A dear friend of our family was married on Nov 13. They were not going to have a wedding cake just different cakes made by an aunt, due to cost restraints. Thing is these folks have more $$$ than I do.
I told her I would make her cake, as my gift to them, if it were a simple one as I am a hobbist. She picked out a very plain cake. She wanted fresh flowers and no topper. OK I can't handle this, to serve 200.
She later comes to me and says her Mom wants center piece cakes for all the tables, 27 of them. PLus the wedding cake. OK, as I gulp. She said they would pay all my expenses.
I start baking and freeze them since I will be doing this alone.
The cake was beautiful, very plain but beautiful. Tasted awesome according to everyone there. The 27 cakes were beautifully displayed. People wanted to know who made the cake and were telling me how good they were. I saw people walking out with the entire centerpiece cake.
Problem, I have contacted her 2 times to tell her I had all my expenses together when they wanted to go over them. I spent almost $200.00. She hasn't responded to my emails.
WHat should I do?
Write it off as a lesson learned?
The four scariest words in the world: "Friend. Owes. Me. Money."
If she won't return phone calls, try sending her a written invoice. I'd also slip in "Actual Retail price: $2000. Your price: $200" (or whatever the actual numbers are.)
I had one of these. A former co-worker and I considered her a personal friend. (That should have been the big flag, huh?) It was last minute and in a moment of "softie", I told her she could leave the check for the final balance on the cake table and I'd get it then. I deliver cake ... no check. well, no problem. She forgot. I'll call/email her. After a few weeks of being totally ignored, I just dropped it (it was less than $150). Unfortunately, I think we've all had one of these at some time or another.
Which is why we end up with contract 3 miles long. Which is what prompted this blog article from me: http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/search/label/contract
Send her an invoiecel, certified post, to be paid by then and then, otherwise interest will accrue.
(Although why you didn't get the money up front, no idea, there are threads and threads on this subject here on CC)
Follow through each week, add the interest, after 2 invoices get a lawyer to send the letter
Grow some GUMPF and don't let down, christmas is coming and you need the money for your kids
Sit down - write out your costs....put in envelope
Get in car - drive to *friends* home
Knock on door
Hand her envelope and wait....
Thats no friend.
Thats you being taken advantage of.
No, no, and no. Do not 'write off' $200. You have nothing to be concerned about. I would keep calling, emailing, whatever it takes. Actually, it might be better to physically mail the invoice to them outlining your expenses and also showing what they DIDN'T pay for...as in time baking, decorating, etc.
Just make your note to them simple,
Hi (insert name)
Haven't heard from you guys since the wedding...I know how crazy things can get so I thought I'd go ahead and send you the list of expenses we agreed upon.
I was so honored to be able to do these cakes for you. I hope everything was to your liking.
I have itemized my out-of-pocket costs for your convenience.
If you have any questions please call.
then list your expenses.
It's up to you how you want to be treated. If they ignore you, I'd say your friendship wasn't on very solid ground. Shame on them.
I would go over to her house and give her the invoice and ask for the money then. Tell her you have sent email and got no response so you figure her email isn't working. Don't call and leave a message...go over and get your money. Then drop her as your friend.
Have they sent out their Thank you notes yet? if not maybe they plan on sending you the money in a Thank you note still. Just trying to think positive since you did say she was a dear friend.
Since she said that her mom was paying the expenses, maybe you can contact the mom as well.
I agree with everyone here. $200 for 27 cakes is the deal of the decade, and you should get paid for your hard work.
I like the simple, positive note that carmijok suggested. But do not let it drop!
There are no pockets on a wedding dress. Get paid up front or not at all. Judge Judy here you come.
Whoa. This is a tough one. However, do NOT let her NOT pay you. There are no excuses possible since the wedding was November 13. There are three possible outcomes for this "dear family friend". 1) She will be apologetic, pay you, and all will be well. 2) She will be apologetic, NOT pay you, and the close family friendship will be over. 3) She will duck your calls, NOT pay you and the close family friendship will be over. So basically, if she does NOT pay you, the friendship is over, no matter what. You have nothing to lose by sending her a bill for the $200 expenses. Do not waffle, do not wait for a lot of ideas, do not beat yourself up, do not think of the "woulda, shoulda, coulda's"--it's already done.
Since you've already emailed her with no response, send a letter TOMORROW with all the receipts, a list showing the amount of each receipt with a total at the bottom, and a self-addressed, stamped, return envelope. I'd suggest you present your bill as follows:
Dear XXX, I was so pleased that everyone at your wedding loved the cakes I made and that they raved about the taste and presentation. Receipts for the ingredients and supplies totaled $xxx and are attached. I need to be reimbursed right away since the $xxx was an unexpected expense during the holidays and I need the $xxx for Christmas for my family. The 30 (or whatever) hours it took to make the 28 cakes was my wedding gift to you and your husband. I hope you have a long and happy marriage and that we will see both of you at many events in the future.
If you do not get a response to your letter in one week, the friendship is already gone, traded in for $200. Call the mother and say "I need my money and I've emailed xxx twice and sent a letter and haven't received any of the money I spent on the wedding cakes. You promised I would be reimbursed." (Then SHUT UP and wait for the mother to respond!) If the mother tries to wiggle out of it, say these exact words, SHUT UP and wait for response: I need to be reimbursed right away since the $xxx was an unexpected expense during the holidays and I need the $xxx for Christmas for my family. As we had agreed before the wedding, the 30 (or whatever) hours it took to make the 28 cakes was my wedding gift to your daughternot the ingredients and supplies.
I hate that this happened to you because a good friend is hard to find and you are obvious a great friend. Get your money. She is not a good friend to treat you like that.
Thanks guys for all the input.
I'm going to try one more time this time with Mom.
Hopefully this will not turn ugly.