Corporate and Special Event Planning

The Traditions of the Wedding Cake

The Traditions of the Wedding Cake

Let’s start with the history of the wedding cake.  The tradition of the wedding cake began in the Roman Empire however it was a loaf of bread, not actually a cake. The groom broke the loaf of bread over the bride’s head as a symbol of his dominance in the marriage and over her. Like with everything else in a wedding, the color of the cake is typically white to symbolize purity. The cutting of the cake is meant to symbolize the first joint task the newly married couple will accomplish together. Feeding each other the cake is a symbol of the commitment the bride and groom are making.

The sugar frosting used on wedding cakes was invented in 1888. The pillars, used to support tiers of layer cake, were invented in 1902. Although not often used anymore, wedding cake toppers are little figures used on the top of the cake as a representation of the bride and groom.

Wedding cakes over the last few years have changed drastically. Wedding cakes are becoming an art. In the last two summers I have heard of many brides opting for cupcakes instead of cakes at all. 
I had a cake at my wedding and wish that I hadn’t. Back 15 years ago I spent $250 that we didn’t have on a cake that most people didn’t eat and the majority of it ended up in the garbage. As I research weddings I come across photographs of some of the most beautiful wedding cakes I have ever seen but I can’t help but get the sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. I got a call from a bride awhile back who was talking to me about their wedding cake. She was talking about how the cake was going to cost them $600!!  $600 for dessert that most people don’t eat???
I don’t want to be a wedding downer or the wedding grinch but there are so many things about a wedding that I just can’t agree spending money on and $600 for a cake that no one eats is one of them. I don’t have a problem spending money on items that will get used, eaten or can be sold afterwards but the cake is one that just drives me crazy. The worst part is that many brides not only have a $600 cake but also provide a dessert buffet with all kinds of bite size treats that get devoured, leaving the cake slices that they paid $1.50 each just to have sliced still sitting on the table right next to the empty treat trays.
This past fall we attended a wedding that had a cookie buffet for dessert. They had little glasses of milk and yummy chocolate chip cookies. We attended another wedding that had a candy buffet. At both those weddings, the buffets were empty by the time we left at the end of the night. Money well spent.
There are so many wedding traditions that simply are not followed anymore and starting your life together in debt for a one day celebration is one of those traditions I think should be abolished. I love weddings and I am in the wedding industry and I do know that money must be spent however I think being smart about what money gets spent is really important. $600 on an item that is essentially used for a photo op is not a smart expense, in my mind.

Julia O’Grady has big vision, fresh ideas and a proven track record in the events industry. She and her team work hard to exceed client expectations and push ITM Events to achieve greater heights. A driven entrepreneur, Julia also manages the business side of ITM Events including human resources, finances, marketing and writing grant and sales proposals. In taking a high level approach to event management, Julia is able to visualize a project from inception to successful execution. She attracts valuable sponsors by offering meaningful opportunities to engage with participants. Julia uses her keen analytical mind to create incredible events that maximize the available budget. When Julia isn’t planning unforgettable events, she loves travelling the world with her family, staying active, and enjoying fine food and martinis.

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