Bride Wants Change 5 Days From Wedding!!

Business By tcakes65 Updated 7 Jun 2010 , 4:50pm by Spuddysmom

tcakes65 Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 6:53pm
post #1 of 22

I did a consultation back in March with a bride, and she contracted her June 12 cake with my business. We came up with a great design for her cake. I did a second consultation with her and her fiance a couple of weeks later because she wanted the fiance's approval. I spent another hour with this couple, and they both agreed upon the initial design and were very happy with it.

Fast forward to today. This particular bride has a wedding planner, and they met for the first time yesterday. All of a sudden, the bride changed her mind and no longer wants the original design for her wedding cake. icon_surprised.gif We're 5 days out from her wedding, and my contract specifically states that any design changes can be made up until 2 weeks before the wedding. I explained this to both the bride, and the wedding planner. However, the wedding planner will not accept my response. She bothered me relentlessly yesterday afternoon telling me that the bride is no longer satisifed with the design, and it is my job to provide her with a design that will make her happy. I should go out of my way to come up with another design for her within the same price range. The planner texted me and said that they and the bride would be at my shop on Tuesday at 5:30 without asking if it is okay or if it would interfere with other appointments. icon_eek.gif I have other consultations that evening and was appalled at the blatant disregard and disrespect to me, my business, and clients. I told them flat out NO that they could not come in and not to interrupt consultations with my other clients. I suspect they will anyway.

I am beside myself. I'm certain that the wedding planner talked the bride out of her cake design. The planner is well known for being difficult to deal with. Now the planner and her assistant are wanting to play cake designer and inflict their personal preferences. I'm not sure what to do. I've tried sticking to my guns, but I feel like the planner has put the bride in a difficult position. She's a very sweet girl that more than likely won't stand up to the planner. I sent several designs to the bride that would be easy to do within such a short timeframe. I've spent way too much time on this and need to start working on her cake no later than Tuesday. I told the bride she needs to make a decision no later than this afternoon. If she doesn't get back with me today, we are sticking with the original design.

Am I doing the right thing? I feel like I'm being too nice, but at the same time I don't want her getting on WeddingWire or The Knot after the fact badmouthing my business. Any advice would be appreciated.

21 replies
cheatize Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 7:31pm
post #2 of 22

I say stick to your guns. What happens if she comes up with a design by tonight but it requires special order items? You'd never get them in time. I also think you should stop taking calls from the planner and communicate only with the bride. They'll never get another caker this close to the event to make the cake, so you have the upper hand here.

antonia74 Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 7:35pm
post #3 of 22

First of all, totally bizarre that she would have hired a wedding planner only a week before the big day.

That planner is being totally pushy and unprofessional, not you. At this incredibly late point in the game, her job is to make sure everything goes off as scheduled for the couple and NOT to attempt to re-design anything! It's her job to make sure that the couple are on-budget and pleased, but that shouldn't involve any major alterations or subjecting vendors to her own design ideas at this late date, that's WAY overstepping her job description.

Stick to your guns on this one. I've had brides attempt to change things less than 2 weeks before their weddings and unless they were talking about minor details (colours of flowers they were providing me, change the width/colour of ribbons I hadn't yet purchased, change a filling flavour, etc) that's just not going to be possible and having signed a service contract with you, she should know that.) BTW, good for you for having it all in writing.

If she really wants to push you, she's risking you offering their $ back and then she's stuck starting from scratch with the search for another baker less than 6 days until the wedding. (Not that you'd go that far, but if she pushes relentlessly she's risking that for her client and that's utterly wrong of her!)

thin4life Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 7:42pm
post #4 of 22

I say stick to your guns, she is expecting the impossible.

Polarcakes Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 7:48pm
post #5 of 22

No way I would let her change anything. She`s 5 days away from her wedding. Stick to your plan.

As others have pointed out, she has signed an agreement which had the terms clearly written about design changes.

I don`t know if others would agree, but would it be possible for you not to accept brides/etc who work with this particular wedding planner in the future? She already has a bad reputation. I know you may lose some sales from it, but it might work?

jqorso Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 7:49pm
post #6 of 22

This should be simple. You have a contract to protect you and your business. Kindly explain to her that she signed a legally binding agreement and that by signing it she agreed to the terms in the contract. This includes no design changes after 2 weeks before the event.

I know you are concerned about bad ratings, but it's unreasonable to change the design now. That's why it's in the contract.

I'd contact the bride and remind her how much she and her fiance enjoyed the original design.

Stick to your guns.

tcakes65 Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 7:53pm
post #7 of 22

Thank you both for your support. I did call the client yesterday and told her she needed to deal directly with me. I went so far as to tell the planner that if the contracted deadline and design were an issue and the bride didn't want to abide by it, she was welcome to go somewhere else. Of course, they started backpedaling. Not a lot, but some. icon_lol.gif They tried to guilt trip me at the same time.

I don't plan on taking any further calls or messages from the planner. Frankly, I'm done with this planner and do not want anything to do with her EVER. I'm still shocked at the whole situation. I've never had a client or planner attempt a change this close to a wedding or be so pushy.

Doug Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 8:35pm
post #8 of 22

send an email to the effect:

dear (profanity omitted) wedding planner.

The contract terms are clear and unambiguous. The contract was signed and is fully legal and enforceable in a court of law. By your refusal to honor and adhere to them and by your advice to your client (poor dear's name here), you are putting her in breach of contract.

Be advised that this makes you liable for any outcome, whether it be loss my services and therefore her cake, or any legal judgment ordered by the courts against you and your client after I sue for breach of contract.

Further, be reminded that as you will be by your actions and advice in breach of contract, any negative statements made by you or your client verbally about my business, my services, my policies, or myself personally in writing to any person, venue, in any and all media (including but not limited to newspapers, magazines, blogs, internet based review sites, reports to the BBB, or any other means of disseminating information) can and will be viewed as libel, slander and defamation of character and will be prosecuted to the fullest extent allowed by the law. My lawyer stands ready to file suit against you.

The originally contracted design will be provided.

And further communication from you will be viewed as harassment and will be report to the appropriate legal authorities.

Have a nice day.

nancyg Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 8:43pm
post #9 of 22

I love the answer.....Are you an attorney? Sounds really really good!!

KHalstead Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 8:52pm
post #10 of 22

I only allow changes up to 3 weeks before the wedding, but have made exceptions.

First thing you need to figure out is CAN you change the design at this point? If you haven't begun making flowers, baking, etc. then certainly you can....................the question becomes.........Do you want to??? If you're ok with it.....then I say charge them an extra $$$ citing that you now have to rework your entire schedule for this new, entirely different cake and time is $ in this business! If the bride is willing to pay extra to go with the wedding planner, then charge her and change it! If you want to!


I find that when people realize their "new and improved" last minute design is going to nearly double the cost....they start to LOVE the old design all over again LOL

Bfisher2 Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:00pm
post #11 of 22

Dear Wedding Planner
Thank you for your input on (bride and grooms name).

I will allow them to make last minute changes to their cake but as it states in the contract you are outside of the acceptable given time frame so a 200.00 fee will apply as I will have to have staff stay late to accomodate this demand.

Let me know by the end of today if this will work out for you. You have until 5pm.

Regards,

*feel free to add meniacle laughter here*

Occther Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:03pm
post #12 of 22

Wow, Doug - I like that wording. I might keep it for future reference. I had a bride call me on Thursday evening before a Saturday wedding to cancel the kitchen cake. Okay - but she had already paid for it. (And it was already baked and in the freezer.) Then her father had the nerve to call me two weeks after the wedding and ask for a refund because they didn't get the kitchen cake!!! People never cease to amaze me.

Stick to your guns - no time for last minute design changes - Sorry, honey - your request is outside the two week window. What part of "No" do they not understand? I wonder if she can change the design of her dress and order different color of bridesmaid dresses.

Doug Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:03pm
post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bfisher2

Dear Wedding Planner
Thank you for your input on (bride and grooms name).

I will allow them to make last minute changes to their cake but as it states in the contract you are outside of the acceptable given time frame so a 200.00 fee will apply as I will have to have staff stay late to accomodate this demand.

Let me know by the end of today if this will work out for you. You have until 5pm.

Regards,

*feel free to add meniacle laughter here*




suggested amendment:

$200/hour of overtime (cost of staff to make it happen)

Bfisher2 Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:04pm
post #14 of 22

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand add meniacle laughter after Dougs reply as well..... Because wow....... Doug.....that would even scare a lawyer......*LOL*

KHalstead Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:04pm
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bfisher2

Dear Wedding Planner
Thank you for your input on (bride and grooms name).

I will allow them to make last minute changes to their cake but as it states in the contract you are outside of the acceptable given time frame so a 200.00 fee will apply as I will have to have staff stay late to accomodate this demand.

Let me know by the end of today if this will work out for you. You have until 5pm.(added-) today to hand deliver the "additional fee" in cash

Regards,

*feel free to add meniacle laughter here*


Polarcakes Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:07pm
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Occther

What part of "No" do they not understand? I wonder if she can change the design of her dress and order different color of bridesmaid dresses.




All of it. icon_lol.gif They could also change their venue, change the caterer, change their transportation. Sheesh, let`s just change who she`s even getting married to, cover everything. icon_evil.gificon_biggrin.gif

Bfisher2 Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 9:11pm
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bfisher2

Dear Wedding Planner
Thank you for your input on (bride and grooms name).

I will allow them to make last minute changes to their cake but as it states in the contract you are outside of the acceptable given time frame so a 200.00 fee will apply as I will have to have staff stay late to accomodate this demand.

Let me know by the end of today if this will work out for you. You have until 5pm.

Regards,

*feel free to add meniacle laughter here*



suggested amendment:

$200/hour of overtime (cost of staff to make it happen)




icon_lol.gif Heck Ya!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

korkyo Posted 6 Jun 2010 , 11:48pm
post #18 of 22

I would defiantly add the extra fee and if anything was not available for the changes they could not have those changes.

johnson6ofus Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 4:49am
post #19 of 22

Let's not forget the OP complaint is not only late changes, but time wasted with "consultations", phone calls, etc.

At some point, just refer to the contract... make the cake as signed, and move on. Sheesh- how many design appointments does one bride get?

indydebi Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 6:38am
post #20 of 22

I luv Doug!!! icon_lol.gif

Stick to your guns. I had a silver plateau that was returned late. 3 weeks late. Family was from out of state and gave the plateau to the groomsman, who threw it in his trunk and forgot about it. It was only after I emailed the bride about "where's my plateau?" that she told me a groomans had it and she had sent him an email to remind him to return it. Of course the deposit was forfeited.

Dad calls me about 3 times asking for his deposit back. His logic? Well "HE" gave it to the groomsman to return so it wasn't dad's fault that it was returned late! Guess what, dude! It wasn't mine, either! I emailed the part of the contract that stated return policy and I didnt' get any more calls.

cakesdivine Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 4:31pm
post #21 of 22

Haven't read the entire thread but here is my 2 cents and if someone has already said this then let me just reiterate... Charge for changes & make them stick with the contract they signed.

Any changes to contract including design changes/serving changes etc. less than 2 weeks from event, require a change of contract fee of $1 per serving of original contract serving amount minimum change fee $50. (example: original contract is for 150 servings, contract change fee is $150 even if cake servings are being deminished) New contract will be drawn up. New price of cake will be per serving fee x new number of servings + change fee. On a cake serving originally 150 if you charge $3 per serving and they down size to 100 the new price would be $300 for the cake plus the change fee of $150 so the price is $450. Same price as the original cake icon_smile.gif

Spuddysmom Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 4:50pm
post #22 of 22

Ahhh, Doug.... is it wrong to love you from afar? sigh.....

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