I Made Alot Of Mistake On The Cake!! What To Do??

Decorating By BecuzImAGurl Updated 4 Jan 2010 , 10:30pm by cylstrial

BecuzImAGurl Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:28pm
post #1 of 35

icon_cry.gif This cake was done on 12-30-2009. My friend had recommended someone who wants an anniversary cake for their parent's 25th anniversary.

She gave me a picture of what she wanted, but she only gave me a week.
During this time so much happened
- my 7 month old got really sick,
- then I got sick from taking care of her,
- I stayed up at night after my baby FINALLY falls asleep, (which is hard because she has runny nose and coughing) to make all those gumpaste flowers
- I bought Bakels Gumpaste which NEVER seems to dry! so I'm there mixing Tylose powder into it to hope it sets faster
- Making the cakes and because I was washing so much and my hands constantly touching water so my knuckles cracked and bleeds...it will heal a bit but when I knead marshmallow fondant, the movement causes it to crack again...so much pain!
- baby crying every single minute when I try to finish the gumpaste flowers but I hate to say I cant stop because of the time left to finish and gumpaste dries fast so I cant stop in the middle.
- slept only 5 hours in 48 hours
- night before pickup, my poor husband and I stayed up til 8am in the morning making mousse, torting, filling, frosting and putting the fondant on. I wake up at 11am to put finishing touches on the cake
- husband opens the heat to about 80 degrees because our baby is sick...didnt know heat will cause buttercream to melt!! AAHHHH icon_eek.gif
(look at the uneven sides in the picture)
- those gumpaste made from Bakels' havent even dried yet!! 3 days 3 nights already!! icon_cry.gif
- so hungry because I only ate 2 sandwiches in 2 whole days!

Finally cake is picked up, I charged only $80.00, the person gave me $100.00 for the rush (8"x4" bottom & 6"x4" top)

The problem:
- not smooth sides from melting buttercream (not that bad though)
- I tasted the leftover mango mousse, some parts of it has a BITTER TASTE!!icon_surprised.gif
I think I was so absent-minded that I forgot to blend the extract in the mousse well enough!!

WHAT should I do?? I tried emailing her to offer 50% cash back, and I think she is bad mouthing me already, and she havent replied back for 2 days now! I felt so down, but I spend so much time and sacrifice so much for this cake! icon_cry.gif

34 replies
Normita Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:37pm
post #2 of 35

Wow...I'm sorry this happened to you!! Before you offer any type of refund, has she gotten in contact with you complaining about the cake?? I think you should let her contact you first to see if there was a problem with the cake. If she was unhappy with the look and taste of the cake then you can offer some sort of refund...definately not the whole price!! Just relax...and wait to see what happens. If you are so anxious about the cake give it a couple of days and then call her and ask her what she thought of the cake and then take it from there. Hope this helps icon_smile.gif Oh...and you did a very nice job!!!

_Jamie_ Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:42pm
post #3 of 35

You are e-mailing this person like a mad woman why?

What if she loved it? I wouldn't have with the problems you described, but your e-mails just dug your own grave.

I was expecting to see an absolute wreck....but I wouldn't call it that.

cathyscakes Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:49pm
post #4 of 35

I think the cake is beautiful, you're just being too critical. I wouldn't have offered a refund, I think the colors are beautiful. I know its hard when you're a perfectionist, and maybe you feel it could have been better, but its still very pretty.

BecuzImAGurl Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:49pm
post #5 of 35

I dont know...she never said she like or didnt like the cake...\\
but I saw her FaceBook account where she posted the picture and one of her friends left a comment saying "OMG....is that THE cake?!!!"

I mean I know how some people dont bother to come back and complain. I'm like that I wont want to try and get a refund if something I bought to eat is not what I want or has gone bad...I'll just never buy from that place again and maybe, I admit, will tell my friends about it too...I tried so hard because I needed the money to support my baby and have tuition to pay...I need the money and dont want people to hate my cakes already

rohima Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:50pm
post #6 of 35

aww I realy feel for you. I have a 3 year old and a nine month old and its very stressful when they are not well even without the added pressure of meeting a deadline. I am not a professional baker but maybe you should get in touch with her explaining that it is a courtsey call to see if a customer is happy and would she give a feedback to you. If she is unhappy maybe you can provide her a discount for the next cake that she buys from you. That way she can see you at your best and hopefully it will give her an incentive to use you again.

ps your cake is beautiful.

madgeowens Posted 3 Jan 2010 , 11:54pm
post #7 of 35

God love you, if you can take care of kids and sick ones to boot and still bake anything, to me its a wonderful thing. You made a gorgeous cake. I hope they tell you it was wonderful and tell you to relax. I hope they do. Don't be so hard on yourself honey. People are not perfect and neither are cakes icon_smile.gif

madgeowens Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:00am
post #8 of 35

The person on facebook perhaps meant wow thats the cake? Like she never saw a cake that great that was not on tv?

chefjulie Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:01am
post #9 of 35
Originally Posted by BecuzImAGurl

I dont know...she never said she like or didnt like the cake...\\
but I saw her FaceBook account where she posted the picture and one of her friends left a comment saying "OMG....is that THE cake?!!!"

I wouldnt take that as bad. It could easily be taken as excitement. For $80, I cant imagine that she would complain about it!

BecuzImAGurl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:02am
post #10 of 35

thanks...I just dont want one bad cake to ruin my reputation, especially when I'm just starting out

bbmom Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:03am
post #11 of 35

I think its beautiful. I think the facebook comment was a positive one. You are looking for the negative because you had so many issues while making the cake. It really is good, I wouldnt offer up all those excuses to her. Just wait and see if you hear from her, if not then "no news is good news"

MalibuBakinBarbie Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:09am
post #12 of 35

Your cake is beautiful, and at $80-$100 I am sure your customer realized she got an incredible bargain for all of that work. My thoughts were that you probably jumped the gun with offering a 50% deposit without finding out how the cake was at the event. I think the comment posted on the FaceBook page was a compliment and I think everything was fine.

Not everyone will come back to us with praise or complaints (which is agonizing for you considering you are so focused on what didn't go right). While we are passionate about cake, and the person ordering from you may be as well, he/she might not feel the need to come back to you with a critique. The BC was probably not an issue, and very possibly the mousse used in the cake was fine, too.

My advice, from a hobby baker, is learn what you can from this experience. I'm sure your BC cakes will not be exposed to 80-degree heat, future batches of mousse will be thoroughly mixed, etc. Also, try to have more confidence. You are very talented, and your work is BEAUTIFUL! thumbs_up.gif

BecuzImAGurl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:14am
post #13 of 35

I study human gesture and reactions before and guys...especially one that age, will say, 'kool cake' 'nice!" and we capitalize the word THE mostly when they talked about something bad and he coulda used "Wow, is that THE cake?" but Oh My God?? maybe you guys wont understand what I'm talking about but I'm 23 and I know how people talk online.

Gosh its so true...hahaha..I should stop being so negative...

Thanks I feel better!!

BarbieAnnPlaysWithHerFOOD Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 12:34am
post #14 of 35

I must say that despite all the things that got thrown your way, you did an outstanding job! I have had a few nights that very closely resemble that in which you have described- I have gone on 2-3 hrs of sleep for 3 consecutive days... and pulled all nighters- it is so hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel when so many things don't go your way-- but honestly, I think that the end result here was pretty darn good - I think it is a lovely cake and I think that you should be proud of yourself for not giving up and ending up with a good result despite everything- we are our own worse critics and I know that you could find a lot of things that could be better but all you can do at this point is exhale... keep calm and carry on with your head held high.

luvmysmoother Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 1:32am
post #15 of 35

I think it's a really pretty cake plus you practically gave it away by only charging her $80 for it too. Don't freak out!! You're being a perfectionist (which is good - it's what causes you to keep striving to improve) - but that same perfectionism is also going to stress you out every time you hand a cake off to a customer as wellicon_smile.gif Just wait and see what her reaction is before stressing out - she probably loved it - she has no reason to be disappointed - like I said- it's beautiful plus we can see how much work you put into it with the details, flowers, and bows etcicon_smile.gif

Texas_Rose Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:00am
post #16 of 35
Originally Posted by BecuzImAGurl

I study human gesture and reactions before and guys...especially one that age, will say, 'kool cake' 'nice!" and we capitalize the word THE mostly when they talked about something bad and he coulda used "Wow, is that THE cake?" but Oh My God?? maybe you guys wont understand what I'm talking about but I'm 23 and I know how people talk online.

Gosh its so true...hahaha..I should stop being so negative...

Thanks I feel better!!

I think he meant, "That's a cake? It looks like a stack of presents!" rather than any sort of criticism. With how popular the cake shows are and how it's kind of a fad right now, people get more excited about cakes than you would expect. I've had people say, "Oh my God! Is that the cake?" as I was delivering it and it's never been a bad thing...men or women saying it.

Anyhow, I think you're worrying too much. The cake is lovely. I wouldn't do anything that complicated with only a week to prepare, so it's amazing that you pulled that off with so much else going on.

If you tasted the mousse later on and it had been left out, maybe that would account for the odd taste. All the mousse recipes that I've seen have to be refrigerated.

Sagebrush Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:10am
post #17 of 35

About the mango mousse... remember that it will be going in a sweet cake, and often, that balances out a not so sweet filling. I made some lemon curd for a coconut lemon cake, and when I tasted it, it seemed a little bitter to me, but when it was in the cake, no one would've noticed... the cake as a whole was really yummy.

Also, I think you're being overly critical. Sure, the fondant is not as smooth after the heat than when you finished it, but other than that, the cake is great... and unless she is quite the cake connoisseur, I'm sure she was happy. Cake muggles are easily impressed icon_smile.gif I made a cake for my huge extended family for Thanksgiving, and really didn't get any decoration on it other than the shell border at the base, and they all ooohed and aaahed over it.

- Leisel

UpAt2am Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:12am
post #18 of 35

first thing...i totally understand the sick kid part...and have been there before with ya (no sleep, just want them to feel better, getting sick yourself)...bless your heart. and what an awesome hubby to stay up and help you! although you wish the cake looked better, i was expecting a wreck and it's not...it's beautiful. so give yourself some credit. you also should have charged hundreds so she got the cake for a deal. and i think the facebook posting sounded positive! i would have never thought it was negative.

next time, never email the customer saying you'll give a refund if they haven't even contacted you asking for one! you're too nice and you deserve every cent of the $100 you got! i'd also think of it this way, she wouldn't have overpaid you if she didn't like it. rush order or not, if she hated it, she would have fought you on the rush fee and would have tried to pay you $80 or less.

don't stress one more second on this cake and go hug your baby and kiss your hubby icon_smile.gif

Kitagrl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:43am
post #19 of 35

I was expecting to see some sort of melted puddle of cake! I think the cake is very nice! Yeah the fondant is not perfect but as someone else said, no regular customer is really going to be picky about that....after all it is frosting!!!!

I would have never emailed unless you could tell the person was upset or if they emailed you or if you otherwise heard of a problem. Sometimes I was upset about a cake and the customer was incredibly pleased despite what I disliked about the cake.

Hope you have a better week this week! You do a great job!

Brendabeeper Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:45am
post #20 of 35

Your cake tuned out beautiful. I know how you feel about being uncomfortable about how the customer liked the cake or not. It is very stressful not knowing. I feel your cake turned out great and that the comment on facebook was a good one. If they didnt care for it there would have been a definate negative tone. I didnt get that from what you put down. I request that each of my customers give me a feedback when I give them their cakes, especially if they pick it up. That way I get a since of relief knowing it made it in one piece and they liked it. ( I once called my customer back 4 times tll she called me back) I had roses on top of my cross cake and the frosting wasn't stiff enough, I had added more meringue and didnt taste it till after I delivered the cake. it had a strong lemon and a bit bitter taste. I about cried, a good friends cake for her church and I was miserable till she convinced me there was not a problem. She even wanted another one for another church event. So you never know. We are always harder on ourselfs. Breathe, call if you must just to ask how it was, don't you dare give a refund, YOUR CAKE WAS WELL WORTH IT!

cathyscakes Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:51am
post #21 of 35

Have you ever noticed the cake shows on t.v. Sometimes the cakes do not turn out very well. Saggy fondant, unlevel cakes, but they present them with a big smile, saying how beautiful it turned out. I guess they just wait for a complaint, they never point out their mistakes. They have been in business for a while, and i'm sure want it to be perfect, but each cake might not turn out that way, what you are seeing the customer might not even notice. I loved the cake, even if the girls didn't, I think they are being unreasonible, because it looked really nice.

just_for_fun Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:57am
post #22 of 35

That is THE cake!! in an awesome way!! I think you're so tired and hungry, your eyes and tongue are playing tricks on you!! Take a deep breath and relax, I doubt anyone is badmouthing you about this masterpiece!!

Creative_chika Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 3:18am
post #23 of 35

I think its a beautiful cake!!! You shouldn't be worried at all!!! I looks great!!

milkmaid42 Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 3:47am
post #24 of 35

I baked a cake for Halloween and was so ashamed of the result that I didn't charge the customer for the balance when I delivered it. I wanted to just throw it away and hide, talk about professional...The wonderful people here on CC me put my mind in the right frame and helped me realize that we really are our own worst critics.
Your cake is beautiful and the flowers and design represent a lot of work. With the short time frame and obstacles you faced, you ought to be proud of what you accomplished. So wonderful you had such a helpful husband and I hope everyone is well now. I am sure the comments were positive and as others have expressed, don't be the first to offer a discount or refund. I certainly learned that lesson.
Hold your head up and continue on. You are very talented.

BecuzImAGurl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 3:52am
post #25 of 35

Thanks! I think i can loosen up now...I've been thinking too much! now I'll be able to relax a bit...I guess I compare myself too much with the pros and set too high of a standard for myself...I'm just a newbie expecting myself to produce pro level products icon_lol.gif

JanJess Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 3:53am
post #26 of 35

First of all, your cake turned out beautiful...take a deep breath and remember if you work with cakes for very long, something crazy will happen & we just have to have a good cry and learn from it as it makes us better. Don't stress about it. Feel better. icon_smile.gif

Susans53 Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 4:25pm
post #27 of 35

Your cake is beautiful and you should be very proud of your work. Around here that cake would go for $500 plus. She got a bargain, you should charge more, and not give a refund.

rblee Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 5:37pm
post #28 of 35

Beautiful cake. No matter where you live, you gave that one away.

Donnagardner Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 5:48pm
post #29 of 35

sorry you had troubles.

countrycaker Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 6:04pm
post #30 of 35

Wow - what a terrible week! I'm so sorry about all your difficulties. It seems like the kids always sense when we need desperately to be working on something and that is when they desperately need us. Of course, they can't help being sick, but it always seems like it's when I'm working to beat the clock that that kind of stuff happens. I hope you're feeling better. I think your cake is beautiful and your customer got a great deal. If she complains about paying $100 for a cake like that, you don't need her for a customer. You did a wonderful job!

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