What’s a formal event or party without a dessert, and what’s a better way to highlight a beautiful, delicious cake than an amazing cake table display to match? Creating a cake table design that pops can make your event stand out and feel all the more special.

With events like weddings on the rise for the foreseeable future, now is the perfect time to get a firm grasp on how to set up a cake table in a way that works for your design goals and desires. 

Cake tables are both functional and decorative, so the linens that are used to dress and decorate them should be, too. In this article, we’ll take a look at all you need to know to make a gorgeous cake table that will wow guests and tie together your event.

What Do You Put On a Cake Table?

The main feature of a cake table is, of course, the cake itself! Beyond that, what’s on your cake table is really up to you – whether it be full of extra desserts or beautiful décor, your display will likely be one of the focal points of your event.

No matter what, though, you’ll need some sort of table linen to protect the table itself and dress it in a way that matches the rest of your event.

There are all sorts of ways to get creative with your linens, which we’ll discuss in more depth below. Different events may inspire different designs, so don’t be afraid to think outside the box and make things your own!

For now, here are some general examples of for things you might include on your cake table:

  • A tablecloth or tablecloth(s) (layered)
  • Table runners
  • Floral arrangements and greenery
  • A cake stand(s), featuring your dessert(s)
  • Serving utensils and tableware 
  • Candles or lights
  • Photos and other miscellaneous décor

How to Decorate a Cake Table at a Wedding Reception

At a wedding reception, the cake is often a fundamental part of the picture. As a result, a wedding reception cake table will likely be decorated thoroughly, or at least stand as an important part of the event’s overall décor.

Wedding receptions are the perfect time to bring in fairytale elements like vintage lace, sparkling sequins, and soft, romantic colors. 

Consider adding decorative elements like floral garland or bouquets, accent pieces, drapery, or even a chandelier into the mix to create a set-up that’s truly one-of-a-kind.

Need a recommendation or a starting point? Check out some of our favorites.

The Claire Lace has a mesh base embroidered with elegant sequined flowers and vines. This linen’s base is sheer, making it perfect for layering. Other color options available.

Giselle Sequins Table Linen in Gold: A mesh, sheer base complements this linen’s bold, sequined floral pattern to create a final product that’s both eye-catching and classically beautiful. This pattern comes in other colors, but we recommend gold for a luxurious, formal feel.

Wedding Table Decoration Ideas on a Budget

You probably don’t need to be reminded that weddings can be pricey! Choosing budget linens is a great way to cut down on some of the cost without sacrificing the look of your event. 

Because budget linens tend to be more simple in their design, they’re also an ideal choice if you’re looking to add a lot of décor to your table. A more muted linen won’t steal the attention from the other parts of your table, but it still delivers class and creates a cohesive look.

Below are some of our top picks for budget-friendly linens:

The Crush Satin Bichon table linen has a satin base with a crushes texture, drawing the eye without overwhelming the cake display. The crushed texture will capture light in the room, adding a certain elegance to any event.

Premium Poly (Poplin) Table Linen in Off White 7105: A polyester base with a simple, matte finish. More color options available.

Simple Wedding Cake Table Ideas

Not all cake tables feature complicated designs and elaborate decorations, and not all of them should! 

Simple wedding reception ideas can help refocus the attention of guests to other things, like the look of the cake itself, or just foster a less cluttered or chaotic environment.

We recommend opting for a design that features a pop of color or a unique texture if you’re looking to keep things basic without feeling drab. 

Try out simple linen ideas like this one:

Shantung Satin (Reversible) Table Linen in Dusty Rose: A classic polyester base with a shiny, medium satin finish and a matte dupioni on the other. Other color options also available.

How to Decorate a Cake Table for Birthdays

What better time to appreciate and celebrate a cake than a birthday?

Approaching a birthday cake table set-up requires a bit of a different approach than a wedding reception, but fortunately, birthdays usually allow for more flexibility (and fun).

Aside from a quality linen(s), things to include on your birthday cake table might be:

  • A cake, cakes, or selection of desserts and food
  • Tableware: plates, silverware, napkins, cups, etc.
  • Birthday décor like birthday hats, confetti, etc.
  • An area for presents or guest party favors

How to Decorate a Cake Table at Home 

It’s entirely possible to create a professional-looking, yet still simple birthday cake table at home – it just takes a bit more planning and practice.

Selecting a table that’s big enough for your display is crucial, as is deciding on a tablecloth set-up that matches your design choices.

When creating a table in the home, it might be challenging to decorate as thoroughly as you might otherwise.

As a result, choosing fun, patterned linens can help bring some life into your table design.

Birthday Table Decorations for Adults

Check out these linen options that are perfect even for just about any birthday party, including those for adults!

Gatsby (Metallic Print) Tablecloth: A polyester base with a classic, metallic print throughout. Perfect for a little extra glitz and glamor.

Glitz Sequins Table Linen in Blush Matte: Mesh base with mini sequin clusters embroidered throughout to give a solid, cohesive look. Classic sequined look that’s perfect for parties, anniversaries, and more. More color options available.

How to Decorate a Cake Table for an Anniversary

Anniversary celebrations are a wonderful time to play with rich, deep colors, elegant floral arrangements (especially roses), and classy tableware. 

If you do decide to create a cake table, consider using linens that help facilitate a romantic, intimate mood.

Lush Velvet Table Linen in Eggplant: Polyester base with a soft and smooth velvet texture throughout. Embrace vintage luxury with this linen! Multiple color options available. 

How to Decorate a Cake Table for Baby Shower

Baby showers are all about fun, excitement, and celebrating the beauty of life, so you’ll want your décor and linens to match. We recommend choosing something that features softer colors, like:

The Seersucker print table linen in pink or blue features soft pink or blue stripes on a polyester base that will serve as a gorgeous complement for your other baby shower decorations, and especially the cake!


Create Your Perfect Cake Table with Urquid Linen

Regardless of the event you’re looking to plan a cake table for, you’ll likely find that your linens are a big, if not the most significant, element of your design to worry about.

At Urquid Linen, we understand all that goes into a perfect cake table display, from tablecloths and table runners to napkins, tableware, and more. Shopping with Urquid means you have access to all you need to plan a memorable and unique event.

Our wholesale linens are made to order and come in a variety of sizes, including custom ones. Likewise, our product line features over 300 unique colors and patterns to choose from, making it easy to find something that works for you and your goals.

Should you run into any questions, concerns, or problems during or after your purchase, our customer service team is always available to help out. 

Buying what you need to design or plan the event of your (or a client’s) dreams shouldn’t be complicated. Here at Urquid, we’re dedicated to producing only the finest linens to bring any gathering to the next level.

Frequently Asked Questions

Want to learn more about creating the ultimate cake table for your event? Check out these frequently asked questions from across the web.

How do you dress a wedding cake table?

In general, a wedding cake table is dressed with a tablecloth or a similar linen. Additional decorative elements, like table settings, table runners, lighting, glassware, and more may also be present.

How do you drape a cake table?

To drape a cake table, you’ll want to invest in quality drape hardware and drapery panels. Your hardware will do the supporting, while drapery panels are the actual material with which you’ll create the display. Be sure to follow any instructions that come with your product.