How Much Should I Charge?

Decorating By starflake Updated 13 Mar 2008 , 3:56pm by tonedna

starflake Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 2:37pm
post #1 of 7

I am creating an outlet for my depression by starting to make my cakes again. I havent done this in over 15 years so I am kind of out of touch with the pricing of my cakes. I am not charging anything except for the ingrediants used. I wanted to get some practice in first before I charge. I am great with Fondant and Gumpaste and most of the cakes I make are completely edible and very yummy. For example: the wedding cake I made is a four teir round cake. Chocolate, Red Velvet, Yellow and Strawberry. There are over 250 individual flowers I made with Fondant. This took a couple of days to do. The frosting is a pink buttercream. I am making these cakes basically to help me emotionally. Nothing but love goes into each cake. I just feel someday I should start charging for these cakes and just need some input. Thank You for Helping Me Starflake

6 replies
step0nmi Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 2:54pm
post #2 of 7

Welcome to Cake Central Starflake!

It sounds like you are, by all means, NOT a beginner! you SHOULD be charging for your cakes! Especially if you are using fondant. No matter what skill level...if you make something for another person you should get what your time is worth! Just my opinion! icon_lol.gif

Pricing really depends on your area. Since you haven't been decorating in a while maybe some people from your area are on this site and can give you some insight on what to charge. You could also call some local bakeries (not a grocery store) and check with them to see what they charge. You could probably start in that same area but I would do a tad more since you are only one person and you will be doing all the work.
My work starts at about $2 per serving and up. Now I know a lot of people do wedding cakes and they would probably say $3...mine is for part cakes!

Glad you came to this site and found a way to do something you love! Good luck! thumbs_up.gif

FromScratch Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 3:02pm
post #3 of 7

You make nice cakes. I would say that you are still polishing your skills, but you are definitely not doing basic beginner stuff. I'd call you portfolio building.. not prefessional quality but getting there. I would call around custom bakeries in your area and get a feel for their pricing. I am guessing $3-4/serving will be the average for buttercream cakes. At this very moment if I were you I would price myself a little below the average with a clear statement that you are just starting out down this road and your prices will increase as your talent increases. Let people know that they are getting a killer deal by using you. It will help you build clientelle and give you an easy out when you need to raise those prices. I wouldn't do a cake for less than $2/serving even in the portfolio building phase of your venture. $3 if you are talking fondant. The biggest thing you need to do is calculate how much it costs for you to make a cake.. from getting the ingredients (include gas) to mixing and baking to leveling and filling to icing and decorating.. make sure you are covering those costs and your time. icon_smile.gif

You have great potential if you really want this. So sorry that you have been battling depression.. ((hugs)). Chin up okay?? Do what makes you happy.. and make others happy with what you do. I think cakes is a great fit for that. Good job on what you have done and I can't wait to see more of what you do.

messyeater Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 3:32pm
post #4 of 7

I love your flower covered cake...I saw it when you posted it and the colour combo is really great.

I agree ask local bakeries for their prices, thats what I did. I cant really factor in the time in takes me to make the actual cake because I'd never sell anything if my prices were much higher than the others.

Then if they want toppers or anything I charge extra for those at $20 a hour. It normally takes me about an hour to make a figure or bow for example. Flowers are charged if the cake is small...for example one or two tiers...then I charge 50c a flower. If it's a big cake I tend to do all additional work for free.

FromScratch Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 3:50pm
post #5 of 7

50 cents for a gumpaste/fondant flower?? It takes me at least 30 minutes to make a flower (and I am talking something super simple like an apple blossom. Now if you are talking a BC rose.. that's a little different.. but still super cheap. And your logic is a bit off.. the bigger the cake the MORE work you have.. you shouldn't be doing it all for free just because someone is ordering 100+ servings.

tracycakes Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 3:53pm
post #6 of 7

Starflake, I am in the same situation as you. I used to sell some cakes to friends and co-workers about 15 years ago and about a year ago, I got back into it, playing with fondant and gumpaste. Last week, I sold my first cake, a small simple sheet cake with my first frozen buttercream transfer, and I decided to sell it for $2 a slice. They didn't question the price at all. Much of it depends on your area though. There are alot of posts on here about pricing so you might check some of those and see what people in your area are charging. You might want to check your local bakeries and see what it seems your area will support.

Welcome back to cake decorating and to Cake Central! I know this site has been a great inspiration to me to try new things and realize that I'm better than I thought but not near as good as I aspire to be. icon_lol.gif

tonedna Posted 13 Mar 2008 , 3:56pm
post #7 of 7

I wouldn't start anything for less than $3.00 a serving. It takes too long.. Gumpaste flowers take a long time. I say it really depends on the flower and the amount of time it takes you. My sunflower cake I charge around a $100.00 just for the flowers.

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