Is This My Obligation?

Decorating By MystiqueFire Updated 26 Sep 2008 , 1:19am by MystiqueFire

MystiqueFire Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 5:06pm
post #1 of 8

Hi I'm new to wedding cakes and I received my first wedding cake order the other day. My boyfriend is a pastry chef who has done cakes in the past for weddings but he was only in charge of making them, never assembling them or whatnot... anyway I was wondering as the actual baker of the cake, am I responsible for providing a cake stand? You know those large silver things that the cake sits on or am I just obligated to make the cake. I have a consultation with her next week, but I dont know what to say if that comes up. If I AM obligated to do this, where can I purchase them? Also, if anyone has any tips please let me know!

Thanks so much guys,
Jasmine

7 replies
ccr03 Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 5:18pm
post #2 of 8

You are not obligated to do anything.
HOWEVER, as a big believer in good customer service, I think it would be best if you did. A one-stop shop is always easier for people and could big back business.

Depending on the style/size of her cake, you can find some on ebay and at Hobby Lobby. In my experience though, HL only has one size.

marccrand Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 6:25pm
post #3 of 8

I would just discuss it with the bride and ask what will work best. Check with her caterer and/or reception halls. Many have them available to use.

If there isn't one available I would offer to provide one. I agree with ccr03. If someone orders a cake from you, they don't want the hassle of trying to coordinate the bits and pieces of it, they just want a cake!

You can rent one from another reception hall (be sure to let her know you'll be passing along the rental fees) or you can buy one and keep it for your next order! thumbs_up.gif

CakesByJen2 Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 8:05pm
post #4 of 8

No, you are not obligated to provide any stands, though some decorators do, and there is generally a separate rental and security deposit for that. I just use the cake drums or 1/2" plywood, covered with nice foil and ribbon on the edge. If they want a plateau or stand, there are several places they can rent them from. Stands can be pretty pricey, so unless you find a really good deal, don't feel like you have to rush out and by them when you're just starting out.

After I had been in business a couple of years and had enough money coming in, I was going to start buying some of those bigger ticket items. I had a fountain and a set of independant stands, and was going to by a plateau next. But my fountain came back damaged after just a few uses, and a reception site THREW AWAY (or stole?) my stands the first time I used them (I had a deposit to cover it, but it was still a hassle for me, and I felt bad for the bride), and I decided I just didn't want to fool with the stress and hassle of worrying about getting my stuff back, or having to constantly replace it. Most of my brides have been good about it, but the reception sites are getting worse and worse about having responsible, professional staff.

If you rent one yourself (which I personally wouldn't), BE SURE to pass the rental fee on to the bride AND charge a security deposit to cover replacing it if you don't get it back. Be sure to cash the deposit check, too.

I've never had a bride have a problem with renting the stands themselves elsewhere. They're usually renting other stuff for the wedding from the same place, anyway. Just be sure they know what size they need to get, and that it needs to be on the cake table prior to delivery.

MystiqueFire Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 9:48pm
post #5 of 8

So if I did offer one, I should request that she give it back? How would I set that up? And if she asks for pillars do I request them back, too? I always thought whatever you purchased for that cake goes with the customer, but maybe that's just a waste of cash?

Sorry for the questions and stuff, it's new and I dont want to "wing it" like I did my first couple of cakes. [bad idea] So now I'm really seriously reasearching things before hand.

Jasmine

keyshia Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 10:04pm
post #6 of 8

I'm not certain about some things, but I think a lot of people ask for things back. I even noticed in the wording on someone's contract that they wanted the items back UNWASHED! I thought it a good idea though since for one you are going to have to wash them anyway, and then there's less chance of them possibly using something that could damage the item. I KNOW you would want that plateau back though as I've heard they are fairly expensive. JMO

CakesByJen2 Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 10:23pm
post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by MystiqueFire

So if I did offer one, I should request that she give it back? How would I set that up? And if she asks for pillars do I request them back, too? I always thought whatever you purchased for that cake goes with the customer, but maybe that's just a waste of cash?

Sorry for the questions and stuff, it's new and I dont want to "wing it" like I did my first couple of cakes. [bad idea] So now I'm really seriously reasearching things before hand.

Jasmine




CHeap plastic items, like plates and columns, are often included in the cake and not returned (some states health codes do not allow them to be reused, but some do), but some people do get them returned and reuse to keep costs down. I include them. The cake drums are also a disposable item included in the price, and some people may or may not ask for plywood bases back, depending on whether they can easily cut them themselves or not.

But the silver cake plateaus and nice acrylic or metal cake stands are pretty pricey, $75 to several hundred, so very few brides are going to be willing to add that cost to their cake, and obviously you couldn 't absorb it. Those are definitely multiple-use, big ticket items that are rented, either from the cake decorator, caterer, or wedding rental place that rents tents, tables, chairs, candleabras, etc., and need to have a rental fee and security deposit to cover replacement.

MystiqueFire Posted 26 Sep 2008 , 1:19am
post #8 of 8

I dont think I want to spend the cash on a base right now, but that's good to know for future reference. I figured that would be a little bit of a risk on some of the health codes with the plastics. My first client is kind of, well, lets just say she's really young and I dont want to chance her not returning a cakestand--or anything for that matter--so now's probably not the time to deal with that anyway.

Thanks, I appreciate everyone's help with this!

Jasmine

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