Decorating a cake is an opportunity to express yourself artistically and pay homage to someone else. A properly decorated cake is an elegant feast for the eyes and the mouth. Creating the ideal cake requires the right supplies. Even if you have your own special utensils and techniques, you will still need a few basic cooking tools and specific cake decorating supplies. Purchasing such supplies wholesale can save you money and time.
Obtain an Employee Identification Number or EIN. An Employee Identification Number (also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number) is a number that the Internal Revenue Service uses to allow businesses to keep track of specific business expenses. Even if you only decorate a few cakes every so often, getting an EIN can be very useful. Many wholesalers require potential purchasers to have an EIN as a means of verifying that they are in the food business. Submit an application via the IRS website.
Investigate wholesale retailers in your area. A wholesaler is a store that sells raw and finished materials at a discount to those in the business. Some wholesalers are open to the public, while others deal strictly with those in the cake decorating or other food related industry. Decorating a cake often requires many different items. You may need to work with multiple wholesalers to get all the supplies you need. One wholesaler may stock pastry bags and cake boxes. Another might specialize in edible supplies such as gold dust, fondant, edible beads and candied flowers.
Research online options. Some wholesalers only operate in a few states yet have websites you can use to order supplies. An ideal website should have pictures that allow you to get close up view of the item in question and detailed descriptions with exact colors and measurements. Even edible supplies can be purchased this way, provided the item has a long shelf life and can stand up to shipping hazards. Find out if shipping costs are included and measure are take to properly wrap the item beforehand.
Buy in bulk. Some retailers will lower prices if you agree to buy items in large quantities. A local store may decrease prices on shipping boxes if you can place a large individual order or provide reliable business on an ongoing basis. If you are facing an unexpectedly big order, such as a wedding with additional unplanned guests, you may not have time to get in touch with wholesalers. A local supplier can meet your needs.
Evaluate non-traditional sources. Cake decorating often requires improvisation, creativity and flexibility. Use these skills in your hunt for suppliers. A hardware wholesale may have the items you need to give a one-of-a-kind design the right support to prevent it from falling over. An art supply store might have edible paint on sale periodically.