Customer Wants Something I Don't Want To Do....now What?

Business By 1234me Updated 3 Sep 2009 , 3:39am by CanadianChick

1234me Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 8:38pm
post #1 of 47

long story short...

cake for an 8 yr old boy. He wants mini oreos all over the sides of the cake. It has nothing to do with the theme of the party. But for some reason, he wants me to put oreos all over the sides! Not crushed oreos, but the actual entire cookie. I don't want to send the cake to the customer and her friends and other potential clients to see it - it will look hideous! Any suggestions as to what to say to her?

46 replies
BakeLoveMom Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 8:45pm
post #2 of 47

I have done a number of cakes that I didn't care for their look, but they were the customer's request and they were so happy. To each their own. I say make the b-day boy happy. It isn't difficult to do that design, so that part should be okay, you can just make the top of the cake amazing or sugguest something different all together, like I have seen cakes on here where the whole cake is an oreo...very cute. You do what you want, but it has just been my experience that some customers are always going to request things that we aren't fond of, if you want/need the pay like I do, I just do it. HTH

Sarah

newmansmom2004 Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 8:45pm
post #3 of 47

A friend of mine did a stacked cake with rows of oreos about halfway up on the outside of each tier and it was actually very cute - in fact, she had a couple requests for it after she did it. If you don't want to do it just tell the customer you won't be able to make it due to other commitments for the day/weekend it's due.

If you've already committed to doing a cake for the little guy, then you need to do as he requests and put the oreos on the cake. Just make them nice and even on the outside instead of randomly putting them on and it'll look fine.

Doug Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 8:52pm
post #4 of 47

make patterns with them...

like triangles or swags.

then add other candy to create a theme

think of them as all one color fondant dots

------

tho' I wouldn't worry what others think other than "wow -- great customer service, she gave them exactly what he wanted"

leah_s Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 8:53pm
post #5 of 47

Using the *mini* oreos really should look fine. From across the room it's just gonna look like large polka dots.

costumeczar Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:06pm
post #6 of 47

I was thinking that the mini oreos would work well, too.

Caths_Cakes Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:14pm
post #7 of 47

i say forget your decorating insticts for this cake. do this, for the sake of little lad, it will make him happy, and im pretty sure in his eyes, it would be most awesome cake hes ever seen! im pretty sure he doesnt understand 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder'. Do it, and be happy about it.

Price Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:21pm
post #8 of 47

Why not make a road out of the mini oreos and have the road going up and down and across the top of the cake. You could make some little fondant cars to place on the road with some roadsigns, etc. Just a thought!! icon_smile.gif

BabyBear3 Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:24pm
post #9 of 47

if it was for some pain in the you know what customer that you really didn't like and she was just trying to be difficult -- then I wouldn't do it.

BUT, since an adorable 8 year old boy has asked for it............just do it!!!!! All that matters is that he has a smile on his face and remembers his yummy birthday cake! I think it will look great icon_smile.gif

kakeladi Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:28pm
post #10 of 47

You do what the customer wants unless it is X rated (and you don't do those - yes, some of you do).
I don't think it's going to look that bad.

MalibuBakinBarbie Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:54pm
post #11 of 47

My first thought is to do just what the little guest of honor wants. icon_smile.gif But, if you're looking for alternative ideas, I think using oreos as "wheels" and making little fondant cars going all around the base of each tier would be cute. (Like bumper-to-bumper, so that there are lots of oreos, to keep the birthday boy happy!) icon_biggrin.gif

juleebug Posted 30 Aug 2009 , 11:55pm
post #12 of 47

DO WHAT THE CUSTOMER WANTS EVEN IF IT IS UGLY!!! (I'm yelling at myself)

I learned this lesson the hard way this weekend - I had a client ask for a design that was not that attractive. I thought it would look better minus one seemingly insignificant element. I decided to leave that element off and my client was less than pleased.

-K8memphis Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 12:09am
post #13 of 47

An idea is to ask if he would like to apply them himself and supply a bag of icing for glue.

Just a thought. I feel your pain though.

CakeMaker303 Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:37am
post #14 of 47

Maybe you could make the cake to look like a big package of oreos. So there is a purpose for the cookies, rather than just on the sides. Just a thought.

kpk125 Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:57am
post #15 of 47

I have done a couple cakes for little ones who have a request that doesn't do the cake any justice! But I was lucky enough to be present at those parties when the little ones see their request on "their" cake and their faces light up with excitement, at that moment I'm soo glad I filled that request thumbs_up.gif

JoJo0855 Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 2:18am
post #16 of 47

Just how important is the party "theme" ?? Some put far too much emphasis on this aspect of party giving, an 8 year old boy is not going to care!

This whole party theme business is nuts ... I doubt the kids worry and fret that the napkins and decorations follow a theme, more the parents showing off I would think ...

costumeczar Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 12:43pm
post #17 of 47

Kids just have weird ideas about what they want for their birthday cakes. When my kids were little they'd ask for some strange stuff, and I did it, it was their cake, so what?

My son asked for "A monster truck crushing a red ferrari sitting on the side of the road with nobody in it" (At least he was concerned about the driver's safety, I guess.)

My daughter asked for that scene from the Spongebob episode where Spongebob and Patrick are selling chocolate bars and they sell one to the old fish and her dried-up mother. (I know that someone has to know what episode that is, don't pretend you don't!) I put the dried up old mother and the old fish daughter on the cake, and it made absolutey no sense to anyone at the party (It sure wasn't a "theme.")

Don't worry about it too much, just do the oreos the way he wants them and he'll be happy with it. You don't have to use the picture of it in your portfolio of cakes, but you'll have a happy customer (and a happy customer's mother, who will refer business to you.)

Win Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 12:59pm
post #18 of 47

I'm not meaning to be snarky here, but the first thing taught when one enters the business world is "The customer is always right." (We know that's not necessarily so, but it makes for a happy customer.) icon_biggrin.gif

nickymom Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:02pm
post #19 of 47

as the others have said ...add the mini oreos. icon_smile.gif

indydebi Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:27pm
post #20 of 47

This thread is an interesting study in human nature.

Customer wants birthday cake that baker thinks might look tacky and isn't keen on displaying as one of baker's work. Advice coming in leans toward "make the customer happy" ..... "it's what the customer wants"... "the look in his eyes will be worth it" ..... whatever he wants will make him happy". And for the record, I'm VERY happy to see this kind of advice for this customer

Where is that other thread in which a bride wants a "tacky" topper on her cake and the advice ranges from trying to talk her out of it to "don't put it on the cake"? And the other threads where a bride wants a fountain and the baker shudders with the thought of having anything to do with it? The comments on how these brides have no taste (or the implied opinion that the bride's taste is no where NEAR as good as the bakers?).

How come THOSE threads aren't leaning toward "what the customer wants" and "it makes her happy"?

Just an interesting observation. icon_rolleyes.gif I'm alway fascinated with the inconsistencies that pop up on here.

Kiddiekakes Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:33pm
post #21 of 47

I agree again with Indydebi.....I say let the Bride have whatever topper she wants...Money in my pocket....Let the Fountain pour...Let the little boy have his oreos....I have done many cakes that are not quite my taste or liking but "Each to their own" I do what they want..that's what they are paying me to do...

-K8memphis Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:38pm
post #22 of 47

Good call, Debi!

I'm the one that would stand up for the bride and would try & change the kid's mind--hahahaha

No, but I have a party bus cake on my web site that I detest. It was for a teen, or an almost teen. It's only there because my groupies wanted to see it online after I made it--o m g--what ever happened to hurry up and cut it so it can be sweet (forgotten) history!!!!

Win Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:52pm
post #23 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi



How come THOSE threads aren't leaning toward "what the customer wants" and "it makes her happy"?

Just an interesting observation. icon_rolleyes.gif I'm alway fascinated with the inconsistencies that pop up on here.




Maybe none of us saw the other threads...? icon_lol.gif

I don't sell cakes, but I have always thought that if I did, I'd try to approach it with this type of attitude: "Hey, I don't eat them, I just make them."

Another example would be from last night's Amazing Wedding Cakes and Christopher Garren's bride who wanted twigs sticking out of the top of her cake. They started with natural brown twigs and everyone agreed they looked like antlers, but the bride had already made it very clear she wanted the twigs. Rather than upset her by removing them, they painted them with pearl dust to go with the rest of the decor on the cake. Problem solved. The bride was happy and Christopher Garren and staff had complied with her wishes.

matthewkyrankelly Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:54pm
post #24 of 47

When it comes right down to it, it is cake. Kids have a whole different perspective on the world. Some things are just magic to kids. If you can somehow get a cake with Oreos all over the sides....well, that just makes you a magician.

Now in our adult, ordered, perspective laden minds, there must be a way for you to cover the sides with oreos and still have it look good.

BTW - I'm having difficulty understanding why it wouldn't look good

JoJo0855 Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 1:56pm
post #25 of 47

There's more to this business than merely baking and decorating well ... like anything that requires an artistic flair, one can't always have one's own way.
Interior designers have to work around existing fixtures, furniture and budgets too, not many opportunities to completely gut a room and start fresh.
If you don't want to take customer's wishes into consideration, perhaps you should not do custom work. Otherwise, learn to think outside the cake box!

luddroth Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 2:05pm
post #26 of 47

I have a friend who is a landscape designer and instructor. She shows 2 photos to her students. The first one is a gorgeous garden she designed for a client that looks like an elegant botanical garden or English estate garden. The second photo shows the same garden a year later with plastic garden gnomes. little flag pennants, and dozens of cheap plastic garden ornaments all over the previously elegant garden. My friend tells her students to "do your best work, but never forget that it's somebody else's garden..." I guess the customer-designed cakes are sort of like that.

Win Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 2:11pm
post #27 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by luddroth

I have a friend who is a landscape designer and instructor. She shows 2 photos to her students. The first one is a gorgeous garden she designed for a client that looks like an elegant botanical garden or English estate garden. The second photo shows the same garden a year later with plastic garden gnomes. little flag pennants, and dozens of cheap plastic garden ornaments all over the previously elegant garden. My friend tells her students to "do your best work, but never forget that it's somebody else's garden..." I guess the customer-designed cakes are sort of like that.




LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT!!! Tucking that story away for future reference!

majka_ze Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 2:13pm
post #28 of 47

I would make the cake. First, children have their own ideals. There will be enough occasions in this boy's life when he learns he can't have something he wants. Birthday cake should be all about his wishes, unless is inappropriate.

As for the bride's wishes - I would try to point out my objections, but still - a wedding should be all about bride's (and groom's) wishes. As the groom is mostly interested in how the cake tastes, not how it looks like, the bride should choose.

Should my cake end on Cake Wrecks, I would wish it was one of these "technically perfect" cakes, not one of the poorly made ones.

2SchnauzerLady Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 2:20pm
post #29 of 47

I've seen some pretty strange cakes of Ace of Cakes, including a wedding cake where a dragon was eating the bride and groom topper - people just want strange stuff, and if you do a great job - they are going to rave over it and recommend you to all your friends!

chefshawna Posted 31 Aug 2009 , 2:38pm
post #30 of 47

I'm with everyone else, if the customer wants oreos, put on the oreos. I've never thought about not doing something someone asked of me on their cake. It is their cake that they're paying for! I think it goes a long way with customers knowing that you will work with them and do whatever is asked of you! I'm sure it will turn out great! Good luck!

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%