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Decorating By cocobean Updated 15 Sep 2009 , 1:17pm by minicuppie

cocobean Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 6:19am
post #1 of 15

If you work out a cake design with someone and one of the cake features has a question mark by it, meaning that you will use it if you decide it looks good and this is the price it will be. Then they pay you up front as if you had decided to use that feature already. Well then cake day comes you decide while decorating the cake that that feature does not look good and so you do not add it. (In the meantime you bought extra ribbon in case you wanted to change another feature at the last minute and ran several more errands to the store for things they were out of the first time you went). Now after all that said, if you can follow this...do I owe this person a bit of a refund for the feature (that they left to my discression) that was not included on the cake. Mind you, noone has asked for any refund money but in my own head I'm wondering if when they return a few of my props, I should bring it up and ask if they want a refund for that non used feature? Or are they suppose to pay for the possibility that if I think it will look good I can put it on? (Sorry this looks like one big run on sentense)! icon_confused.gif I need a little advice please.

14 replies
Bluehue Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 8:06am
post #2 of 15

I think i have this right -

They ran some ideas past you and YOU had the choice of using those ideas if YOU wanted too - right?

You didn't use a certain idea - instead - you went with another choice - yes?

So in my calculation - NO you don't owe them any money.
And NO i wouldn't even bring the subject up about repaying any $$$$'s.

If it was me in your shoes - i would feel safe knowing that *it was MY choice* of what idea i went with.


Bluehue. icon_smile.gif

cocobean Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 3:48pm
post #3 of 15

Bluehue, thanks for your imput. Yes, that is right. It was up to me to make the choice to use the idea or not but on the pricing sheet, I gave them, the other choice cost them 15.00 more, eventhough at the last minute I decided it didn't look right. They did pay in advance for the other choice if I decided to use it. See how that could confuse me. Thats my dilema. Is it a test of my integrity?

*I added the extra trips to the store and the other ribbon in the first post to show that sometimes we buy extra things and make extra trips that the bride never knows about and is never billed for to. So I wonder if that makes things even because of that. I guess you can chalk those things up to the decorators insecurities?

I really don't want to make this a big deal! I'm just trying to get it straight in my own mind. thumbs_up.gif

stephaniescakenj Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 4:07pm
post #4 of 15

if you charged them extra for an element that is not included on the cake, then I think you should refund if it was clearly marked on the contract that the extra element would cost more if you were able to incorporate... so if I'm understanding this correctly, you said Design A would be $15 extra for an element if you were able to incorporate it... but you were not able to... so I would say they are owed that extra money back. if you didn't charge them any extra for it and you said you would try to add it in but weren't able to, then you don't owe them anything.

indydebi Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 4:10pm
post #5 of 15

Without knowing what the detail was, I think you're overthinking it. Don't mention it. If she mentions it, then resolve it then, but I woudln't bring it up.

Since I dont' charge extra for decoration details, this is never an issue for me. Even with the ribbon ... if a bride wants a specific color, then she brings me the ribbon. If she wants "navy blue", then I pick it up and no, I don't charge for that. Adding a ribbon border that cost me less than two bucks is way faster, easier, cheaper than me adding an intricate icing border. Overall, it all evens out, so I don't have to mess with nickel and diming a bride for every little thing.

Lenette Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 4:24pm
post #6 of 15

I can see your concern but have to concur with Debi, don't bring it up. A lot of times it is better to let the client take the lead. See where their thoughts are with it.

She may be fine, loved the cake and not care a lick about $15.
It's like when we see flaws the clients don't see. No need to point it out. icon_wink.gif

When they bring your stuff back, chat a bit with them and see what they say. Be prepared to refund it but I wouldn't offer.

HTH! icon_smile.gif

Etta1025 Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 6:53pm
post #7 of 15

I have to disagree with the others. The way I'm reading this is, "If I put a clown figurine on the cake, the figurine will cost $25." The customer has paid you the $25 in advance, but the cake they recieve does not have a clown figurine on it. You owe them the $25 back.

cownsj Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 7:27pm
post #8 of 15

I think I would leave well enough alone right now. Not because of the money, which you will gladly refund, but I'd be more afraid of how you many change their perception of the cake they received. As far as you know, right now they are very happy with their cake. Why have them 2nd guessing if they are happy with it by bringing up a negative? If they ask, or if you even hear they weren't entirely happy, then approach them and offer a refund. But until then, they know they got a great cake and they are happy, don't change that happiness into questions.

itsacake Posted 12 Sep 2009 , 7:49pm
post #9 of 15

Maybe I'm not getting this, but I'm reading that you decided with the client that you would make this design element and then see if it worked on the cake. If it didn't work, you wouldn't use it-- which was the case.

So it seems to me you did the work, as they requested, and your design expertise, which is what they are really paying for, told you not to use this element.

Therefore, having done the work, you still need to be paid for your development time. They knew up front you might not use this piece of the design.

Am I understanding this correctly?

In any case, I'm with IndyDebi. If they bring it up, you can consider a refund, especially if I've got the situation wrong, but if they don't mention it, I think I'd leave it alone.

7yyrt Posted 13 Sep 2009 , 2:25pm
post #10 of 15

A woman may not say anything, but she certainly will remember that $15. You charged her extra - it wasn't in the original price. She can buy the kids pizza with that money.

When they return the items, just say matter-of-factly "since we didn't use the ____ here's the return of that part of the price."

Loucinda Posted 13 Sep 2009 , 3:14pm
post #11 of 15

I am with Indy here - I don't "itemize" the cake. For this type of cake it is this amount - period. I saves a lot of time and energy (and too much thinking) in the long run!

LaBellaFlor Posted 13 Sep 2009 , 3:33pm
post #12 of 15

I'm with 7yyrt. I don't usually do orders they way you did, but if I told someone this item is gonna cost this amount & this amount to put on, and I don't do it, I'm giving the money back. I'm not gonna look at several trips to the store as a reason to keep the money. thats not the clients fault.

LaBellaFlor Posted 13 Sep 2009 , 3:33pm
post #13 of 15

I'm with 7yyrt. I don't usually do orders they way you did, but if I told someone this item is gonna cost this amount & this amount to put on, and I don't do it, I'm giving the money back. I'm not gonna look at several trips to the store as a reason to keep the money. thats not the clients fault.

cocobean Posted 13 Sep 2009 , 4:37pm
post #14 of 15

Thank you all for your imput! These were the nicest people that I made the cake for. I think for my own peace of mind, when they drop my props off I will mention I owe them 15.00 since I choose not to imcorporate that design on the cake. I really doubt they will let me give it back. But at least that puts the ball in their court and they can make the decision. judge.gif I think I will feel better about that. You know when you keep thinking about something you need to put your mind at ease! Thanks again everyone it helps to just talk it out!

minicuppie Posted 15 Sep 2009 , 1:17pm
post #15 of 15

It sounds like you are losing sleep over this issue. Refund.

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