Hi everyone. I have a bride who wants to know ALL her options with prices for a tiered wedding cake for 80. She would also consider a tiered cake + cupcakes. For you more experienced wedding cakers - how do you do this? Do you have a package of info with wedding cake options that you would give to a bride? There are so many options....stacked, pillared, both stacked and pillared, various stands that could be rented, bc vs. fondant, dummy cakes.....I'm procrastinating getting started because I think it will take me hours and hours....! I was thinking of suggesting a 12"/10"/6" stacked - that equals 80 servings (I think, not looking at a chart right now) using the Wilton party serving chart (the wedding servings just seem SO tiny). But would that look okay (only 2" difference between bottom and middle, 4" diff. between middle and top)? Please help, feeling stressed....
Price per serving...period.
One price for buttercream if you wish
One price for fondant
cupcakes same price as per serving?
Whether they are stacked, pillared, or seperate shouldn't make a difference in your pricing...except for maybe charging a deposit on anything you need returned.
$3 (buttercream price) x 80
$4 (frondant price) x 80
$2 (cupcake price?) x 80 + $3 x 8 for 6" round to cut.
Make it simplified and just do the math.
I would pick out a FEW designs and go from there..... there is no way you could give her ALL the options.... Find out if she has some pictures of cake designs that she likes..... fondant or butter cream........ fancy flowers or more plain.... Ask her LOTS of questions, then you can naoow it down a bit... Personally, I always make more servings than they ask for, because if anyone other than a decorator is going to cut the cake, they will cut the servings to large, and you won't have enough....
grama-j is right .... no way you can give ALL the options. Tell her if she wants to see her "options", she can spend a few HOURS on the internet looking at cake pics.
I'm with mgdqueen .... My price is per-serving, no matter HOW you construct it. I don't charge by design, which means I dont' charge differently for a stacked cake, a pillared cake, a cake on a fountain, a cake on acrylic stands, etc.
I use the Wilton Wedding Cake chart for pricing purposes, not necessarily for serving size (although they are coincidentally very close and/or the same thing). She can have a square 12/8/6 (which serves 104 plus the top tier of 18 = 122) or she can have a round 12/10/6 (which serves 94 plus the top tier of 12 = 106), based on a 1x2x4 serving size. If she wants to cut them bigger, then she needs to order more and pay for more cake.
The bride sounds like she just needs to make a decision on what SHE wants. If a catering customer asked me for a price on ALL of their options, well heck, I could quote them Mac-n-Cheese or I could quote them Lobster Newburg. Come on, bride. Figure out what YOU want and I will be happy to quote you. I can't decide for you what it is you are looking for.
It sounds like she doesn't have any idea what cakes cost, and maybe she is afraid to ask for something fearing it will be too much. (Obviously I haven't worked with any bridezillas!) Maybe you could give her a FEW examples...simple butter cream ... fondant ... elaborate, so she can get an idea for her budget, then, I agree with everyone else, price per serving and SHE needs to figure out at least what style she wants.
When I consult with a bride, I give them the prices up front. I let them know what I am comfortable doing and what equipment I have on hand. If they want something I don't have I let them know up front what the cost is and explain why I do not have that in my inventory. If it is something she is really wanting, then we work it out, and some of the cost is absorbed by the bride. (I don't make her pay for all of it because I know I will use it again.) As for designs. I talk a little with the bride and see what style she likes. I look online for ideas and I have a few books on hand to look through as well. When I am searching I keep in mind my skill level. I don't want to pick something out of my comfort zone for a wedding.
Other things for you to consider is how much batter you are going to need for each pan, cooking time, ingredients, amount of frosting and/or fondant. I always have this planned out ahead of time so when it comes time for baking, I know I have everything I need and can bake efficiently, i.e, 12" & 6" take two batches of batter. I bake in the morning and torte and crumb coat in the afternoon so the cakes can settle overnight. I decorate the next day, and do touch ups the day of the event. If the cake is big, plan on a 12 hour day the baking day. Decorating is about 6-8 hours. This is just what I have found works for me. It may be different for others, but I am a one woman show and learning as I go.
I was so nervous for my first big wedding, but when I made it through, I found that I love doing this. Good luck to you.
Use the matrix.. i swear by it.. ask for what she's looking for and put it in the matrix and it will give you an accurate pricing...