My Other Blog

What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

I Think I've Just Been Punk'd

If you guys thought the first wedding disaster cake was bad, hold on to your pantaloons.

Alright, let's set the scene: here's what the bride asked for, only in all white with minor green accents.

Now, I would tell you to take a moment to prepare yourselves for the horror you're about to witness, but frankly no amount of time would be adequate. So just go ahead and scroll down now.

I'll give you a moment.


Back in your seat now? Good. Because believe it or not, there's more. Aw yeah.

1) The top tier still had the Springform pan under it.

2) The cake "base" is a metal sign.

3) I swear I am not making this up.

Ok, so the bottom levels are covered with a fondant lumpier than the Bearded Lady's thighs, and the top tier is the wrong shape and isn't even iced completely. I see all that, and yet you know what the funniest bit to me is? Those green lines up the sides, which I can only assume are attempts at "ribbons": not only are they as unlike ribbons as icing can possibly get, but they don't even line up! Somehow that last bit of lunacy just sends me over the edge.

(This post is also the first in a new category: Missed Marks. Because nothing is quite so wrecktastic as when you see what it was supposed to look like.)

Now like you, I'm sure, I was highly skeptical about this being a "professional" cake. However, the e-mail came from the bride herself, and she seemed outraged enough to be telling the truth. (Yes, a replacement cake was procured at the eleventh hour.) I can only assume the icing and generic tips in the photo were purchased to try and "fix" the cake after it was picked up. In fact, Vicky C., if you're reading this, you might want to chime in on the Comments section now, just to back me up here.

[crickets chirping]

Vicky? Er, Vicky, c'mon now, this isn't funny.

[crickets still chirping]

Seriously, Vicky: tell the people I'm telling the truth. Vicky? Er...Vicky?


UPDATE: YES!! Vicky the bride has spoken!!! Check the Comments section for her assurances of this cake's validity. (You'll have to scroll waaaay down; you guys are certainly letting your voices be heard on this one, aren't you?)

« The Painted Cake Cometh | Main | Fan Wrecks »

Reader Comments (277)

Okay...I guess I'm a little skeptical. What kind of store did she order it from? Really....

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterA Blogging Babcock

This really looks like a child's effort. Even the worst cake decorators, and I've seen some bad, bad cakes, will put their cakes on something other than tinfoil (even tinfoil on a metal signboard).

If the bride truly received this cake as her wedding cake, I honestly can't imagine what she saw as a sample. Who orders a cake without seeing a sample of what the decorator can do? If this was the best the decorator could do, why on earth did the bride go with this decorator? My friend is a cake decorator (she does fine work), and some of the brides she's got to deal with will haggle their little hearts out, trying to get a beautiful cake for next to nothing; but none of them would pay a cent for something this awful.

You may, unfortunately, have been punk'd ^^;;

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterophelia

I call foul. I think someone made an intention wreck to get on your page. The Marshmallows, are no doubt there because MMF (marshmallow fondant) is popular among home-based cake decorators. Also, the picture was obviously taken by the person who made the cake right where it was made, and not by anyone else (any bride would refuse delivery of a cake like that--and since when do brides pick up cakes and take them to their own kitchen? They're usually delivered right to the venue). WE are the ones who have been punk'd.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTara

The mini-marshmallows are for the cocoa. Faced with a cake like that, there are two choices. Drink heavily (which will only make the cake worse) or consume lots of chocolate. Cocoa is a nice, liquid chocolate. But, of course, you need the marshmallows to go with it...

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCat Skyfire

I bet the mini marshmallows were to make the ring of dots around each layer.

I still like the plaid cake the best (or worst, however you see it), although this is a worthy 2nd place.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

My take...
That is kitchen foil badly wrapped around a cereal box as the 'cake plate'.
The tips are ones you can buy at the grocery store for about $3.
The 'pastry bag' is a Ziploc baggie.
The mini marshmallows are there, because s/he was attempting to make marshmallow fondant.
The darker green looks like canned frosting; the lighter was the same with added powdered sugar.
Leave the pan on?! Do you know how much those things cost??
No cake decorator made that - not even someone trying to make a nice cake made that... Someone trying to get a picture posted on your site made that.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFeisty_Granny

it looks like the fondant from the top layer was peeled off in the attempt to fix it. the green of the bottom border is smeared on top of the second tier.

maybe they were making marshmallow fondant to fix it?

but yes. i agree that thing is horrific. my eyes are trying to vomit. :P

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterlilypie

Um, Brett, if you can't figure out what is wrong with the first cake you may be qualified to be a cake wreckerator. Nothing is wrong with it. It is the good cake. Followed by bad cake. Good/bad cakes. The point of the post.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I think the mini marshmallows were going to be used to get that beaded effect around the lower edge of each box (see the top photo for the desired effect.)

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermaisnon

I'm in the list on non-believers on this one. Why would the bride even pick it up? The marshmallow bag leads me to believe its MMF on the cake - again, a home-made cake. The green icing at hand...the dark green accents on the top tier (supposedly from the baker) is ON the light green (supposedly from the "fixing.")
If the bride picked up the cake looking like that, she deserved to have that wrecktastic design.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCakeEater

@ Brett (September 8, 2008 10:20 AM)
The cake picture at the top is the reference pic the bride gave the baker to show her what she wanted. Except instead of a teal cake she wanted it to be white with green accents. Then the baker delivered their version down below.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

Wow. This one makes me very sad, as opposed to the plaid one which made me laugh. This one crossed the line. Maybe the sad part is that the bride thought it was salvagable. I agree with you Jen, the ribbon outlines are the most befuddling part. But it is all very confusing. I want to know who hires bakers for a wedding without seeing some examples of their work. I don't get how anyone could present "work" in this state.


September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Brett, darling, you need to read the text accompanying the pictures. The top picture is not a wreck, but it is what the bottom picture is supposed to look like. Oh wait... if you didn't read the text with the images, then there is no way you will read my comment! LOL. Here's hoping you figure it out...

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterErica

Had this happened at my wedding, I would have gone completely Bridezilla on the bakery. Fortunately we were smart enough to use a reputable bakery, rather than letting a epileptic, colorblind squirrel try to make our cake...

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Are you seriously kidding me right now?! Oh's beyond bad.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

I'm also calling shenanigans. I don't believe anyone would pay good money for this cake under any circumstances. Has Vicky ever responded?

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Of course it's very possible that I have indeed been punk'd, but here are a few of the e-mailed details to answer some of your questions:

1) The bride's parents picked the cake up the night before the wedding. That's why it wasn't rejected at pick-up and the photo is in someone's kitchen.

2) The baker was a member of the groom's family, but was supposedly a pro with "tons of experience". No portfolio, though. (There's your warning sign!)

3) The replacement cake was a simple grocery store sheet cake.

@the courteous chihuaha: LOL - my apologies. I didn't see any five o'clock shadow in your profile pic. :)

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJen

I know what the marshmallows are for! They're for lighting on fire and throwing at the baker!!!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

I'm not buyin' it. That counter and backsplash are clearly residential. And there is the icing right next to it. You've definitely been punked...or Vicky was...

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLori

Blogger whywouldyouknitthat said...

... Do these people operate out of a Uhaul or something?

Yes. As they drive down the road, apparently.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCalc

no, that can't be real. I think you've been punk'd.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterreadingwritingliving

I once had to decorate (with flowers) a wedding cake, which, when it started to fall apart during delivery, the man who delivered it laid it on a up-turned sheet pan, which was about 10" too wide for the square cake. She put it on the cake table that way, and I had to find a way to disguise the aluminum pan that stuck out on all sides. It was horrible!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterkenju

The baker was a member of the groom's family? Oh snap that should make family get togethers a heap load of fun.

"Oh look, here comes Aunt Ruth, the one who RUINED my wedding."

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAn Apron Straitjacket

Since nobody else has mentioned it yet, don't the lower layers with their stripes kind of resemble tidy whitey underwear? Ewww.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Certainly it would be extra super funny if it could be verified as a true wedding disaster, but even if it turns out to be just a home-baked cake with less lofty aspirations ... it's still pretty darn funny. Something about sagging fondant and melty icing makes me giggle every time.

Love the site; keep up the good work!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermetabonbon

Even if it is a fake, it's still a horrible cake. Definitely made me laugh.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJulie

I think what really makes this Still Life with Cake complete are the ghetto-licious accessories:

~The bag o' marshmallows, which were used... for what, exactly? Filling?

~The rack full of god-knows-what-all in the background.

~The ziplock-baggie-as-pastry-bag (oh no they di’int!) with four UNUSED frosting tips. Which begs the question of how the “ribbons” were done...

~The leftover puke green frosting on the plate that the baker’s rugrats presumedly dragged their fingers through.

~And the coup de grace: that narsty blue towel RIGHT NEXT TO THE CAKE.

All in all, a nice addition to the “baker’s” “portifolio”. Yeetzah!

Nancy ~

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

If MY parents picked that up for me and didn't reject it (even if the baker was a future member of the family), I'd kill them.


September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Words wouldn't even begin to describe the rage I would feel if this were my wedding cake. It's almost unbelievable how the "baker" allowed this to be sent out. Hopefully this is a lesson learned: NEVER order a wedding cake without seeing a portfolio and if the portfolio isn't believable (such as the pictures look like they were lifted from the internet or a magazine), do your research. Don't let bad cakes happen to good people.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTanya

I can barely stop laughing to comment! There are tons of real "kitchen professionals" out there but this is not from one of them!!! when i saw the comment that the bottom layers were fondant i just lost it. (btw, the marshmallows are probably a fondant ingredient). This absolutely "takes the cake" for worst wedding cake ever!!!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMaire

Wow - I think my 7-year-old could do better than that!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCrochet by Momma J

i'm shocked and amazed that the bride's parents thought this was an acceptable cake when they picked it up... i call fake!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

That is why you get a plain cake and awesome fillings.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCheza

I'm with Tara -- how would someone end up with a picture taken at the place of creation?

I think cake wrecks has hit the tragedy of the commons phase -- it's a bummer, but also a compliment to how original the idea of it is, and how well you've executed it.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSherry

That is the ugliest mess I've ever seen, and thanks to you I've seen some pretty ugly cakes lol

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSunshine

wow. fake or not, it's ridiculously horrible. the decorator was either sobbing and trembling with terror as they were working on it, or laughing hysterically as they acted out their plan for revenge toward the bride.
i'm a kitchen baker. i use MMF. i live in a redneck town and still my 5 year old would have done better.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDana

Real of Fake... it's still a freakin' redneck wedding cake from hell.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFluffy Cow

*snork* Caligirl9 - "Is 4H Green even the right green?"

IMHO, no green is the right green in this scenario.

Bride's parents picked it up the night before? Stale much?

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTheOtherJennifer

The more I look at this, the more I'm glad Mr. Twistie and I chose to have homemade individual fruit tarts over a pro-made cake.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTwistie

I can't believe this is a professional cake. The decorating supplies and green icing slop is all over the counter. Someone just wanted to be on your site I think!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKarie

Oh My Goodness!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKatrina

too funny! your site is a hoot!!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterletters to elijah

My own wedding cake arrived in the wrong shape and the wrong colors, but despite that, it looked beautiful and tasted amazing, so we didn't make an issue of it.

But, this reminds me about a bride who had her mother-in-law offer to sew all the bridesmaids' dresses. They were supposed to be replicas of the dinner gown from "Titanic", an elegant dress embroidered with intricate beadwork. A few hours before the wedding, only one of the dresses had arrived and it was a monstrosity of cheap satin with huge loops of silver sequins randomly sewn on. They had to scramble to find replacement gowns. (Here's the full story:

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterorianna2000

I think you're being Punk'd as well. There's green icing in a ziplock bag. Most likely someone used that as their piping bag without a tip to put icing on the cake. There are marshmellows there, which probably means someone was making MMF. I really don't buy this one. Well, other than the fact that it's ugly.

I fear this will be an on-going problem you'll have, finding the real wrecks from the fakes. At least the homage cakes will tell you!

And to the poster who said most home bakers prefer MMF. They're wrong. A lot of people use it, yes, but not that many. It's much easier to pre-buy something decent tasting

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

Suddenly, I'm not so sorry that we had no wedding cake at all. And I'm feeling a little less bad for how pathetic my attempts at birthday cake were for my 1-year-old.

(besides, her cake was DELISH)

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommentertriLcat

I can't even handle that.


September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAzúcar

Oh my gosh! I just found your blog and I am laughing so SO hard right now! Thanks for making such a great blog!

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRobyn

My guess is that it melted, which is why the fondant looks like cellulite and the icing is droopy looking.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth

The second one was not a purchased professional cake. The supplies are there on the kitchen sink. Probably someone practicing fondant for the first time. As the other commenters state- no one would even accept it from a bakery. Now- she may have had a friend make it, but I really don't believe it's from a bakery.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Was it worth posting? For sure not a real wreck.

Definately Punk'd if you believe otherwise.

September 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

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