Wedding Cake Toppers - 7 Things to Know

September 18, 2017

Wedding cake toppers have come a long way since the generic, plastic bride and groom from yesteryear. Modern cake toppers can be fun, reflecting the unique personalities of you and your intended, or classic with initials or a beautiful phrase. Cake toppers are also made from several types of materials, the most popular being acrylic or wire and come in a wide variety of sizes that depend on customization. If you are opting to have a cake topper, what do you need to consider when purchasing your cake topper?

  1. Order your wedding cake before you order your cake topper. This advice is contrary to what you may find on websites that sell custom cake toppers. However, from this New Jersey cake designer's point of view, you'll need to know the size of your cake so your topper will fit the top tier and compliment the style of your cake. Your cake designer determines the size of your wedding cake so it only makes practical sense to have the sizing information available for the creator of your cake topper. If your topper is not the correct size (larger than your top cake tier), you have the option to either repurchase the correct size or have the topper overhang the top tier of your wedding cake.
  2. Acrylic Cake Toppers. Acrylic cake toppers are very popular because they are a fully customized and can be very detailed and embellished. This type of cake topper has one (or up to three) pick(s) that is inserted into the top tier of the cake. While they are lightweight and do not require any additional support inside the top tier, they are also incredibly fragile and can snap very easily. Because of the risk of damage, some cake designers or bakeries will ask that you leave the topper at the venue for a venue representative or wedding planner/coordinator to insert into the top tier.
  3. Wire Cake Toppers. These toppers can have a slightly less formal vibe, being fashioned out of twisted wire. Like the acrylic cake toppers, wire toppers are lightweight with a similar pick-style insertion, but are more sturdy and virtually less risk of breaking.
  4. Ceramic Cake Toppers. Ceramic toppers take the cake when it comes to the traditional and romantic. I have found that some of our clients like to add a sentimental touch or honor parents or grandparents by using their saved cake topper. Ceramic toppers also tend to be gifts, sometimes given at showers or engagement parties. Often times, ceramic toppers are larger items. This is where communication and planning with your cake designer is very important. Ceramic toppers will require additional support in the top tier of your wedding cake, both for the weight and so the topper doesn't sway. Be sure to show your topper to your designer. As with acrylic cake toppers, check to see who will add your beautiful topper to your cake.
  5. Metal Cake Toppers. Metal-type cake toppers tend to be the most sturdy with less risk of breakage. Because they are not customized, they make great initial toppers and will also come in a wide variety of phrases. If you choose to use 2 or more metal cake toppers to create a monogram, sizing is very important so that the width of all of the initials and/or ampersand fit perfectly on your top tier.
  6. Timing. If you are opting for a custom acrylic or wire cake topper, know the lead time required by the creator. Especially during popular wedding months, custom toppers can take 6 weeks or longer. Also take into consideration the mailing time and choose expedited delivery if there are any concerns.
  7. You Don't Always Need One. Does every wedding cake need a cake topper? No. Some styles of wedding cakes look beautiful with a clean top. You can also consider having your cake designer make a full topper of sugar flowers (the benefit is that you can keep them and they are not toxic, as with real flowers). For a fresh, modern look, think about adding one, large gorgeous sugar flower to the top right side of your cake.

Questions? I'd love to help! Send me a note here or schedule your wedding cake tasting at our Bergen County cake parlor.