Can She Do It?

Business By jillmakescakes Updated 7 Aug 2008 , 12:16pm by loriemoms

jillmakescakes Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 3:59pm
post #1 of 26

I'm somewhat new posting here, but I've stalked the chat room for months. I teach the classes at our local craft store as well as run a very small business decorating cakes (I can only accomodate 1 per weekend with the limited rental space). I just have to laugh and share the phone call that I just received. The store where I teach gave this woman my phone number because she called THEM with a question about decorating a wedding cake. She then called me to tell me that she is making her daughter's (that alone is a lot of stress) and had a question about the cake. The daughter wants a 4 tier cake with the cherry blossoms and branches look, very popular. The woman called me to ask how she is supposed to attach the branch and blossoms to the cake!!!!!!! If she's not sure how to do that, how is she going to get 4 tiers stacked, transported and set up, before getting ready for her mother-of-the-bride duties??? Am I the only one who thinks that is nuts?

25 replies
mandysue Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:09pm
post #2 of 26

Yep, complete nut job! Spend the money to get someone else to make the cake.....or make something simpler yourself! Geez!

BellaSweet Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:11pm
post #3 of 26

That is definitely a LOT of work. I am actually the cousin of a bride. And she desperately wants me to make her cake. No one else will due. And she was very dissappointed to find out that because of when she wants the cake there, for set up, I will not be able to go to the ceremony icon_sad.gif . If you are any family member (let alone MOB) it will almost always be difficult.

biancas_mommy Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:14pm
post #4 of 26

eek! icon_eek.gif i wonder how much if any experience she has. sounds like not much! people really truly don't realize how complicated a wedding cake is. let's hope she knows the tiers have to be supported...a lot of "laypeople" really just think it's a bunch of cakes sitting directly on top of each other! i was shopping with a friend yesterday buying foamcore board and dowels and she was like "that's all for a CAKE?" i had to explain to her how a cake is stacked and she was amazed. she had no idea there was all that stuff going on inside of a wedding cake...she goes, "wow i probably would have just started piling them on top of each other." LOL.

GingerCakes Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:17pm
post #5 of 26

Yeah, that is insane! The MOB is already the 2nd most stressed out role (sometimes the 1st). Did you tell her that if you were her you would have it done? She probably wouldn't listen anyhow, but wow, think of the stress!

bambuf Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:26pm
post #6 of 26

I suppose it is more of a pet-peeve to me, but it annoys me when someone calls me (also a teacher at a local craft store) with questions on how to do things, when they have never taken a class from me. The cost of the class is usually less than $20...make the investment, come learn something when it is convenient for both of us, not when it is convenient for you! I never mind students who call me to ask a question and I am always willing to help. I guess I feel less inclined to do so when a stranger calls me to tell them how to do something that others pay me to teach them! Sorry if I hi-jacked the thread...

As for this MOB, I applaud her for wanting to take on the challenge, but shame on her for expecting YOU to tell her how to do without some sort of recompense.

tx_cupcake Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:29pm
post #7 of 26

I'm not saying she can't do it, but I hope she at least practices first!

CakesByLJ Posted 5 Aug 2008 , 4:31pm
post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by jillmakescakes

If she's not sure how to do that, how is she going to get 4 tiers stacked, transported and set up, before getting ready for her mother-of-the-bride duties??? Am I the only one who thinks that is nuts?




Well........... does she have any decorating experience? She might, and just not sure how to do the one thing she asked you.. It's possible, as folks come to this site for the same reason sometimes... I taught classes for years and had lots of similar experiences. Who knows why people do what they do icon_confused.gif
It can be done though.. I did my daughter's wedding cake, and flowers, and traveled 250 mile with it.. It's all about organization.. icon_smile.gif

indydebi Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 10:22am
post #9 of 26

When she asked about attaching the branches and flowers, was she talking about using a 'real' branch? icon_confused.gif Or icing/fondant ones? I couldnt tell by your post.

Having been the MOB who made the cake AND did the finger-food catering, all I can say is NEVER AGAIN!!! I might make the cake, but will designate someone else to do the set up work!

playingwithsugar Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 10:48am
post #10 of 26

I guess she'll have to take course 3 to find out, huh?

Theresa icon_smile.gif

grama_j Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 11:17am
post #11 of 26

" The woman called me to ask how she is supposed to attach the branch and blossoms to the cake"

She isn't taling about REAL flowers and branches, is she ?

loriemoms Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 11:35am
post #12 of 26

Its not as crazy as you think...the women just isn't thinking outside the box and maybe just doesn't have the knack...

If it wasnt for my daughters wedding, I may not have the business today! When my daughter got married, we couldn't afford the 10000 dollars for a wedding!! The church was free (mormon) and the reception hall was free (part of the church) but that was it (that helped a lot!) I did everything else. (My daughter took care of the dress, bridesmaid, stuff like that) We had all her friends to help decorate (I found a place on line that had white christmas lights CHEAP) A friend of mine told me about a flower wholesaler and I bought all the flowers bulk and MADE all the bouquets, center pieces, etc. FRESH roses! (they arrived in ice packed boxes three days before the wedding ..my house smelled SO good!) I had never done a wedding cake in my life and did a lot of reading, researching, and testing with friends (they were sick of cake by the time the wedding came around) and made a wilton fondant covered three tiered cake with gum paste flowers. Cost me about 300 bucks in pans materials and such, but was still cheaper then the 600 I was quoted from local bakeries! We ordered barbeque from red hot and blue and we made some little snacks for right after the ceremony and bought big bags of salad and dressing and made salad. We did buy the invites, but I found themonline cheap. A friend of my daughters who just finished photography school did the photos for free, I just paid for the processing..she was delighted, because it gave her something for her portfolio, and she did a great job! A friend did the DJing of the CDS the kids like. The entire wedding ran us about 2000.00 dollars for 100 people. You can't beat that with a stick! and I still had a ball because all the work was done BEFORE the wedding..once the big day arrived, we just put the food out and enjoyed the guests and family...and we weren't broke the day after.

So don't knock a mom who wants to help!! It isn't impossible and she isn't crazy. My daughter thinks she had the best wedding ever and that is all that mattered!! And it got me started on doing cakes for a living!!! (man, the bug hit hard!)

iownajane Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 11:39am
post #13 of 26

....It is possible...I did my daughter's with TONS of help from several wonderful and generous people on here,and on another list...help with interpretation of technique,recipe suggestions,how to transport and construct...I did practice for about 8 months ,and figure I spent over $3000...lots of cake pans and toys and SPS,and many many practice cakes....tons and tons of sugar..I also ,with a girlfriend, made her a bolero to wear over her dress,and ended up making a decorated and textured painted box for envelopes,and 230 fondant covered cookie favors......If I hadn't asked questions ALL the time,I would not have been able to pull it off,because no matter how great the information is online,it sometimes helps to have it explained....
One of the girls sent me her phone number,so I could talk to her,because when I was "at the wire" ,nothing worked,and I had done "trial runs" of every aspect and technique...and while my results were not professional,everything had worked well...rolling fondant had been no trouble,sugar gun no trouble,bow no trouble...and then ,we think because of humidity etc...H*LL...and I wanted to know WHY,since I was following directions to the letter...it REALLY helped to talk to her... and faster than waiting for an answer to a message...
As for classes,there's NOTHING anywhere near where I live,and I don't drive,so asking my DH to drive me somewhere an hour away, and then wait for 3-4 hours to come back, was out of the question.
I know my cakes were not up to the standards of a lot of the members here,and I almost had a nervous breakdown getting them to the venue 3 hours away,through US customs,but my daughter was happy with them....
All that said,I don't know if I'd do another one,because the possibility of mishap is so great,but it was quite an experience...
I should add,like lorimoms said...I bought and we made the centerpieces,and streamers and balloons,and the wedding was at a close friend's house..lunch at at small restaurant close by...thank God for Michael's in New Hampshire...decorated everything the night prior,and friends provided flowers from their garden....it still cost money,but it was what the couple wanted

mommy_of_3_DDs Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 11:46am
post #14 of 26

I don't think she is a complete nut job... I just did a 4 tier cake that I delivered STACKED with 4 satellite cakes....

and I just had a request for the ever popular cherry blossom w/branch on a cake and I would be comming here to ask the EXACT same question...

But I guess that would make me a total nut job too... cause I am not a pro (cottage law home baker) who hasn't had any formal training (not even Wilton)... cause I don't know how to attach a cherry blossom branch made out of floral wire and gumpaste flowers to a cake....

but you know what I can make some pretty darn good cakes....

I guess I will just PM the person who made the one in the gallery that my bride really likes and ask how they attached the blossom branch...

Oh and on a side note people sometimes WANT to take the classes at a craft store and can AFFORD the $20 but just don't have the TIME... like oh someone who is working fulltime, attending college fulltime, raising 3 kids (on with Aspergers, one with ADHD), and doing the cake thing on the side cause she LOVES it that much...

Ok off my soap box... (it must be THAT time of the month)

FromScratch Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 12:30pm
post #15 of 26

I think the nut job part is because she is the MOB.. I don't think she's crazy, but I don't think she is thinking it is going to ba a big deal to do this and still be a part of the ceremony.. and it usually isn't the case. It is a big deal and setting it up can take longer than you think. I am a good decorator who is fast and efficient with a set up, but I'm not sure I would want to do my daughter's wedding cake simply for the fact that I want to be a part of the fun stuff leading up to her special day (not that I have to worry about it soon.. she's only 7 icon_wink.gif ) but I don't want to spend those days covered in flour and royal icing and gumpaste.

BakingJeannie Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 1:20pm
post #16 of 26

Here's my two cents...my mother has three girls and she baked all our wedding cakes, but was smart enough to have someone else decorate them. So she had lots of time to be MOB!

Maybe you could suggest this to the lady.

One big difference is, our cakes were fruit cakes which she made about two weeks prior to the wedding for them to "mature" before they were iced with Royal Icing.

tx_cupcake Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 1:37pm
post #17 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by loriemoms

A friend of mine told me about a flower wholesaler and I bought all the flowers bulk and MADE all the bouquets, center pieces, etc. FRESH roses! (they arrived in ice packed boxes three days before the wedding ..my house smelled SO good!)




I know it's a little off topic, but where online did you find these flowers? I am helping a friend with a budget wedding in November and this would help out a lot!

Thanks!

CakesByLJ Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 2:07pm
post #18 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by loriemoms

Its not as crazy as you think...the women just isn't thinking outside the box and maybe just doesn't have the knack...

So don't knock a mom who wants to help!! It isn't impossible and she isn't crazy. My daughter thinks she had the best wedding ever and that is all that mattered!! And it got me started on doing cakes for a living!!! (man, the bug hit hard!)




My point exactly! I did not miss one minute of being MOB, and my daughter was thrilled that we got to plan and execute every detail of her wedding together. I wouldn't have wanted it any other way.. btw.. she and my sil are about to celebrate their 13th anniversary.. icon_biggrin.gif

Bijoudelanuit Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 2:38pm
post #19 of 26

I also teach in a arts/crafts store. A few months ago a woman approached me and asked about using circles (cardboard or styrfoam) to have space between tiers of a wedding cake. She had never made a cake before! She needed the space so that she could insert flowers to cover the bottoms of the cake, as she has never used a pastry bag and didn't want to try piping! I tried to explain what she needed to do, and wanted to show her pictures/diagrams in one of the books and she exclaimed.. "I don't have the time! The cakes are home sitting on the counter!" She was planning on just stacking the cakes with the boards or circles inbetween! I did manage to talk her into using plastic plates and push in pillars, but since then I always wonder how it came out.

JodieF Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 2:44pm
post #20 of 26

Proflowers does wedding flowers. Their flowers are gorgeous and their customer service is great. They ship them to you.

I ordered cases of roses from Sams for my wedding. There were 200 roses per case and they were $70 each when I ordered them 5 years ago.

Jodie

cakesbycathy Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 4:43pm
post #21 of 26

Maybe it's just me, but I read the thread as the crazy thing being the MOB thinks she should put REAL branches on the cake!

michellenj Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 5:08pm
post #22 of 26

Wow, if she does the cake, this is going to be one sleep-deprived, stressed out MOB.

all4cake Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 5:13pm
post #23 of 26

I don't think it would be that difficult for her to pull off. Even the more difficult looking ones look like as long as the items were made in advance, the rest should be a snap to put together.

The one below with the extra branches(made ahead and inserted on site) seems easy enough as long as they were made in advance. MOF, I would rather do this one so that the extended branches could help disguise any possible goof ups.

If she stacked them together, center doweled it, used a toothpick to draw the connecting branch, piped it and some extensions on the side of the cake, placed blossoms on cake, transported to site, insert wired branch pieces(using sections of straws to prevent wires from coming in contact with cake).

http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.cakessospecial.com/images/Jennifer_Cherry_Blossoms_SB.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.cakessospecial.com/Cherry_Blossom_Cakes.html&h=750&w=500&sz=131&hl=en&start=11&sig2=DzDrHvAh2D4MTzQLYsJhaw&um=1&tbnid=a6xIKaeEUm7XbM:&tbnh=141&tbnw=94&ei=8NeZSPPbLojihALQjdEl&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dcherry%2Bblossom%2Bwedding%2Bcake%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26rls%3Dcom.microsoft:*%26sa%3DN

mommy_of_3_DDs Posted 6 Aug 2008 , 9:46pm
post #24 of 26
Quote:
Quote:

If she's not sure how to do that, how is she going to get 4 tiers stacked, transported and set up, before getting ready for her mother-of-the-bride duties??? Am I the only one who thinks that is nuts?




This to me IMPLIES that she doesn't know how to transport stack or set up a cake because of not knowing how to attach a branch...

Oh and not being covered with icing and powder sugar day of wedding...? Take a look at this:
http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v355/dorothybooth/?action=view¤t=100_3421.jpg
That's me the day of my sisters wedding just after setting up a cake that I made and delivered myself... and you know what I was well rested and dressed for the wedding that was happeing that afternoon... after this pic... I still needed to help decorate the reception and do all the SOB (sister of Bride) things...

I decorated the cake on Friday and delivered it the next day...

If I was running a full time bakery... then yeah I can see how doing a cake and being the MOB could be kinda crazy... but I am pretty sure that this cake is the ONLY cake the MOB will be working on.

Just my 2cents

DebBTX Posted 7 Aug 2008 , 1:02am
post #25 of 26

I just made my daughter's wedding cakes 1 1/2 weeks ago. The Bride's cake was 5 tiers and the Groom's cake was 4. My husband did the actual piping on the Groom's cake after I marked out the design. He did a fantastic job. So, they were parent made cakes. icon_biggrin.gif

I can't wait until the official pictures arrive. I understand they should be in either this week or next.

It was a whirl wind week, but we attended everything and visited with our best friends who parked their RV on our driveway.

I just can't believe I am old enough to have a married daughter. icon_lol.gif

-Debbie B.

loriemoms Posted 7 Aug 2008 , 12:16pm
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by txcupcake

Quote:
Originally Posted by loriemoms

A friend of mine told me about a flower wholesaler and I bought all the flowers bulk and MADE all the bouquets, center pieces, etc. FRESH roses! (they arrived in ice packed boxes three days before the wedding ..my house smelled SO good!)



I know it's a little off topic, but where online did you find these flowers? I am helping a friend with a budget wedding in November and this would help out a lot!

Thanks!




I do not know of any places online..this was a wholesaler that a friend of mine used. It was all done over the phone. Do you work with any florists on your cakes? Maybe they can help you out and tell you the name of thier supplier...(especailly for the things like bouquet holders and pew holders and such....they are a lot cheaper from suppliers!)

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