Cakes Are Not Free!

Decorating By CakeMixCakery Updated 11 Jul 2011 , 1:17am by JenniferMI

CakeMixCakery Posted 26 May 2011 , 7:59pm
post #1 of 66

I LOVE making cakes and i love that our friends and neighbors are always asking us to make cakes. However i hate the fact and everyone is asking us to make these cakes, but no one wants to pay for it.

They dont realize how my time and effort it takes to make the cakes, how much time and what a PITA it is to clean up after, nor do they realize how much it costs us to make the cakes. It is just so irritating and disrespectful

Im tired of the "Wow thats expensive, i can get a cake at costco or walmart for cheaper" and the "I want this cake but i cant pay for it". So what i have to be out all the money and supply's because you cant pay for it? And yes i know Costco and wal-mart are cheaper, but you are not asking me to make you a sheet cake, you want a tiered sculpted cake.

Its so frustrating and im just at the point where i just want to say "Im Done"

65 replies
chefjess819 Posted 26 May 2011 , 8:18pm
post #2 of 66

my friend doesn't even ask. she just tells me i want a so and so cake for my birthday. it's expected. no payment. and i've made 3 cakes over at her house for her family baked, fbct, carved, iced..so she knows exactly what goes into them. this time she wants 2 cakes. one for one day, and another for another day. do i look like a cake fairy? that i can just poof them out out thin air?! for me, i let them know the first year is free, next year you want a cake, you will at least buy the ingredients and i'll bake them at your house. icon_twisted.gif

cheatize Posted 26 May 2011 , 8:22pm
post #3 of 66

Time to pull out your cake balls. They can only take advantage of you as much as you let them. Yep, it sucks, but you are the one in control in this situation. icon_smile.gif

CakeMixCakery Posted 26 May 2011 , 8:31pm
post #4 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheatize

Time to pull out your cake balls. They can only take advantage of you as much as you let them. Yep, it sucks, but you are the one in control in this situation. icon_smile.gif




LMAFO

SRumzis Posted 26 May 2011 , 8:33pm
post #5 of 66

I'd say, ok I'll keep track of the hours it takes me to make the cake, then you owe me that many hours of a free service (like cleaning my place) in exchange. Consider the material cost your bday present. Haha!

TexasSugar Posted 26 May 2011 , 8:36pm
post #6 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheatize

Time to pull out your cake balls. They can only take advantage of you as much as you let them. Yep, it sucks, but you are the one in control in this situation. icon_smile.gif




Love it!

I was going to say people treat you how you let them treat you, but I think you said it better.

cakeman75 Posted 26 May 2011 , 8:38pm
post #7 of 66

I'm glad to hear about Ur frustration. I'm glad because I thought I was the ONLY ONE that.had this problem. When u figure out what to do let me knw. I feel Ur pain.

Brevity Posted 26 May 2011 , 9:01pm
post #8 of 66

It really has everything to do with you, not them. When it's not what they do for a living, they're never going to truly understand what an undertaking cakes can be. This goes for most careers...my sister is an engineer; the rest of my family still thinks this involves trains. I digress....

I've lived here for long enough that the whole city thinks they know me on a personal level, so I am hit up for 'donations' all the time. I do a fair amount of donations, but I pick them, and they go to groups that really need the help.

What seems to work for me, is rarely talking about cake outside of work. They start in, and I'll say, 'you should come by the shop next week, and we'll go thru options, yada yada'. You have to assert yourself, and mention money right off. Quite often the first thing out of me, is 'what kind of budget are you working with?'

I'm rambling. I guess Its a question of, is this your hobby, or is this your business? If it's your business, get serious.

bakencake Posted 26 May 2011 , 9:07pm
post #9 of 66

do you all of a sudden have a bunch of new friends that all you have meet before and never really talked to you but then they see your cake and all of a sudden they like you? or friends that call you coincidentally around the time they need a cake? aww, come on! it cant be just me?

CakeMixCakery Posted 26 May 2011 , 9:29pm
post #10 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brevity

It really has everything to do with you, not them. When it's not what they do for a living, they're never going to truly understand what an undertaking cakes can be. This goes for most careers...my sister is an engineer; the rest of my family still thinks this involves trains. I digress....

I've lived here for long enough that the whole city thinks they know me on a personal level, so I am hit up for 'donations' all the time. I do a fair amount of donations, but I pick them, and they go to groups that really need the help.

What seems to work for me, is rarely talking about cake outside of work. They start in, and I'll say, 'you should come by the shop next week, and we'll go thru options, yada yada'. You have to assert yourself, and mention money right off. Quite often the first thing out of me, is 'what kind of budget are you working with?'

I'm rambling. I guess Its a question of, is this your hobby, or is this your business? If it's your business, get serious.




I am going to start doing that, thank you! Its not a business, just a hobby

ChilliPepper Posted 26 May 2011 , 9:53pm
post #11 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakeman75

I'm glad to hear about Ur frustration. I'm glad because I thought I was the ONLY ONE that.had this problem. When u figure out what to do let me knw. I feel Ur pain.




Come on ladies where's your backbone! Tell them that they need to pay for the ingredients and materials used and the cost of baking. If you want to give your time for free that's your choice but put your foot down, "find your cake balls" (LMAO) and tell these freeloaders where to get off. The only people who get 'free' cakes from me are my immediate family and they get the cakes instead of a gift. Everyone else, close friends included, pay! END OF!

CP xxxxx

yummy_in_my_tummy Posted 26 May 2011 , 9:55pm
post #12 of 66

That's a good way to do it - "what budget are you working with?"... I'm going to use that icon_smile.gif

mplaidgirl2 Posted 26 May 2011 , 10:26pm
post #13 of 66

If someone wants a cake at cost. (super close friend or immediate family for one of thier friends) . I give them my ingredient list and have them buy me my ingredients. When they see the price of the butter I use alone they cringe. They end up spending $65 at the store. So they just have me do it for a quoted price after.

And they know I only do 1 cheap cake a year. The others are full price so they need to choose wisely. For my mom, sis, dad and niece I will always make thier bday cakes at no cost. But only my niece gets the really nice ones. lol. ( i don't have kids yet so I have to spoil someone!)
I made her the 3 tier dora cake in my photos for her 2nd bday

warchild Posted 26 May 2011 , 10:30pm
post #14 of 66

Somewhere along the line you've given the impression you're not concerned with payment for your work, or your friends wouldn't be expecting you to make cakes for free.

That's something you need to work out with your friends soon, if you don't want to end up with your friends becoming "un" friends.

I do cakes for close family and friends but not on demand, and not all my family and friends. Cake ingredients are expensive. If I agreed to make free cakes whenever they were requested, I'd be broke.

MaryAnnPriest Posted 26 May 2011 , 10:55pm
post #15 of 66

I do cakes for my immediately family (siblings (mine & his), their spouses, my nieces/nephews, my parents & parents-in-law. If they want they can choose a design or theme. It is their gift from my family (I may have done the work, but my kids/husband had to give up some time too).

Relatives outside that spectrum, and my two closest girlfriends (yup, even though their like my sisters) get a generous discount. Everyone else (even some close friends) pays full price.

I did a cake for my sister's birthday yesterday. Someone at the party thought it would be perfect for her MIL & asked me how much I would charge for the cake. She nearly fell over when I said $385.

samgill99 Posted 26 May 2011 , 11:24pm
post #16 of 66
Quote:
Quote:

"I want this cake but i cant pay for it".




And yet you still go ahead and make it anyways?

costumeczar Posted 27 May 2011 , 12:40am
post #17 of 66

Here's my free seminar for preventing people from taking advantage of you.

Learn to say this word: NO

Say it, say it....no....Louder...No......Louder, you can do it! NO!

NO NO NO NO NO!

NONONONONONONONONO!

Don't you feel better now? And this time, don't say no.

Lovin_Cakes30 Posted 27 May 2011 , 1:15am
post #18 of 66

I am getting worried about the same thing. In August WA's cottage food law goes into effect. I will be able to charge for cakes after I go through all the inspections etc.... right now I am doing them free because it is illegal to sell w/out going through the HD etc.... I am really worried that people will freak out when I say how much a cake is, but dang.....a lot of money (and not to mention TIME) goes into even a small cake! The two tiers I have been doing have been costing $40 or more to make! But I really don't know how else to practice and get good enough to even begin to sell cakes without doing some freebies???? I can't keep em' all at home! I can't imagine the poundage I would put on! haha. Just worried my future "customers" will get too used to this.........

BTW, anyone know if it is legal to charge for supplies if the person actually goes out and buys the stuff or is that still illegal? Or if you make it in their house?

indydebi Posted 27 May 2011 , 3:06am
post #19 of 66

THem:

Quote:
Quote:

"I want this cake but i cant pay for it".



Me: "Then you're not getting it, are you?"

That's exactly what I told my kids when they were growing up and they'd ask for something in the store. I'd tell them to "get out your money." They'd say, "But I dont' have any money!" to which I replied, "Then I guess you're not getting it, are you?"

too bad not everyone's mama did that when these people were kids! icon_biggrin.gif

To share my own little list of 'wants':

- I want a cadillac escalade ... but I can't pay for it.
- I drive a $1500 Olds Bravada with windshield wipers that have to warm up first before they work right.

- I want a U-shaped leather sofa with recliners on each end and those little armrests in the middle.....but I can't pay for it.
- I sit on a green plaid couch that is over 15 years old and has stuffing coming out of one of the pillows.

- I want a REAL designer purse monogrammed with those expensive crystals ... but I can't pay for it.
- I carry an all-purpose bag that I crocheted myself.

People are amazing in their attitudes aren't they? icon_eek.gif

Katiebelle74 Posted 27 May 2011 , 3:23am
post #20 of 66

I've done a lot of cakes for immediate family. But I have a decent size immediate family and a number of friends that I've had for 20+ years. One day I really did the math, and was like hey wait a minute...If I budgeted what I could AFFORD to spend on a gift for this person (a gift relative to what they typically give me) it would be WAY less then these dang cakes!

CakeMixCakery Posted 27 May 2011 , 3:47am
post #21 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by samgill99

Quote:
Quote:

"I want this cake but i cant pay for it".



And yet you still go ahead and make it anyways?




No i dont!

caymancake Posted 27 May 2011 , 4:10am
post #22 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefjess819

my friend doesn't even ask. she just tells me i want a so and so cake for my birthday. it's expected. no payment. and i've made 3 cakes over at her house for her family baked, fbct, carved, iced..so she knows exactly what goes into them. this time she wants 2 cakes. one for one day, and another for another day. do i look like a cake fairy? that i can just poof them out out thin air?! for me, i let them know the first year is free, next year you want a cake, you will at least buy the ingredients and i'll bake them at your house. icon_twisted.gif




I love that you bake it at their house - does that mean they clean up too? I may have to do that for friends/family who ask for cakes!!!

calicopurr Posted 27 May 2011 , 4:24am
post #23 of 66

If you are a sucker to make it and pay for it too, then will you make me a cake too? Oh yeah, please deliver it to my house as well.

These kind of posts just make me want to pull out my hair. They must think you have money to bake and decorate for free. Is this a sympathy post? You know the right thing to do. Do you really want to give your time and money away for free? Come on!!

mom2twogrlz Posted 27 May 2011 , 5:05am
post #24 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

THem:
Quote:
Quote:

"I want this cake but i cant pay for it".


Me: "Then you're not getting it, are you?"

That's exactly what I told my kids when they were growing up and they'd ask for something in the store. I'd tell them to "get out your money." They'd say, "But I dont' have any money!" to which I replied, "Then I guess you're not getting it, are you?"

too bad not everyone's mama did that when these people were kids! icon_biggrin.gif

To share my own little list of 'wants':

- I want a cadillac escalade ... but I can't pay for it.
- I drive a $1500 Olds Bravada with windshield wipers that have to warm up first before they work right.

- I want a U-shaped leather sofa with recliners on each end and those little armrests in the middle.....but I can't pay for it.
- I sit on a green plaid couch that is over 15 years old and has stuffing coming out of one of the pillows.

- I want a REAL designer purse monogrammed with those expensive crystals ... but I can't pay for it.
- I carry an all-purpose bag that I crocheted myself.

People are amazing in their attitudes aren't they? icon_eek.gif




Once again you hit the nail on the head, quite humorously too. Love it!!!!

sweettreat101 Posted 27 May 2011 , 7:02am
post #25 of 66

I will be making a Quince cake next week for a friend. There are nine cakes all fondant. I calculated how much it will cost for ingredients and my time. I'm only charging her 400.00 and she supplies the fresh flowers. She did ask me again about the price but she said it was fine. I wanted to tell her she can go to the two bakeries in town and pay 800-900.00 plus delivery. I had her give me half the money down so I could buy the supplies so if she flaked I wouldn't be out of pocket. She would just end up with a huge amount of cake supplies.lol. You could always give them a list of what you will need and let them go purchase everything. Then tell them how much you will be charging for your time on top of what they already purchased. I did this once and one of my friends never asked me to make a cake again.

CakeLady1981 Posted 27 May 2011 , 4:12pm
post #26 of 66

I have a very close friend who always wants a discount!! I have done 3 tier cakes for her children for $45! I love them so I did it. She has ordered 4 cakes a year for the past 2 years and ALWAYS gets a huge discount. She is very specific too, I want this but not this change this it has to look like this...so on and so on. Well two cakes in a row her husband threw the cake boards (reuseable) into their burn bin!!! When I was fed up about the last one I sent her a price that I fully expected her to pay for a new cake board with shipping! She was flabergasted and proceeded to trash my cakes and tell me they weren't that good to begin with!! SERIOUSLY!!!

Then, since I use cake mixes (doctored of course) she tells me I can not charge professional prices for Betty Crocker cake mixes! WHAT!! I have never hidden the fact that I doctor cake mixes from ANY of my customers. I can not scratch bake so I doctor! Needless to say we are no longer really friends. But she did have the nerve to bring me a round board her husband cut from some scratch wood they had laying outside! Which is nasty and I can not use. I just let it go!! I think I will do the supply list next time I have a "friend" ask for a deal on a cake! Then tell them I want that plus what they make an hour for labor!!

jason_kraft Posted 27 May 2011 , 4:20pm
post #27 of 66

And on a similar note, cake decorating as a hobby is not free...if you can't afford to keep decorating as a hobby and your state doesn't have a cottage food law, that doesn't make it OK to illegally sell your products.

Lovin_Cakes30 Posted 27 May 2011 , 4:59pm
post #28 of 66

Sorry if I am hijacking the thread.... but Jason, you seem to know a lot about legality..do you happen to know if it is legal to have your friend or relative purchase the supplies themselves and then make the cake at their home together? Just curious. WA is supposes to enact our cottage law in august so it is not that many more free cakes ill have to do before I can go through the proper channels (if all goes well) ... yes doing these for free is quite expensive, but I keep doing it cause there is no other way to practice right now!

jason_kraft Posted 27 May 2011 , 5:03pm
post #29 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovin_Cakes30

Sorry if I am hijacking the thread.... but Jason, you seem to know a lot about legality..do you happen to know if it is legal to have your friend or relative purchase the supplies themselves and then make the cake at their home together? Just curious.



The food safety laws in many states specifically exempt you from inspection if you make your products at the customer's home, the exemption is meant for personal chefs but I don't see why it wouldn't apply here. I believe you would even be able to charge for your services in that case, although you may still need a business license and of course liability insurance is a must.

Lovin_Cakes30 Posted 27 May 2011 , 5:36pm
post #30 of 66

Wow thanks guys for the information =) I feel better but still cannot wait for August! I just pray my city goes along with the law with no problems... I have heard of people who's state has the cottage law but their city gives them a really hard time or still won't let them do it! yikes!

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