Building a Wedding Cupcake Tower

When we first started planning our wedding, I will admit that I had visions of a beautiful, elaborate cake, filled with some kind of fresh berry compote and cloaked delicately in a mixture of white and dark chocolate frosting.  Then I remembered: we live in Northern Maine and I’ve planned an outdoor wedding… cue reality.

When planning a budget wedding, it’s important to figure out what concessions you’re willing to make, and at the end of the day, I know that I can bake well.  It’s one of the things I’m known for at work and in my family.  And when it came down to the cost of the kind of cake I wanted that would taste the way I needed it to, it was easier to do this part… myself.  Yes, you heard me right.  I’m making my own wedding cupcakes.  140 of them, to be exact.  And I’m going to bake them and frost them and explain the arrangement to the wife of a dear friend, so that I can at least cross one thing off my list before the big day!

I will admit that people are skeptical. My mother was a particularly hard sell.  The secretary at school thinks I’m crazy.  Really, though, I can make the cupcakes on Thursday, frost them on Friday, and have them nice and cool in the fridge on Saturday morning, just waiting to be placed outside after the ceremony on their cupcake tower.  And in that respect, I am the luckiest girl in the world.

Jason’s dad is a really accomplished craftsman when it comes to projects that involve wood.  Just a few months ago, I sent him the photo below and asked if we (read: he) could do this.  After emailing a few bloggers and getting some responses on the instructions for their cupcake towers, I sent Jason’s dad my revised dimensions (listed below), and he was able to craft our cupcake tower.

L 30” x W 30” x  H 4” Base (holds 36 – 2-1/2″ cupcakes)
24 ”x 24” x 4” 2nd tier (holds 30 cupcakes)
18” x 18 ”x 4 ”3rd tier (holds 24 cupcakes)
12”x 12”x 4” 4th tier (holds 16 cupcakes)
6” x 6” x 4 ” Top tier (holds 2 cupcakes or one small cake stand)

Please note that these dimensions make for a much larger cupcake tower than the one pictured above.

We decided to go with wood because given that we’re planning an outdoor wedding, I needed something super-sturdy, something that wouldn’t blow over in the wind!  Beyond this, though, I wanted something that would last and that I could give away to another bride after my wedding if she wanted it (and that’s already been arranged!).

After Jason’s dad finished building the stand (which he built as a series of boxes from 1/4” plywood, screwed together for greater stability), I painted it with white interior paint that our local hardware store was giving away.

Initially, I had planned to run pink ribbon (the same color as my bridesmaids’ dresses) around the rim of each box; however, one of my bridesmaids made cupcakes for Easter using Wilton’s cupcake papers (available at our local Walmart), and I’m thinking of maybe just doing simple white frosted cupcakes in a pink flowered wrapper.  I have picked up a package of the wrappers and plan to try out a few cupcakes this way later in the week, just to see how it goes.

Would you try wedding cupcakes?

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