Pricing 1St Cake Request

Decorating By PandaBear1 Updated 19 Dec 2009 , 3:48pm by LaBellaFlor

PandaBear1 Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 6:19am
post #1 of 17

So, I have my first cake request and I've made a few practice cakes. My problem is, I'm not at all sure what to ask for price. Any suggestions? I've attached one of my practice ones below. Couple things to keep in mind with the price: I'm a newbie still so there will most likely be flaws, it's for an acquaintance, and I live in a small town where people are picky about paying anything remotely pricey.

So, yeah, I'm attaching a picture. It's slightly larger than the one I'll be making. This one is a 9x13, 8x8 and two 2x4. The request is for an 8x8, 6x6, and 2x4. Can anyone suggest a decent price to charge?



16 replies
browniebatterer Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 5:23pm
post #2 of 17


cakesdivine Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 7:19pm
post #3 of 17

You are so bad brownie...LOL!

_Jamie_ Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 7:28pm
post #4 of 17

I don't know Panda Bear...I don't bother with designs like this. Meaning, I'm not going to carve and hack on different cakes to get measurements like you give. If I did this cake, it would look something like this:

Fondant covered (wouldn't do a design like that in BC, nooooo way, not clean enough looking)

2 six inch square packages, one sitting on a 10" square package, sitting on a 14 or 16" square package.

Torted, filled, all about 4 inches in heigth.

Total servings= about 184 (figuring the bottom was 14"), at $5.00 per serving= roughly $950.00

So Brownie...ya ain't off in my book! icon_biggrin.gif

Unless I made an egregious error in math or dimension estimations.

_Jamie_ Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 7:30pm
post #5 of 17

Oh....probably would need to be a 16" square. Biiiiiig cake.

Joybeth Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 7:34pm
post #6 of 17

I just did a cake this style for my church party and I did a 6 5 4 3. took forever..I did mine in buttercream too. I would definitely agree you make them pay for what its worth. It takes a lot of time.
Take a look at mine. Figure out the cost to make your cake and the hours it takes you and figure out what its really worth TO YOU! Especially if its your first time...then you can go into the actual pricing field and calculations. Don't stress about it though. Have fun!

Mike1394 Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:05pm
post #7 of 17

I came up with 765.00


Mensch Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:15pm
post #8 of 17

$1314 for a cake the size Jamie mentioned.

I do all celebration cakes in fondant, and my work is much cleaner than the pic.

brincess_b Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:20pm
post #9 of 17

the first question is, are you legally set up to sell cakes?

the fact that people dont want to pay honest prices is not your problem. you have to charge enough to cover ALL your costs and the time for everything, inlcuding making fondant bows - many people do a seperate charge for them like $20 depending on size. if they want custom cake, they pay for custom cake. they want cheap cake, suggest they go to walmart or do it themselves. also suggest they go to duff (or nearest famous baker) and pay the $1000 minimum.

using wedding servings, the 8 and 6 is 50 (assuming about 4 inches deep), and say 10 out of the 4 since its shallow (although i kinda picked that out of thin air). at a basic bc per serving price of $2.50, and lets say 50c per sering fondant, $180. but with the bows, you need to add more!

but you really need to sit down and figure out your costs (including things like random toothpicks and power for your fridge and cooker), then give your self an hourly wage. as you can see there is a wide range of prices you can settle into! and after you do a cake at 2 am and realise you made $10 profit total, you will realise your time is worth more than you think just now!

id say the main thing to make clear to the client is that the cake will not look like that one at all! it will look like a regular stacked square cake, bows and ribbons wont be so obvious. so you might want to encourage them to stick with the original layout, maybe even on bigger cake and one smaller so that it looks a bit more like a pile of presents than a stack of them.

when it comes to flaws i have two words - holly leaves! you always get them on wrapping paper so why not on a wrapped cake? will cover many sins!

cakesandbakes Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:39pm
post #10 of 17

All I can say is WOW! I wish I lived in an area where you can charge what the previous posts suggest....I live in rural PA...I wouldn't charge more than $50 or $60 (or get it if I did charge more).

brincess_b Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:49pm
post #11 of 17

thats a dollar a serving! how much profit do you make?

Mensch Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:50pm
post #12 of 17

Um.... none. That's like actually paying people to take the cake of your hands.

Mike1394 Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 8:52pm
post #13 of 17
Originally Posted by brincess_b

thats a dollar a serving! how much profit do you make?

At the price I gave with ingredients being SO expensive. I would make VERY lil off of that price.


leah_s Posted 18 Dec 2009 , 9:12pm
post #14 of 17

By my calculations, the customer's request is for 54 servings. I totally agree, I'd only do that in fondant. $316 no delivery. That's with two bows.

But most of all, you first need to check if you can even legally take the order.

Isn't California a tough state about home baking?

Mensch Posted 19 Dec 2009 , 6:49am
post #15 of 17

At 54 servings I would charge $450 (fondant only) no delivery. The design is so simple I wouldn't charge extra for the bows.

LaBellaFlor Posted 19 Dec 2009 , 3:38pm
post #16 of 17
Originally Posted by cakesdivine

You are so bad brownie...LOL!

icon_lol.gificon_cry.gificon_lol.gificon_cry.gificon_lol.gificon_cry.gificon_lol.gif Ditto!

LaBellaFlor Posted 19 Dec 2009 , 3:48pm
post #17 of 17
Originally Posted by cakesandbakes

All I can say is WOW! I wish I lived in an area where you can charge what the previous posts suggest....I live in rural PA...I wouldn't charge more than $50 or $60 (or get it if I did charge more).

I have to ask, how much do your ingredients and equipment cost? I always wonder about this, cause I see a lot of people talk about living in rural areas and selling cheap, cause of it. The only way I could see selling something for $60 bucks is if I spent a total of $10 bucks on electricity, cake boards, any support system, PLUS all my ingredients and then I would have to be able to go to the store, bake the cake, make all my fillings, fondants (plus coloring),buttercream, AND decorate and assemble all in 2 & 1/2 hours. Now, I'm pretty fast, especially if it's for my own personal use and not being sold. I don't have to be as exact as I would be for a client. BUT I ain't that fast and butter averages $3 a pound here. Even a cake mix is at least a $1 and you still need butter if you make an American based buttercream.

So I have to ask what do your ingredients cost? How long does it take you to make a cake? Just something to think about when. And I gurantee, there are some rural folk who can afford to pay more or are willing to pay more for what they REALLY want. We all do. icon_wink.gif

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