Ok Time To Vent...

Decorating By todolomio Updated 27 Feb 2010 , 1:14am by dalis4joe

todolomio Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 9:00pm
post #1 of 31

One day out of the blue a customer that lives in my community gives me a call for a baby shower cake for one of her daughters. She was very insistant in me making her cake so much so that she called 8 times one day while I was out working! I finally met with her and she told me what she wanted.

All right so she asked for a cake to feed 45 people. I suggested a 7" and a 9" this should serve 40 and said if she wanted more servings we could go 8" and a 10" but would charge her more...she said no worries she had other desserts to serve.

Delivery date arrives and the delivery time is 1pm. She has called 3 times during the day to find out if the cake was ready! I mean why would you call at 8:30 am to find out if the cake is done? She says: "nope I'm just checking" at the second call I'm already thinking is 80 buck really worth all this aggravation?

I deliver the cake at 1pm as agreed. She was not home but her daughter (not the pregnant one) and mom were in the house. I place it on the table and leave. My client calls me 5 min. later that she is dissapointed in the cake! It's to small it won't serve the amount of people she has as guest. and she adds this is not what I ordered. At this point . I'm already upset with this cake and client.

So I tell her what we agreed on and she was still insisting on it being wrong. Well, I tell her it only take me 5 min to get back and return her money. She agrees then I tell her oh and by the way I will also be taking the cake with me and the silence occurrs ...and says she but wait! What am I supposed to do without a cake? I suggested go to the supermarket or Walmart. Then she tells me she will be home in 10 to 15 min. Wait a minute, she's fighting and she has not even seen the cake!!! (remember I had only been gone for 5 to 8 minutes!) So I asked her and she tells me this is what her mother and daughter are telling her and she was on her way to see for herself.

I needed to get home because I had another cake waiting for me and as a simple gesture of neighbor appreciation I had made a mini (6 inch) cake that read "just for you & baby". Of course this is for the difficult client so I decided to go home finish this cake and take it back to her this way it was out of my way and she would feel better knowing she had more cake available. I'm done, I'm knocking on her door she opens it and says the cake is very pretty but again it's not what I asked for...takes the cake and slams the door in my face.

Thirty minutes later she calls and says: "Oh can you make a rattle for the cake?" I was polite and said: "No, I can't oh and by the way please don't call me for any future orders. I have the right to accept the people and the orders I want to work with and you are not on the list. Thank you for your order". Ok well, all I really said was No, I can not. Sorry.

What did you learn about this lesson? Make a contract even if it's your mother! I've been doing cakes for over 2 years and never ever had a problem. But there is always a first time.

Thanks for reading just wanted to vent. :roll

30 replies
bettinashoe Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 9:20pm
post #2 of 31

How upsetting! Luckily those customers are few and far between but unfortunately it is these nightmare customers that we remember. You did good!

makeminepink Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 9:43pm
post #3 of 31

People are such a pain! icon_biggrin.gif

tsal Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 9:54pm
post #4 of 31

That sucks, but luckily, she is not the majority of people. I have a feeling that even when the cake size is specified, people don't actually visualize an 8" or 10" cake and then are shocked at the size (even though it was agreed upon initially).

Muggles...

ayerim979 Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:13pm
post #5 of 31

I myself think that people just dont know how to cut cake and at glance the cakes do sometimes look small, but I think maybe some people need to get educated with a size chart to see how infact a cake needs to be cut. It is relatively annoying but true.

todolomio Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:35pm
post #6 of 31

I agree a cutting chart for customers will educate them on how to cut the cake. Earlene Moore has a chart on how to cut the cake but, I believe its for the wedding cake (which is sized smaller). Hmmm....lets make one.

nicoles0419 Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:38pm
post #7 of 31

people are CrAzY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

nicoles0419 Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:38pm
post #8 of 31

oh and by people I mean that lady lol

todolomio Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:39pm
post #9 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicoles0419

oh and by people I mean that lady lol




I concur!!! Crazy...

Rose_N_Crantz Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:47pm
post #10 of 31

I just made my first stacked cake the other day (so fun!!!). I did an 8 and 6 inch and when I first looked at the final product I thought, man that does look kinda small. Then I started cutting it up and came out with 33 pieces. I was shocked, but also reassured when I see some of the numbers on cutting and serving guides! I used to think yeah right, now I know!

summerki Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 10:48pm
post #11 of 31

That just plain sucks! It just seems that some people are impossible to please. Collette Peterson could show up on her doorstep with a 6-tiered masterpiece and she to would find something to complain about. I think you did an awesome job dealing with a really tough situation and it is best just to wash your hands of those types of clients. Best of luck in the future!

Mrs-A Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 11:25pm
post #12 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by todolomio

......, I tell her it only take me 5 min to get back and return her money. She agrees then I tell her oh and by the way I will also be taking the cake with me and the silence occurrs ...and says she but wait! .......




so she was happy to have a full refund and keep the cake..... reading the cake muggle stories on this site always amazes me

Mrs-A Posted 20 Feb 2010 , 11:26pm
post #13 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by todolomio

......, I tell her it only take me 5 min to get back and return her money. She agrees then I tell her oh and by the way I will also be taking the cake with me and the silence occurrs ...and says she but wait! .......




so she was happy to have a full refund and keep the cake..... reading the cake muggle stories on this still amaze me

Tellis12 Posted 21 Feb 2010 , 2:25am
post #14 of 31

I'm very impressed with the way you handled this. I would have had such a hard time holding my tongue! Sorry you had to deal with this. That's pretty lame.

Also, just a note on Earlene's serving chart. It is sized for weddings but the pieces are more generous than the wilton serving chart. Just an fyi!

Mensch Posted 21 Feb 2010 , 7:29am
post #15 of 31

You should have beaten her up.

tesso Posted 21 Feb 2010 , 7:45am
post #16 of 31

three words of wisdom.. contract contract contract ..... it is this kind of experience why i always do a contract and a sketch of the cake that is initialled by the client. i try to cover all my bases. I am even making my sister sign one!! icon_lol.gif

aandecakedesign Posted 21 Feb 2010 , 4:47pm
post #17 of 31

You handled it well. I probably would had made the rattle to keep peace.

I also feel that now with all the cool cake shows, people expect more and bigger cakes out of us usual people. Their cakes feed 100s and they have some really expensive equiptment that we would not be able to afford therefore have to what we can do with what we have. They also have a large staff with many talents. Not to mension that people want to spend $100 on a cake that they would charge $1000s of dollars for. People just dont realize what goes into make a cake.

todolomio Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 2:43pm
post #18 of 31

Thanks all for your thoughts. Yes Contract, contract, contract from here on no matter who! And I really had the feeling of just tossing the cake in the trash!!! But, lets be professional!! lol just things of the business. Like I said once:

Working with clients can be difficult but woithout them there would be no work!

cakesdivine Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 2:54pm
post #19 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by todolomio

I agree a cutting chart for customers will educate them on how to cut the cake. Earlene Moore has a chart on how to cut the cake but, I believe its for the wedding cake (which is sized smaller). Hmmm....lets make one.




I beg to differ on two counts. Earlene's chart will have you giving away cake. The Wilton chart is much better.

There is no difference in the amount of cake you get with a party size as opposed to a wedding size.

Wedding slice: 1"x2"x4" = 8 cubic inches of cake
Party slice: 2"x2"x2" = 8 cubic inches of cake

See the same icon_smile.gif

KHalstead Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 3:26pm
post #20 of 31

I think sometimes when people order tiered party cakes, they cut the slices bigger...either 1-1/2"x2"x4" or 2"x2"x4" I have a lady that uses my guide for 1-1/2"x2"x4" and likes big pieces so she cuts the chart in half when deciding how much cake she'll need!!! My prices go by a rounded down wilton chart..........so a 10" round serves 35 (1"x2"x4") per my pricing and what I charge for.......but this customer considers a 10" round to be around 12 servings! she pays for 35 servings though!

JustToEatCake Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 3:55pm
post #21 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by KHalstead

I think sometimes when people order tiered party cakes, they cut the slices bigger...either 1-1/2"x2"x4" or 2"x2"x4" I have a lady that uses my guide for 1-1/2"x2"x4" and likes big pieces so she cuts the chart in half when deciding how much cake she'll need!!! My prices go by a rounded down wilton chart..........so a 10" round serves 35 (1"x2"x4") per my pricing and what I charge for.......but this customer considers a 10" round to be around 12 servings! she pays for 35 servings though!




I think we are used to those restaurant size wedges of cake. Personally my family would laugh me out of the house if I even thought they were going to get a 1 x 2 x 4 piece of cake. But what I think a lot of people forget is usually that piece of cake is eaten after a meal, when at home it is usually eaten as a snack between meals or late at nite (great for the figure) or even in place of a meal so a bigger piece is usually what you want. We never had dessert at the dinner table right after our dinner, we were too full, but about 8 or 9 pm watching TV, yep. So healthy I know.

CakeMommyTX Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 3:59pm
post #22 of 31

Maybe the 3rd or 4th paid cake I ever did was a 14" round double layer cake, it only had to serve 30. By Wiltons Party serving chart it served 63...customer called only minutes after I dropped off the cake complaining that it would not be big enough and she has to now go buy cupcakes?!?
Those are some serious hunk'o pieces she was planning on serving!
Now I include a serving chart and cutting instructions with every cake, I also let them know what is considered a serving size .
Remember most people think a serving looks like this >>>>>>

Image

m1m Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 4:17pm
post #23 of 31

Good points Aandecake and Khalstead!

I think most people cut their cake slices pretty big!

KHalstead Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 4:26pm
post #24 of 31

I have a piece of styrofoam cut to the size of a 1"x2"x4" slice of cake and a 2"x2"x2" (for sheet cakes) and I show it to them and say this is the standard slice of cake.........most people agree it's large enough, some people say I want twice or three times that slice and I say OK>........and then we figure out how large the cake needs to me.

I've been doing cakes for business now for about 2 yrs. and have NEVER had someone say they ran out of cake or it wasn't large enough, if that happens they only have themselves to blame because I showed them the "slice of cake" in foam form! lol

JulieMN Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 4:34pm
post #25 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by JustToEatCake

Quote:
Originally Posted by KHalstead

I think sometimes when people order tiered party cakes, they cut the slices bigger...either 1-1/2"x2"x4" or 2"x2"x4" I have a lady that uses my guide for 1-1/2"x2"x4" and likes big pieces so she cuts the chart in half when deciding how much cake she'll need!!! My prices go by a rounded down wilton chart..........so a 10" round serves 35 (1"x2"x4") per my pricing and what I charge for.......but this customer considers a 10" round to be around 12 servings! she pays for 35 servings though!



I think we are used to those restaurant size wedges of cake. Personally my family would laugh me out of the house if I even thought they were going to get a 1 x 2 x 4 piece of cake. But what I think a lot of people forget is usually that piece of cake is eaten after a meal, when at home it is usually eaten as a snack between meals or late at nite (great for the figure) or even in place of a meal so a bigger piece is usually what you want. We never had dessert at the dinner table right after our dinner, we were too full, but about 8 or 9 pm watching TV, yep. So healthy I know.




I agree with both of these (and the posting with the picture of the cake mix box too). The advertisements, over-the-top restaurant serving sizes and at-home practices color what people think of as an appropriate size piece of cake. Showing or explaining the servings sizes and providing a cutting guide is a good start to "resizing" the perceptions.

Renaejrk Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 5:53pm
post #26 of 31

I think we all just need to bring it up with the client, friend, family member and make sure they are aware what size a standard serving is - then if they want double or triple that size they can order enough for that.

SpecialtyCakesbyKelli Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 6:08pm
post #27 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mensch

You should have beaten her up.




That's what I was thinking : icon_lol.gif
I was having visions of smashing that cake in her face while reading icon_evil.gif

Caths_Cakes Posted 25 Feb 2010 , 6:14pm
post #28 of 31

I agree, i made a cake for my mum and her Bf, it had roughly 30 servings, my mum told me they didnt even get 15 out of it, Because they are used to having LARGE Slices, even though i explained to her about serving sizes etc , it wasnt a paid cake or anything, just me experimenting and they get to be my guniea pigs haha

BCo Posted 26 Feb 2010 , 8:43pm
post #29 of 31

Oh my how timely is this - I just got this email from a potential client after I sent him a quote...

Now they need the cake to be eggless and nut free and they provided me with the recipe to make sure it's what their son could eat. So just to see how this cake baked up to make sure it would work for what they wanted I made a test cake. This recipe only makes one 9inch round and it only rises to 1 to 1.5 inches in height. So to get at least a 4 inch cake I would have to bake 3 layers for one tier. The cake is to be 9 inch bottom tier and 6 inch top tier. Soooo long story short it's going to cost me 3 times as much to make. So by Wilton's party cutting chart that should give them more then enough to feed 25 people. They also supplied me with a picture from Pink Cake Box that they wanted the cake to look like....

Here is the link:

<a href='http://blog.pinkcakebox.com/category/pastry-images/children-cakes'><img src='http://www.pinkcakebox.com/images/cake1023.jpg' alt='Pink Cake Box Cake'></a>

I was going to do the cake in buttercream to save on cost and then use the fondant accents....

Here is the reply email I recieved back from him:

. I forwarded to my wife, and she has a few questions she wanted me to ask.

Is buttercream what is used in the picture my wife was thinking that it was Fondat (sp?). Not sure if that contains eggs/nuts or something.

The cake sounds a little small will it really feed 25 people comfortably?


Lastly, and perhaps this is because were used to buying cakes from our local bakery (grocery store) Grauls is $85 standard for this type of cake? It just sounded a little bit on the high side to us, given its size.


Guess it's time to start schooling a customer...... icon_smile.gif

FullHouse Posted 26 Feb 2010 , 10:17pm
post #30 of 31

Bturpin, tell them to go ahead and call the Pink Cake Box for a quote and you'll be happy to charge them 15% less than whatever PCB would charge.

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