How to stack a wedding cake with seperator plates and pillars

Written by nicole ramage
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How to stack a wedding cake with seperator plates and pillars
Cakes designed with pillars need to be stacked carefully. (wedding cake white dessert image by Paul Retherford from

Stacking a wedding cake with separator plates and pillars is a moderately challenging task that makes your cake look beautiful and provides more room for decorating. It will also make a small cake look larger. If you are wanting to make your cake look more decorated with less frosting, pillars will do that for you too. No matter what your reasoning for wanting pillars, getting it exact is a very important--- otherwise your cake could sink or topple over.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Pre-made and decorated cake tiers
  • Pillars
  • Wooden dowels
  • Scissors
  • Separator plates

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  1. 1

    Place all of your cakes on separator plates. This makes it easier to stack them.

  2. 2

    Take the middle layer of cake on its separator plate and carefully press it onto the bottom tier where you want it to go. You should only press hard enough to get an imprint of where the pillars attach. Repeat this with the top tier onto the middle tier. There should be four imprints on the bottom and middle tiers of cake.

  3. 3

    Place one of your wooden dowels in an indentation. Stick it all the way in so that it goes right through to the bottom and touches the separator plate. Pull the dowel all the way out and cut it with scissors at the point where the cake crumbs stop. Use the piece that you cut as a guide line. You need seven more this exact same size.

    How to stack a wedding cake with seperator plates and pillars
    Thinner dowels work better. (dowel pin image by Jim Mills from
  4. 4

    Attach your pillars to the bottom of the separator plates. Set the pillars and the layer above firmly over the dowels. You must make sure that you get the pillars over the dowels or your cake will topple. Repeat this step with the smallest tier on top of the middle tier.

    How to stack a wedding cake with seperator plates and pillars
    Stack pillars largest to smallest with the largest on the bottom. (wedding cake image by Cindy Haggerty from

Tips and warnings

  • The wooden dowels are used to stabilise the pillars so that the cake doesn't sink or fall over; make sure they are firmly in place.
  • Stacking your cake should be the very last thing that you do---after you have decorated the cake.
  • Once the pillars are in place, the only thing you can add is add fresh flowers if you choose.
  • Once your cake has been stacked, it can be taken down if you choose. But don't take it off the plates.

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