Laughing Out Loud At This One...

Decorating By suesweet Updated 16 Mar 2011 , 12:38am by Cealy

suesweet Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 7:13pm
post #1 of 21

I am so sick of people thinking making quality cakes/desserts is cheap. My brother works for a really great mentoring organization. In the past I have donated my services and provided cakes to them for different fundraisers. But now, it seems like EVERY time they have an event, they (prob because my brother tells them I will) EXPECT me to bake for them for free. They have an event on Friday and of course my brother asked if I could make some stuff but this time he graciously *rolls eyes* tells me that they will give me the money for ingredients and to send him an invoice. He asks me to bake cheesecakes, brownies and at least 3 types of cakes. Ok fine.

I tell him I'm going to make 2 each of of the cakes (12" gourmet flavors), 6 cheesecakes, and 2 half sheet pans of brownies. I sent the invoice (didn't even charge for stuff like pans, boxes, and other minor ingredients) which came to $114. Most of the cost came from butter and eggs (I make SMBC), cream cheese, and chocolate I'll need. He tells me they're never going to approve the invoice bcuz it's too much $ and to lower the costs because they need to make a profit. LOL!!!! I told him THAT'S what it costs to make!!!!! And that doesn't even include the gas I use to bake, or my time spent on making the desserts! Non-cake people really grate my nerves. I told him they need to just buy cupcakes from the supermarket if they want to make a profit. I'd rather just donate $50 and save myself the time and headache. How do you all handle donation requests?

20 replies
awatterson Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 7:35pm
post #2 of 21

Are you going to do it? If you did it I would do maybe one cake.

artscallion Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 7:40pm
post #3 of 21

I never donate cake at all. If people ask I tell them I don't accept solicitations for donations as I already make monetary charitable contributions to organizations I've already chosen myself each year.

If they try to convince me that I'll get lots of free exposure, I make myself try to remember the last time I was at an event where I was aware of who provided the desserts. When I've searched my memory and realize that it was NEVER, I tell them I can get the exact same exposure if you, or someone else, pays me for the cake you need, politely of course.

solascakes Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:10pm
post #4 of 21

People never appreciate what they get for free.

APieceofCake75 Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:16pm
post #5 of 21

So far I have done a couple of cakes for a charity auction(can not recall the name of it) but they life flight the sick and injured to the specialty hospital. Each year they auction off sweets and other deserts. I always do a cake that I would typically sell for $80-100. The cost is mainly in the time I spend. Not in ingredients. I send a stack of business cards for them to put by the cake as well.
I don't think I would do as much for your brother's company if they are not willing to pay for just the cost of ingredients.

AmysCakesNCandies Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:21pm
post #6 of 21

I have done a few donations and in every instance I have told them what I was donating, didn't even give them a chance to ask for something else. I just say "sure I can donate XXX" rather that asking what they would like. And I only donate to charities that are near & dear to my heart that I would likely make a donation too anyway.

2508s42 Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:25pm
post #7 of 21

I used to do a lot of these things, then the word got out that I would... and I became a target. the FOR PROFIT hospital in my area opened a new cardiac wing and asked me to donate a cake for 1000 people, in the shape of the new building, complete with landscaping etc. I actually laughed. My husband told me to tell them that they could pay for the cake in three easy payments of $2000 each.

suesweet Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:34pm
post #8 of 21

I have donated to other organizations as well and I have also NEVER received ANY business from it. I love my brother dearly and hate to tell him no (he's the only one of my siblings who actually ORDERS and PAYS for cakes from me) but I don't think I'm going to compromise. Honestly at this point I don't want to do it even if they pay for the ingredients. He truly doesn't understand the cost and time involved. For example he asked me to make him a birthday cake and he would pay me (its the comedy cake in my pics). It took 2 days worth of work. He and everyone else raved about it. He asked me how much it costs. I told him to give me what he thought it was worth (wanted to see if he had a clue). He gave me $40 icon_eek.gif

nickshalfpint Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:50pm
post #9 of 21

WOW! I would have told him "you can pay me the rest later" =)

Sangriacupcake Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:50pm
post #10 of 21
Originally Posted by AmysCakesNCandies

I have done a few donations and in every instance I have told them what I was donating, didn't even give them a chance to ask for something else. I just say "sure I can donate XXX" rather that asking what they would like. And I only donate to charities that are near & dear to my heart that I would likely make a donation too anyway.

This is excellent advice!

Suesweet, you sound like a generous person, but you wouldn't let someone come to your door and say, "We'd like you to donate $114 to our worthy cause because we know your brother." If this is still a charity you'd like to support, tell them exactly what you are able to provide, for example: one cheesecake every other month. If not, tell them you can no longer provide baked goods but you wish them success with their fund-raising events.[/i]

luddroth Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 8:59pm
post #11 of 21

Six 12-inch cakes, six cheesecakes, and 2 half-sheet pans of brownies for $114. I don't think you could do that at Costco, Sam's Club, or Walmart, do you? Have any of them tried to buy a pound of butter lately?

sweetflowers Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 9:15pm
post #12 of 21

I used to also donate to charity, but I also did not get any business from it. The reason I stopped was because it didn't really help the charity. They would take a 10" decorated cake with lace, sugar roses and such and sell it for $10, like it was a bake sale icon_confused.gif Really, most people don't understand the value of a custom cake. The organizers and most people buying the cake looked at like a grocery store or costco cake value so I just stopped.

ChrisJack1 Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 9:16pm
post #13 of 21

I'm just starting out and have done a few cakes for people. It hasn't taken me long to realize that people do not understand how much it costs JUST to MAKE the cakes! Especially for bakers who don't have all of the tools it takes to make a great cake. Never mind the hours it takes to make the details.... I've done all of my cakes as birthday gifts so far, and am done with it. The people are always thankful, but a girl could go broke donating soooo much!

eatdessert1st Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 9:27pm
post #14 of 21

Send them the itemized invoice. Then they'll get an inkling of how much you've been out of pocket in the past. If people don't bake they really have NO idea how much ingredients cost. Consider it an "educating the cake muggles" endeavor icon_biggrin.gif

Melanie Mc.

pandakakes Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 9:32pm
post #15 of 21

I find it really helpful to keep the grocery store receipt for ingredients as an "invoice" to friends and family who request cakes and expect to pay very little. Considering the fact that I normally use a few ingredients that I keep in stock anyways, that's a great deal! I also try and work in something like "oh I'm so glad you like the cake so much! It makes the whole 10 hours of work all worth it. Happy Birthday". Haha. Something sneaky like that.

cakesbycathy Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 10:34pm
post #16 of 21

You need to have a straight up chat with your brother and tell him either they pay the entire bill for ingredients or they do not get any desserts. I would also tell him that this is the last time you will be making anything and suggest they go to the grocery store in the future.

oneyracing Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 11:05pm
post #17 of 21

i only do cakes for family and they get very expensive...most don't understand the the last time my sister wanted a cake i gave her the list and had her go buy all the stuff for me to make it...then had her help me alittle..mostly by doing dishes and doing odd and end things...taught her a lesson very quickly icon_biggrin.gif

LKing12 Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 11:19pm
post #18 of 21

Your brother needs some education. Invite him over and let him help you as you cook. Then let him clean up the kitchen. I took a cake 6 hours away once and finished putting it together at my brother's home. My sil was speechless and said-I never knew what all went into making a cake. My brother cleaned up my mess and said the first $40.00 of a cake order should be for cleaning services!

cabecakes Posted 15 Mar 2011 , 11:32pm
post #19 of 21

oneyracing and Lking12 WAY TO GO...THAT'S TEACHING THOSE CAKE MUGGLES! Two thumbs up. We could all take a lesson from the two of you. I had my niece do this for her cake. I gave her a list of stuff to get at the store(s). She ended up having to go 3 different places. By the time she finished running around, she had only a small idea of what went into making the cake. Maybe I should have had her help me with it as well.

indydebi Posted 16 Mar 2011 , 12:18am
post #20 of 21
Originally Posted by artscallion

If they try to convince me that I'll get lots of free exposure......

..... I tell them, "I'll get the same exposure whether the cake is free or paid for, so I'm opting for the paid-for option."

Cealy Posted 16 Mar 2011 , 12:38am
post #21 of 21

My daughter taught me a good lesson, she's 17!
When I go get the supplies at the grocery store put only the items for each cake on one receipt, then double the receipt to be my starting price. Depending on how difficult the design is, add a dollar per serving.

When dear ol' brother asks you to do this, estimate how much you have lost over the years on his 'donation'. Then show him how much the supplies for this years donation will be. Once that's done, using minimum wage add that on top for your time! Then look him straight in the eye and ask "Where is my tax receipt for those donations over the years?"

Your work and time are worth something, even if he doesn't realize by how much! Don't sell yourself short girl, go after the paying customers!!!

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