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

Doilies and Squiggles and Spray Paint, Oh My!

It's time again for everyone's favorite:  WEDDING WRECKS!

(Well, everyone but the bride.)

(And possibly the baker who may or may not have been assaulted by the aforementioned bride)


What the bride wanted:

 What the bride got:


Hey, Jen has a dummy cake in her office this exact shade of Wilton Spray-On Blue!


Don't ask.

(Or do; Jen's rather proud of it.)

 Moving on...


 What the bride wanted:

 What the bride got:

I like to imagine a bakery order sheet somewhere with the words, "Pink, brown, and squiggly" all checked off.


(Btw, "Pink, brown, & squiggly" is the name of my topless Vegas act.)


 What the bride wanted:

 What the bride got:

To be fair, it's probably just the lighting.  Really, really bad lighting.  Like hospital lighting.  Or maybe morgue lighting. Heck, I bet every body looks like this in a morgue.

 [Later that day:

 "John, why do we have 300 emails from morticians?!"]


 What the bride wanted:

 What the bride got:

  When only the best will do: Doilies.


Thanks to P. C., Jenni S., Brett R., Esther G., and Jen for keeping the baby cake locked in the closet and away from the knives...

« Colon: Blown | Main | The World's Most Ironic Back-To-School Cake »

Reader Comments (76)

My reaction for that last cake was: "<AUDIBLE GASP> NO..." I think I would cry. Are those aligator clips on the butterflies?

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJessie

Okay, you know I love you guys, but I think you're a little harsh on that first one. The odd thing is that the brush embroidery looks great, so I can't figure out why they messed up the bottom. The blue is basically a "Tiffany Blue" which is very popular with brides.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

Okay, one slight edit. I think the original cake is more of a wedgewood blue, and they GOT Tiffany blue. Sorry for the confusion. :)

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

These wedding wrecks always confuse me so much. Do the bride and groom to be not see any of the bakers actual work before they order the cake from the baker? Do they pay for these wrecks?

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShannon

Wow. Here I was thinking, even with my limited skill set, I could do those...

pink, brown and squiggly.... *headdesk*

Is there a black coffin in the middle of the bottom layer with the doilies????

I'm at a loss.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDi

No "Sychronous Parodization" today. I have no idea what Sharyn is going to write,
I only know it will be awsum! I blame my loss of synchronization on these cakes. They just make me sad.
So sad.
Sometimes I feel so sad...

Anything, Sharyn? Nope, the power's gone.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSuBee

If there was ever a legitimate cause for murder, these cakes are the evidence! I feel so sorry for the brides! I really like the brown, pink, squiggles cake in its ORIGINAL version... (John, I think I'll pass on your Vegas act...) The last cake, heavens, looks like a kid did it! It looks as much like the model cake as I look like Cote de Pablo!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDonkaloosa

Topless Vegas act... Yep. Lost the coffee on that one.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteroneguy

Even the groom figurine on the last cake looked distraught about having to sit on this cake wreck. That doesn't even come remotely close to the original. Bakers: If you don't think you can handle the job, just say NO!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSharon's Edible Art

Sung to “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again”

What do you get when you fall in love?
A cake that is going to cost you double
And chances are it will cause trouble
I’ll never buy a cake again
I’ll never buy a cake again

First there’s a picture, so divine
The baker said, “Easy!” when he phoned you
NEVER trust what your baker told you
I’ll never buy a cake again
Dontcha know I’ll never buy a cake again

Don’t tell me that is what I bought
It’s Wilton blue and the lace is blots
I don’t think that I need remind you
I have a contract here that binds you

Need I point out my cake was brown?
With lovely pink dots and swirls unwinding?
That squiggly pink thing there is blinding
I’ll never buy a cake again
And my Mom’s gonna stab you with a pen

I don’t think that I need remind you
I have a contract here that binds you

Where did you learn to roll fondant?
The cake that I chose should have been easy
Your cherry blossoms make me queasy
I’ll never buy a cake again
I’ll never buy a cake again

What did you think when you brought this out?
There are only so many ways to spoil these
Can’t camouflage bad cake with doilies
You’ll never bake a cake again
When I’m through you’ll never bake a cake again

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSharyn

Wreck #1 - They get points for at least TRYING to make it look like the requested cake.

Wrecks #2 & 4 - What the... how in any universe is that even similar to the design?

Wreck #3 - I've definitely seen that one before, but I don't know if it was on CW or something else.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMegan M.

I've seen so many wrecks like this, but the last cake illustrates it perfectly. Look at the "what the bride wanted" now look at the actual picture, specifically the bride and groom "topper".

Now put those two together. (Remember: Most bride's pick their own topper)

Are you going to tell me that even if the baker has made the pretty cake, that topper wasn't going to ruin it?

Jen, please tell me you have a folder of wedding cakes that are gorgeous but the toppers just don't match. PLEEEZE. (it would make my day)

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDelphine

What The Fern! I weep for these poor brides.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermaggiew

Oh for the love of... that last one is TERRIBLE!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

I'd make a comment, but like these bakers, I just can't be bothered.........

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCaroline B

@Sharyn, Thanks. I'll have that song in my head forever now! (I hate that song.) But I DO like your version of it. Yours is hilarious. ;)

At least the first few tried, to a degree. They may not have succeeded, but at least I can see SOME resemblance. But the last one? Where did that come from? That one has no resemblance whatsoever to the model. None. Nada. Zip. Nilch. Huh? (head*desk)

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeesMom

I too need how HOW does this happen? Are the brides cutting their budget and go to really inexperienced bakers or do bakers say they can do what they actually cannot? This is the best worst missed marks ever! Through the whole post, I just kept saying "no, no, no, no" over and over. Poor brides...I hope they at least tasted good.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAngela

The one thing that gets me on these wedding wrecks is that the bakers can't seem to find the right set of cake pans to make the tiers - 12", 14" and 16" just don't do it. The layers need to be more like 4", 10" and 16". That first cake would have been much nicer if the layer sizes were closer to the original.

Oh, and centering the tiers helps too.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLady C

Thanks Sharyn :) You almost made up for these disasters, as always :) Sorry you lost your psychic connection to her SuBee - that must have been awesome while it lasted :P :P

... I think the first cake depresses me the most. I mean, the other are just horror shows, but the first actually APPROACHES the intent, and shows some skill... just not nearly enough to actually pull it off. The fondant is straight... just not the right color. The brush-strokes on the flowers and leaves is nearly perfect... then they piped on the outlines with too big a tip and too even an application, ruining the entire effect. And the broken, horribly uneven border with it's GOLD dots makes me want to cry :(

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLacey S

Love the name of your topless act. Can't wait to get to Vegas.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBecky

...this just goes to show you -- when it comes to cake is in the eye of the bag-holder...

@Sharyn: one of your best, with a clever reference to a previous post/video! Bravo!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermel

Brilliant, and by brilliant I mean terrible of course, but it makes for good amusement! x

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterIced Jems

On the pink cake - are those Atari symbols on the top with the odd "W" shapes? Perhaps there were just really big fans of Atari games....

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Why do you always assume it's the bride who'd be upset and not the groom?

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersaoili

Oh, wow. That last one is HORRIBLE. Cake crumbs showing, the colors are something I've seen in nightmares, those roses(? those are supposed to be roses, right?) are all just....terrible. And the ruffle!! I remember my m-i-l using this wilton ruffle on wedding cakes 20 years ago. That shouldn't even still be around!! Wow is all that's left to say.... wow...

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCaroline

Eeeek!!! They're all Hideous. And, Dear Trevor: No! Tthat first one was just as hideous as the rest. Can't imagine that showing up at the reception and the bride saying it was okay!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAngie

OK, was it just me or when looking at the 3rd cake (the NON-wrecky version) did anyone else see a big ol' handlebar mustache before realizing it's actually two black birds?

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEddie

Sharyn you just hit a GRAND SLAM, my friend. GRAND. SLAM.

*golf clap*

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKIm in ID

Delphine, I agree with you completely. Those "crazy bride convinced some hapless guy to marry her - HAR HAR!!" cake toppers immediately make me question the taste level in the first place.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDana

I belive the last wreck is missing a T and an F on that top tier.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMaria

My eyes! My eyes!

What is with the baby being swallowed by the cake? Is this cakesand as opposed to quicksand?

And the last one--was it done using Braille? Those net frills - ugh. Make me squirm.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMac

1. Meh.

2. Jen's art wall! *swoon*

3. Pink, brown and squiggly? I'm glad you said it was your TOPless Vegas show....I might start to feel a bit sorry for Jen otherwise. (I'm SORRY. You set it up so nicely and I have NO self control. It's like Roger Rabbit with the "Shave and a haircut...." bit.)

4. Huh. That's pretty much exactly how the sheet corners on my bed look. You'd never be able to bounce a quarter off 'em.

5. I'm scrolling, I'm scrolling....the What They Wanted and What They Got pictures are both on the screen. I'm thinking, like Delphine, that the topper doesn't go with the original cake at all. Then I look at the wreck itself and think, "Huh. That's a mighty small cake for a wedding. It's like a personal sized cake. Well, at least they went with less is more on this one. It's bad, but it could have been so much worse". Then I scroll down. "Oh. It is." It looks like the baker put some plastic fern leaves on the front and added a few giant, frayed yarn buttons. I hear tulle is all the rage for cakes this year, though. So, that's one thing they got right. *snerk*

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea

The last cake needs a T and F to go with that W.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterThe Former CB

Wreck One: In all fairness, the flowers and leaves aren't that bad.

Final Wreck: Seriously?!?!? I mean.... SERiously?!??!!!... (blinkblink)... At least please tell me that tasteless, stereotyping, grotesquely misogynistic, inappropriate cake topper was actually chosen by the couple, and not just added as an afterthought by the wreckerator... >:-[

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBADKarma

Put a bird on it!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKathy

to me the lesson here is, if you want the beautiful "before" cake, you need to be prepared to pay for it. I think a lot of these people get a picture of a fancy cake, then ask an inexpensive bakery (like maybe a grocery store one?!) to reproduce it without seeing what the baker is actually capable of. Do they just go to the bakery and say "can you do this?" Of course they're going to say yes because they want the sale, regardless if they have tried that particular technique before or not!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterannabannanna

Decorators: Just say NO!!! Nothing worse than getting a customer's hopes up when you clearly can't deliver. Saying this as a novice decorator myself.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErlinda

Just as now my every trip to the grocery store includes a run by the bakery to look for potential wrecks, anytime I attend a wedding I will have to inspect the cake from all angles expecting it to be wrecky in some way. You've given me a new purpose in life and for that I thank you!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMom A

@Maria - I'm with you! What The F(ern), indeed!!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterlisadh

Jen, I recently watched a rerun of a Graham Norton show on BBC. He did a segment on your Cake Wrecks, as I'm sure you know. It included the baby cake from your office. It must be thrilling for you to be so popular and recognized the world over.
I love, love, love Cake Wrecks! Thanks ! !

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBrenda

I shouldn't be looking at posts like this when I have a wedding cake to finish for this weekend. (And to think I worry the most about the minor details). At least my brides get what they ordered.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJodie N

How many of these wrecks were actually made by a bakery? I can just see Aunt Bertha, the family's fave baker, being asked to re-create one of the original cakes, doing her best, and not coming close. Shock on the wedding day, but nothing could ever be said. Just wonder how many wedding wrecks are family made.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobyn McIntyre

Sharyn Rocks. Period.

And I really love it when John does the commentary, it's nice to get the husband's viewpoint - thanks, Jen, for sharing him with us.

I am so glad I haven't ever seen a wedding cake wreck at any wedding I've ever attended. It's just so public, you know?

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

I love Wedding Wrecks-I wish it was once a week. Someone needs to video the meeting that they have with the baker before and after.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTara

Wow. Those are really bad, especially the last one.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCHICKIEGIRL07

These wedding missed marks are my favorite kind of posts. :D I just don't get these bakers who think they are actually doing what the formerly-happy couple wants! I mean, really? Wow.

And, Jen, please tell us about the baby in the cake in your office! Would love to hear the story about that!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaura P.

I'm guessing the wedding album consists of at least one picture of the bride shoving wedding cake into the baker's face.

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBrasstax

Eurgh. That last one especially - wow.

I have to wonder, though, how much of this was a fail on the bakery's (grocery store's?) part, and how much was the result of the bride wanting a really fancy cake but not wanting to budget appropriately. You do get what you pay for - and if your budget's small, then go with something simpler!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterA. Nonymous

Phsaw. That looks the same.


August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStoich91

Awesome as usual Sharyn
Ok, I wanna know the story behind the baby that fell in the cake...
We need details John!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJodee in WA

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>