DIY Wood worker wedding #2: The cake plate - a DIY design that will last

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Blog entry by gurnie posted 01-26-2011 06:42 PM 11196 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Welcome to the DIY wood worker Wedding Part 2 of DIY Wood worker wedding series Part 3: DIY Wood worker wedding #2 - The cake plate Chapter #2 »

The cake plate will be an on going project that I am trying to get done before the spring / summer.

On etsy if you do a search for many very nice cake plates that look rustic and woodsy. I first stumbled across this cake plate on etsy

If interested you can find the seller’s shop here:

Now there’s a lot of good and bad with this design, good being it’s natural and pretty, it’s rustic and it’s just overall a neat idea of a cake plate for those who are doing an outdoor wedding. But i find issues with it structurally. Mainly the issue is with the plate itself – cross sectional parts of trees will split or usually will split over time. So if this is a piece you want to become a family heirloom – its not going to last. This piece is also made of what i believe is called base wood, which isn’t the strongest white wood available.

There are some other issues with the base – when you’re working with a chunk of wood that still has bark on it and the piece has not been kiln dried the piece has the potential to harbor bugs in the bark… and if you kiln dry the piece you’re likely to crack the wood because it’s a cross section. And if you air dry the base piece it’ll take forever. well maybe not forever but I do think the rule is 1” of thickness takes about 3-6 months to dry (if the wood is green to begin with). That piece looks at least 4-6” tall, so that’s time I don’t have to wait for the wood to dry. Not to mention just because it air dries doesn’t mean it won’t crack.

So we have issues with this design – it could crack, it could harbor bugs, or it could take forever to dry which is time i don’t have now. So I am going to do my best to create a piece that imitates a real tree stump, but one that will last a long time and feel wedding-y.

So i came up with the idea of gluing up some sort of log out of maple, and then glue a maple cake plate and then attach birch bark that I have. Doesn’t elegant but it looks beautiful in my head. I swear it does.

An example of birch bark – see very wedding-y

So i searched for ideas on how to glue up the hollow stump when i came across a fellow lumber jock’s idea for a jewelry chest:

shipwright's jewelry chest

What a brilliant idea! So i read his blog and started out on my own:

So far I cut four pieces of wood about 3” long, 1” thick. a 45 degree cut was cut in each piece.

These pieces we then flipped so the 45 degree joint was made into a 90 degree joint. The idea is for the back end to fit into that 90 joint. these two pieces will eventually be cut into smaller pieces to make a cylinder

Here’s an example from Shipwright’s blog of what we should get (please read his blog, it's really great):

the next step will be to cut these 90 degree pieces to the correct height for the stand. then we will fit together the cylinder and then glue up.

I want to note that the two 90 degree pieces are not glued together despite they are next to each other. it was just easier to glue them up next to each other.

if my design goes off without a hitch I will make two cake plates and sell one to my wedding cake baker who has express interest in my design.

Stay tuned!!!

-- Please visit my Etsy site, or You can also follow me on my artfire blog:

4 comments so far

View superstretch's profile


1532 posts in 4143 days

#1 posted 01-26-2011 07:26 PM

Great idea for the stump. In response to your concerns over the plate splitting—it very well may split, but I see that it was cut on an angle, so there is a far less chance of it splitting tremendously. People do that often with plaques and those glued-on pictures you see at any mountain/rustic tourist shop.

-- Dan, Rochester, NY

View shipwright's profile


8816 posts in 4248 days

#2 posted 01-26-2011 07:51 PM

Good start, I’ll keep an eye on the blog. I know you’ll produce a fine cake stand.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View rivergirl's profile


3201 posts in 4288 days

#3 posted 01-27-2011 04:05 AM

Also there was a blog on L/J about making a log cake stand.

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View TJ65's profile


1443 posts in 4500 days

#4 posted 01-27-2011 09:39 AM

interesting! Very interesting

-- Theresa,

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