Wedding Cake Cancelled 3 Days Before Wedding!!!what To Do?

Decorating By jennbrownrigg Updated 2 Nov 2010 , 2:59pm by manahigh

jennbrownrigg Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 6:57pm
post #1 of 29

I had been asked over the summer by a friend to do her friend's wedding cake (which was due today). On Tuesday I got an email telling me how excited she was for the cake. On Thursday I got an email telling me that the wedding is cancelled and that she wanted to make 'final arrangements'.

Well, I was only charging $150 for this cake. (2 tier, white with black damask stencil & red ribbon). Needless to say I wasn't making money on it at all. Upon our first meeting we went through the contract etc. and I made sure to discuss with her the cancellation policies (with less than 7 days notice of cancellation, all monies are non-refundable).

Of course by Thursday, cakes were baked, the chocolate hazelnut truffle ganache was made, buttercream & fondant were all made too. I have offered to do her son's birthday cake in November (which we had previously discussed) for free but she is not understanding that she is not getting her money back.

I'm not trying to be unreasonable but this stuff that I've already made are flavours that I rarely use and I'm obviously out the $$ and time and $150 is nothing...

what do you all think? give her a partial refund or policy is policy?
I've never had ANY problems at all doing cakes and just when I decided to slow down on cakes because of my 'real job' I run into a problem and I'm stressing...HELP!

28 replies
Caths_Cakes Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:14pm
post #2 of 29

Very simply, and friendly, explain to her that it was the contract that she signed, that you dont give refunds past certain points etc. . Im sure if she is a real friend, and you explain to her, that you'd already went ahead and prepared everything, she will understand. as for others, you need to make sure you have a line in your contract so you arent left out of pocket!

blessedist Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:16pm
post #3 of 29

NO MONEY BACK! No discount, no future discount, nothing! A business is a business for a reason! Regardless of who she is, she gets NO money back! She can be mad, but she will get over it or not ask you to do a cake again....oh well! icon_rolleyes.gif

Scarlets-Cakes Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:18pm
post #4 of 29

Friend or no friend, POLICY IS POLICY, and CONTRACT IS KING!

She signed the contract and it clearly states that all monies are nonrefundable with such short notice.

Now that said, if you are concerned that this "friend" is too "good" of a friend to lose over $150, you may want to consider splitting it with her. It's only reasonable that she pay SOMETHING, as you have put in time to design, shop, bake and prepare, as well as the necessary ingredients involved. And the "opportunity cost" of doing someone else's cake since her event was booked for this weekend.

Just my 2-cents. HTH

tiggy2 Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:20pm
post #5 of 29

Business is business no matter who the customer is. I'm sure noe of the other vendors are refunding her money.

artscallion Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:21pm
post #6 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennbrownrigg

Upon our first meeting we went through the contract etc. and I made sure to discuss with her the cancellation policies (with less than 7 days notice of cancellation, all monies are non-refundable).




Was this in writing in the contract? If so, just highlight that part and send it to her. End of story. Tell her she is welcome to come pick up whatever you'd already baked. But no refund or replacement cake later on.

If that wasn't in writing in the contract, you can still claim you had a verbal agreement. But she is more likely to fight it. Hope it all works out.

Bottom line is this happened to her, not you. Don't let her make you be the one to bear the financial brunt of it.

aligotmatt Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:22pm
post #7 of 29

No refund. No future cake. I would hive her the cake you baked for her that she paid for. Evergreens wedding is on or off, once the contractual payments have been made, you owe her that cake on the date. She can take it and smash it on his car if she wants...

DianeLM Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:24pm
post #8 of 29

This is a friend of a friend? Stop fretting and stand by your contract. This situation is EXACTLY why you have that clause!

Ruth0209 Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 7:24pm
post #9 of 29

I agree with the other posts. She either gets the cake delivered to do with what she will, or not, but there's no refund. She willingly signed your contract. No discussion. Period.

indydebi Posted 31 Oct 2010 , 11:49pm
post #10 of 29

no refund. no future cake. if she wants to take the uniced baked cakes off of your hands, you'll be happy to give those to her, but the "no refund" is to protect YOU because of any business you may have turned down because you set aside this day just for her.

It's not personal .... it's business. She couldn't do this to her mechanic, her dentist or her doctor. A contract is a legally binding item and if the roles were reversed, you can bet your patootie she'd be holding YOU to every clause that was of benefit to HER!

madgeowens Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:08am
post #11 of 29

Never good business doing business with family and friends...........I agree...no refund

jenscreativity Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:15am
post #12 of 29

NO refund! SOrry that is why contracts are done..regardless. Plus you gave you a big fat discount and would do her son's cake for FREE>..Give her the cake anyways and if she is mad..don't opt to do her son's cake then b/c really,,it's not worth the stresses from people like this. If she is upset about son's cake ALSO...then just politely tell her you got plans instead and you are sorry..and move on with your cake life.

-K8memphis Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:29am
post #13 of 29

I tell people that none of the payments are refundable. I tell them that the cake order is not contingent on them actually getting married. Although I get it that it's their plan A--it's not mine. If something happens, they still contracted with me for a cake and they're getting what they ordered.

I had to keep two of three payments (2/3 of the total price) for a family friend because they broke up right after the second payment. She understood. Even if she didn't she wasn't getting the money back.

So when she did get married she paid for the whole next cake--I lowballed it a little by tossing a few freebies like delivery & some artwork but I went way above and beyond on it.

iamcakin Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:35am
post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

no refund. no future cake.

It's not personal .... it's business. She couldn't do this to her mechanic, her dentist or her doctor. A contract is a legally binding item and if the roles were reversed, you can bet your patootie she'd be holding YOU to every clause that was of benefit to HER!





"...not personal" you have to see that.

This is not something that you caused, this is a business transaction that you stand to lose money on.

Foxicakes Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 1:01am
post #15 of 29

I, too, agree that there should be no refund given. You stated, however, that she said she wanted to make "final arrangements". Are you absolutely SURE that she meant that she wanted a refund? Was she paid in full? If not, maybe-just maybe-she meant that she wanted to pay you the rest of the money that she owed you. Or, maybe she meant that she wanted to give you a different address to deliver the cake to?

IMO, I think that you need to clarify what EXACTLY it was that she meant by the verbage "final arrangements" and THEN you will have some peace of mind and will be able to handle the situation like what you are, a professional.

By the way, just out of curiosity (read: nosiness) did she say why the wedding was cancelled? If he called it off, I can tell you from experience since I, too, have been "stood up at the alter" and if that is, in fact, what happened, then I guarantee you, your friend feels very embarassed, is hurting more than she ever has in her life, and just wants everything that reminds her of him or this day, gone.

And, it is for that reason and only that reason that I think that you can make a concession here and do the son's cake with today's cakes, etc by freezing them. You said the son's b-day is in November, so that's not too long for the cake to be frozen.

Otherwise, I would agree with everyone else and just say no refund and no free cake later. Further, I would explain to her that you were not MAKING money on her cake. That what she paid you for was ingredients, overhead, and your time spent.

I think that anyone that is reasonable would understand that and be thankful that you are atleast willing to give her something for her money. (I would also explain THAT to her and make darn well sure that she knows that with anyone else, you would just tell them that you are sorry for their circumstances and tell them to have a nice life).

Anyway, sorry I got so long winded, and I HTH you be able to look at the situation from a different perspective.

indydebi Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 1:24am
post #16 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis

I tell people that none of the payments are refundable. I tell them that the cake order is not contingent on them actually getting married. Although I get it that it's their plan A--it's not mine.



Oh I luv this!!!! thumbs_up.gif

cakegirl1973 Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 4:24am
post #17 of 29

I would bet you a dime to a dollar that none of the other vendors are refunding her money, per the terms of their contracts, too. Two points: 1) I think she is trying to take advantage of your relationship and 2) No refund should not be a difficult concept for her to understand, since none of her other vendors are handing out refunds, either.

Stay firm. Good luck! icon_smile.gif

neelycharmed Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 11:55am
post #18 of 29

I wouldn't give any money back, and I hope you didn't either.
Its bad that the wedding didn't go through, but you didn't have anything to do with it... It's not your problem( might sound mean but its true)
Jodi icon_smile.gif

Mexx Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:24pm
post #19 of 29

If she's cancelled her wedding with two days notice, there's all kinds of other service providers that she'll have to cancel with e.g. florist, caterer, venue, etc. It is unlikely any of these will hand back deposits/full payments either.

You've got a contract, make her abide by it. I wouldn't offer a free b/d cake either...especially thinking you could use her frozen wedding cake. She'd probably want a different flavour any way.

Good luck.

3GCakes Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:32pm
post #20 of 29

If she doesn't want the cake, maybe even ask her if there is a charity or group of people or local soup kitchen she may prefer you give it to in her honor. (The design can be changed to make it a celebration cake instead of a wedding cake).

Then she doesn't have to see it but knows it wasn't just thrown away.

mareg Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 3:43pm
post #21 of 29

I have to agree. No refund.

jmchao Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 4:04pm
post #22 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

It's not personal .... it's business. She couldn't do this to her mechanic, her dentist or her doctor. A contract is a legally binding item and if the roles were reversed, you can bet your patootie she'd be holding YOU to every clause that was of benefit to HER!




Exactly! I have a $10-$30 copay depending on which doctor I go to. If I miss an appointment or cancel with less than 24 hours notice, I get charged $50!! More than the copay! So why does she think she can do this to you?

Oh...and if you need something to do with that chocolate hazelnut truffle filling, I'll take it off your hands (and add it to my hips!) icon_lol.gif

nhbaker Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 4:06pm
post #23 of 29

Okay, first off, yes, I agree, no refund.

Second, did she seriously cancel her wedding cake via email??? My gosh, has all common decency gone in this world?? Doesn't anyone know how to use a phone anymore? (And no, not to text either). Yes, she's probably embarrased, etc., etc. but sometimes when I'm in the midst of baking & decorating I don't even have a chance to check my email -- what if that was the case with you and you had gotten much further along in the project.

Sorry for the rant, and I'm all for technology, but we have to draw the line somewhere.

lanana Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 4:44pm
post #24 of 29

I haven't think about that, what to do if the wedding get canceled. It is time to review my contract!!!

thecakeprincess Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 5:16pm
post #25 of 29

No refund.

Karen421 Posted 2 Nov 2010 , 12:49pm
post #26 of 29

Many years ago, my very young DD was engaged to a "not nice" person. We had all the deposits down, the dress bought, and he insisted on a very expensive ring, that she bought and that could not be returned. Thank God (seriously, I was thanking God for at least a year!) she called it off, with 5 months to spare. I didn't get a penny back, didn't even ask The way we saw it - it was well worth the price to have her be safe!!!

Our contracts clearly stated no refunds within so many months, no matter what the circumstance. It wasn't personal.


Edited to fix stupid typo = Don't type before first cup of coffee! LOL

vtcake Posted 2 Nov 2010 , 2:21pm
post #27 of 29

why is a friend of a friend purchasing the cake anyway? Was it her gift? If she's upset about losing the $, she should get a refund from the bride.

EvMarie Posted 2 Nov 2010 , 2:49pm
post #28 of 29

Oh boy - you gotta feel for the bride. Bummer. But, maybe explaining to her, if in fact she wanted her money back, that she won't get refunded for X, Y or Z vendor. And, then maybe add on the doctor, dentist, mechanic bit. On top of that, you could enter in the "I'm hurt you would expect me to pay the $150 out of my own pocket" Since of course, you didn't make anything on it.

This is for sure a lesson in "TACT 101". That's why I like the "I'm hurt" line. You could always say "shocked" if you think "hurt" is laying it on a little thick. You get my drift though. I'm not sure just telling her "oh you signed a contract - tough noogies" is gonna cover it. I mean...it could. But, I guess I'm not that cold.

I love those shows when people are bargaining...and they say "I just can't do any better than that". For some reason, even when you kinda feel like they are full of it - it doesn't come off as rude. Ahhhhh, the art of saying no.

I wish you luck. Don't get taken advantage of - but don't be a jerkface. Easier said than done sometimes.

manahigh Posted 2 Nov 2010 , 2:59pm
post #29 of 29

Is this a friend or an aquaintence? If she is a true friend then I would freeze the cake, icing, filling, etc and do this as her "free" birthday cake later this month. And I would return her $150.00. You won't be out anything and you would save your friendship. If she is a true friend then she will be thrilled with the free cake even if its not her preferred flavor.

However I don't think she really is a real friend or you would not have done a contract to begin with, because you don't have to protect yourself from a real friend. JMHO Since she is just an aquaintence, then you have nothing to lose by standing by your contract.

Hope it all works out for you.

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