3 things to know about Wedding Cake pricing (How about “Wedding Tax”?)

Are you planning your wedding day and feeling like everything seems rather expensive?

Planning your wedding day is such a beautiful time.

Remembering my own: it was full of excitement and anticipation. Searching for the right venue, choosing the dress, imagining what the cake would look like and the list goes on. It was wonderful and quite overwhelming…

And then there is the cost of it all, which can be quite substantial, and very important to consider especially when your budget is tight.

Wedding Cakes Buckinghamshire

“Wedding Tax”

One thing that often comes up is a fear of being overcharged for services, just because it is a wedding.

Unfortunately, sometimes it does happen.

But it is also true that the vast majority of suppliers would never take advantage of their couples like that.

As a cake designer myself, I know the cost of a cake can be more than my lovely couples would first think. This is because they are rarely aware of the cost of ingredients and other necessary supplies to create a cate to a high standard fit for a wedding.

And they are also unaware of the number of working hours I would put into creating the sugar flowers or other decorations for their lovely cake.

This is very similar with most suppliers. A photographer for example would spend at least a full working week with long hours touching up each of your beautiful photos in photoshop, editing hundreds of images and creating your lovely photo books and videos. They surely cannot do all that without charging an hourly rate.

It is not only what is happening on the day, there is usually so much more going into the work of a wedding supplier.

Wedding Cakes Buckinghamshire

Genuine Cake Pricing

In case of cakes, you would certainly find a wide range of prices out there.

There are more famous cake designers who will naturally charge a greater hourly rate and so be more expansive that the average.

When it comes to reasonable pricing, there are a few things to consider.

One is the price of ingredients.

My clients and couples often think that I buy things at a trade discount and in large amounts.

Unfortunately, this is not true. Most small business cake makers buy their ingredients in the supermarket or in the farm shop, the same way as yourselves.

For example, a single tier 8” round (6” tall) chocolate cake to make cost about £35 to make. This is without cake boards, box, other materials, sugar-paste covering, any decoration, or any hourly rate for the time spent on it.

In terms of time to make it would be at least a couple of hours (baking and filling).

Then there would come the covering adding at least another hour (yes, it does take that long if done with care).

Depending on the design, the decoration can take anything from 2 hours to 20 hours or more.

I often hand paint my birthday cakes, this usually means a minimum of 6 hours work, plus an additional 3-4 hours creating cake toppers. Not to mention if sugar flowers or other intricate decorating methods are involved. A single stem of realistic sugar rose complete with foliage takes 8-10 hours to complete to a high standard.

All in all, and average single tier birthday cake would cost £150, this is with a very simple design. Charging for 10 hours of work and £50 for cost. Surely £10 hourly rate is not all that excessive.

Wedding Cakes Midlands

Wedding Cake Prices

I always charge for my wedding cakes the same way as I would for any other cake. Considering the design, the cost, the time and skill needed to create that special cake.

The price difference come from the size, the fact that with more tiers more supplies are needed and also more time to spend on them.

With a tiered cake the preparation and baking time will be more as well, and of course the ingredients. More base boards needed, dowels to give the cake structure and so on.

Large cakes also need more than one person to handle and deliver and each of these persons should be paid for their work.

The other major difference is the amount and type of decoration.

Large numbers of sugar flowers are often called for and it takes a long time, skill and effort to make these to a high standard.

Royal icing structures and hand piped details are also popular, and time consuming too.

It is a truly beautiful line of work to be part of the wedding day of so many couples. Such happiness and hopeful anticipation in the air. And I know I always do the most possible for my couples and work with them to the best of my ability and always for a fair price.

And in truth , this is the case with most suppliers in the industry.