How Many Of You Have A Full Time Job And Still Cake?

Decorating By TiffySue Updated 25 Aug 2010 , 9:20am by mombabytiger

TiffySue Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 2:59am
post #1 of 38

I'm just curious... I currently am full time caking, but considering going back to a mon - fri job as well. Not sure I can keep up both since at the moment cake takes up all my time. So just wondering.. how many of you have a full time job and full time cake, and how do you manage your time? How many cakes will you take on for a weekend?

Thanks! icon_confused.gif

37 replies
BethLS Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 3:09am
post #2 of 38


I work part time at a college veterinary hospital, have two kids under the age of four, and still do cakes. icon_smile.gif

I try to do (would LOVE to do more) 2 cakes a weekend. Had a large competition cake this past weekend (and won, woo hoo!) and have a 3 tier wedding cake for this upcoming Saturday. icon_smile.gif

But, I am currently seeking employment at a bakery...but just havent found the right one yet! Anyone have any leads on a good, quality bakery near Lansing, Michigan? icon_biggrin.gif

indydebi Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 6:35am
post #3 of 38

Anything is do-able, depending on how bad you want to do it.

I held a full time job AND did wedding cakes AND did caterings (100 to 300 people) AND did the dealership cookie order of 300 cookies every single day. I survived on 4 hours sleep a night (if I was lucky) for about 2 years. That's when I stopped wearing contacts and make-up because I found I could get an extra 30 minutes sleep that way.

I mastered time management and work efficiency in the kitchen during this time period.

Anything is do-able. It's up to you just how much you want to do.

Tinabarena Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 12:33pm
post #4 of 38

I work full time at a law firm which has work times that are never consistent...sometimes I am working 40 hours/week; sometimes 50+...just depends. On top of the kids sporting schedules, school schedules, and managing the house...well, some days, I might go crazy!

I won't lie, I think it is tough doing both work and cakes - sometimes I work 15 hours days (at work, then at home baking/decorating), but I believe I might have insomina, so that kinda helps icon_lol.gif

HOWEVER, if you really like to do the cakes but need to go back to work, then I think you'd figure out a way to manage it. Maybe not taking on too many cakes, or maybe just working part time? I agree with Indydebi, anything is do-able. You would just have to see what works best for you.

BTW, Indydebi, I think it is CRAZY that you had that kind of schedule - but I am secretly jealous that you could handle all that!! Makes me think of that Beatles song where "she takes that little yellow pill"! icon_lol.gif

tracycakes Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 1:29pm
post #5 of 38
Originally Posted by indydebi

That's when I stopped wearing contacts and make-up because I found I could get an extra 30 minutes sleep that way.

That cracks me up! That's the same reason I tell people that I've gone back to glasses and quit wearing makeup and just wear my hair pulled up all of the time. I could shower and be out the door is 20 min. I think my mom thought I was depressed. icon_lol.gif

cakesdivine Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 1:41pm
post #6 of 38

Ditto on the glasses & make-up..LOL!

I currently work 30 Hrs a week at a day job, and 30 Hrs a week at my dance studio teaching and dealing with the biz end of the studio. Friday afternoons, Saturday afternoons & Sundays are dedicated to caking. So I generally can't do a mid week cake so if they want their cake M-F I decline the order and refer them elsewhere.

Would I like to be able to do more cakes...Of course and once my comm kitchen is finished and I don't have to rent from the church any more then I will build my biz up to where I can stop doing the day job and just focus on cakes and dance icon_smile.gif

southerncake Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 2:06pm
post #7 of 38

I have caked (and other desserts, candies, etc.) plus held my full-time job for the past 7+ years. The plan was always to quit the full time "eventually," but at this point I need my benefits through the full time too much to quit!! Fortunately, I work Sunday-Thursday, so I am off Friday and Saturday (although now high school football has started back for our youngest, which makes Friday nights so hard!), which works out perfectly for cakes most week!

If you really want to do it, you'll find a way to make it work!!

And I agree...make-up is overrated icon_lol.gif ! I can't give up the contacts, though..I would hate to see what my cakes look like without them!!

cai0311 Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 4:06pm
post #8 of 38

First off, let me bow to indydebi. I can't fathom doing 300 cookies/day as my only job let alone a full time job and catering/cakes business besides that.

Now back to the op, I work a full time job and have a liscensed home bakery. I work 9.5 hrs per day at my "real job" and in turn get every other Friday off.

I max at 1 wedding cake per weekend. Now, if it is the week with my Friday off I have taken on a small cake or cupcake on top of the wedding cake. I have also had a wedding on Friday (took vacation that day to insure it was finished) and one on Saturday. That was doable since both were the "plain with a ribbon" design.

Twice I broke my rules and it nearly killed me. One weekend I had an order for 288 cupcakes covered in fondant and a fondant ribbon and bow on each one, one 6" cutting cake and a 3 tier baby shower cake to feed 100.
The second weekend I had five 3 tier cakes and one 2 tier cakes. Plus my husband was in the hospital for viral menigitis. I almost joined him for a nervous break down.
I will never break my rule again!

cakegroove Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 8:54pm
post #9 of 38

Yes I have a full time job, but I don't do many cakes. Unfortunately where I live, the area is SATURATED with home bakers because here in Ohio we can. There's a home caker on every corner and a couple of major bakeries that have carved out a great name for themselves here. I can't say as I'd be ready for a full time caking career anyhoo. I am getting ready to start a family and I don't need a business baby and a live baby at the same time.

regbevjon Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 9:22pm
post #10 of 38

I work a full time job and do cakes and some catering, as well. It IS doable, but it can be VERY difficult, especially if you don't have someone that is willing to help pick up the slack. My husband helps with deliveries and clean up. It's pretty stressful at times, but I love it, and it sure helps pay the bills. Not sure how much longer I can keep it all going though, truthfully speaking.

cakelady31 Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 10:16pm
post #11 of 38

I work part time 20 -25 hrs per week in a bakery , then have my own home based business as well. I don't know how anybody does both while working full time!! I really want to dump the part time job and go my own way !! But for now I limit my number of wedding cakes to one per weekend. I have in the past also broke my own rules on the number of orders I take. I wont do that again either!

dguerrant Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 2:46am
post #12 of 38

lets see, thiese are my duties:
* wife and mom of 3 (ages 17, 12, 10)
* full time art teacher (500 students)
* dyslexia educational therapist for 5 students (daily)
* more cakes than i would like
* enrolled in master's classes

never enough time in the day for me, i'm seriously considering not caking anymore, at least for a good while. with 4am up all night cakes for the weekend, delivery, ballgames, lesson plans, 20 hours of course assignments, uuuugggghhh

TiffySue Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 3:02am
post #13 of 38

WOW! Seriously I bow to you all! icon_smile.gif I forgot to mention that while I'm staying home caking.. I also am taking care of my 4 year old and 9 month old. Getting any caking done among this is a task in itself! I have managed to get to do one to two cakes a weekend, and *try* to keep up on my household duties. It would be awesome if when my husband got home from work he would help me with the kids so I could get some sculpting or flowers done for my up coming cakes so I'm not scrambling on cake day.. but instead modern warfare takes priority. lol now I'm on a rant.

But back to the topic at hand, I do think it's doable.. I just really wanted to hear what you all had to say, and I think what you do is amazing!! Hats off! thumbs_up.gif

peg818 Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 10:40am
post #14 of 38

I, too, work full time. I do cakes more as a hobby then anything. Right now around here the cakes are almost dead anyway. I've been getting a couple a month but that is it.

I, also, teach a few classes here and there. My kids are grown and out of school, one in college the other working full time, so there isn't the running around that there used to be (gee i miss that, but don't tell them that)

What does help me to get things done, is i work 5:30am to 1:30pm this gives me the opportunity to get stuff done in the afternoon before anyone else gets home. It also gives me the freedom to pick and choose what cake projects i would like to work on. I don't think i would ever want to do cakes full time, it just wouldn't be fun to have to put up with all that i see some of you do.

suzylynn58 Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 12:12pm
post #15 of 38

I work at a hospital 36+ hours a week plus one night of call and have a cake/catering business. I do most of my cakes for weekends. Can't wait to retire from the "real" job and do my fun job full time. I don't see how you ladies with small children do it! And indydebi, getting by with 4 hours of sleep! WOW!! I can't go without my sleep!

jones5cm Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 3:25pm
post #16 of 38

OMGosh! at some point in my life over the past years, I could have written any one of these scenarios!! I still work full-time; but love my hobby of baking cakes! and that's how I have always looked at it; as a hobby...but very busy with it at times. I think if I had to cake full-time, I wouldn't have the passion for it that I have. Plus, my job allows me the extra time to spend here on CC (please don't tell my supervisoricon_smile.gif Best of luck to you Bagunts and may you never lose your passion for caking!!

erinjoy002 Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 4:00pm
post #17 of 38

I too work full time. I work 40 hours a week (they just cut our overtime) and try to only take on 2 orders a week, although some weeks i take on more than i can chew. I can relate to throwing your hair up. I got so sick of throwing my hair up that last week i had my best friend chop it off. It is now much more managable than before.
I also have a 3 year old son that begs for mommy's attention every day. I have been trying to give him things to do so he thinks he is helping mommy cake!
Some days I don't think I can do it anymore, but alas.. I am here and still caking. I heart caking.

cakeglitz Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 4:15pm
post #18 of 38

I work 40 hrs Mon-Thurs 10 hrs per day. I start my cakes on Thursday night and finish up by Sat mid-day that way I can spend the rest of my weekend with my family. It is doable but you have to be willing to stick to your rules... only take what you know you can handle. I never commit to more that 2 cakes per week because I know I would be too streesed out if I had more...but that's just me. icon_smile.gif

TrixieTreats Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 4:18pm
post #19 of 38

I work full time (40 hours or more) and cake as well. I usually have maybe two cakes each week, but have done 3 special occasions and a formal occasion (for 125) cake in one week....that was interesting. It is very difficult at times, but in the rare instance when I do not have a cake to work on...I feel like something is missing. So, the sleep deprivation and exhaustion is all a part of it, and at this point in my life, I cannot imagine being without it. I hope to become a business at some point, and earn a living from caking, but for now...I am happy to be getting experience, playtime, and fulfillment...with a side of bags and dark circles under my eyes ;o)

indydebi Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 4:20pm
post #20 of 38
Originally Posted by suzylynn58

And indydebi, getting by with 4 hours of sleep! WOW!! I can't go without my sleep!

Shoot, that's nuthin' now! With school and working 35+ hours a week (graveyard shift) it's VERY common for me to go 24 to 38 hours straight with no sleep at all.

2 days ago I was up for 20 hours straight w/o sleep. Slept 3 hours before I had to go in for a 4 hour shift at work.

Those 4 hours a night were a luxury!! Who knew!!!! icon_lol.gif

DeeDelightful Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 4:27pm
post #21 of 38

I have a full-time job and not enough personal time to take off every time I have a cake order. I have a 3 year old and a 2 year old and a husband. It's not easy. I don't have a huge amount of cake requests, but enough to keep me busy (1-2, sometimes 3 per week).

I have learned to trust baking a few days in advance, wrap well and freeze. I make a batch of icing every time i think about it and have a few extra minutes.

I made a 3 lb batch of fondant, because the requests for fondant accents were increasing, so i can easily color that when needed.

On Fridays, i spend time with my family after work, and when they go to bed, I stay up working on cakes, sleep a few hours and get up early, before they do to finish. Sure, I don't get much rest, but it's my passion and I want to do this and i HAVE to work and raise kids. Over the years, I have learned how to make it all work out, so they don't feel TOO neglected. If i can, I will take Friday off work for a large order, but yesterday my son got sick, so I had to leave work. Not likely I'll be asking for Friday off this week.

I purchase cake boxes/boards and as much groceries as possible the weekend before the cakes are due. I can remember when a small sheetcake would take me all night, due to lack of planning. Planning and preparing in advance is the key. None of it is going to happen all at one time and run smoothly with a full-time job and family. You will feel guilty, because cakes will take over your life.

This weekend i have a 3 tier birthday cake and another large sheetcake with a carved cake on top due on Saturday. another large sheetcake due Sunday. There are only two flavors, so I will start baking Wednesday or Thursday night and freeze them. I can bake the cake for Sunday on Saturday night and wrap it up, put in the box. Decorate it on Sunday morning, go to church, cake will be picked up after church.

emiyeric Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 4:35pm
post #22 of 38

Lol! I can relate! I'm a neonatologist, with 80-110 hrs per week at the hospital every week (with usually 2-3 times a week whee I do either 24 or 30-hour shifts, so they add up). I have three beautiful munchkins at home, so my caking abilities are limited, but I LOVE doing it and try to keep at least one cake every couple of weeks or so, and about 1-2/wk during august-December). I'm chronically tired, but I figure there's a time fr everythig and this is the time to be tired icon_wink.gif. I have a good life, so I can't complain icon_wink.gif.

dchockeyguy Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 7:12pm
post #23 of 38

I also work a full time job and am trying to get my cake business going. Right now, I don't have a lot of requests, which is nice, becuase I work a lot of unplanned overtime. I have had nights when I had to stay up until 1 am to finish a cake. Still doesn't hold a candle to debbie though!

dguerrant Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 9:24pm
post #24 of 38
Originally Posted by indydebi

Originally Posted by suzylynn58

And indydebi, getting by with 4 hours of sleep! WOW!! I can't go without my sleep!

Shoot, that's nuthin' now! With school and working 35+ hours a week (graveyard shift) it's VERY common for me to go 24 to 38 hours straight with no sleep at all.

2 days ago I was up for 20 hours straight w/o sleep. Slept 3 hours before I had to go in for a 4 hour shift at work.

Those 4 hours a night were a luxury!! Who knew!!!! icon_lol.gif

I completely understand!!! Last Friday went in to school 7:45am, got home at 3:30, worked on master's homework (deadline that night) till 9:30, then worked on wedding cakes/ groom's cakes till 4:30 AM, slept 2 hours up at 6:30AM continued cakes till 2:15PM loaded them up and delivered them 2.5 hours away, got home at 10 PM and crashed!!!!!

indydebi, i bow to you and your ability to continue on minimal sleep. I was not pleasant to be around that evening or heck the next day either, i gotta have my sleep!!!!

wendyhouse Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 9:46pm
post #25 of 38

i work full time mon-fri not enough time for cakes lol

tracycakes Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 9:55pm
post #26 of 38

I did work full-time until March 31 then I went part-time. We opened store hours at the business so my husband comes in at 10:00 to man the desk and phone until I get here around 12:30. I'm here until I finish with what I need to do. My husband is awesome! He washes dishes, buys most of my supplies and does my IT and financials. Without him, I wouldn't get near as much sleep as I do. Although I've never been officially diagnosed, I have all of the symptoms of Fibromyalgia and without adequate sleep, I really don't function - my body quits on me. It doesn't help that I have chronic insomnia (even as a baby) and am a very light sleeper....except storms. A huge thunderstorm can come through and I never hear it. Let a mouse scratch inside the wall and I'm wide awake. go figure.

cutthecake Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 9:55pm
post #27 of 38

I am such a slug.

NanaWay Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 9:58pm
post #28 of 38

Yeah, me too, have to bake cakes on wed, and decorate at misnight when i get off work in order to be able to make the delivery, thumbs_up.gif its hard i feel you...

GGx1 Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 10:12pm
post #29 of 38

I am no where near any of you, I work full time but rarely get rquests for cakes. I have just really started. I mostly get weekend requests and start on a wed night. What I hate are the people who think they can call you on wed for a weekend cake. I prefer at least a weeks notice.

mommy3204 Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 10:46pm
post #30 of 38

I am so lucky, i work a ton but my job is the decorator at a bakery, i get paid for it. I love it.

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