The Etiquette of Cutting a Wedding Cake

We asked our wedding etiquette experts some tough questions, from how to cut a wedding cake to the origins of the groom's cake. Although the first slice is cut with everyone's eyes on it, catering companies usually take the rest of the cake to a private area to finish cutting it. That's because cutting a wedding cake can be a complicated job, especially when there are a lot of layers to take apart. In fact, most catering companies start serving the cake to guests long before the cut is complete. If you had to cut the cake yourself, you would miss out on the opportunity to be on the dance floor and listen to some of your favorite songs.

Instead, crush the first portion, give your partner a glass of bubbles, and let the professionals handle it so you can continue enjoying the party. Customs evolve with the times, and today the ceremonial cutting of the wedding cake is still a popular and significant activity for wedding receptions. Along with the wedding cake, the groom's cake can take on any shape and flavor, whether it's a traditional rich chocolate cake filled with liqueur or the funfetti of his childhood, carved in the shape of his precious grill or adorned with the logo of his favorite team. Talk to your baker about the strategy of what levels each flavor includes for a more even division, and consider a slightly larger cake; your guests will want to try both offerings. The exact origins of this tradition are debated, but the bridegroom's cake has long been a mainstay at weddings in the Southern United States. If you want to know more about this wedding tradition, how to cut a wedding cake and much more, read all about it below.

While this tradition is no longer as common, most of the time it is replaced by separate wedding gifts. It's still a good gesture (and a great way to avoid wasting cake) to offer boxed slices to guests at the end of the night as a takeaway treat. For added convenience, some couples like to have wedding tasks focused on them such as throwing the bouquet of flowers and cutting the wedding cake one after another. Then make a connecting cut to form a wedge using the cake knife to remove it and place it on a plate. It's a long-standing tradition for the bride and groom to keep the top of their wedding cake to share on their first anniversary.

An old superstition suggests that the bride sleeps with a piece of the wedding cake under her pillow to inspire her future wife's dreams. While everyone gathers around you and at the cake, you can ask your DJ to play a song that you've selected beforehand that is related to food or just one that everyone knows. While you and your spouse might have some fun jokes or a traditional “crushed cake” before and during cutting, you don't really need to say much. Once you've decided on color combinations for details such as your wedding dress, floral arrangements and place itself, you can select a matching pastel design. Of course, as with most wedding expenses there's nothing that says that either groom's family or couple themselves can't foot bill for wedding cake.

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