“Advice for Married Men: Never laugh at your wife’s choices; you are one of them.”
So you and your fiancé are engaged, and are in the midst of planning your wedding. It’s time to begin narrowing down ideas for rustic wedding decorations. A big feature at your grand celebration is the wedding cake, of course. Maybe you’re already busy clipping pictures of cake styles you like the looks of, and dreaming of whipped butter cream frosting. You could spend hours collecting examples of what type of cake topper suits the two of you. But has anyone asked you if you’re going to include a Groom’s cake? If you’re from the South, then you may be fully aware of this particular tradition. However, do you know where it comes from? And, if you aren’t from down South, you may be wondering what the heck a Groom’s cake is!
Who thought up a GROOM’S CAKE and why is it more common in the South?
Actually, the groom’s cake is a tradition that began in Victorian England and was brought over to the United States by American colonists. Originally, it was a heavy liquor soaked fruitcake. Then chocolate cakes were popular, but overall, the cake is often richer than the wedding cake (which was seen as the Bride’s cake and too light for masculinity).
Since so much of a wedding is really geared toward the bride and her dream day, the inclusion of a Groom’s cake is a way that the groom can be singled out to receive a little extra attention. Traditionally, the bride will choose the design of the Groom’s cake, which is decorated in a way to reflect the groom’s hobbies, such as: fishing, hunting, favorite sports team, or online game – did anyone say World of Warcraft? She may even keep it a secret until the main event.
Historically, the single women at the wedding would be offered a small piece of the groom’s cake which was put in a small box. She then took it home, and instead of eating it, was instructed to put it under her pillow. Legend has it that this tradition would help unmarried women find a husband.
Where do you display it and when is it served?
Most often, the Bride will have the cake delivered to the reception site, and set it out on a table near the wedding cake, where it serves as a second flavor choice when it comes time to cut the cake. You might decide to slice pieces of the groom’s cake to go home with your guests. If so, when you’re searching for wedding reception decorations, try to find some clever or unique packaging and dress up the table it is displayed on. This is a fun way to show off a bit of your man’s personality and get creative, even go over the top! It won’t go unnoticed.
Photographer: Leah Brewer Photography
Photographer: George Street Photography
Photographer: Leighanne Herr Photography
Some of you may remember a famous scene from Steel Magnolias, a movie that won a golden globe back in the late 80’s. In it, the groom requested his cake be made into the shape of an armadillo. The bride and her mother said it was awful. It was red velvet cake with gray icing, so when they cut into it, it looked gruesome. But of course, it is a humorous and memorable scene even today.
Have any of you attended a wedding where there was a groom’s cake? If so, did you take your piece home and sleep on it? Is your fiancé the man you dreamed of when you placed it under your pillow?
Whether or not you’d like to observe this southern custom is up to you. Obviously, if you’re getting married somewhere else in the country besides the South, that doesn’t preclude you from introducing a groom’s cake at your wedding. No matter what, it’s meant to be fun; you can dress up the table with charming wedding reception decorations and create a whole little theme. Because of you, this tradition may spread even more rapidly. At the very least, you will have an exciting conversation piece and something spectacular to add to your wedding festivities.
If you’ve decided on a groom’s cake, what is your design going to be and why? We’d love to hear your story in the comments below.
Have any questions to ask or items to discuss with a Moffitt Oaks wedding planner? Don’t hesitate to call us now 1.281.370.6616 or schedule a private tour with one of our expert wedding planners.