Strange Request

Decorating By beesweetcakes Updated 5 Oct 2011 , 12:04pm by costumeczar

beesweetcakes Posted 2 Oct 2011 , 10:00pm
post #1 of 29

I have a bride called me and has one very specific request. She did not want high cake tiers. She knew that traditionally cake tiers are 4 inches high but she hates the high cake look.

Please excuse this dumb question. I'm still very new to this. I charge per serving. Do I still charge the same as if the cake tier was the traditional 4 inches? No contract has been signed yet. She is coming today to do that. I have a feeling that she wants the shorter tiers to cut down on cost.

Suggestions!!!!!!! Advice!!!!! Thank you.

28 replies
pj22 Posted 2 Oct 2011 , 10:20pm
post #2 of 29

IMHO, Regardless of the size, the same number of people are gonna eat that cake so you cannot reduce your serving price. Apart from the cake size, your serving rate also includes labor and decorating time that will not reduce if the cakes are an inch shorter!

cakelady2266 Posted 2 Oct 2011 , 10:28pm
post #3 of 29

Well if you price by the serving she will need more shorter tiers to accommodate the number of guest, but the price per serving would still be the same. Show her an example of a 2 inch tier cake in a picture or stack a bunch of pans together. Maybe she wants 3 inch tall layers, but if you don't have those pans I wouldn't go to the expense of getting a set for one customer.

BlakesCakes Posted 2 Oct 2011 , 10:45pm
post #4 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakelady2266

Well if you price by the serving she will need more shorter tiers to accommodate the number of guest, but the price per serving would still be the same. Show her an example of a 2 inch tier cake in a picture or stack a bunch of pans together. Maybe she wants 3 inch tall layers, but if you don't have those pans I wouldn't go to the expense of getting a set for one customer.




I agree!

In a lot of ways, making a bunch of shorter tiers is more work and requires more materials--boards, supports, etc.--and more of them to get any nice height for the cake.

Rae

jules5000 Posted 2 Oct 2011 , 11:32pm
post #5 of 29

I have a different opinion than some of the others. I think that this is the bride's cake and the bride's wishes should be adhered to. If she does not like 4" layers so be it. The costs of servings is not going to be as high for you the baker as the 4" because you are icing 2" as opposed to 4". 1 cake per tier vs 2 cakes per tier and if she doesn't want them torted and filled there is not going to be as much time or icing used and no filling either. The time to decorate 2" tiers is not going to be as much as 4" tiers. So even if the reason she doesn't want as traditionally high layers as everyone else for the reason of cost she should get a little break as you don't have as much time cost involved, or ingredients costs either. instead of 1 1/2" x 2" x 4" she is having 1 1/2" by 2" x 2" the amount of the servings is the same but time invested is not. Now if she wants special things to go on her cake that would be higer cost because of what she wants then charge your normal extras fee for that, but I don't think that she should be charged the full fee when she is wanting less cake. That is just my opinion. I am not stating the others as wrong in the way they figure their costs, but this is the way I would figure it if I were doing the cake. So like say she wants a 14" tier, 10" tier and a 6"tier. according to the wilton serving guide she would be getting 116 servings. Say that you normally charge $3.75 a serving. I am not saying cut it in half, I would say take it down to $3.00 a serving. This is the break I would give her. I am not saying that that is what I charge. That amount is hypothetical.

Now say that she does want you to torte and fill them then maybe I would not cut the price down. Because that is actually going to take me more time then just putting icing or filling in between two layers in a tier. Hopefullly, these different opinions will help you.

beesweetcakes Posted 3 Oct 2011 , 2:02am
post #6 of 29

Thank you for everyone's suggestions. The bride and I could not agree and went our separate ways. At the end of the day she wanted a lot of cake, as far as the tier sizes, but not have to pay for it.

LoverOfSweets Posted 3 Oct 2011 , 7:15am
post #7 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by beesweetcakes

Thank you for everyone's suggestions. The bride and I could not agree and went our separate ways. At the end of the day she wanted a lot of cake, as far as the tier sizes, but not have to pay for it.




I am just curious, what did she think she should pay? Half the price?

Evoir Posted 3 Oct 2011 , 8:30am
post #8 of 29

In Australia, traditionally wedding cakes have only ever been 3 inches tall. These days we do all sorts of sizes, but there are still many people who just want regular 3 - 3 1/4 inch tall tiers. Our serving sizes are a bit smaller than those in the USA but the way you cut up a cake is different too, so the nett effect is a minor difference in volume per slice.

However, a customer with champagne tastes and a beer budget is never easy to deal with, and a whole other story!

beesweetcakes Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 12:04am
post #9 of 29

The bride only wanted 2 inch high tiers but wanted me to cut extremely small pieces. She only had so much money left in her budget and though that if she made small cake servings it would cut down the price of the cake. She still wanted the 4 Tier cake (12, 10, 8 &6) but only wanted to pay what money she had left in her budget, which was $75.00. I told her with a very straight face (all I wanted to do was laugh at her) that I am not the baker for her and there was no way that I could make the cake for only $75.

kakeladi Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 12:57am
post #10 of 29

...... She wanted the 4 Tier cake (12, 10, 8 &6) ... 2 inch high tiers....cut extremely small pieces..... only wanted to pay what money she had left in her budget, which was $75.00.....

*THAT* has got to be the most laughable request of all the 'poor bride' tales we have heard ever!

.......I told her with a very straight face (all I wanted to do was laugh at her) that I am not the baker for her and there was no way that I could make the cake for only $75.............

And you handled it perfectly icon_smile.gif

auntbeesbaking Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 1:24am
post #11 of 29

I have no words...well, no nice words anyway! Unthinkable and Unbelievable!

MommieK Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 1:35am
post #12 of 29

I think some people don't really understand the work that goes into one of our cakes. If we went to a tailor and asked for a stunning satin gown with tons of intricate details for $50.00 people would think we were mad. Why is it that people think it's ok to insult us by wanting our time and talents for free? They definitely wouldn't work for free, why should we? Great reply. That's my motto as of late, you want a cake for that price, you are definitely not my customer and I am definitely not the baker for you.

BizCoCos Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 1:43am
post #13 of 29

Everyone should have a $75.00 wedding cake dummy in their shop with a barbie doll towering over it. lol, Let's get real, people are insane when they come to you with these requests. Weddings are still the biggest thing in most countries and they sometimes save for years for them even without a fiance!

FromScratchSF Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 1:50am
post #14 of 29

I have a bride for a wedding in May that is having a 150 ppl wedding, only wanted to spend no more then $300 on the cake. I quoted her the size of cake $300 would buy with me, which is 2 tiered 60 or so servings. She wanted to know if it could be cut into smaller pieces. I told her that's not my problem, this cake has X recommended servings, but if she wants smaller pieces then that is a conversation she can have with whomever is cutting it.

She ordered it, I have it paid in full and I can care less what they do with it after I drop it off as long as they've signed for my serving chart and the clause in my contract that I am not responsible for how the cake is cut.

Now, your lady is a nut for thinking she could get all that cake for nothing, but really, in my opinion if they want to only serve a crumb to their guests that is not a reflection on me... her guests will be looking at the bride for being a cheep-o.

psurrette Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 2:07am
post #15 of 29

I wonder how her guests will feel in half a chair? Or how about ripping a $10.00 bill in half for her gift. WTF is wrong with people! UGH

LoverOfSweets Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 6:32am
post #16 of 29

Oh my...$75.00?!?!? Not even Walmart would do it for that.

shaekae81 Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 7:02am
post #17 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF

I have a bride for a wedding in May that is having a 150 ppl wedding, only wanted to spend no more then $300 on the cake. I quoted her the size of cake $300 would buy with me, which is 2 tiered 60 or so servings. She wanted to know if it could be cut into smaller pieces. I told her that's not my problem, this cake has X recommended servings, but if she wants smaller pieces then that is a conversation she can have with whomever is cutting it.

She ordered it, I have it paid in full and I can care less what they do with it after I drop it off as long as they've signed for my serving chart and the clause in my contract that I am not responsible for how the cake is cut.

Now, your lady is a nut for thinking she could get all that cake for nothing, but really, in my opinion if they want to only serve a crumb to their guests that is not a reflection on me... her guests will be looking at the bride for being a cheep-o.




This is the PERFECT reply, IMO! When people scoff at my prices, I ask what their budget is and then tell them what that will get them. Some people go with less servings (as your bride did), and some people realize they want the original amount of servings and work it into their budget...others walk away...at which point, other bakers here are right on track that those are not the customers we want anyway.

cakesbycathy Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 2:14pm
post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by shaekae81

Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF

I have a bride for a wedding in May that is having a 150 ppl wedding, only wanted to spend no more then $300 on the cake. I quoted her the size of cake $300 would buy with me, which is 2 tiered 60 or so servings. She wanted to know if it could be cut into smaller pieces. I told her that's not my problem, this cake has X recommended servings, but if she wants smaller pieces then that is a conversation she can have with whomever is cutting it.

She ordered it, I have it paid in full and I can care less what they do with it after I drop it off as long as they've signed for my serving chart and the clause in my contract that I am not responsible for how the cake is cut.

Now, your lady is a nut for thinking she could get all that cake for nothing, but really, in my opinion if they want to only serve a crumb to their guests that is not a reflection on me... her guests will be looking at the bride for being a cheep-o.



This is the PERFECT reply, IMO! When people scoff at my prices, I ask what their budget is and then tell them what that will get them. Some people go with less servings (as your bride did), and some people realize they want the original amount of servings and work it into their budget...others walk away...at which point, other bakers here are right on track that those are not the customers we want anyway.




The problem is though, that no one is going to blame the bride if there's not enough cake or the pieces they get are teeny tiny. They are going to blame the baker. They'll never assume the bride didn't order enough. They'll assume the baker didn't make enough.

BizCoCos Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 2:16pm
post #19 of 29

last comment, true, besides it's very easy to blame the baker since they're not there.

carmijok Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 2:30pm
post #20 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by margiep

last comment, true, besides it's very easy to blame the baker since they're not there.




I disagree. Having been to a wedding where the pieces were teeny (and before I was caking), I just thought it was whoever was cutting the cake was doing a crappy job. I didn't even think about who baked it. It's who served it.

BizCoCos Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 2:34pm
post #21 of 29

I once went to a wedding where the bride's parent got a very expensive venue at an unbeievable price, ( They had a connection that arranged the deal) the sacrifice? barely any food, half a glass of champagne, tiy cake servings, et. al. I knew the parents thus Iknew it was their usual cheapness that had come into play.

FromScratchSF Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 3:39pm
post #22 of 29

I stand by my comment. If they are on a super budget, cutting the size of the cake to save $300 is most likely not the only thing the bride cut. Also, the guests have to know the financial situation of the B&G. The only time we get blamed is if the cake sucks or if it's ugly.

There was a piece on WEJ Money (I think) where the Knott blowhards made the "money saving tip" to only order 1/2 of a cake because nobody eats cake. That article had everyone crawling out of the woodwork to blast them like the staff at RBI and Kerry Vincent etc. I totally disagree with WSJ too, as a general sentiment It's crap to suggest to people to always do this and only serve 1/2 of your guests cake, but I don't see any difference between cutting 1/2 size pieces of a tiered wedding cake from ordering 1 cupcakes per person. 120 cupcakes is only a 60 person wedding cake per my recipes, and if they were ordering bare minimum cupcakes, that's the amount I'd suggest for their reception. So, to me, there is no difference.

cas17 Posted 4 Oct 2011 , 4:19pm
post #23 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by carmijok

Quote:
Originally Posted by margiep

last comment, true, besides it's very easy to blame the baker since they're not there.



I disagree. Having been to a wedding where the pieces were teeny (and before I was caking), I just thought it was whoever was cutting the cake was doing a crappy job. I didn't even think about who baked it. It's who served it.




i agree and so did the other guests. i can't think of anyway that this bride will be able to feed her guests cake on $75. even if she made it herself ingredients would be more than that for 4 tiers. sad case of not managing your wedding budget very well.

KoryAK Posted 5 Oct 2011 , 5:09am
post #24 of 29

Ok, I literally snorted when I read $75. That's a freaking joke.

To answer the original question for anyone else who might need the info, in my book at wedding cake serving is 8 cubic inches. Most of the time that is achieved 1x2x4" but if your cake is 2" tall, the slice would be 2x2x2". As pp's have said, if they would LIKE to cut a 1x2x2" half sized slice they may, but the cutting guide I am leaving with the cake will instruct to cut 2x2x2" and "this cake will feed X if cut as directed".

So yes, an 8 x 4" tier is twice the price of 8 x 2" tier. i also set my base price (for all cakes) high enough to cover this scenario.

mcaulir Posted 5 Oct 2011 , 6:08am
post #25 of 29

I've been to many weddings and never once askedd who made the cake, who the florist was, or who any vendors were. No-one asked me at my wedding.

I think we get a bit carried away here about our reputation. None of the guests care.

FromScratchSF Posted 5 Oct 2011 , 6:37am
post #26 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcaulir

I've been to many weddings and never once askedd who made the cake, who the florist was, or who any vendors were. No-one asked me at my wedding.

I think we get a bit carried away here about our reputation. None of the guests care.




thumbs_up.gif

They only care if it's terrible. thumbs_up.gif

mcaulir Posted 5 Oct 2011 , 9:15am
post #27 of 29

^
And even then, they don't really care who the baker was. I went to a wedding a year ago, and the cake was bland and dry. I didn't ask who the baker was. Not many guests at a wedding are in the market for a wedding cake, and those who are, often don't live close by, and would use someone else regardless of whether the cake was the best ever.

I can just imagine approaching the bride and asking who made her cake. "Oh, why do you want to know?" "Because it was just awful, and I want to avoid using them myself." Yeah, right!

DSmo Posted 5 Oct 2011 , 11:12am
post #28 of 29

I totally agree with you, mcaulir. No one really cares, or will ever know who made the cake. What they will think is, "I can't believe the bride chose this baker." A bad cake will reflect on the bride (or her mother, or whomever is responsible for the purchase).

costumeczar Posted 5 Oct 2011 , 12:04pm
post #29 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcaulir

I've been to many weddings and never once askedd who made the cake, who the florist was, or who any vendors were. No-one asked me at my wedding.

I think we get a bit carried away here about our reputation. None of the guests care.



thumbs_up.gif

They only care if it's terrible. thumbs_up.gif




What's more likely to happen is the person who's instructed to cut the cake wafer-thin will do so, the cake will seem dry as a result (if you can't get a piece to stay on your fork because it's so thin, it must be dry cake, right?) then the bride will come back and tell you that the cake was dry and she wants a refund. How do I know this, you ask? I know it because of the charming MOB I had who was in the hotel kitchen yelling at the chef to cut the pieces really thin because she wanted to have a lot of cake to take home. They had only ordered 150 servings for 250 guests, and they still had half the bottom tier left over, so I don't know how thin they were cutting it, but it was thin.
http://acaketorememberva.blogspot.com/2011/01/when-you-cut-cake-too-thin-it-will-dry.html

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