How Would You Handle This?

Business By CakeDiva70 Updated 3 Jun 2008 , 11:16pm by CakeDiva70

CakeDiva70 Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 7:37pm
post #1 of 11

How would you handle this? My co-worker told me that his brother-in-law was getting married and as a gift to the happy couple he was paying for the cake. I told him that I don't do wedding cakes .....yet, but I could do the groom's cake. The co-worker even talked to me about doing a dessert table at the wedding. Well a lot of time has gone by, and I have been trying to get the details of what they want ......if anything. My co-worker is unsure what the bride wants.

Yesterday, I get an email from my co-worker's wife letting me know the dates of the "tasting". Below is what she says:

[list]She can do June 20, 21, 27, or 28th. She is open on the time. She wants to taste Italian cream, red velvet and carrot cake. However please tell her to bring any suggestions she might have as my future sister in law does not have a clue what she really wants.

I respond back with:

I will check my calendar and let you know about the date. Does your sister-in-law want a dessert table at her wedding? That way I will have an idea of what she wants and which desserts to bring besides the ones listed below. If you could also let me know the date and how many guests, that would be great. I look forward to meeting you and the happy couple. If you need to contact me, please feel free to do so on my cell.

She responds back with:

She said she never thought about a dessert table but that could be an option. They are expecting about 500 people. The date of the wedding is October 11th.

I am still unclear what is going on. I don't want to prepare all these desserts to take to the bride only to have her say well I want only this or that. I am not sure if she is having the desserts in addition to the wedding cake or just desserts.

Every time I ask, I don't get a clear answer. It seems the bride may not know what she wants either. I don't know my co-worker's wife at all, so I don't feel comfortable being direct asking her what is the deal.

Also, she wants to taste a lot of things, and it is too expensive to provide all these desserts only for her to come back and say I am too expensive or whatever she might think of.

Sorry so long, but if you could help me out on this one..........

10 replies
darandon Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 7:44pm
post #2 of 11

I think I'd quit going through the co-worker's wife to get to the bride. That gets very confusing even if the bride would know what she wants. Let her know what desserts you offer and have her pick 2 to taste. That would give her an idea of your baking skills - she wouldn't have to taste 15 different kinds. SHe can go by the description to know if she would like something.

michellenj Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 8:00pm
post #3 of 11

Do you have those 3 flavors in your freezer or something? Were you planning on doing 6" cakes, or cupcakes, or making a full sized cake? Those are some expensive ingredients for a tasting that she may or may not be interested in. Or are you ucharging for the tasting?

I would try to meet with the bride before the tasting, and get a feel for what she wants, then do the tasting at a later date. It would suck to waste your time and $$ making things that she doesn't want. In my experience, try to do as little communicating through a 3rd party as possible, unless it's an event planner/bridal consultant.

Auryn Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 8:04pm
post #4 of 11

Go straight to the bride
this is turning into a big ol mess that your gonna hate soon.

seems to me like they think u are doing the wedding cake.
Quit beating around the bush and talk to the bride directly.

SweetConfectionsChef Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 8:37pm
post #5 of 11

Going through a third person is going to drive you up the wall! Just ask your co-worker for the bride's contact info or tell her that you need the bride to contact you directly. A tasting is where you would set up the details assuming you are open for her wedding date. I serve vanilla cupcakes at tastings....there is no menu and there is no choice. They are just there to sample your product not everything they might or might not want at their wedding. I tell them they should be looking for moistness, texture, and quality flavor. Then they can see the custom work from my portfolio. As a cake designer part of your job is to actually design the cake with the bride's likes and dislikes in mind. Anyway, good luck with this and get rid of third party conversations or you'll be posting from a mental institution! icon_wink.gif

SweetConfectionsChef Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 8:37pm
post #6 of 11

Going through a third person is going to drive you up the wall! Just ask your co-worker for the bride's contact info or tell her that you need the bride to contact you directly. A tasting is where you would set up the details assuming you are open for her wedding date. I serve vanilla cupcakes at tastings....there is no menu and there is no choice. They are just there to sample your product not everything they might or might not want at their wedding. I tell them they should be looking for moistness, texture, and quality flavor. Then they can see the custom work from my portfolio. As a cake designer part of your job is to actually design the cake with the bride's likes and dislikes in mind. Anyway, good luck with this and get rid of third party conversations or you'll be posting from a mental institution! icon_wink.gif

SweetConfectionsChef Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 8:37pm
post #7 of 11

Going through a third person is going to drive you up the wall! Just ask your co-worker for the bride's contact info or tell her that you need the bride to contact you directly. A tasting is where you would set up the details assuming you are open for her wedding date. I serve vanilla cupcakes at tastings....there is no menu and there is no choice. They are just there to sample your product not everything they might or might not want at their wedding. I tell them they should be looking for moistness, texture, and quality flavor. Then they can see the custom work from my portfolio. As a cake designer part of your job is to actually design the cake with the bride's likes and dislikes in mind. Anyway, good luck with this and get rid of third party conversations or you'll be posting from a mental institution! icon_wink.gif

CoutureCake Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 8:44pm
post #8 of 11

I agree with the PP in that it sounds like they're thinking that you're going to be doing the main wedding cake. I also agree that you should start communicating directly with the bride because the go-between stuff is going to cause a lot of confusion that you do NOT want to deal with! The other thing is the groom's cake should involve the groom.. Demanding that you provide three different samples right there is enough of a call for a good loud "WOOOOAAA NELLY!"...

YOU are the one who runs the tastings, not the bride... Unless you've got your most expensive flavor options for cake sitting in the freezer just waiting for a bride to eat them, there's no way you're going to do those options for a tasting menu that she's never going to use. I've yet to have an order for a red velvet cake.

Good luck!!! Just stand your ground in wanting to start dealing directly with the bride.

ccr03 Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 9:18pm
post #9 of 11

I'm gonna have to agree with the PP.

1. Talk to the bride directly. Lots of time our friends think they save us the trouble of being the go-between, but quite the contrary.

2. It also sounds like maybe they do think you may be doing the wedding cake.

You have to be straightforward and upfront with everyone who comes knocking at your door, otherwise you are not going to be running a strong, successful business.

gateaux Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 9:36pm
post #10 of 11

I say it's time to get on the phone with your co-worker's wife and find out their budget and then contact the bride and find out what she thinks you will provide then you can let her know - yes I can decline and say sorry this is not something I can provide.

I understand that the inlaws are paying so maybe they think you will give them a big break because they know you. Also 500 people is that how many they are inviting or is that the 60% rule. Wow that would be over 830 invited guest, that seems a bit extreme to me and I come from a large family as I am grandchild # 57 of 64. Still if they are inviting 500 the 60% rule put them at needing 300 servings. So still alot but much less.

Good Luck

CakeDiva70 Posted 3 Jun 2008 , 11:16pm
post #11 of 11

Thanks for all the insight..........it all makes sense. I am going to contact the bride directly and find out what she wants me to do, because I hate wasting time. Also, I like the suggestion of not doing all those desserts.........just too expensive to do on a "may be"! Thanks CC Family! icon_biggrin.gif

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