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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

Barking Up The Wrong Cake

So there I was, looking through thousands of awful wedding cake pics - as one does on a typical Tuesday night (WHAT) - when I started to notice an odd trend: tree cakes.

I don't mean the beautiful blossoming vines we see so often:



And I don't mean stump cakes, which Jen has devoted a whole tag to in iPhoto because we have that many:



No, I mean a dead tree plastered up the side of a wedding cake.

Like this:

We really don't get enough opportunities to eat things the color of wet concrete.


Sometimes, in an effort to make the tree look slightly less dead, a baker will add "leaves":


Or "flowers":

"It just so happens this tree is only mostly dead. There's a big difference between mostly dead... and all dead.

"Now hand me that knife, and we'll split the difference."


My favorite, though, is the baker who opted to liven up a dead tree with polka dots:

They're just so festive. In a pox-like kind of way. (Pox-ish?)

Like a festival of pox.


Tell you what, bakers, why not stick to what we know? Simple, beautiful, blossoming vines.

Okay, maybe these could use a few polka dots.


Thanks to Amy L., Allison N., Daniel & Kim, Katy G., Layne L., Jon D., & Linda N. for branching out.


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Reader Comments (21)

For me, it's that chunk of firewood that makes #4 there REALLY special. I so wish I could listen to the thought process of the person who decided that was a good idea.

On the other hand, #5 may be the most well-executed cake I've ever seen in a weekday post. Too bad they decided to paint on the cake with poo. <<hurk>>

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterAngelaS

There's got to be an inspiration cake out there that's amazing and beautiful, right? Otherwise I just don't get why anyone would ask for this. Actually, I don't think it makes sense under any circumstances.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

The idea behind a tree cake is that the tree is supposed to be growing, and going UP. Not chopped down and leaning against the cake.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterLady Anne

Those cakes look as though they were decorated by a bored three year old. O_o

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered Commentermindy1

Did anyone else immediately see the Delia Deetz sculpture from "Beetlejuice" when looking at cake #3? Looks like it's giving those ghostly white tiers a big 'ol hug!

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

Is the polka dot cake an homage to Chicka Chicka 123? If so, they've forgotten the numbers, and two of the apples are covering up a crack the size of the Grand Canyon.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterRachel CrazyMum

A pox, a pox, how delightful, a pox.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered Commenter3Davideo

Frankly, that bakers can keep churning out these wrecks has me stumped. I wonder what their incompetence stems from? Maybe they should just branch out into other kinds of decorating and leaf making tree cakes alone. Maybe they even thought by putting flowers on some of them that their business would blossom. If a baker had presented me one of these cakes, I might have torn him limb from limb. No matter what these bakers think, these cakes are not oak-ay. I wouldn't be surprised if some customers uttered profanities when they were given these wrecks, like "son of a beech". Willow these wrecks never ceases? I pine fir the days when cakes were done by real professionals. Maybe we could stuff these bakers in a trunk and let it go at that.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterMike

Maybe it’s just me, but the polka dot “tree” cake looks like an octopus trying to juggle.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterFairly Ridiculous

That last one is not vines, nosiree. It looks more like random Hebrew letters/characters applied haphazardly to the sides of the cake. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterMoira

And it looks like that 4th cake is on top of a stump cake FTW

Mike- I'm very impressed!

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

Was comment from Princess Bride?

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterNancy

I just always wonder, who say's "YES! I CAN MAKE THAT FOR YOU!".. and the get a green light and at the end ... it needs an ambulance. Who? I ask.. who?

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterKris

*A customer enters a bakery in a swish of dark skirts and ruffles..*

Customer: 'Ello, I wish to register a complaint.

Wreckerator: We're closin' for lunch.

Customer: Never mind that, my lad. I wish to complain about this cake what I purchased not half an hour ago from this very boutique.

Wreckerator: Oh yes, the, uh, the tree cake...What's, uh...What's wrong with it?

Customer I'll tell you what's wrong with it, my lad. The tree is dead, that's what's wrong with it!

Wreckerator: No, no, it's uh,...It's a Spring cake, an' ever'body knows trees look like that in the Spring!

Customer: Look, matey, I know a dead tree when I see one, and I'm looking at one right now.

Wreckerator: It's not dead yet! It's just pine'in for the forests of the fjords! Look, we'll just go back a bit and add some leaves! That'll make it right quick smart.

*A groaning, wheezing sound, followed by a heavy thump, fills the air.*

Wreckerator: See, told'ya didn't I? The leaves make it perfect!

Customer: The leaves don't enter into it. It's stone dead.

*The Customer slams her fist down, striking the cake and splattering tons of frosting everywhere.*

Wreckerator: Now look what you've gone and done! This wasnae a squash cake for yer wee babbie's first birthday y'know! *points to a sign* Our policy is "you break it, you bought it". Now clear off!

*The Customer produces a short black rod topped with a red ball and points it at the Wreckerator. A brilliant flash of light emerges, and a miniturized Wreckerator falls to the floor.*

Customer: *mutters to self* Well, I had a lovely afternoon of tea and cake planned, but I probably couldn't get her to come round anyway. She hasn't trusted me through thirteen incarnations; I doubt this one will be any different.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered Commenternancy1745

What the...? How the...? Oh dear Lord.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterLisaP

For Easter this year, I didn't dye any eggs. I pulled out leftover decorating flotsam, like stickers, and did that instead. Some of the hard-boiled eggs were cracked, so I put stickers over the cracks. I think the polka dot tree decorator copied my style.

Also, that last cake sort of looks like it's covered in stylized Hebrew. Either that, or it's an "early bird catches the worm" representation. But I do like the bluebird toppers.

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterYet another Jen

@Nancy1745 Loved the Monty Python sketch reference!

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterMike

If there is contest for pushing over a multi-layer cake, the tree on the polka dot cake is winning by a big margin. Go, tree, go!

April 12, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterAl the K

Lol oh man all the scary poo colored trees. Or painted with poo either way not a tree to be found here lol.

April 13, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterArlene Marie

@Nancy1745 & @Mike ... And the Doctor Who reference.

April 13, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterSarah C

Wowser! The pick of the litter is that concrete bunker tree. It takes effort to make it that EXACT shape, and do it with such purpose.

The #2 messy stump cake could have been redeemable had the decorator used solid color butterflies and flowers that were a bit bigger. Yeah, it's still a semi car fire, but it could have morphed into OkayLand

With a 50% divorce rate, I guess semi ded trees make sense.

April 14, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterMatKnifeNinja

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