It’s finally here – that time in the wedding planning process when you decide on your wedding cake topper.
Do wedding cakes need a topper?
How tall should a wedding cake topper be?
What do wedding cake toppers cost?
Short answer, It depends…
Just how do you decide on your perfect wedding cake topper when there are a ba-zillion wedding cake toppers to look through on Pinterest, dozens of ETSY wedding cake topper shops to ‘favorite’, and too many other wedding decisions competing for your attention. And you can’t leave this decision to the last minute. Your wedding cake baker most definitely needs to know so she/he can make sure your cake can support your cake topper.
So what do you do?
Wedding Cake Topper Types: Traditional vs Modern vs Hobbyist
What fits you as a couple? You could be a traditional couple who loves to play golf (hobby) or a modern couple that loves vintage materials (traditional) or a mountain climbing couple that loves urban design (modern). It’s all in how you mix the match or match the mix. We are all a little bit of all three. Which one works for you? After that we’ll browse materials, colors and price ranges.
Traditional Cake Toppers
Traditional wedding cake toppers usually involve hand-painted porcelain – posed, dressed up and perfect for highly decorated white wedding cakes. These often are or can become family heirlooms and reused from one generation to the next. For same sex couples this may be an impossible find because it’s hard to find figurines that work without going whimsical, stereotypic, or cliche.
Slightly less traditional, yet classic, are figurine pets and children to add to the top of the cake or on the tiers. Porcelain figurines also come in a variety of custom hair colors, skin colors, attire, and poses. If you see mostly toppers that are white and blond, don’t get discouraged. When you don’t see yourself represented – ASK – or let the owner know you are taking your business elsewhere. It’s a great opportunity to push and ask for more inclusivity and cultural diversity in the wedding industry.
Modern Cake Toppers
Acrylic or wood Laser-cut words and phrases are cake toppers that can be used to display a quote, your names, or just your initials. These toppers take an updated approach to a traditional décor piece. There are some beautiful choices out there with acrylic colors in solids, glitter or with metallic finishes. There’s the option of stained wood cut calligraphy which adds an elegant and whimsical feel to any cake design. These are a great way to personalize your wedding day.
Laser cut toppers are easily customizable to commemorate your special day with names, initials, or the date of your wedding. Wood toppers and acrylic blocks can be heavy and require advance planning with the baker. Acrylic cake toppers are often thin (1/4”), somewhat fragile, and will include cake stakes to hold them up. Stakes can be designed to break off easily so that you can store or display your topper after.
A little less modern in the traditional sense – see what I did there – are Silhouette Cake Toppers. They are the ‘vintage’ modern and can be whimsical by adding silhouettes of balloons, words, pets or special items that relate to the two of you. Silhouette Cake Toppers are usually acrylic, but can also be found in wood.
Wire Wedding Cake Toppers are also popular, particularly for brides and grooms wanting a casual, modern vibe. These are not ‘hangers on’ from days-gone-by. These are modern toppers with-a-twist to spell out a variety of different words, monograms or just spell out your name(s) in a fun twisted script. If you are having a dessert table full of trendy Bundt Cakes, a few of these trendy toppers certainly are a nice finishing touch your guests will notice
Hobbyist Cake Toppers
If you have a passion, or love doing a particular thing together, you can show that off on your cake top. There are custom and ready made topper designs for golfers, motorcyclists, dog lovers, beach lovers, and everyone in between! The more meaningful and personalized to your relationship, the better. Hobbyist cake toppers come in a variety of materials – porcelain, wood, acrylic and plastic.
Creative Wedding Cake Toppers and Unique Cake Topper Ideas
Having a Beach wedding? A pair of Adirondack chairs embraces that sun-kissed vibe and romance. A woodland wedding? How about some antlers laser cut out of wood. A garden wedding? What about a topiary initial cake topper. Maybe it’s just simply the BEST DAY EVER! in a custom acrylic color or a beautiful laser cut wreath cake topper for a rustic wedding. If you have a particular theme, there is a cake topper for it.
Same Sex Cake Toppers
When Derek and I were looking for a wedding cake topper we did not have as many choices when it comes to materials and expression. Same sex wedding cake toppers can be as simple as an acrylic Mr. & Mr. to a Bride and Bride Same Sex Wedding Cake Topper Set in Hand Painted Porcelain. Custom acrylic cake toppers with names and dates because they are easy to customize and also in a variety of colors, materials and designs.
Themed Cake Toppers
Cake toppers can also come in a wide range of themes. Disney, Game of Thrones, Vampires, Star Wars, Sports, Harry Potter, super heros, and on and on. Themed weddings with a wedding cake topper to match will take your event from cool to AMAZING. It’s your wedding – go for it.
Funny Cake Toppers
Who doesn’t love a good laugh. Fun and funny cake toppers can range from Batman Legos, funny figurine wedding cake toppers, cake toppers that look like you with bobble heads, and some over-the-top expressive cake toppers.
Floral Cake Toppers
Boho Weddings are famous for amazing floral wedding cake toppers. Dahlias, Tropical leaves, Roses, Eucalyptus, Paper Flowers, Grapevine are all great features on your cake and make a beautiful ode to nature. Check with your baker about whether your live toppers are edible, or ask for sugar versions instead.
Materials and Size
Wire, stone, acrylic, porcelain, wood, plastic, flowers, and paper are all available materials. It comes down to personal preference, keepsake value, cost and vision. I actually think this is the least difficult part of the decision. Once you have your look and feel of your wedding down you’ll know what material would fit best.
Size is largely determined by the size of the cake. If your cake is tiered, it is the top tier size you will want to consider. Most stand alone cake toppers are about 6 inches tall. The more custom your wedding cake topper, the more control you will have over the size, but know that a topper can easily look top heavy. Weight also becomes an issue as size increases. Get your cake baker or wedding planner involved to help you with your decision.
And you don’t need a cake topper for your wedding cake. Some cake designs are best left alone.
Wedding Cake Topper Pricing
Wedding cake topper pricing varies widely. Ready made cake toppers are generally less expensive than custom designs, but still will vary based on materials and personalization. You’ll have to decide what makes sense to you on cost. At Taylor Street we have wedding cake toppers that start at under $30 and have custom wedding cake toppers that could cost you upwards of $100. We try to offer a variety of prices and materials.
Getting married is an incredibly magical and sometimes stressful experience. Wedding cakes are deeply rooted in tradition. Deciding on your cake topper is a little wedding decision with a surprising amount of pressure behind it. Whether you prefer a traditional, modern topper or something with a lot of glitter and flair, we’re sure that Derek and I can help you find that perfect fit here on Taylor Street.
Contact us if you need some help finding what you need. We can check our resources to see what is possible.