How Much Would You All Charge For This?

Decorating By cb_one Updated 11 Jan 2010 , 2:04pm by Mike1394

cb_one Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 11:21pm
post #1 of 21

Have a possible Wedding this May, and here is the cake the Bride wanted. There is a posibility that she would want this to be a Dummy cake, with sheet cakes to feed 200-215 people.

Ive never done a dummy before, and told her my price for the cake would be $4.75/serving. I was thinking of charging a little less because she is a friend of a friend..maybe around $3.75-4/serving.

Anyway, what would you all charge for a dummy like this and sheet cakes to go with it.

It would be $950+ to feed 200-215 if I did no sheet cake. Or I could possibly drop it to around $750.

I was thinking for charging $150 for the dummy cake and $300, ($1.50/serving) for the sheet cakes to feed 200, for a total of $450.
LL

20 replies
indydebi Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 11:36pm
post #2 of 21

So let me get this right .... you're going to do a real cake for $950 .... or a dummy for $150? icon_eek.gif

Read this blog on why a dummy cake is NOT cheaper: http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/search/label/fake%20cake

It's the same work, same icing, same amount of time. You're not paying for cake ingredients but you're paying for the styrofoam, which can be more expensive than the cake.

aundrea Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 11:41pm
post #3 of 21

i say $1000-$1200 sounds about right. i would not go down on the price for dummy cakes and sheet cakes. there is still alot of work going into this cake just in decorations. plus the added expense and work of making sheet cakes. dont sell yourself short-or you will regret it.

Teekakes Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 11:51pm
post #4 of 21

You should take the good advice given and charge the same for the dummy as you would if it were a real cake. It is not cheaper to make dummies. icon_smile.gif

costumeczar Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 11:52pm
post #5 of 21

Unless you have $800 worth of time and materials going into a real cake vs. a dummy cake, I don't see why you should reduce the price for the dummy by $800. I agree with everyone else so far, you should be charging around the same for a real cake vs. dummy plus sheets.

Look at it this way: You'll be baking the same number of cake servings for both scenarios, using the same amount of ingredients, and you'll actually have to take MORE time to decorate a dummy plus ice all of the sheets. Plus, you'll have to pay for styrofoam dummies if you do the dummy plus the sheets. So your time and expenses for the dummy+ sheet scenario will actually be higher than they will be for making a real cake. So you should actually be charging more for the dummy cake + sheets, not the other way around.

leah_s Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 11:53pm
post #6 of 21

And we, as professionals, need to stamp out this dummy cake + sheet cake crap anyway. Listen to IndyDebi and all the rest of us. You'll work the same to create that dummy, so why on earth would you charge any less for it?

Deb_ Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 12:11am
post #7 of 21

Another bride who's been reading these stupid "how to save money on your cake" articles.

I don't offer discounts on this type of thing at all. In fact as Costumeczar said you should charge more for a dummy plus sheets.

Not only are you decorating and assembling the dummy, you also have to make and decorate the sheets.

Mike1394 Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 12:21am
post #8 of 21

15.00

Mike

Deb_ Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 12:34am
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike1394

15.00

Mike




lol I'm beginning to see a trend here.... icon_biggrin.gificon_wink.gif

FromScratch Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 12:34am
post #10 of 21

LMAO Mike... I love seeing what silly price you'll drop.

Listen to everyone... Don't charge next to nothing for the dummy cake. It takes the same effort and time to decorate. I'd tell her flat out that she would be better off having the cake made of cake than doing it as styrofoam with sheets.

I have a schpeal on my site as well...

"Isnt it cheaper to get a fake display cake and serve sheet cakes?: No. Styrofoam dummy cakes cost just as much as the raw ingredients for a baked cake. The bulk of the cost of your cake is in the decorating and that costs the same no matter what it is on. Then you will be paying for the kitchen cakes which cost about the same amount as a tiered wedding cake. You will end up paying more for a display cake and kitchen cakes than you would if you ordered the appropriate servings of wedding cake."

I'm with Leah... we need to trample this thought out of the industry. It's simply ludicrous!!

All that aside, I'd stick with your original quote of $4.75/serving and charge extra for the sugar flowers. That cake as pictured won't feed that many people... you will have to make the tiers bigger. Either that or make the cake as pictured and have kitchen cakes out back to make up the servings. icon_smile.gif

all4cake Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 12:40am
post #11 of 21

The only reason I could see for charging less for the dummy is if you were to get it back in pristine condition and could use it, as decorated, for another purpose, ie...showpiece for an upcoming bridal fair, or bakery window...

FromScratch Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 1:02am
post #12 of 21

That cake looks like a 4-6-8-10... so 100 servings...

You could do a 6-8-10-12 for 165 servings, or a 6-9-12-15 for 225 servings, but I think the bigger tiers would take away from the overall effect of the cake.

So what I would do is either 4-6-8-10 or the 6-8-10-12 and have a kitchen cake out back to make up the servings. Kitchen cakes are not sheet cakes. They are simply undecorated tiers that are 4" tall just like the main cake so no one would know the difference between a slice from the main cake or the kitchen cake. I do not offer sheet cakes (one layer of cake with icing) as a general rule, but NEVER for weddings.

This is how I would break it down...

Flowers... $200.00 and design fee of $50.00 for the separations for either cake.

Option A. 4-6-8-10 for a 100 serving main cake... $500.00. 100 servings of kitchen cake... $400.00. Total... $1150

Option B. 6-8-10-12 for a 165 serving main cake... $825.00. 35 servings of kitchen cake... $140.00. Total... $1215

OR... if she goes dummy cake with kitchen cakes...

Dummy cake 4-6-8-10... $455.00. 200 servings of kitchen cake... $800.00. Total $1475.00
Dummy cake 6-8-10-12... $701.25. 200 servings of kitchen cake... $800.00. Total $1751.25

Then add delivery fees. HTH's a bit. icon_biggrin.gif

(edited to fix prices in 2 places.)

cb_one Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 7:43am
post #13 of 21

Wow, thx for the replies. I was way off I guess. At the tasting on Saturday, I did tell her that the dummy would be less, so sorta stuck there. I will stick to my original price of $4.75/serving.

I did tell her that the pic was a smaller cake. She said that it would not have to be just like it, similar though.

Going to give her a call today after work. Thanks guys.

janeoxo Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 8:36am
post #14 of 21

I don't understand why if she has that many to feed she even wants a dummy cake. Why not a real cake which would feed the whole lot. She has said it does not have to be the same it can be similar, or if she does decide she wants the same then still do real and sheet to make up the difference.

Just seems like extra faffing about if you have to do all that work on a dummy and then sheet cakes to feed that many. I say keep it as little work as possible for you and she still gets the look she wants with the luxury of actually being able to eat it.

Sagebrush Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 9:26am
post #15 of 21

Okay... so you said the dummy cakes would be less, but it sounds like you didn't say how much less, right? And you didn't already offer her the discount, so...

You could stick with the prices you already said you were comfortable with... $4.75 for real cake, and then list $4.25 or $4.50 for dummy... you're still getting more than the $3.75 - $4 that you would have done it for at the discounted friends rate, but it's also less than she was expecting to pay for the real cake.

Or, you could tell her that you went home and priced things out and found that the dummy cake wouldn't be less as you had originally believed, but then offer to do the real cake at the discounted price. She will still be getting a deal from you, but you can probably still do it the real way instead of the more time and $ intensive dummy way.

Also, and I'm not sure if this is possible or not with stacking physics (I haven't done any stacked cakes), but if you did manage to convince her to go the real cake route and made the skinnier spacers out of cake, too, then you wouldn't have to make a kitchen cake at all.

- Leisel

Mike1394 Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 9:54am
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by all4cake

The only reason I could see for charging less for the dummy is if you were to get it back in pristine condition and could use it, as decorated, for another purpose, ie...showpiece for an upcoming bridal fair, or bakery window...




NO you charge a deposit, and then it becomes a rental item.

Mike

costumeczar Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 12:32pm
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike1394

Quote:
Originally Posted by all4cake

The only reason I could see for charging less for the dummy is if you were to get it back in pristine condition and could use it, as decorated, for another purpose, ie...showpiece for an upcoming bridal fair, or bakery window...



NO you charge a deposit, and then it becomes a rental item.

Mike




I'd charge $950 for the rental fee icon_lol.gif

FromScratch Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 1:11pm
post #18 of 21

Yes exactly... you didn't tell her how much less you were thinking about charging her for a dummy cake... so yu can tell her that you discount 10-15% on a dummy cake and you are in the clear. It is still less, but not so much less that you are kicking yourself in the pants whilst making it.

FromScratch Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 1:12pm
post #19 of 21

Oh and making the spacers out of cake... I'd not suggest it. It's hard enough making them out of foam. icon_smile.gif

all4cake Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 1:22pm
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike1394

Quote:
Originally Posted by all4cake

The only reason I could see for charging less for the dummy is if you were to get it back in pristine condition and could use it, as decorated, for another purpose, ie...showpiece for an upcoming bridal fair, or bakery window...



NO you charge a deposit, and then it becomes a rental item.

Mike




Right...but more like require 950 up front (okay, 750 'cause she DID say she'd charge less for a dummy) for it with an agreement that 250 will be refunded if it comes back in pristine condition. She is ultimately making the design for her so there should be some added cost there as opposed to someone renting a dummy that's been previously made and displayed in the bakery/shelf/bridal fair. I wouldn't JUST charge her a refundable deposit though.

Mike1394 Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 2:04pm
post #21 of 21

Charge less for the dummy, WITH the agreement of getting it back. Then you can rent it out over, and over again.

Mike

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