Wedding Cake Dilemma

Business By ATCakes Updated 27 Feb 2009 , 4:07pm by ATCakes

ATCakes Posted 26 Feb 2009 , 5:25am
post #1 of 9

A woman I work with is trying to help her niece out with her wedding. They were quoted $300 for a 8-12-14 wedding cake-plain butter cream with ribbon and pearls around each tier. I haven't made many wedding cakes and I would like to expand my business. Should I do the cake for cost? Should I suggest goiong with smaller tiers and a sheet cake. Any help would be appreciated.

8 replies
JanH Posted 26 Feb 2009 , 8:56am
post #2 of 9

$300.00 for an 8-12-14 cake (158 servings) is not outrageous.

One of the problems with doing wedding cakes "for cost" as a favor, is that most brides still expect perfection!

Worst case scenario.... What if the bride doesn't appreciate the deal she's been given (after the fact) and decides that something was amiss with your cake which ruined her special day; and now she wants a refund.

How do you give even a partial refund on a cake that you took on as a loss leader?

And even if she loves the cake, she's going to tell everyone how CHEAP you are... And now you're stuck marketing yourself to brides who would otherwise go to Wal-Mart for their wedding cakes. When you want the brides who value (and can afford) a freshly baked and custom decorated wedding cake.

As for making the tiered cake smaller and having a kitchen cake (layered sheetcake) for the balance - that's just MORE work for you than making the 8-12-14. (And a 6-8-10 doesn't make a very grand presentation for the "cutting the cake" ceremony when you're hosting over 150 guests.)

JMHO

If you want to expand your business, add to your wedding cake portfolio by using cake dummies to demonstrate your skills as a decorator! icon_smile.gif

Should you proceed with doing the cake for cost, please be sure to have a contract stating that the regular price of the cake is $300.00 and that a discount of $200.00 was given. Also indicate that because of the substantial discount your normal refund policy doesn't apply!

Good luck!

leah_s Posted 26 Feb 2009 , 3:44pm
post #3 of 9

Wedding cakes are a particular niche in this business. You are dealing with a bride on her "Princess Day." The cake (and everything else) has to be perfect largely because she's eiher been planning this day since she was 4 or she bought a wedding magazine and read all the hype.

If you're nt pretty experienced, you might not want ot step in on this one. Make her a cake for her bridesmaid's luncheon or shower.

And $300 for 158 servings is a STEAL! They should jump all over that offer.

FromScratch Posted 26 Feb 2009 , 5:24pm
post #4 of 9

I was thinking the same thing.. $300 for 158 servings is a steal and they shouldn't be balking at it. That same cake from me would cost $790.00.

I wouldn't do it for cost... unless it was for my family. I would tell her that she's getting a great deal at $300 and you couldn't do it for much less.

ccr03 Posted 26 Feb 2009 , 6:39pm
post #5 of 9

ditto with jkalman.

my first non-family big cake (quinceanera for 300) I gave a CHEAP price (I still made a profit, but you live and learn), but she still tried to get me down more. She tried to convince me that she could get the same cake WITH fresh flowers for $150 at the local bakery. ha! I tried not to laugh!
Once the grandma saw I didn't lower my price and was ready to leave, they put 50% down.

Now having said that, I totally understand wanting to lower the price to gain experience. fi you want to do that, fine, but do how indydebi does when she wants to try a new technique. Let her know that this is NOT the regular price. Then after you are finished, figure out what the regular price will be. (If I'm wrong indydebi - please correct me! I would hate to be blasmphesis (sp?) towards you! icon_smile.gif

Another reason for not doing it at cost, they will not look at you like a real cake decorator/baker. It'll be easier for them to come back to you and say, "oh, I thought you might want to try out this 3-tiered topsy turvy fondant cake. Could you do for cost?"

Deb_ Posted 26 Feb 2009 , 10:15pm
post #6 of 9

You've received great advice from these fine ladies and I agree with everything they have said.

To add to the above I'd like to remind you that some venues require the Wedding cake being brought into their facility be made my a licensed baker. If you're not licensed, this may be a deciding factor for you.

ATCakes Posted 27 Feb 2009 , 3:22am
post #7 of 9

Thank you all for the advice. I have been mulling it over and I don't think I am going to do this. It originally started as a simple cake with ribbons and pearls and now she is adding butterflies from a Martha Stewart cake. I get the feeling that they are going to keep changing it around on me and I don't need that headache. I have seen to many Bridezilla episodes!!

jammjenks Posted 27 Feb 2009 , 1:36pm
post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATCakes

Thank you all for the advice. I have been mulling it over and I don't think I am going to do this. It originally started as a simple cake with ribbons and pearls and now she is adding butterflies from a Martha Stewart cake. I get the feeling that they are going to keep changing it around on me and I don't need that headache. I have seen to many Bridezilla episodes!!





Sounds like you made a good choice with this one.

ATCakes Posted 27 Feb 2009 , 4:07pm
post #9 of 9

As much as I hated to do it, I did. I told her she was getting a good price that most prices now start at $4 per serving. There was just no way I could do it for less than the $300. Everything has gotten so expensive!

Thank you all for the advice. It was hard, but I had to do it. The next time will hopefully be easier.

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