DIY Cake Pulls: A Lucky Wedding Tradition

Cake: It's always the sweetest part of the evening. But to make it even more enchanting, we've reworked the southern tradition of "cake pulls"—fortune-telling charms on ribbons that each bridesmaid tugs out of the confection—to give guests a peek at the future. 

Photography by: Aaron Dyer

Here's an auspicious idea: Have a cake with trinkets hidden within brought to every table, along with a key explaining the prediction each bauble makes: Refer to ours (key below), or conjure up some yourself.


Fortune cookie: Sweet surprise
Bells: Wedding bells
Key: New home
Eiffel Tower: Bon voyage
Horseshoe: Luck awaits
Crystal drop: Marriage proposal
Globe: Adventure ahead
Fleur de lis: Prosperous future
Star: Well wishes
Pacifier: Baby on the way


Wedding Traditions and Superstitions


  • Silk ribbon
  • Jump rings
  • Charms
  • Tassels
  • Scissors
  • Fabric glue

Note: You'll need one charm, one tassel, and two jump rings per person that is pulling. Each length of ribbon should be the radius of your cake plus four inches. 


  1. Open a jump ring and thread the loop of the tassel onto it. Close the jump ring. Repeat for each tassel.
  2. Open a jump ring and add a charm. Close the jump ring. Repeat for each remaining charm. 
  3. Slip one end of the ribbon through a jump ring with a charm on it. Fold the last 1/4" over the jump ring and use fabric glue to attach it to itself and secure the jump ring. Add a tassel to the other end of the ribbon in the same way.  
  4. Repeat so that each ribbon has a charm on one end and tassel on the other end. 
  5. Have your baker place the charms between a layer of the cake or under the cake before it's served. 


5/8" Hand Dyed Silk Satin Ribbon in Bougainvillea ($3 per yard,; 1.5" Fine Metallic Tassels ($6 for pack of 4,; 8mm Jump Ring ($3.50/100-pack,; Aleene's No-Sew Fabric Glue ($3.49,

About the Author

Eleni N. Gage

Having graduated from college with a major in Folklore & Mythology, Eleni loves any good ritual, but a wedding just may be her top favorite. (That would explain why she had two in one day, tying the knot to the same guy in both a Catholic ceremony and a Greek Orthodox one on the island of Corfu on 10.10.10.) , The author of the travel memoir North of Ithaka,  the novel Other...


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