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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

Who You Callin' 'Pro'?

You all know I only feature professionally made Wrecks here on CW. The irony, of course, is that I mistake pro for amateur way more often than the other way around! Heh. So anyway, while I've been told that today's Wrecks are indeed made by real, honest-to-goodness, got-paid-for-their-efforts cake decorators, part of me still refuses to believe it.

I'm still posting them, though, because they're all wedding cakes. Served at people's actual weddings. And even if one was actually made by Aunt Mildred who calls herself a pro but really isn't, I think the world deserves to see this cautionary tale.

Plus, it's kinda funny.

Whew, thank goodness for fresh flowers! Too bad they didn't have enough to hide the fact that the cake is being served on a giant dry-erase board, though.

I also like the gentle placement of the topper. That took "finesse."

Apparently this was taken during The Great Icing Shortage of '73 - back when grooms were stayin' alive with their groovy butterfly collars and the bridesmaids wore Frigidaire green. Looks like they ran out of flowers here too, though, and raided the fruit bowl instead.

Hey, "Love to Highway", right? And getting married doesn't mean the groom has to give up his matchbox cars, right?

And now, a haiku for you, wedding cake:

red bleeding ribbon
did the cake get in a fight?
lumpy icing tiers

And finally, before I show you this last Wreck, I feel I should reiterate that the bride herself *assured* me she paid actual money to an actual professional to make it. Honest. Really.

Now, in the baker's defense, I'm told the insides of all the cake tiers were raw.

How is that a defense, you ask?

Well, um...

Oh! Imagine how hard it must've been to stack all those raw cake tiers! Eh? Yeah, I like to look on the sunny side of things. Which is good, because this cake is so sunny I think I can hear my retinas sizzling.

Hey, Grace C., Tony M., Anony M., Anony #2., & Anita R., "sizzling retinas" would be a terrible band name. Really. Just awful.

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Reader Comments (129)

If "Raw" means vegan, that is no excuse for that neon mess!

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Forget sprinkles...cake #2 has me thinking "I want FROSTING" should be the next shirt slogan!

And I really think I would have cried had the last cake been delivered to my reception.

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered Commentercyn

Sandra Lee promoted un-iced cakes as "fashionable".

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter~* Aria *~

if these cakes were presented at my wedding, i would shoot the baker lol

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter~Nikki~

Well, I guess that's a divided highway!

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDW

I REALLY shouldn't have looked at those - I'm getting married next week! Thank goodness I gave the bakery a paint sample so there won't be any confusion about which shade of yellow my cake should be! (Fingers crossed!)

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'm totally with WolvieGirl... What is a Highwab? Because I don't see a "y"...

July 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney

The yellow one looks as though someone went nuts with Playdoh which makes it that much more yummy looking...

July 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnneke (Mudhooks)

Ah, the Highwab TO Love. (Perhaps the person who took the order gently suggested 'of', only to be told in no uncertain terms that the word in question is 'TO'. I always think of a journey, not a destination, but it's 'TO', so there.)

You know, where two cars drive side-by-side in the same direction on a two-lane road (passing contest, perhaps?), another one drives into a waterfall and a truck drives down the middle of a stream (so much for aquatic life -- hey, watch out for the waterfall!).

Maybe the new word and the curious vehicle placements were the wreckerator's subtle revenge...

wv: mosama. Not going there.

July 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

I think I would simply refuse to accept any of these, and go down to the grocery store for a couple of sheet cakes.

July 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAviatrix

Raw doesn't mean vegan, it means without baking. You can make stuff out of other non-traditional stuff that doesn't get baked to be a 'cake' - or specifically over 110 degrees, I think.

I'm not entirely sure what you would make a raw cake out of though, but it would probably involve sunflower seeds.

July 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly

Oh jebus. If only you could post epilogues for these cakes along the lines of "and the bride took the baker to small claims court where she recouped all her money plus damages and the baker was ridden out of town on a rail never to be heard from again."

Then maybe I could sleep tonight.

July 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristine

Alternate haiku ending:

lumpy icing, tears.

July 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMiles Johnson

Wow, just wow. I can't believe these decorators get paid for these things.

July 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMary

How awesome would it be if the second cake was for a nudist wedding?

July 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

@earlleen: by your definitions (which I really like) the lady who made my wedding cake was either a semi-professional or an ameteur, and she also happened to be the mum of one of my bridesmaids. She basically just charged me for ingredients and time, and the result was stunning. She was a true artist, the filigree wedding bells she made out of icing were incredible. She showed me the cake at various stages of completion, to be sure it was what I wanted. Now that's true professionalism.

July 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWolvie Girl

Oh, that first cake can't be a "wedding" cake... it's a cake for a FUNERAL... because it looks like 3 caskets stacked on top of each other!

:) Mags

July 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMags

Wait! You mean that last cake didn't even TASTE GOOD?


July 12, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterwildmuff

What does "Love to Highway" even mean?

I'd make some assumptions, but I'd be insulting certain demographics so I won't even try.

July 12, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAi

Honestly.... I'm not sure why anyone would assume that, in this case, the term "raw" meant "vegan" or that the bride ordered a "raw" cake. Quite obviously, "in the baker's defence" is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the fact that the cake looks like it is melting because it wasn't fully cooked and was, therefor, not holding its shape.

Very straight-forward, if you ask me.

July 12, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnneke (Mudhooks)

Cake #2 would have been pretty if it had marzipan or fondant fruit or autumn leaves or something on it (in much smaller scale...).

July 12, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnneke (Mudhooks)

OK, I am gonna be a bride soon, and if I were to end up with a cake such as these (I won't, because we ordered a tiramisu instead)...

...I wouldn't cry.

I'd laugh my @ss off!! :)

Then I'd eat the cake.

WV: unsproun

I have no idea what funny pun I can turn that into but it just sounds filthy and wrong, like that neon cake.

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJenna

the second cake there looks like it was supposed to be the applesauce spice cake that my usband and i were supposed to have for our wedding cake. (from a martha stewart weddings, now in her recent CAKES book!) it had no frosting, just powdered sugar, but is supposed to have wooden dowels not plastic! and dipped apples on each layer as a garnish. i had the materials and fresh apples and tried to bring in, but was assured they had the same. ours came similar to this with WHITE plastic to support the layers, AND they used half rotton crab apples... and frosted the whole thing (husband and i are not frosting fans)... so NOT what we paid for... rather sad looking like #2

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered Commentercalamity jane

The tall, tiered cake with all of the apples is, I think, a take an a traditional Appalachian Stack Cake. However unfortunate it may look, that really is intentional and probably exactly what they were expecting.

Wikipedia article for Stack Cake:

September 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter28

The one with no frosting is actually a really, really bad copy of a cake featured in The Best of Martha Stewart Weddings book. It is a filled cake that should have a powdered sugar dusting. The original (if you have the book it's on page 173) is MUCH nicer.

October 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Naked cake ashamed.
Fig leaves not enough to hide
the theft of apples.

July 14, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHaiku Joy

I'm a pro, and I know amateur when I see it. C'mon, really?

November 10, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterkristen

I actually wonder if that nakey cakey wasn't meant to be a nod to the lovely tradition of the Appalachian stack cake. That would explain both the nudity and the fruit decor.

March 10, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

The top tier on the second one looks like a tuna sandwich.
Jen I think you missed an opportunity. The last line of your haiku should have been "lumpy icing tears". I think it fits the situation, I'm sure there were tears aplenty.

April 17, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterQuizzly

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