How Much Would You Charge....?

Decorating By goa11ie Updated 15 Mar 2011 , 2:59pm by scp1127

goa11ie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 4:26pm
post #1 of 24

Hey everyone,
My husband and I are in a deep discussion of how much one would charge for the following cake (if there isnt an attachment, here is the website: http://cakecentral.com/gallery/1960849)

Here is some info:
- 9 layers
- Size of an actual bag
- Took 20 hours to make (some was trial-and-error, so if I had to do this again, maybe it would take me 17 hours)
- If you compare to the actual pattern, I was pretty spot-on for the most part...

He says $300...is that too high? Too little? The area in which I reside isn't too terribly stricken financially.

Any input would be greatly appreciated icon_smile.gif Thank you!!

- Sarah

23 replies
goa11ie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 4:36pm
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Im sorry its not letting me attach the picture...

springlakecake Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 4:41pm
post #3 of 24

wow, what a great cake! I think $300 is a good price. I am sure you could get a lot more depending on the part of the county you are in.

Will you let us in on your secrets of supporting such a tall and narrow cake? I can't believe it isnt sagging either.....

BCo Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 4:42pm
post #4 of 24

How many does this serve?

goa11ie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 4:47pm
post #5 of 24

There are three wooden dowels supporting it, and I ganached the outside. I also carved it so it had a slight slope, but it was tough to get the panels on...when I froze it, I had to support it with a cake pan. It is not wobbling a heck of a lot right now because I used a stiff buttercream to cement it to the board, but I dont trust it. I will have it on my lap when my husband drives tonight!

In terms of servings, I'm not too sure...I always have the toughest time determining serving size because my idea of a serving is a large piece of cake icon_smile.gif I would say, standard size, about 40?

Kitagrl Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 5:00pm
post #6 of 24

I would have charged at least $10 serving for that great cake! Possibly up to $500 for the project. I'm in a big city area.

MissLisa Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 5:04pm
post #7 of 24

My goodness, you are gonna be seeing circles and flowers for the next week! What a very cool cake!

So your husband KNOWS that this cake took you approx 20 to make? I'm assuming he was around while you were working on it. Does he realize that it was a labor of love for your sister?????????? If you were going to do this cake again you need to get paid for it.
Does he not think your time is worth something? 'Cause if he is of the "it's just cake" mentality you can just send him over here to Michigan and he can have a conversation with my husband. If a cake I'm working on it taking serious time away from "our time" I better be getting paid for it!

I would think you price is quite close to reasonable.

BCo Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 5:07pm
post #8 of 24

I would say depending on where you were $300 sounds about right - maybe bigger cities $400 Great job!

StacyN Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 5:16pm
post #9 of 24

I would say at least $300.00. Although I live in Southern California and I know the prices here are higher than in some other cities/states. What area are you in? That might help some others to determine price.

It is a beautiful cake! Im sure she will love it!

goa11ie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 5:43pm
post #10 of 24

Thank you everyone...it was definitely a labor of love! I've been mentally prepping for this cake since last April. Actually, I was pregnant and got sick from the smell of fondant and couldn't do this cake for my sister's college graduation (and yes, fondant was the ONLY thing that I couldn't stand the smell of during those 9 months!) I live in upstate New York outside of Utica, but I have done cakes for the Saratoga Springs/Albany area...

cowie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 6:13pm
post #11 of 24

So this cake is made for family?

goa11ie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 6:42pm
post #12 of 24

yeppers...my sister's 23rd birthday

LindaF144a Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 7:09pm
post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by goa11ie

Thank you everyone...it was definitely a labor of love! I've been mentally prepping for this cake since last April. Actually, I was pregnant and got sick from the smell of fondant and couldn't do this cake for my sister's college graduation (and yes, fondant was the ONLY thing that I couldn't stand the smell of during those 9 months!) I live in upstate New York outside of Utica, but I have done cakes for the Saratoga Springs/Albany area...




Okay, I know that area.

Saratoga Springs you might get $300 for that. The rest of the area IMO is too depressed for someone to want to pay $300 for the cake. I honestly believe $300 to be a bit low. If you take that an divide by 20 hours it is $15.00 an hour, not including your ingredient cost, electricity, etc.

But there may be people in your are who will pay that much. Like I said I understand SS has some affluent people there. But Utica, I would be surprised. My in-laws live in Canajoharie. I live in one of the other "major" cities along the lake. I could get that here, but I do know that our economy is better than the Utica area right now. Are you still paying something like over 9% sales tax? In fact I would bet that the other "major" city between you and me would be a another hard place to get that price. They are hurting a little bit too.

But like I said there are people willing to pay that price. Just don't expect every cake to be in that price range, this one is an exception to what your median price of what you will probably get from that area.

Just my $.02.

goa11ie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 7:21pm
post #14 of 24

Linda,
Thank you for your reply....I was born and raised in Gloversville (if you're familiar with the area outside of Canjo...)

Right now, I am living in a college town...the hubby is a professor. But yes, there are a lot of smaller towns outside that I know are financially stricken, especially out near where your parents and my parents live.

I guess the way I look at it, I don't think I'd do this cake again for anything less than $200...it really was very tedious with all of the small pieces. I'm actually wicked burned out from doing it and can't forsee myself doing it in the near future unless someone was willing to pay for it. And I picked one of the easier patterns because I used mainly cutters and did lots of layering. The other patterns would probably require painting in layers like they did on Ace of Cakes.

I also try to compare to neighboring cake businesses and there is a lady about 30 minutes from me going towards Syracuse that charges around $7.50 a slice for her cakes.

sand_e Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 7:41pm
post #15 of 24

I am new to making cakes (less than a year) and i have the greatest trouble deciding how much to charge. Given said that, i think you should at least charge $300. It is a difficult cake and with great detail. Great job!

LindaF144a Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 8:08pm
post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by goa11ie

Linda,
Thank you for your reply....I was born and raised in Gloversville (if you're familiar with the area outside of Canjo...)

Right now, I am living in a college town...the hubby is a professor. But yes, there are a lot of smaller towns outside that I know are financially stricken, especially out near where your parents and my parents live.

I guess the way I look at it, I don't think I'd do this cake again for anything less than $200...it really was very tedious with all of the small pieces. I'm actually wicked burned out from doing it and can't forsee myself doing it in the near future unless someone was willing to pay for it. And I picked one of the easier patterns because I used mainly cutters and did lots of layering. The other patterns would probably require painting in layers like they did on Ace of Cakes.

I also try to compare to neighboring cake businesses and there is a lady about 30 minutes from me going towards Syracuse that charges around $7.50 a slice for her cakes.




It really is sad, because it is such a pretty area.

And the lady getting $7.50, I forgot about Skenaeteless (spelled wrong for sure) and the finger lake area. There is affluence out that way too. I could see a small market segment for that price range, depending on what she did. I bet you it is mainly for wedding cakes.

cowie Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 8:38pm
post #17 of 24

Being that it is for family you would/could charge less then you would anyone else, It's hard one people in your area expect the best but don't want to pay the prices.

BCo Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 8:50pm
post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowie

It's hard one people in your area expect the best but don't want to pay the prices.




This is so true - I have had so many calls the past 2 weeks for cakes and they wanted big cakes for 50+ people and after the quote process they either do not return the email or all of a sudden 2 hrs after they inquired about the cake and I gave them the price someone else in their family had already ordered a cake and they just found out....really????? I find it strange that 3 people this past 2 weeks all were requesting a quote and all 3 people a few hours later (on different days from each other) just found out that someone else had already ordered a cake....strange. A no thanks that won't work with my budget would be fine but to have them all come back and all of a sudden someone else had already ordered a cake? Do people just take it upon themselves to order cakes for parties at random and not let anyone else know and only tell someone after someone else inquires about ordering one? I guess my point is that I feel like they were lying to me b/c they weren't comfortable with the price instead of just saying oh sorry, that won't work with my budget. I find a lot of people don't even have a budget but after you tell them the price that's not what they were willing to spend icon_smile.gif Frustrating icon_twisted.gif

scp1127 Posted 4 Mar 2011 , 11:26pm
post #19 of 24

BCo, don't take it badly. They were really trying to be polite. Most people aren't confrontational, so their answer will be a dead end... something not open for discussion, such as the cake has already been purchased. It was just more than they budgeted.

graciesj Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 3:26am
post #20 of 24

What I'm trying to do is, set a base price and for family give 25% off and good friends 10-15% off. Hey business is businessicon_smile.gif

BCo Posted 14 Mar 2011 , 12:20pm
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

BCo, don't take it badly. They were really trying to be polite. Most people aren't confrontational, so their answer will be a dead end... something not open for discussion, such as the cake has already been purchased. It was just more than they budgeted.




I know - I understand and I'm sure you're most correct!! After the 3rd one it was just frustrating icon_smile.gif I just had another one Saturday - after going back and forth for about a week she finally decides on a design so I can give her a final quote and told her I need a final decision by last night and nothing, no return phone call, no email, nadda!!! Oh well icon_rolleyes.gif I hope everyone has a great, successful cake week ahead! This just means more time I can spend with my family for the week!

scp1127 Posted 14 Mar 2011 , 12:35pm
post #22 of 24

Sometimes we all want something we just can't budget. I don't think they all don't see value. Sometimes, the expense just won't fit.

graciesj Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 1:54pm
post #23 of 24

[quote="BCo"][quote="scp1127"]BCo, don't take it badly. They were really trying to be polite. Most people aren't confrontational, so their answer will be a dead end... something not open for discussion, such as the cake has already been purchased. It was just more than they budgeted.[/quote]

I know - I understand and I'm sure you're most correct!! After the 3rd one it was just frustrating icon_smile.gif I just had another one Saturday - after going back and forth for about a week she finally decides on a design so I can give her a final quote and told her I need a final decision by last night and nothing, no return phone call, no email, nadda!!! Oh well icon_rolleyes.gif I hope everyone has a great, successful cake week ahead! This just means more time I can spend with my family for the week![/quote]

I just try to look at it like this, the next one will come, and it'll be great!

scp1127 Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 2:59pm
post #24 of 24

I would like to make a suggestion... and I know Indydebi and others will second this. You must get a clear approval on a budget first . Then comes taste and your ability to creat the design that works in the budget. "If I can design a similar cake with x servings for $350, then we have a deal? Perfect, lets's get the paperwork started. We can then fine tune the details of the design." Not knowing a firm budget puts you in the position of educating the bride so that she can now take her realistic budget elsewhere.

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