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tline3open  1902 - HIRED SILVER AND SHAM CAKES

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Author Topic:   1902 - HIRED SILVER AND SHAM CAKES
Scott Martin
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iconnumber posted 09-19-2011 10:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
San Francisco Call
Volume 87, Number 8
8 June 1902


A silversmith observes that he makes more money by loaning articles than in the legitimate way of business. All kinds of silver and fancy ornaments are borrowed to make a grand show in the present-room. Many articles still in his shop have realized their value over and over again, and are yet in condition for further service, says an English Journal.

For instance, a silver teapot of antique design has been out over thirty times and is good as new; teaspoons, carvers, marble clocks, etc, are in constant demand, and as the goods are merely on show for a few days they come back unimpaired.

Speaking of a recent wedding which caused some sensation in the particular locality, the silversmith said: "A description of the wedding gifts occupied half a column of newspaper print, one-third of the articles being borrowed from my establishment. Others were from different houses, and most likely a dozen or so were really presents”.

"I saw the lot tastefully arranged about the room, the borrowed ones ticketed with names of imaginary donors. Quite a crowd had gathered to see the wedding presents, which made a brave array. I warrant many of the young lady admirers felt envious at the particular good fortune of the bride. How they would enjoy themselves if they knew the source from which the most handsome articles had been derived!"

This is not an exceptional case, the loaning of wedding presents having become quite a trade.

Then there is the wedding cake. Few brides are so humble that they cannot obtain some sort of cake for the occasion; but the grand cake, the huge confection with its lofty ornaments and orange wreaths, its cupids and silver leaves, is the one that it borrowed.

Cakes of the massive order may be loaned, which possibly are not cakes at all. Nothing is there genuine about them. save the icing and the sugar cupids. One bridecake has graced the breakfast tables of all sorts and conditions of brides, having been on the rounds for over two years, and with a little touching up seems as fresh and delectable as ever.

The "cake" is simply a round of cork eight inches deep and about the size of a small cheese. This is enameled white and thinly iced, piles of ornaments crowning it; foliage and flowers embellish the sides — altogether a magnificent article for purposes of show. As the fee for its temporary possession is some few shillings, it proves a very profitable property.

Genuine cakes are sometimes hired merely for table ornamentation. When these have lost their freshness they are cut up by the confectioner for sale by the pound.

Where a dummy cake is used there is always a small one to distribute among the guests, otherwise the handsome sham would be regarded with suspicion. A certain confectioner has generally three or four imposing property cakes on hand. When a good order is given for sweets and pastry for the wadding feast, a sham bridecake may be lent free to ornament the festive board.

Very rich-looking shams are even made of paper— body, sugar work and flowers as well. So carefully turned out are they that closer inspection than is generally granted a bride cake is necessary to discover the deception.

The paper productions are cheap, and are to be purchased— not hired. A few shillings, it is said, will buy a beautiful imitation of a ten-guinea cake. America is responsible for their introduction.

Actually bridal gowns and veils may be borrowed — an economical proceeding for brides who cannot afford a big sum on a dress that is intended for a few hours’ wear.

Swell bridesmaids, who bring their own elaborate dresses, are also willing to be hired. Their presence among strangers is sure to elicit wonder and admiration, which is exactly what those who like a showy wedding desire.

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