Monday, December 13, 2010

"Just Serve a 'Cheap' Sheet Cake" she said

Well, this one pushed my hot button! Brides, please pay attention to this one. Please. I'm about to teach you how to NOT insult your guests at your wedding.

I actually saw an online article entitled "How to Buy Cheap Wedding Cakes". Now I understand in this day of a tough economy that we are all on the lookout on how to save money. And weddings can be expensive. So I know that anyplace where costs can be cut, all of us should endeavor to cut them. I get that.

However, I've never seen an article entitled "How to Buy a Cheap Diamond Engagement Ring" (bride, how would you react if you saw your groom studying up on such an article?) or "How to Buy a Cheap Wedding Gown" (or if mom was reading a series of these?).

But here I find an article (written, by the way, by someone who, based on her bio, is not in the wedding business and definitely not a cake expert) who is encouraging a bride, on her wedding day, to "oh, just go get a cheap cake!"

Wait ... it gets better.

Further down in the article is the tired and uninformed opinion about buying a fake cake (see my article on why THIS is false!).

She says a couple can "cut" the cake of their dreams and "serve a cheap sheet cake to wedding guests."

Serve a "cheap sheet cake."

Doesn't that make you sad? It does me. It makes me sad that someone with some fake and self-imposed authority on wedding cakes is regurgitating the same tired, worn out, untrue advice about cakes and encouraging brides to serve their family, their friends, their guests who have elected to incur some personal expense of their own to come and share in the couples wedding day .... she tells these brides, "oh just serve 'em some cheap sheet cake."

This article of mine is in danger of going on and on because I am just in SHOCK that someone would actually say that to a bride. Am I getting my frustration across? Because the only thing that would appall me more is to hear a bride say, "That's a good idea! I'll spend a fortune on my venue, my dress, my bar bill and my fabulous dinner. Then I'll just slap some "cheap sheet cake" in front of my guests!"

As I take a minute to take a deep breath, let me clarify that a low-cost cake to fit in a budget is not a bad thing. Many highly skilled decorators have many options for brides to enable them to have a wonderfully decorated and great tasting cake at their wedding. That's not what I'm talking about.

I'm talking about serving guests cheap tasting sheet cake: Mass produced, frozen for months in a warehouse, shipped to a big box grocery store bakery, already iced when it arrives, pulled out of the freezer the day before it is due so a decorator can spend 4 minutes putting a border with icing that from a big bucket that is commercially made.

Most people can tell the difference between this grocery store sheet cake and a wedding cake that is custom made just for the bride's special day. That is part of what is irritating me on this. That someone just so nonchalantly suggests a "cheap sheet cake" is good enough and that a bride shouldn't care if her guests actually LIKE the cake or not. That, too, is just sad.

Brides, the key to being able to stay in budget involves careful planning, including control of your headcount (see my "60% Rule" article), good comparison shopping, working with a wedding planner (yes, they DO save you money!), and being realistic about what you can afford.

But please. Please. DON'T slap your guests in the face with an attitude of they are only worth some "cheap sheet cake" for your wedding. Plan accordingly. And treat your guests with the respect they deserve.


  1. So true. I always look forward to the wedding cake and would be highly insulted if I were served some "cheap sheet cake" especially if I saw that the bride went all out on her dress, venue etc.

  2. I hear you! There are ways to cut costs with a wedding without insulting your guests. The food and the cake are the two things the guests will remember most... and if they're served a cheap, dry, nasty WalMart cake they'll remember it and tell EVERYONE about it! Bad news travels twice as fast as good! You CAN get a nice dress, venue, cake, etc. without going overboard... just don't go cheap!