Do I Ask Her To Pay For The Extra Flowers? (Long Sorry)

Business By jenmat Updated 13 Oct 2009 , 6:30am by aundrea

jenmat Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 5:42pm
post #1 of 19

So I did a cake this weekend with red roses in between each tier and on top. She had the florist provide the flowers, and I gave her an estimate on how many I would need, but warned her several times to have extra there for me, and to make sure they were large roses, because I would need a lot more if they were not. I did not charge an arranging fee, (I usually don't, which is a whole other topic). I told her 4-5 dozen roses would be needed.
So I get there, and like a darn fool, I never counted the flowers. After everything's said and done, I do my best to count the thorny stems and if there is 3 dozen, I would eat my hat. The entire back of the cake was empty, and the bunch on top is teeny weeny, which makes the whole cake look a little off. So, I suck it up, go to Sam's, no roses, then to Walmart, one dozen red were all they had. I rush back to the hall, add these flowers, and do my best to make it look full, and the cake still looked a little "off" because of the topper.
My question is, do I ask her to reimburse me the money (only about $10), or just let it go since I never counted the flowers from the florist? And do I tattle on the florist or do I just let it go?
LL

18 replies
tootie0809 Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 5:56pm
post #2 of 19

Absolutely! Why should you have to pay money out of your pocket for it? You told her to provide you 4-5 dozen. She didn't. I say she got a bargain if you only charge her $10. I think it would only be fair to you to charge her not only for the cost of the roses, but an hourly wage for your time spent running to the different stores to find the roses and also gas. Beautiful cake by the way!

Ruth0209 Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 6:02pm
post #3 of 19

Yes, you tell the bride that you had to purchase more flowers to make the cake look presentable and ask her to reimburse you, and yes, you tell her that the florist delivered 3 dozen. The fact is, the bride may have only ordered three dozen from the florist, so I wouldn't assume the florist shorted her.

I almost had the same problem with fresh flowers on a cake. I told the MOB who ordered the cake that she had to order 1 dozen flowers from the florist for the cake with the rest of her order. Since she was from out of town, I volunteered to go pick up the flowers so I could arrange them on the cake at home. When I went in the week before to check on the color and arrange to pick them up the day before the wedding, the florist told me she had NOT ordered the dozen I needed. The florist called and told the MOB that she'd need to authorize payment for the extra. I refused to front the money on the flowers. If she hadn't paid, I would have delivered the cake with no flowers on it.

neelycharmed Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 6:26pm
post #4 of 19

Yes, I would tell the bride.
I always tell the bride when she orders fresh flowers to have extra because you never know how big the flowers are going to be.

sfaith Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 6:42pm
post #5 of 19

I usually don't leave it up to the bride. I go to the florist, see what they ordered, order what I need and add that price to the cake. That way I know what's coming.

cylstrial Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 7:24pm
post #6 of 19

I would definitely ask the bride for the $10 plus some. It took you extra time to go to Walmart plus gas money. She may not have ordered enough flowers anyway. So it would be good to know.

jenmat Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 10:58pm
post #7 of 19

Thanks. I will send her an invoice after I explain what happened. I would normally handle things with the florist myself. However, this bride was out of town and I never actually met her. Only did things over email. Next time I will find out the names of all necessary vendors!

CoutureCake Posted 11 Oct 2009 , 11:40pm
post #8 of 19

icon_surprised.gificon_surprised.gif O.k. I would NOT send her an invoice on 1-dozen roses that were $10 and gas... OTOH, I would call her and tell her what happened that there were only 3-dozen there for you and wanted to be sure that SHE KNOWS YOU WENT OUT OF YOUR WAY to have her cake look awesome instead of half the flowers missing on the back of the cake, and in case the florist shorted her she can follow up on it... If she didn't order enough, then she's going to be the one ducking tail, but YOU won't be the loser because she'll say that you went out of your way... If you send an invoice on this, you can be sure that she's going to tell everyone and her brother about the unauthorized purchase you made and billed for it...

$10 IMNSHO is NOT worth losing the referral clients AND the word of mouth here... AND... In the future when you have a bride that orders a cake like this, you tell them "I will use the flowers that are provided, but it's your responsibility to order at least 4-5 dozen so there are enough flowers. If there are not enough flowers there will be a bare spot on the back side of the cake."... and never do the florist's job again...

Deb_ Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 12:47am
post #9 of 19

I wouldn't send an invoice either....I would let her know that the florist didn't provide enough flowers.....too bad you didn't count them.......and let her know that you decided to go and buy more to finish the cake.

I agree with Couturecake on this one....$10 plus gas/time is very small in the total scheme of things.

jenmat Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 5:17pm
post #10 of 19

That's my first thought- $10 isn't very much money- if I would have had to stop at a floral shop, then I may want to make a bigger deal... I guess I'll just follow the bride's lead on it, and wait with any charges to see if she offers, or what actually happened.

leah_s Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 7:16pm
post #11 of 19

Absolutely NO, I would not send an invoice to the bride. The flowers could have been spaced a bit more, and there are lots of flowers on the top - more than I would normally put on top.

Couture had it right. Use what the florist provides. You are not a florist.

BTW, the cake is lovely.

__Jamie__ Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 7:24pm
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

Absolutely NO, I would not send an invoice to the bride. The flowers could have been spaced a bit more, and there are lots of flowers on the top - more than I would normally put on top.

Couture had it right. Use what the florist provides. You are not a florist.

BTW, the cake is lovely.




Agree with all!

indydebi Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 7:46pm
post #13 of 19

I require brides to provide all flowers, silk or real. I am not a personal shopper. I do not run all over town to order/pick up flowers.

I have dropped off a cake and there were no flowers on the table, which is what I tell the brides, "Leave the flowers there and I'll take care of it when I set up the cake." I asked the folks in the venue and no one had any idea of any cake flowers. Ok.....she got a plain white ugly cake, then! I left. That was the only issue I ever had.

littlecake Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 8:49pm
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

I require brides to provide all flowers, silk or real. I am not a personal shopper. I do not run all over town to order/pick up flowers.

I have dropped off a cake and there were no flowers on the table, which is what I tell the brides, "Leave the flowers there and I'll take care of it when I set up the cake." I asked the folks in the venue and no one had any idea of any cake flowers. Ok.....she got a plain white ugly cake, then! I left. That was the only issue I ever had.




ditto...when they bring me in flowers to work with...i use what they bring...space them accordingly

i always tell them to bring a lot more than you think you'll need .........if they don't i just use what they bring.

and i've had a couple look kinda sparce....

__Jamie__ Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 8:52pm
post #15 of 19

If someone tried to give me a bill for services I didn't agree to, I'd tell them to shove it.

indydebi Posted 12 Oct 2009 , 8:57pm
post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by LURVELY

If someone tried to give me a bill for services I didn't agree to, I'd tell them to shove it.



I often wonder how it works with the larger caterers who keep a credit card on file "for expenses incurred" after the final total is given. I see/hear this all the time, but as a caterer, I'm not quite sure what those expenses might be. The ONLY thing I can think of is if the client delays the whole shindig, causing my staff to stay a few more hours, which costs me in payroll. But yeah ... I think most people would react with "*I* didn't tell you to buy those flowers!"

which is why I don't buy flowers.

jenmat Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 3:42am
post #17 of 19

(leah s- that was the 'after' picture.)
The cake was almost a 360 degree view (there was a 'back' but you could definitely see it,) so I did not want to get a call from someone wondering what happened.
No matter whose fault it was, everyone at that wedding would have seen the cake and wondered what the cake lady thought she was getting away with. I feel once the flowers are on the cake, they are my responsibility, although I may be wrong on that as a business policy. I decided if it were my cake, I would want someone to make it right. It was not my responsibility, but I took it on as my responsibility and was wondering if I needed to pass that cost on to my customer. I did kind of figure I was going to eat the cost at the time I ran out an bought the flowers (and I was ok with that), but I did want to know what all you savvy business people thought. Thanks for the advice!
This will definitely be a story I share with my fresh flower brides in the future!

PieceofCakeAZ Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 6:03am
post #18 of 19

We do that setup quite a bit and I can't tell you how many times I have casually stolen flowers from table centerpieces due to being short of flowers to fill those gaps. I figure if something is going to be short of flowers, better a few tables than my cake. icon_biggrin.gif

I agree, don't bill her but make sure that she knows what you did to make certain that her wedding cake was everything she wanted it to be.

aundrea Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 6:30am
post #19 of 19

hmmmm this is a tricky one.
if you have copy of proof that you requested 4-5 doz roses and a receipt from the florist that says only 3 doz were delivered. then i would contact the bride and let her know what happend.
if she offers payment accept it-i would not ask for it. but take a lesson learned and inform all future customers that if what you ask for is not there then their cake will not be what they originally wanted.
i dont think its the amount that is so bothering, its the principal.
good luck-and your cake is lovely!

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