The bottom layer was a home-made marble cake recipe that wanted to fall apart. The other layers were made from box cake mixes, and all were frozen beforehand. The wedding was blue and silver and we had some trouble getting the right shade of blue but it turned out pretty close. The arrangements were made out of floral picks which I picked up on chearance at Michael's and Hobby Lobby after Christmas. I made these well ahead of time.
I used 16", 14", 12" and6" inch pans. I had intended to use smaller plates for the two top layers so they wouldn't show, but I failed to explain what I wanted to do to my sister-in-law, so the plates were showing. However, using smaller plates may have created a balance problem, so that may be the only way it would work.
As I said, I was overwhelmed by this experience, and it scared me off making any more wedding cakes - until now, two and a half years later! I'll let you know how my next experience goes.