Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 5:56pm
post #1 of

Sometimes when you think you know someone very well, and they through you a curve ball, it really feels weird. More than being snubbed by a stranger. Can I share?

This is a pic of the cake my close friend ordered for her daughter's 2nd birthday. Now, this little girl is my Goddaughter, and I was asked to do a cake for her the year before; a combi 1st birthday and Christening (it's 2-tier, white/pink roses in my gallery).

But for this party, I was never asked and I figured she was making her daughter's cake (like alot of mom's do). When she brought it to the table, I asked, "Oh, **** did you make that yourself?" (thinking it was her first attempt as a cake civilian). "Oh no, I got it from XYZ bakery". It hit me like a load of bricks right then that she hadn't asked me to make my GD's cake, and paid someone else to do it.

Then she and her husband both give me this woman's glossy portfolio of brochures and say "here, this might help you get some tips for your business and ideas for decorating when you open one day". HUH? I'd just seen the cake. I was all set with that.

I thumbed through the damn folder, only to see the rcpt and it brought tears to my eyes to see what she paid for this cake. AND that she accepted it like this.

At that point, I could have sworn I heard the theme from The Twilight Zone. At the end of the party, we said our big g'byes, and I cried all the way home about that #$^%($%&%* cake!

I asked her about it 3 weeks later, and she said it was because she didn't want me to have to worry about bringing anything to the party. That sounded not quite right to me. It's not like it was a salad or something. From certain things she said after that, I drew a possible conclusion that her mother wanted her to get a cake from someone else. I have no idea why, though, because everyone told me how they loved the previous year's cake at that big fancy event. The only thing I can think of is that my friend did have to pay for the combi cake because it was done while I worked at the bakery. The owner told me to only charge my friend cost though. Maybe her mom was mad about that. I have no idea.

I've not pursued it any further. I just don't know why it eats at me still. Anyway, thanks for reading...
LL

51 replies
awolf24 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 6:02pm
post #2 of

I'll never understand people. First of all, I'm not impressed with the cake in the picture (you can see the cake through the icing!!!) and the cakes in your gallery are beautifully decorated - gorgeous smooth icing and you have amazing piping skills.

Maybe she really was trying to save you "trouble", maybe she did have pressure from her mother for some reason or other. You'll never really know. I know it is difficult but try not to keep letting it bother you. If I had a choice, I'd have asked you in a second!! icon_smile.gif

ziggytarheel Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 6:40pm
post #3 of

I understand how you feel. But, could it be your friend is a lot like me?

I hate asking people favors and avoid it with all my might whenever possible. So, perhaps they are like me and would never impose by asking a favor like that?

And, could it be they thought you would offer to make the cake, and when you didn't, they bought one instead?

And could it be, that they thought there might be something educational in the brochure (pricing?) and maybe they even WANTED you to see how much it cost, so maybe you would offer next time?

ribby0224 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 7:52pm
post #4 of

This is totally OT, but please tell me what system you use to get your icing so smooth?

ccr03 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:03pm
post #5 of

I used to work as a journalist (it sucked to much out of me -but would love to go back some day). Anyway, I took any type of criticism/critique about my writing very personal. When my sister worked as a marketing person for her school and never asked for my opinion I was sometimes hurt but then I learned that my work is SEPARATE from me. It's the same with cakes.

Yes, I put a lot of personal time and energy into my cakes, but just because a family member or close doesn't ask me to do it doesn't mean that they didn't like. Some people are funny about having 'business transactions' with friends.

Also, like ziggytarheel said, she could VERY well not wanted you like you had to bring something. yes, it's not 'salad' but cake civilians don't know that.

Don't let it bother you! I'm sure it's a bigger deal to you than she even thought it to be.

Oh, and on the brochure thing - I do that ALL the time with my sister. She and her husband have an equipment rental company and whenever I see something about equipment rentals I'll send it her way - including info on the competition! Competition info is the closest info you should keep!!

Sorry this is sooo long! icon_wink.gif

michellenj Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:13pm
post #6 of

I'm sure they didn't mean anything by it, and were just trying to save you the "trouble" of doing the cake. It really does sound innocent, to me. Just try to forget about it.

Aliwis000 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:13pm
post #7 of

I would believe the "we just wanted you to be able and come enjoy the party" thing up until they handed you the brochures. What in the world? Your cakes are so much better then the one pictured! The cake can be seen through the icing! I know we all have our bad days, and I am no pro but I have eyes and can see your cakes are better. What a slap in the face to have a friend do that to you. I am sorry!

mariela_ms Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:14pm
post #8 of

I agree with ccr03. I too get a little weird with family/friend business transactions. Your cakes are beautiful! what is t not to like?

I'm sure it was just that she didn't want you to go through the hassle of making one. It doesn't mean she doesn't like them or didn't want one from you at her daughter's party.

I go to family parties and people keep buying cakes from WalMart. It doesn't bother me. shake it off! And keep doing those amazing cakes! icon_smile.gif

SUELA Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:18pm
post #9 of

I agree the cake does not look that great. I have a friend that every second year asks me to do the cake. The off years she doesn't want to bother me. (i worked full time and taught 3 dys a week). We also live opposite ends of the city, so logistics can be tricky to get the cakes. However, I know how I feel when not asked to do a cake, so I can only imagine for your god daughter. I swear I worked at the one place where people DID not take advantage of my cakes in any way shape or form!

When you have cooled down a bit from this, maybe explain to her how it made you feel, and that at least being given the option would have been appreciated.

TC123 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:22pm

I know it's hard, but please try not to dwell on it too much or take it too personally. (Even though when it comes to us and our cakes, it IS very much personal!) Based on viewing your photos, I find your cakes to be way better. I'm not sure what was behind it all, but I don't think anyone wanted to hurt, upset or anger you. I don't know... I don't get people sometimes either... icon_confused.gif

tyty Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:22pm

After looking at the pitiful little cake, I understand how you feel. Why would someone want that? The icing isn't even smooth! Palm trees and pumpkins? That is NOT cute.

Maybe your cakes don't look professional enough because you don't use candy and plastic toys to decorate. If that's what she likes, let her have it and move on to your next customer.

calynmom Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:33pm

I'm not sure I understand the cake either. What exactly was the theme of it.?????

What it be rude to ask what exactly was the price for that cake.

I can't believe they would be proud of that cake and then give you brochures of this lady. How weird.

fondantgrl Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:38pm

If this is really eating you up, talk to her and ask the real reason why.

I can understand your disappointment, but there is no need to cry over it.

I always give my cakes away to me friends (since I'm not allowed to sell), but if they order cakes somewhere else, I don't feel bad and sad about it. There could be a lot of reasons why. Don't worry about it.. maybe next year make it clear to her that you want to do it. Let it go.

Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:40pm

I see the points of view you all have expressed. Maybe she really did just not want to bother me. She's a sweet person. Wait. Now that I'm thinking of it, I DID ask her the month before if she wanted me to do the cake, and she said "No honey, that's ok. We'll all set."

Believe me, both my friend and her husband had no problem asking me to make them a half dozen cupcakes every couple of months for their own enjoyment, or for his birthday because they were his fave.

Well, whatever the reason, I'm just going to try and let it go. At 40 y.o. I've kind of figured out that it takes less energy to look to the future than keep my neck craned backwards looking at the past. (I just need a reminder every now and then icon_wink.gif)
Thanks to you guys for your words of advice, and for your nice compliments.

tx_cupcake Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:43pm

So it was a tropical Halloween themed party?

I can understand your frustrations. The only cake I ever made for my in-laws was for my SIL's baby shower. EVERYONE at the shower loved it, yet I have never been asked to make another cake for anyone in that family. But you know what? I make cakes because I love making cakes, not because I love compliments.

Your cakes are gorgeous and that weird monkey cake couldn't hold a candle to your work. Chin up!

jacquie575 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:45pm

Your friend is nuts. Your cakes are beautiful and she was crazy to pay for something soooo, how can put this? Amateurish! Do you mind sharing how much she actually paid for that catastrophe? icon_confused.gif

smoore Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:48pm

But how much was it? icon_smile.gif Perhaps in hearing how much it was, some of us who don't think we could get more for our cakes can muster up some confidence in asking more .... if they can get that much so can we type of thing.

I agree -- it doesn't help fretting over the why she didn't ask you. Maybe she showed you the brochures because she was actually dissapointed in her cake and she wanted you to know she was expecting better??? Were the pics in the brochure better???? I know, I'm stretching it .... but I would like to know the price! icon_smile.gif

Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:50pm

fondantgrl, sometimes tears come whether we want them to or not. icon_wink.gif

The theme was Curious George, txcupcake. And I know what you mean, I make cakes for my family because it gives me the chance to be up to my elbows in buttercream, not for accolades.

Calynmom, it was $90.

dahir Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:54pm

OMG Please tell us they did not pay for that cake. Maybe they were trying to be nice and let you just enjoy the party but honestly they could have gotten a better cake at walmart. How did it taste? Dont let it bother you to much because remember all the family parties we are invited to and we are EXPECTED to make the cake while someone else gets to bring salad. icon_smile.gif P.S. your cakes are beautiful.

Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:54pm

smoore, The few pics in the glossy brochure were honestly a little better than that. There was a wedding cake pic that was nice.

yelle66 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:58pm

LMBO! Tropical Halloween theme is my favorite! I can't wait to get the opportunity to do one icon_rolleyes.gif

I had a friend of mine (a good friend) order a cake from somewhere else for her DD's birthday and it was kind of hurtful. I have let it go, but it is hard not to wonder why. Better just to look forward to the many people who will appreciate your cakes for what they are *which is surely NOT an green mass of frosting covered with yucky candy pumpkins and plastic trees*....Right?

Oh my word! I cannot believe THIS was a Curious George theme! And $90!?! Whooo.... I need to be in that town. How in the world do people get away with charging that much for a cake that looks like that?

Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 8:58pm

Thanks much, dahir. The cake was moist borderline wet. The BC was creamy and not bad, although you could take somekind of slight artificial undercurrent.

Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:04pm

yelle66, you can get away with a nice chunk of change when you have a business address in this particular affluent town where the bakery is. icon_confused.gif Neither she nor I live there, it was on her way to work.

FlourPots Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:19pm

I don't have any words of wisdom to add, but like ribby, I would love to know your smoothing method?

Swede-cakes Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:26pm

Ribby and Flourpots,

I have no special trick! (just what you wanted to hear, huh? icon_wink.gif )

A 14" straight blade spatula, a 4-cup glass measuring cup of boiling water, and a couple of bar towels are my best friends in the kitchen! Lol!

Let the blade heat up in the boiling water, take it out and QUICKLY run each side of the blade on the towel to wipe off water and use it to smooth the BC. You get two well placed strokes on the cake, one from each side of the blade, then do it all over. Dip, wipe, smooth, repeat. You shouldn't be actually pressing into the BC to smooth it, as you'll take off too much and that's not the goal. You want to smooth what's there. Smooth with a light, quick hand. Takes practice...good luck!

FlourPots Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:40pm

Thanks so much...that definitely sounds do-able.

littlecake Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:41pm

she's prolly like my best friend, she won't let me do ANYTHING for her, she doesn't want to bother me, although there are things i'd like to do for her, she just won't let me.

she is prolly just a good person....as i get older i've learned to give those we love the benefit of the doubt...it's good for us and them.

people who stuff for a living get overrun with everyone wanting something for free, she prolly just didn't want to be one of them

Beckalita Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:45pm

I recently had something similar happen with a good friend of mine. I've made plenty of cakes for her and her family before and they always loved them. Two months ago she told me she's planning a big birthday/anniversary party and would I consider doing the cake? She can get a cake with her catering package, but prefers mine. So I get all the details and do a few sketches. I give her a quote (same price she'd pay for the caterer's cake, BTW) and she says let me get back to you when I have a final headcount. The deadline goes by and no word, so I email to ask her if she still wants me to do the cake. She replies that she hasn't thought about it and can she let me know in a week or so? I reiterate that time is short and I need to know soon in order to get the necessary supplies. Finally after a week and another email, she calls to tell me that she decided to get the cake through the caterer ~ because she wants me to enjoy the party and not have to stress about the cake! I'm really hurt at this point, mainly because she completely wasted my time with details and sketches ~ hoping I would be cheaper than the caterer when she knows I really could have used the money. I think I am done doing cakes for her.....I have enough REAL customers who appreciate my products and don't bat an eyelash at the price. Let her go to Walmart from now on.......
Sorry for the rant, didn't mean to take over icon_surprised.gif(

AmyCakes2 Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:50pm

When I lived in Ohio and did cakes, I had a friend who'd always order cakes from me for her grandkids - up until the point the her dd's MIL decided SHE wanted to get the cake for the next birthday - and it wasn't from me.
I have GREAT friends (not that your friend isn't!)- and they never hesistate to get their cakes from me. I've stressed to them NEVER to hesitate to call, etc.
Do you work out of your home?? Maybe they don't get all that, etc. Who knows! Try and shake it off and keep up your good work!

turtlemom Posted 17 Jul 2008 , 9:56pm

friends are the worst. I just hope you let everyone know at the party that you did not make that cake. Hopefully you can let it go, but I know how you feel!

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