Sunday 15 April 2018

Wedding Cake Stand

Off the back of the "Dutch Courage" sign that I made for the wedding, I was asked if I could also help with a custom cake stand for their wedding cake.

They're not having a traditional wedding cake, instead they've opted for brownies, in 7 different flavours, so the cake stand needs to accommodate them all and at the same time be able to differentiate between them.

In addition, there's a multi-colour theme to the wedding, so that needs to be included with the design.

The obvious thing to do was use different colours to separate the flavours, and my initial ideas centred around something like a painter's palette.

I was looking at a segmented circular design, but it was looking a bit strange with an odd number of segments, so I opted for six segments with a smaller platform in the middle to provide for the 7th segment.

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To calculate the size I was told that there will be one tray of brownies per flavour, and that would be about equivalent in size to about a Roses tin, which is roughly 9 inches diameter by 4 inches tall.
Using that as I guide, I based the design on a circle of 18 inches diameter divided into 6 sectors (so 6 triangles with two 9" sides and a 6-and-a-bit" rounded side).
This equates to approximately equivalent size.


The back segment (red in the original diagram).
This one also has a small solid tip added
as it will overlap the central segment
  • The base was cut from some chipboard up-cycled from some flat pack furniture.
  • Each segment was cut from 3/8" marine plywood.
  • Six 9x4" rectangles were cut to create the face panels, and attached to the sides of the raised segments (2 for the rear segment, 1 each for the other raised segments.)
  • Supporting posts for each of the raised segments 
  • The central "tip" of each segment was trimmed to allow room for the wooden pole that will support the centre segment.
These were secured to the base of the stand, but could be easily disassembled.

Rounded supports were attached to the underside of the curved edge of the segments. These were made from scrap, and supported a thin hardboard which was curved around to provide a solid outside to the segments. This was attached with staples, as the hardboard was too soft and nails passed straight through.

Each segment was wrapped with coloured fabric, fastened in place with staples and spray adhesive.

The centre segment was a smaller disc with a segment removed to allow the red segment to overlap. The supporting pole was approx 1.5" diameter and attached to the centre segment with a combination of glue and nails.
This assembly was wrapped in white fabric and attached to the base with a couple of screws (so to avoid rotation).

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I'm really pleased with how this project turned out. With a lot of projects, the actual building usually highlights issues not thought of during the design, and so adaptations have to be made, but in this case, the end result came out pretty much exactly as the initial design.

Working on this project also helped develop a new workflow - due to geographical and timing constraints, most of the design discussion was co-ordinated via WhatsApp. It was a case of being sent links and screenshots of ideas, sketching up a plan, photographing it and returning it etc. It was a surprisingly good system and something I'd definitely use again.

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