So Beyond Frustrated!! Rant...long, Sorry.

Decorating By Erin3085 Updated 15 Sep 2010 , 12:14am by fortheloveofsweets

Erin3085 Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 7:04pm
post #1 of 14

There is this girl I know who is always raving about my cakes, and how pretty they are and yummy, etc. I'm not a pro, I'm just a hobby baker and the cakes I have done for friends I have made right at cost, and even a little less, and I use doctored mix recipes.
Anyway, she asked me not too long ago to make her mom's bday cake for her, and had been "excitedly" (because she puts on that show when she wants something) talking about it with me for several weeks. She wanted a 2-tier similar to the yellow one I have in my pictures, and I told her I could do it for $30. She acted so over-the-top excited about me making it, until I told her the price. Then she said "Oh, well...let me ask my nanna and make sure she wasn't make one first." Two weeks later, I get an email saying "Hey sorry but my nanna already had planned to make a cake!" That's fine, but I was a little annoyed that she obviously had sticker shock over a $30 2-tier birthday cake.
Well today I get another email. She forwarded me something from a friend of hers who sent this picture of an ELABORATE (for my skill level) wedding cake she wanted me to do. It needed to feed 200-300 people, and she needs it beginning of november. I quoted her a price on the beast, and told her it was very, very, very rough ballpark estimate and it depended on what decor she wanted to keep from the design and what she didn't, and that I needed a more definite number of servings to give her a good estimate. I told her minimum $200, which is crazy-low I know, but I'm not all that talented IMO and I want the practice, considering the bride has seen my work and knows what I do and said "Just do with the design what you are comfortable with." The actress is splitting the cake cost with another friend of hers as the bride's wedding gift. She was borderline angry at my price! icon_mad.gificon_mad.gif I got nothing back beyond a very short, curt, "Well maybe try to push the kitchen cake option to her then.", because I had mentioned that would be a way to do it a little cheaper, and easier for me. These situations make me so mad. I know that she knows what it would cost elsewhere, because she made the comment that it would be at least $500 anywhere else, so basically she wants me to make it for less than it would cost in supplies so she can get a deal. I get that there are people like that, but it irks me to no end to know that a family friend is pulling this crap on me. In closing, I commend all you ladies who earn a living from your cakes, because there is no way could I ever be a pro...I would go to jail for assault! icon_biggrin.gif

13 replies
Erin3085 Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 7:05pm
post #2 of 14

Ugh, I can't get the picture to post!

Malakin Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 7:21pm
post #4 of 14

Man, how can you be nice to someone like her when responding to this? She wants you to do it for free. Now, if that's the case, I would contact the bride and ask her what gift she wanted from you as you do really nice cakes! Then your "friend" can buy her another gift. How rude. I think Nanna should make this one for her also. (No offense Nanna)

etr2002 Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 7:41pm
post #5 of 14

The "Nana" cakes always give me the biggest laugh. A colleague of mine told her friend about my cakes, so the friend asked me to do one for her. I rarely, rarely do cakes for anyone outside of family and this was a cute idea so I said sure and quoted a price (this is allowed where I live). The girl was excited and didn't seem upset about the price as it was really, really low anyway and just covered ingredients. Well, the girl's mother thought I was extrememly over priced and the girl called me back and said that the child's "Nana" was going to do the cake. No big deal for me. I later asked my colleague if the girl ever mentioned how the "Nana" cake turned out and she busted out laughing and said that the girl came into the office the Monday following the party and swore she would never, ever let her mother try to make another cake for them as it was outright embarassing it was so ugly. I just laughed on my end of the line and said that in my experience the "Nana" cakes always start out as being the way to go but usually end-up in fiasco.

LyndaJean Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 7:44pm
post #6 of 14

Sounds like she wants something for almost nothing...and she also sounds like she would be a pain to work with, I agree will the previous post, "let Nana make it!" By the way, you are very talented, all of your cakes are wonderful! icon_biggrin.gif

TexasSugar Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 7:45pm
post #7 of 14

People assume because they are family or are a friend they should get a deep discount. That is why I don't do the discount, at cost or free cakes. If I am going to spend my money and time making a cake that someone else asked me to make, then they are going to pay me for my time and what I put into the cake.

People also tend to treat those that don't have a 'business' or do it at of their home differently than they would if they went into a shop. You wouldn't walk into the grocery store and expect a discount or a free cake.

It sucks when people try to take advantage of you, but I'm glad you aren't letting her get by with it. Some people think if they whine or complain enough you'll drop your prices even lower. You are better off not doing any cakes for her.

Erin3085 Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 8:07pm
post #8 of 14

Thank you so much LyndaJean! icon_redface.gificon_smile.gif

I feel bad for the bride, because she is a nice girl and wants this wedding cake design, is more than willing to scale it down where possible to cut back the cost and we have been emailing back and forth all day trying to work out something that she will be happy with at her wedding and that Ms. Actress will agree to pay for. It seems Ms A is a crappy friend to everyone, not just me. I was so excited to get the first email this morning about this cake, until I learned that Ms A was paying for it. And that's when it went downhill. I think I would be more likely to take a hit on it if the bride were paying for it at this point, and she is a total stranger. It infuriates me to hear her say that she couldn't get this cake anywhere else for less than $500, and then in the same breath, gasp in shock at my estimated price. Obviously she thinks Im going to do something for LESS than nothing, seeing as how this cake will cost me what Im charging her, at least. I can't legally charge money for a cake where I live, and I'm more than happy making cake at cost for people...I think of it like, spending my time for free practicing on people is cheaper than paying money to take a class at Michaels. icon_razz.gif

MyDiwa Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 8:28pm
post #9 of 14

I don't know... $30 for a cake like that sounds deeper than a deep discount to me. And for her to be ticked off means she was expecting it to be free. I mean if $30 is too much, then um, what IS the right amount????

catlharper Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 9:33pm
post #10 of 14

here's a little trick that might work with someone like that. Think about what your price is then add 50% more to that total and say..."well, for that cake I WOULD charge $60 BUT since you are such a good friend I'll give YOU a 50% discount and do it for you for only $30!" That way they "think" they are getting a screaming deal when in fact they are paying the price you wanted anyways<G> Some people just want to feel like they are getting over on someone else. SIGH.


ps...LOTS of major chain stores do just this...they start out at one price knowing that they will be doing heavy discounts in the they figure out what they need to get from the product at the deeply discounted price and then add enough to that price to allow the discounting along the way.

cakesbycathy Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 9:54pm
post #11 of 14

I know the bride is a sweetheart but seriously why are you putting yourself through this aggravation? Tell them you can't accomodate their budget. Their budget (or lack of) is not your problem.

FACSlady Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 10:02pm
post #12 of 14

A student's mother saw the tiki cake I made (two tiers, modeling chocolate bamboo, gumpaste plumeria, edible umbrella) and asked me to make a graduation cake like it for her daughter. She didn't have much money to spend - maybe $20. Sheesh. It's times like that I'm glad CT won't let you have a home bakery so that I could graciously decline.

saffronica Posted 14 Sep 2010 , 10:07pm
post #13 of 14
Originally Posted by catlharper

here's a little trick that might work with someone like that. Think about what your price is then add 50% more to that total and say..."well, for that cake I WOULD charge $60 BUT since you are such a good friend I'll give YOU a 50% discount and do it for you for only $30!" That way they "think" they are getting a screaming deal when in fact they are paying the price you wanted anyways<G> Some people just want to feel like they are getting over on someone else. SIGH.

This is what I do. I figure out a price I think is fair, then added 25%. Then I can give people a 20% "Friends and Family" discount and they think they're getting a great deal -- they usually even add a tip! They don't need to know that I ONLY sell cakes to friends and family....

(For example, I want to get $100 for the cake. Up price by 25%, cake is now $125. Then I offer a discount of 20% -- in this case, $25 -- and cake is back to $100.)

fortheloveofsweets Posted 15 Sep 2010 , 12:14am
post #14 of 14

Ugh I had a similar experience a few months back. My sisters friends sister wanted two filled cakes covered in fondant for her daughters birthday I quoted her the two cakes at 100 total. She said it was too much and I lowered the cost to 80. Which would barely cover the costs to produce the cakes and she freaked out! Saying it was way too much money. So i told her I don't make cheap sheet cakes that you can find at the grocery store and if that's what she wanted then she should go to the grocery store and buy one. SO she did. I still laugh but I was so angry at her, acting like the prices were over the top. I'm not giving my cakes away! And neither should you! What you quoted was definitely below what you the cakes would costs anywhere else. You stick to your guns! Don't let her mess around with you, be firm say you have set prices and if she doesnt like the prices she can go somewhere else!

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