Can't Believe How Some Ppl Can Give Their Cakes Away...

Decorating By Spills Updated 6 Jan 2010 , 9:20pm by _Jamie_

Spills Posted 2 Jan 2010 , 6:56pm
post #1 of 69

I've been asked by a gf to do her wedding cake in August this year, as well as being part of her wedding party...can already see issues...

But, as we were trying on our dresses last week, another one of the bridesmaids mentioned how one of her friends was getting her cake quoted out at around $600, but then found a decorator on Kijiji that would do her cake for somewhere around $250. Of course my gf was like "ohhhh..."

I've attached the cake the bride would like; top two tiers would be fake, all buttercream besides the base sash, without the bouquet of flowers, and some little crystals instead of some of the gumpaste flowers...

Depending on what size she wants (6,8,10,12 or 8,10,12,14) I've come up with $280-340 (friend pricing for me).

I found the Kijiji person and emailed them about this cake - they'd charge $275 for either sizes for what I've described above.

I'm just really frustrated how someone can even think about having any sort of business or barely even make any money on pricing like that. I'm really tempted to tell my gf about this other decorator and tell her I can't beat that price, even for her.

Just needed to vent. Thanks for listening...

68 replies
Mensch Posted 2 Jan 2010 , 7:01pm
post #2 of 69

yeah. It's like they actually pay for people to take cakes off their hands.

Tell your friend you can't beat that price (and really, why would you even want to, even with the 'friend' discount you're willing to give?).

You get what you pay for, really, whether it be a crappy tasting cake or a crappy looking exterior.

Dizzymaiden Posted 2 Jan 2010 , 7:15pm
post #3 of 69

I would be conflicted - at first you would want to help your friend by not advising her to buy into a cheaper cake and lower your price and just as the other comment suggest, tell her she must go with the other for the lower price and let the cake crumbs fall as they may.

Hopefully - the other cake will be ok and you will be able to relax and enjoy the wedding. If it taste poor then others will look to you and you can be humble.

I am interested to know which way you will go. Both are perfectly proper.

LaBellaFlor Posted 2 Jan 2010 , 9:14pm
post #4 of 69

Me neither. But I always look at 2 things, 1)the bride will pay for what she gets and end up with something on cake wrecks, cause a deal isn't always a deal, and 2)the person selling the cake for that price will eventually go out of business, cause there is no one they can keep those prices and not eventually see the lack of profit...unless they are really stupid, which is always a possiblity. icon_biggrin.gif

costumeczar Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 12:44am
post #5 of 69

Guaranteed that if she gets it from someone who's charging $275 for that cake, it will look like what it is, a cut-rate cake. If you can give her a discount as a friend and she still complains about the extra $70 or so, then let her go get it from the cheap person who will give her something that looks like a monkey iced it.

Spills Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 4:38am
post #6 of 69

Thanks for giving me some sort of sanity on this topic...and just think, it's only January and the wedding's in August... icon_cry.gif

Those mentioned are exactly what I was thinking as well, but my fear is that if she decides to go with this other decorator for the cheaper price, and it turns out better than what I could do...I think I'd be mortified.

But again, good to know I'm not crazy thinking this way thumbs_up.gif

Mensch Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 4:49am
post #7 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spills

.... but my fear is that if she decides to go with this other decorator for the cheaper price, and it turns out better than what I could do...




Don't worry, it won't.

Jeep_girl816 Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 5:10am
post #8 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mensch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spills

.... but my fear is that if she decides to go with this other decorator for the cheaper price, and it turns out better than what I could do...



Don't worry, it won't.




Totally agree. IMHO people with skills charge for them. The other person is probably just a hobbyist trying to make some extra cash on the side, yeah, even some "legit" cake businesses are really nothing more than that. Wouldn't you rather be the Saks or Neiman Marcus of cakes rather than the Walmart or Big Lots? icon_twisted.gif

ksmith1012 Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 5:30am
post #9 of 69

"Wouldn't you rather be the Saks or Neiman Marcus of cakes rather than the Walmart or Big Lots?" icon_twisted.gif


- ABSOLUTELY! icon_biggrin.gif

Spills Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 5:25pm
post #10 of 69

This is a great support group...lol

Anyways, I just threw both my and this other decorator's price at my gf...and she basically hit me. She thinks the same as we do (thankfully), she knows what my cakes taste like and look like, and if this other person is charging something so low, then it concerns her.

SIGH OF RELIEF. icon_cool.gif

Thank you all SOO much for the support, especially helping me grow the guts to just spit it out to my gf. haha

_Jamie_ Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:16pm
post #11 of 69

Wouldn't it be awesome if that other person was a member here and is reading this thread....she/he has the opportunity to pull their head out of their you know what and get real! Bwaahahahahaha.

_Jamie_ Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:25pm
post #12 of 69

Let's see, I want to play the Cakewrecks game!:

Pictured: 2.5 billion individual plunger cut blossoms.
What she gets: Crooked rows of piped "flowers" with a star tip, with smooshed tops.

Pictured: Gorgeous, delicate, beautiful little spray with 1.2 billion little plunger cut blossoms.
What she gets: A snapped off twig from a flower spray in the 50% off bin at Walmart.

Pictured: Possibly a chocolate wrap around bottom tier.
What she gets: A big fat ribbon of buttercream made with a large icing tube.

What else???? icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif

LaBellaFlor Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:41pm
post #13 of 69

AH, Ha, HA, HA, HA, HA!!!!!! And the sad things some people will really do what you just said. Or try to cut out blossoms and not really know how long it can take. My husband watched me one night punch out some very small blossoms and said,"Oh, he!! no! That can [email protected] my a$$!". He walked off shaking his head.

juststarted Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:44pm
post #14 of 69

I am very happy for you that your gf got the whole issue. Congratulations on her wedding.

candoo Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:52pm
post #15 of 69

Hmmmm... I have to disagree. I would charge about what the "cheap lady" would, and I think my cake would taste and look great. Ya'll are welcome to look at my work and tell me if u disagree, but I just don't believe a cheap/reasonable price necessarily means second class work.

LaBellaFlor Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:59pm
post #16 of 69

If you charge the same, $250 for that exact same cake and size, everyone would more then likely think your under pricing yourself as well.

_Jamie_ Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:04pm
post #17 of 69

Ok, so quite literally, you would hand cut all of those flowers, and handmake that spray.....then bake, ice, fondant....assemble.....for that price? Because I'm being very literal here. Just like that picture. In those sizes, with absolutely no subsitutions. I'd love to see a profit margin from that.

candoo Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:12pm
post #18 of 69

Yes- I prob. would... But I will admit that I do not make much. So my profit margin is not what you would want yours to be, I'm sure. Not really what I want mine to be either, but I try to do it for as cheap as I can, and still make a little.

costumeczar Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:15pm
post #19 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by candoo

Yes- I prob. would... But I will admit that I do not make much. So my profit margin is not what you would want yours to be, I'm sure. Not really what I want mine to be either, but I try to do it for as cheap as I can, and still make a little.




Then I'm assuming this is a hobby for you, not a business? Just asking.

deMuralist Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:16pm
post #20 of 69

why? I understand not wanting to "cheat" anyone, but what is the point if you can't make a decent living?

candoo Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:27pm
post #21 of 69

Hobby??? It's kind of both. I have a job that I depend on the pay the bills... this is extra money and pays the bills when the other job falls short.

Deb_ Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:33pm
post #22 of 69

Scratching my head........ icon_confused.gif

countrycaker Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:35pm
post #23 of 69

I think you need to figure in that this is a wedding cake, as well. So not only the stress of making the bride's perfect dream cake, but you have to add for time for consultation, delivery, and set-up. Wedding cakes cost more for a reason.

costumeczar Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:37pm
post #24 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by candoo

Hobby??? It's kind of both. I have a job that I depend on the pay the bills... this is extra money and pays the bills when the other job falls short.




I'm not trying to be confrontational at all with this suggestion, but why don't you raise your prices a little in order to bring in more money? If your first job falls short sometimes then earning more with the cakes would probably help, and if you're undercharging then you can definitely raise your prices.

candoo Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:40pm
post #25 of 69

costumeczar- You are right and I have said that I would raise my prices after the 1st of the year... I'm just not sure what the happy medium is, and I haven't done it yet...

LaBellaFlor Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:43pm
post #26 of 69

Wedding cake, birthday cake, all the same prcing. I don't change pricing, cause the cake is ordered for a wedding. But I also do custom cakes, so everything is treated custom. No sheet cakes.

costumeczar Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:44pm
post #27 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by candoo

costumeczar- You are right and I have said that I would raise my prices after the 1st of the year... I'm just not sure what the happy medium is, and I haven't done it yet...




Just be prepared for your clients to have a snit fit when they see that your prices have gone up. When people have gotten used to getting bargains they'll gripe about having to pay a decent price. Don't let them bully you into lowering the price back for them.

Cathy26 Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 9:56pm
post #28 of 69

i charge different for birthday/christening cakes and wedding cakes cause for my wedding cakes i bake 2 sponges for each tier and level them down to get the nice 5-6 height you want. whereas for my bday cakes i just bake one sponge, level the worst of the top with my agbay and tip it upside down to get it flat on top and they yep il have a gap btween the board and the bottom of the cake but i have so many decorations, fondant and border that its hidden. i make up the height to about 3-3/5 inches by torting 3 times. i do use quite a deep dense receipe i.e.lindy smith or debbie brown which means i have to use a heat core and towels for bigger cakes but this really works for me and saves me heaps of time.

this means i can price a bit lower as its a lot less work i.e. one cake to bake instead of 2 and also it obviously costs less to make so my customers are happy whereas with wedding cakes people are expecting to pay a few hundred.

just an interesting story about people's attitudes to cake pricing in northern ireland.....

one lady rang me and asked how much the hello kitty 2 tier castle cake on my site was (8 inch and 6 inch fondant covered squares with loo roll fondant covered turrets and gumpaste figure)

she didnt want to go over.....wait for it.......its a good one........

30 pounds,,, yes £30 sterling THATS 30 QUID for a 2 tier cake.

what can you say??? icon_cry.gif

Mensch Posted 5 Jan 2010 , 6:26am
post #29 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by candoo

........but I try to do it for as cheap as I can, and still make a little.




Um.

sambugjoebear Posted 5 Jan 2010 , 2:58pm
post #30 of 69

My base price for BC in Hicksville, USA is $2 (and I'm in the mid-high range, go figure). I would charge atleast $3.50/serving in my area (I think they'd revolt if I went above that)for that cake. So, about $427 for me.

The other women in the area start at $1.35 and $1.85 for BC....I *think* they add $1/serving for fondant.

I so wish I could charge $4.50/serv baseprice for BC... *sigh*

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