heychele Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:34pm
post #1 of

I just made the wrestling duffel bag cake posted in the 3d sports section and the birthday cake section. It was for the son of my best friend, after much agonizing over what to charge I decided just to charge supply cost.
She just picked up the cake and as she's carrying it out the door she says "well I know you won't take any money so I'll just take you out to lunch one day"
So the costs of supplies and not to mention my time just walked out the door free for her and leaving me in the hole!
Some day I guess I need to grow a back bone. Has anyone else had this experience?
Thanks for letting me vent!!!!

37 replies
flytrap77 Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:41pm
post #2 of

Oh my. It's not too late to tell her you want to be paid. If you leave it as it is now there is going to be a tension between the two of you that she will not understand. And then one day you will explode on her and she will be totally confused. Get your money honey!

Call her and say, I think there was some confusion about the payment for the cake. I will take your money for my hard work.

It's not easy to do something like this, but in the end it will be worth the trouble.

Kat

sofiasmami Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:46pm
post #3 of

I agree with flytrap if it bothers you let her know ...

nanni Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:47pm
post #4 of

Why not chalk it up to a gift and learning experience. Don't let it become a rift between you guys-BUT the next time a situation comes up tell her up front that while you won't "sell" her the cake-you will charge her for supplies. I did a wedding cake for a dear friends daughter-she covered my expenses and delivery (while we were going anyway I had to take everything with me to another state and finish it all there). I am sorry your upset-give yourself a hug from CC!

HollyPJ Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:50pm
post #5 of

I think this is going to hang over your friendship. You need to be honest. I would call her and say something like, "This is awkward for me, but I need to discuss the cost of that cake with you. While it was a pleasure to make, just the ingredients and supplies cost $x.xx and I just can't afford not to be paid back for that like we discussed. Since you're my friend and this was a favor, I wasn't planning on charging any more than my cost. I hope you understand."...
etc.

If she can't understand why you would need to be paid back, or is hostile about your request, I think she is not a very good friend.
Please talk to her, or this will just eat at you! Not to mention, you might face another awkward situation next time she wants a cake.

Good luck and let us know what you end up doing!

Barbara76 Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:52pm
post #6 of

There is nothing wrong with telling her "You are right, I am not charging you for my time and skill, but I would appreciate the cost of the supplies".

By the way that is an awesome cake!!

You can always pick a really nice place for lunch and order well icon_smile.gif

Barbara

jscakes Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:52pm
post #7 of

hmmm, lunch at Red Lobster?!

Jenn123 Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:54pm
post #8 of

I would let this one go... perhaps you will get more orders out of it from guests or friends. I agree it is hard. Always tell people up front that there will be a charge and agree on the price before you start. It makes things awkward for for everyone involved if it is left hanging.

HollyPJ Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:58pm
post #9 of

I just took a look at your cake. WOW!! It looks terrific.
If you do end up talking to her and she balks at the cost, don't hesitate to (gently) mention how much that cake would cost a normal customer (it should be a lot!).

After reading what other posters wrote, I guess I would amend my recommendation to talk to her a little bit. Only you know her personality and the strength of your friendship. If you think both she and your friendship can take it, I still think honesty is in order.

I would want my best friend to be truthful with me over such a thing.

Jenn123 Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:59pm

After all...how much did your supplies cost? Was it more than lunch would cost her?? It looks like you made most everything yourself. (And very well too!)

Don't sweat it!

heychele Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 9:59pm

I was thinking of maybe just not eating or drinking for 3 days before she takes me to "lunch" so I can make it equal! lol

Cakeman66 Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 10:53pm

No offense, but I think this calls for something much better than Red Lobster.
There's no shame in charging family or friends. If they are your real friend, they won't mind paying for it. If you do freebies then you're doing your business a dis-service.

candyladyhelen Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 11:13pm

Everyone has posted very good advice. But don't beat yourself up over this. If you feel you let the opportunity slip by for asking for money, then please just use this as a learning tool. I looked at you pix & you certainly do wonderful work. You are established enough now to make up a price list and you can hand this to whomever asks for a cake the next time. And yes, everyone has made a pricing mistake and had to "eat" it!!!!

heychele Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 11:19pm

Great idea for handing them a price list! I think I WIll just "eat" this one and count it as a lesson learned. It's certainly not worth hurt fellings.
Thanks for all the great advice, I'm off to make price sheets!

TERRYHORTON Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 11:38pm

I think Outback has a Great happy Hour!!!
and the steaks are out of this world!!!!


Go for it!!!!

Lemondrop Posted 15 Jan 2006 , 11:44pm

Amazing Cake!! Be sure to have a dessert too! icon_wink.gif

llj68 Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 4:03pm

Awesome cake!! You did a great job on it. I would "eat" this one, too, but next time, BEFORE you make the cake--discuss how much it's going to cost you for supplies, etc. Heck--this exact same thing happened to me before--with my best friend--and when she walked out without paying me, I told her--Oh, btw, this is Danielle's present from me. There you have it.

Lisa

Lazy_Susan Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 4:10pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by nanni

Why not chalk it up to a gift and learning experience. Don't let it become a rift between you guys-BUT the next time a situation comes up tell her up front that while you won't "sell" her the cake-you will charge her for supplies. I did a wedding cake for a dear friends daughter-she covered my expenses and delivery (while we were going anyway I had to take everything with me to another state and finish it all there). I am sorry your upset-give yourself a hug from CC!





I absolutely agree with nanni... I'm sorry for your loss but if you are afraid your friendship is not strong enough to go to her and tell her that you were expecting to atleast get paid for your materials then you have to really think how she will take it and is it worth it. I think it is a fabulous present. Nothing more special to give as a present than one that is made with your hands and given with love in your heart.

Lazy_Susan icon_wink.gif

Devonee Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 4:10pm

Your cake looks great, I'll bet you'll get orders from people who see it, hopefully that will make up to cost of the cake.

LittleBigMomma Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 4:29pm

That's a fantastic job!

I, too, bet you'll get some orders from some of her friends, family or guests.

My SIL never pays me for birthday cakes. She always only offers to pay for supplies etc. I turn down her offer and my nieces and nephews know that their cakes are their gifts from me. (And, they love them!) They remember the cakes waaay longer than they do the other gifts they receive).

JamesSweetie Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 4:39pm

Did you talk about payment before you made the cake?
I don't think its unusal that she assumed you wouldn't charge her (Though I think she should have asked or at the very least offered), since it wasn't mentioned before you made the cake, but I would most defintely count that as the gift, and be planning that lunch date with the two of you. I know with friends and family it can be awkward, because cakes can be really expensive to make not to mention time intensive, usually a lot more so then they realize.

I think the line, "I know you won't take my money..." would have bothered me more, because its an assumption, and bascially puts the oness on you to say, "Well actually I will!". When I tell people that a cake has taken me 4+ hours to make they look like this icon_eek.gif And I mean thats a SIMPLE cake! Your cake is absolutely gorgeous and its not hard to tell you put a lot of energy into it. icon_biggrin.gif

jscakes Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 9:02pm

I'm going to try this again..got a "Debug" error message earlier..

I want to re-think what I wrote in before. If she is a friend, then this will never happen again as you will talk it over and communication will be much better. (being true friends, this wouldn't have happened at all)
As far as lunch, it wouldn't matter where we went if she were a true friend, you'll go and enjoy the time together. I'd be happy going to McDonalds. It wouldn't be fair price for a cake, but it would give you time together with her.

It's funny how life throws you curves and allows you to really see things for what they are, appreciate what you have, and who you have in your life.

Cakeman66 Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 9:22pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by jscakes

...
It's funny how life throws you curves and allows you to really see things for what they are, appreciate what you have, and who you have in your life.




While this is good advice, it's almost un/impracticle to think this way, if the other person is seemingly willing to take advantage of you/your time. There's nothing friendly about that. It might sound nit-picky, but time is valuable, at least to me it is. Nothing in life is free, not even for family and friends anymore.

My favorite saying to people ALL the time - Communication is the most important thing to me, if you are my friend, then it should be important to you too.

JamesSweetie Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 9:53pm

I don't necessarily think the friend was trying to take advantage of her. I don't charge friends or family for cakes(though I do not have a business yet, so maybe my point of view is different). If I couldn't afford to make one, I would tell them at the time they asked how much I would need to cover costs, or what I would need for them to buy. We live paycheck to paycheck too so they would have to understand that.

My aunt made my wedding cake for free, she had to take two days off work to finish it, she even took classes to perfect her skills for it. While of course not everyone can afford to be that generous, I would hope she would have been able to tell me when I asked if she could do the cake, how much money she would need for it. If after the wedding she had said, "oh by the way, I need $300 for the cake", of course I would have been upset.

As someone who has recently lost loved ones, I understand what jscakes is saying...that cake isn't worth a damaged friendship. I didn't realize that it was a best friend, you should be able to tell your best friend anything, including that you can't afford to give her a cake for free. People can't read your mind, I am guilty of not being direct either, and then get upset when I don't get what I want. But its not fair to the person that I get upset because they didn't offer.

The night before my father passed, I really wanted to go see my parents. I hadn't seen my parents for almost two weeks, because of being busy with christmas shopping and whatnot, and missed them. I hinted around I wanted to go (I don't drive) but because I didn't want to bother my husband and was afraid he would get irritated, I never come out and asked and thought, "well I will see them tomorrow". That night my father died in his sleep of a cardiac arrest.

After, part of me was mad at my husband, because I thought, "well if you had offered to take me, then I would have saw him one last time." He would have taken me if I had asked. Obviously he didn't know I wanted to go, and it wasn't his fault. Deep down it was actually myself I was mad at.

Its really worth speaking up.

okieinalaska Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 10:13pm

Beautiful cake btw! You did a fab job on it. Did you discuss the supply cost at all ahead of time? Or cost in anyway?? If not I would suggest you let it go. (although I think it's kind of rude for a friend to just assume that but it happens)

Not sure how much you have into the cake, if it's an amount you really need and just aren't going to be able to make it to pay day then definately talk to her. I am sure she would understand.

Don't feel bad, I made a similiar mistake once. I made a cake for a friend who told me she would pay me but I didn't ask her budget. I made a fancy black forest cake with filling and cherries, etc... and charged her $40. well that wasn't her budget, she was thinking $20. It worked out but was akward.... lesson learned though, LOL. If I had known I would have made a much simpler cake.

Amy

jscakes Posted 16 Jan 2006 , 10:18pm

Thank you JamesSweetie;
I am so sorry for your tremedous loss, that is exactly what has brought me to what I had to say. I lost a friend recently. His family is like another family to me and I just realized how much I appreciate them, and how they feel towards me. So it's not worth losing that over a cake.
If I don't have the material to cover a cake, I ask for that. I'll be more than happy to do your cake if you'll bring over all the supplies I need. So far all of my friends have been 100% agreeable to this, and also to paying if I ask.

I'm not in this for a business, I truly enjoy it and if I GIVE something I've made special, it comes from my heart - which is so full I feel truly blessed and there is only room for more.
Besides which, it just gives me more practice!

LNW Posted 17 Jan 2006 , 11:11pm

I had this happen a couple of times. The first was a family member, I let that one slide. The second time though I called the friend and explained my situation. She was more than happy to reimburse me for the money Id spent to make the cake. Its an awful feeling to have to pay someone else to make a cake for them.

If youre out quite a bit of money Id call. Thats really the only reason I called my friend. No way was I eating almost $30 in expenses. The first cake though probably cost me a few dollars to make but I spent several hours working on it. It would have been nice to get a little something for my work. I learned my lesson after the second mishap. I let them know up front I plan to charge them for expenses only and I will call with that price after Ive bought everything.

angelas2babies Posted 25 Jan 2006 , 2:00am

I just saw your cake. It is amazing. While I personally can't imagine what your friend was thinking just walking away with the cake like that, I guess it depends on what was agreed on BEFORE the cake was made. Never assume someone is going to do the right thing. I would have been too stunned at the moment she dropped the "I'll buy you lunch" line to come up with a retort, but after reflecting, she was rude and very thoughtless, and not to mention insulting to you by doing that.

(Deep breath) Sorry about the rant. I'm not trying to attack your friend. I just feel for you because I never say anything either to people that pull stunts like that and then I sit there and wonder why I took so long to get irritated. You are too nice. icon_smile.gif I would be in the same situation. Definitely just tell people beforehand what you expect as payment and there won't be any awkwardness. You are a talented ARTIST. Your time was your gift. People should just learn to be more appreciative. Again, your cake is beautiful.

Good luck.
Angie

butrcup Posted 25 Jan 2006 , 2:26am

I have to go with everyone who said unless it was discussed before hand- what would you expect to get paid? Unless you do cakes you don't have a clue how difficult they are, its like painting-I think those who are good at it must come easy to them, like you"re born with the talent-I don't have a clue what it takes to paint. Personally I have to say the friend sounded gracious by extending the lunch-she didn't just grab the cake and bolt without mention of some type of compensation. When someone comes to my house to do work they always bring up the estimate part, I don't, but I also wouldn't have work done without knowing what its going to cost.

babynewyear Posted 25 Jan 2006 , 2:34am

Oh my gosh thats a great cake. She should be jetting you somewhere for lunch! icon_biggrin.gif

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