Need To Vent To Only Those That Would Understand......(Long)

Decorating By chrissysconfections Updated 3 Apr 2008 , 7:58am by Curtsmin24

chrissysconfections Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:04am
post #1 of 82

So DH calls me on Monday afternoon, says "Honey Darrell here at work needs a wedding cake, 2 tiers covered in fondant for about 50 people in 11-12 days...I told him we'd do it" I laughed and said that wasn't funny, I know we had a hard time with the fondant covered TT cake this weekend but this running gag of yours is getting old. He says "No I'm serious" and he was!! So I meet with the groom-to-be at DH's work and he says I'll have to talk to his future wife because he likes them all and can't choose. OK fine. She looks at my MySpace page loves the work says I definitely want you to do the cake. So we start hashing out designs, she dumps the fondant idea when she realized it's much pricier and opts for BTC....again fine. She calls last night tells me she's picked the design, opted for extra cake for the kitchen and now all that's left is picking flavors....of course she wants each cake different wouldn't ya know. So I email her a list of flavors and fillings and wait patiently for her to get back to me. She calls and says she wants to add color to this all off white cake now but doesn't know what color would be best or how best to add it....she'll leave that up to me. She's wearing champagne and the bridesmaids are wearing chocolate but she doesn't want brown on the cake. So since her design of choice was the strawberry cake in my pics (minus the strawberries) I thought maybe adding something to the borders in a dusty rose or peach would be nice (these are the colors in the bouquets). I email her a pic of a 6" pan I decorated using a simple shell border with that little curvy, petal like thing in between. I told her that they weren't the actual colors I would use; they were just what I had left over from my last cake, that this was for DESIGN ONLY purposes. She emails back " We're still deciding on the coloring. I like what you have, but I'would like to see the actual colors in the topper before making a decision. That should be here by the weekend. I hope that doesn't mess things up for you." It's Easter weekend and her wedding is 10 days away!! She doesn't have her topper and now I'm back to square one with the cake!! I told her I HAD to have her FINAL decision no later then Saturday...totally forgetting it's Easter weekend. It was supposed to be a simple 2 tier cake for $100 to feed 50 people now I'm up to 4 cakes....3 tiers on seperated stand, 3 different flavors, lord knows what design and still at only $100!! Just to clarify, the price didn't go up because the cake sizes got smaller then the orginal quote. She's getting a 6" 2-8", and a 10" BTC and what was supposed to be a simple design.
Furthermore, she gives her husband a swatch from her dress and the attached picture from Sylvia Weinstock. She said she'd REALLY love to have this cake. HELLO!!!!
Maybe I'm wrong here or over reacting; (I do have a two yr old with night terrors too) but what more can I do for this person. She's not clear on what she wants so how can I design a cake!?!?
I just don't know what to do, I'm freaking out here and now DH is telling me all this stress is hardly worth the $100.....he's the one who told them YES!! icon_cry.gif
Any suggestions?

81 replies
Doug Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:14am
post #2 of 82

you to dh:

dear, you're right. This stress is not worth $100 to me.
You make the cake. Bye!

you to bride: The SW cake is lovely and will cost you $500.

if you want to only spend $100 you get a 8" and 10" or a 6" and 2-8" in plain BC w/basic borders.

(BTW-not counting the 6" tier -- 2 8" and a 10" would serve 82! according to wilton charts)

JoanneK Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:30am
post #3 of 82

I don't understand why you are allowing her to keep adding more and more things but you are staying at $100.

chrissysconfections Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:33am
post #4 of 82

Doug~ I'd so LOVE to say that to DH and I think he knows that! Problem is he'd tell her to shove it at this point.

I also was aware of the servings and pointed this out to her as she told me there would only be about 40 guests total. She said she wanted to cut bigger slices, then later when she ordered the extra 8" she said her son's wrestling team was also joining the reception at some point.

fiddlesticks Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:38am
post #5 of 82

I would tell her what she can get for the 100$ ( your choice and what you have time for ) She is now taking advantage ( big time ) ! If she wants a SW look a like cake then she has to pay for it ! You were being nice and took her on at the last min. You need to tell her what you can do for her at this point. If she,s not happy with that , she can go elsewhere!

bobwonderbuns Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:40am
post #6 of 82

I guess I'm looking at this from the outside in, but I'd put my foot down. I had to do that with a bride's mom last year -- she wanted this, she wanted that, no she doesn't like this, no, not that... yada yada yada... icon_rolleyes.gif My answer to her: Here's three choices, pick one by this date or I'm not doing the cake. Period. Guess what -- she did! icon_biggrin.gif

Another snitch of good advice -- what Doug said! icon_lol.gif

Melvira Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:40am
post #7 of 82
Originally Posted by chrissysconfections

Furthermore, she gives her husband a swatch from her dress and the attached picture from Sylvia Weinstock. She said she'd REALLY love to have this cake.

I'd have to quote Austin Powers at this point... "And I want a toilet made of solid gold, but it's just not in the cards, baby!"

I think you have bent over backwards and she proceeded to kick you in the @ss. Anyone who waits until LESS than 2 weeks before their wedding to order a cake will get what they get and like it, or they will serve Twinkies. Let her know that. Just MHO!!! Good luck to you... you are a saint for doing this!

bethola Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:40am
post #8 of 82

Yeah! What DOUG said!

Beth in KY

aligotmatt Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:42am
post #9 of 82

I think you shuold raise the price if she's raising the work.

And stick to your Saturday standard, if she can't have a cake finalized tell her she have the sizes and bc with a border. it's a week and a half to her wedding!!

Also, just for personal sanity, I use to take a lot of short term cakes, I did one wedding cake for a Saturday that the bride called me on Tuesday!! I did so many that I joked about naming myself "Last Resort Bakery" - Then I quit doing last resort cakes, because they really are the most stressful. Recently I've started doing them again, but I put strict guidelines on people. I either tell them the cake they will have (if they want me to make it) or give them 2 options. No tastings... no looking down the whole list... And certainly no specific matching colors. Sure, they can say 'peach' but don't bring me a swatch, just deal with the peach I make. I have come to love the last resort cakes. I've never thought about them before, they come and are gone and I'm paid by the weekend! it's fantastic! You just have to make it that way for you.

cohenandlillysmom Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:43am
post #10 of 82

Sweetie, you have to stop letting her push you around. I tell all of my brides that they are allowed to change any aspect of their cake a million time up til 2 weeks before the wedding. After that they are out of luck. The fact that you are even doing the cake on such short notice is amazing and the bride should realize that. You need time to get colors if you dont have the ones she wants. If you have kids you may need to find a sitter (lord knows I can barely cook dinner with my 2 year old and my 5 month old.) If anything you should have charged more for such short notice.

Stop selling yourself short. If you let her push you around you'll let the next one push you around and then you will stop loving what you do and waste a great god given talent!

Good luck with whatever you do and just relax, and charge what your worth.

Molly2 Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:43am
post #11 of 82


First of all tell her what you do for $100.00 then tell her if she prefers the Sylvia cake she might want to check with her to see if she able to make her cake.( tell her are hubby to look up some cake prices at area bakers) I'm not in the business of baking cakes for other people but when I make for friends and family I always ask them how much are you wanting to spend and the I show them what they would get for that price then I tell them leave me alone and I'll make you something pretty unless your going to stand right next to me and run to the store every time you want to add to this cake
I have not had anybody disappointed yet. it makes me so mad when people think that you cake just pull a cake out of the air and think it's not that hard to make Good Luck and don't stress you'll have to use that $100.00 to see the doctor


cocobean Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:44am
post #12 of 82

I don't really have any answers for you except that that cake is gorgeous and the inside looks delicious!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That cake looks way out of that gals price range!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! icon_twisted.gif

willman Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:46am
post #13 of 82

holy cats!! gotta LUV them spouses my wife keeps trying to undersell me to all her friends and pretty much everybody else drives ya crazy don't it the cake this lady wants is at least 600-700 dollars by the time you get it decorated and delivered good luck (you will need it)

marthajo1 Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:54am
post #14 of 82

I just have to tell you about the sign I saw at a walmart this weekend!

ALL wedding cakes ARE SPECIAL ORDER!!!!

I was just laughing at this sign! Obviously they turn down last minute cakes, and so should have you.

If you feel like it would be bad to turn back now then I would definitely put your foot down. I like what a previous poster said about keeping it at 100 for a simple white cake but upping the design features is going to have to add to the charge!

bobwonderbuns Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:54am
post #15 of 82

You know, another policy I have with my brides is that I simply won't talk them if it's six months or sooner until their wedding. Period. No exceptions. I've been questioned on this and the answer is "I do quality work and I get booked up early." Also, DH has his own business and it works best for us when I say "talk to the man" about his work and he says "talk to her" when people inquire about my cakes. icon_rolleyes.gificon_biggrin.gif

TheButterWench Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 3:12am
post #16 of 82

I also agree that shes adding more work and you need to up your price.

She has a 100 dollar budget you tell her what she can get for that.

That's it.

Why are you letting this get you stressed out?

deanwithana Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 3:15am
post #17 of 82

I would be very kind and just explain to her what you explained to us..... realized fondant was more expensive so you did away with that. When I originally quoted a price it was for ............. at $100. Well, you are now ordering .......... and it will now cost $........ Also, I love the picture you sent me.....that is a SW design....the minimum for a design from her is $........... you certainly have wonderful taste and if you want me to do something in that range it will be........... Also, if there are separate cakes in addition to the main cake (for the team) that is an additional 15% up charge (PITA charge) to the $....... that the one cake costs.

Also, if I do not have an answer by Saturday morning at 10 a.m. as to what the final cake will be, I won't be able to help you as I won't be able to get the supplies in time and I will not attempt to complete the order as the end result is a reflection of me.

Price has slowed her down once already.....I am sure that price will slow her down ALWAYS does. And if she is willing to pay the price....she will have to let you know by Saturday!!!!

Hope this helps and I really want to know how it turns out!!!!

jklm3721 Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 3:28am
post #18 of 82

You are way undercharging for this last minute cake!!! I don't really have any advice as far as the cake goes, but we just go through with night terrors with my 3 yr old, so I can sympathize with you. The trick we used was using "Monster" spray (air freshener). It has really helped.

Hope all turns out well.


akgirl10 Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 5:17am
post #19 of 82

I agree with all that has been said above, she needs to be reined in. I just wanted to chime in on the night terrors, they are awful, but after about three months they stopped. I hope your little one gets over them soon.

tammycake Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 11:56am
post #20 of 82

She is taking advantage of you. You know she is. Your husband knows it. We all know it. Only one person can stop it and that would be you.

The worst thing that is going to happen is she is going to get mad at you and run down to Walmart. It doesn't sound like she was a friend anyway and you don't think that. Even if she was, friends don't treat each other like that.

Good luck in telling her no.

janebrophy Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 12:09pm
post #21 of 82
Originally Posted by marthajo1

I just have to tell you about the sign I saw at a walmart this weekend!

ALL wedding cakes ARE SPECIAL ORDER!!!!

I was just laughing at this sign! Obviously they turn down last minute cakes, and so should have you.

If you feel like it would be bad to turn back now then I would definitely put your foot down. I like what a previous poster said about keeping it at 100 for a simple white cake but upping the design features is going to have to add to the charge!

OMG! I can't believe that
a) Walmart makes WEDDING cakes!?! and
b) that anyone would order their wedding cake from Walmart!?!?!

fmcmulle Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 12:16pm
post #22 of 82

I totally agree with everyone else. SHe is asking for way to much for $100. I know she wouldn't get that cake from Sylvia for $100. I had a girl want a cake from me and emailed me a picture of a Colette Peters cake and said remember we are on a budget.. Yeah what about our budget? My DH did that one time and never again will he make that mistake. I would politely explain how much all the design changes will costs to her and if she still wants the cake great, if not it will not be that big of a loss. Good luck with this one!

ziggytarheel Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 12:30pm
post #23 of 82

"That's a lovely cake. I do believe that particular cake artist charges...$xxxxxxxxx for that cake. I could probably do it for about $900. You interested?"

bashini Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 12:32pm
post #24 of 82

I too agree with everyone else. she is taking advantage of you BIG TIME!. What you have to do is, put your price up if you are going to do the cake she wants. If not stick to your guns and tell her what you can do - take it or leave it.

You are the only one who can stop this. You have to be straight forward.

Good Luck!

chrissysconfections Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:02pm
post #25 of 82

Just an that makes my blood boil a bit too......
I got a reply from what I thought was my polite email last night. She apparently found it somewhat offensive. All I did was repeat the fact that the colors I used in her sample "pan" design were not what I would actually use and stated that "time is of the essance here and I will need your final decision by Saturday at the latest to get supplies" I'm not sure how that become offensive but her tone wasn't postive.
She basically said "Do whatever you decide" this is not how I want her to feel but I do need something set in stone at this point.

Secondly my DH calls this morning and says that her DH told him again that he's so happy I'm doing the cake because who they went to first told them that their cake would cost between $400-500!! So she obviously had someone else in mind before I got the shaft here. I had prevously thought she was going to attempt it herself because she new our lingo but now I know she's been out looking for a sucker to do a champagne cake on a beer pocket book!!
I'm gonna look through the galleries and maybe do an internet search today ...not that I have time with my holiday baking and cleaning to do .....but maybe I can come up with something else; a compromise of sorts.

FYI~ I charged her $1 since I'm not licensed and it was my DH's co-worker that's why the price is so low. We are not friends and I've never even met this woman.
She was willing to pay a little bit more but balked at the $200 I would have charged for fondant so I'm not really sure what her budget is at this point.

Thanks to those of you with the night terror experience and advice. I'm pretty much running on auto pilot right now.

bashini Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:25pm
post #26 of 82

If I were you I wouldn't do the cake.

Something similar is happening to me as well. A freind of DH asked me whether I can do his son's 1st b'day cake. I said ok and I sent him lots of cake photos to choose from. He still hasn't got back to me. The party is on the 29th. If he calls me after monday, I'm just going say I can't do it. BTW, its for 200 serving!

Anyway, Good Luck!

janebrophy Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 2:42pm
post #27 of 82

Wow, people will never cease to amaze me! If I were you, taking into account the holiday, and night terrors (boy do I know what it's like to have no sleep!), I would tell her no. Just weigh out your sanity vs. her cake. I would let her go elsewhere and pay more. It's a toughie though since your DH works with hers!

Petit-four Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 3:14pm
post #28 of 82

I am so sorry to read about your situation. If it helps -- I was put in a similar situation last fall.

DH's co-worker (not a friend), talked about a special event cake for months, I talked to her early on, but she never ordered, and then 2 weeks before, sent him home with a Martha Stewart wedding book, post-it notes indicating what she'd like. At the time 2 of my family members had serious health problems.

I typed up a quote (for my tiered cake prices), a sketch, and photos, and then she responded by writing up her own quote for half the price. I call to clarify, and she tells me, "Your prices are ridiculous. You're no Martha Stewart." Yells at me for 30 minutes.

Don't hear from her for days, and then sends a post-it note home with him written "do as you wish." Sigh. Anyway -- she got a bargain cake, I got zero references from her party, and he got some peace at work.

You do lovely cakes -- perhaps there is a way to make some RI roses for just the top, and pipe some vines only on the lower tiers? A way to save time, and give her a bit of the "look'?

I am so sorry -- it can feel like being trapped in a lose-lose situation when co-workers of spouses are involved. I'll be thinking kind thoughts for you over the next few days!

Melvira Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 5:10pm
post #29 of 82
Originally Posted by Petit-four

Don't hear from her for days, and then sends a post-it note home with him written "do as you wish."

And you DID the cake? "What I wish" would've been to tell her to go to HECK. *Insert much stronger profanity here* icon_wink.gif Peace at work or not, it's NOT worth being treated like that. If someone insults me or my work, you can guarantee they aren't getting a cake.

Petit-four Posted 20 Mar 2008 , 5:48pm
post #30 of 82

Melvira -- yes. icon_redface.gif I know, I know. In hindsight -- yes, I regret it very much. I am not proud of what I felt had to do, but felt little choice. I could relate to the situaton in the original post: having sick family members (cancer), and DH is VERY tense because co-worker is being mean to him, and, well, sometimes it is hard to think straight! (For us both!) Just reading it, I felt my stomach tighten up!

In my case, I learned a hard, bitter, lesson. He continues to have problems with this person (who filed a complaint against him). I have switched from 90% of my cakes being from DH's co-workers to 10%. I had some down periods as I built up a new customer base, but it was 100% worth it. And I am treated lots better by my "outside" customers!

I realize reading my first post that it sounded like I was saying "just go along." I am sorry, I meant "try to make the best of a bad situation" by using a few decorator tricks to make a quick cake look "WOW." That is what I did with my "problem child" client, and still kept DH work situation (sort-of) stable.

(PS -- thank you for sharing your icing method -- it is wonderful!)

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