Pricing When Using Cake Dummies

Decorating By countrycaker Updated 8 Nov 2011 , 6:26pm by cakeyouverymuch

countrycaker Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 4:46am
post #1 of 7

When you use foam cake dummies on any of your tiers, do you charge less? If so, how much less do you charge? I know it would be different depending on the size of the tier, so I would love to hear your price changes (if any) for each size. Another local cake decorator uses the same price whether it's real cake or foam, but to me it seems like there should be some kind of discount for using a dummy. It's quite a bit cheaper than cake, the time involved is obviously reduced, and it sure makes the cake lighter and easier to transport. I don't know though - what's your take on this?

6 replies
countrycaker Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 5:02am
post #2 of 7

Whoa. Duplicate posts galore. Sorry about that. It didn't show up as having posted on my computer and I can't get the "my forum posts" to open to see what's there. Screwy goings on are afoot. Again. Anyway, hopefully one of the higher ups who has the power and know-how will delete all those other duplicate posts to this one.

sugarjones Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 5:14am
post #3 of 7

It depends on whether they want dummies out front and cakes in the back. If they want a six tier cake but are only having 100 guests then I would charge them materials plus labor to decorate the dummies. If they want a six tier cake but want kitchen cakes (usually because they think it will be cheaper) and dummies out front, it's the same price as a decorated cake. I always tell brides that you are still paying the cake base price and then I still have to decorate the cake out front so it's the same price as if you had real cake. Many brides have read that they can "rent" a fake cake to keep the costs down but don't realize that anyone who rents dummy cakes doesn't make them to order. The bride would pick from a catalog of designs. It's a good idea but not very common. Hope this makes sense icon_smile.gif

sugarjones Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 5:15am
post #4 of 7

It depends on whether they want dummies out front and cakes in the back. If they want a six tier cake but are only having 100 guests then I would charge them materials plus labor to decorate the dummies. If they want a six tier cake but want kitchen cakes (usually because they think it will be cheaper) and dummies out front, it's the same price as a decorated cake. I always tell brides that you are still paying the cake base price and then I still have to decorate the cake out front so it's the same price as if you had real cake. Many brides have read that they can "rent" a fake cake to keep the costs down but don't realize that anyone who rents dummy cakes doesn't make them to order. The bride would pick from a catalog of designs. It's a good idea but not very common. Hope this makes sense icon_smile.gif

countrycaker Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 3:42pm
post #5 of 7

Anyone else with suggestions or tips on how you price them?

jason_kraft Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 5:34pm
post #6 of 7

We charge the same price for dummy tiers as we do for real tiers. There might be some savings in terms of labor when using a dummy tier, but using dummies is kind of a pain and we don't want to encourage customers to decide on dummy tiers by offering them a discount.

cakeyouverymuch Posted 8 Nov 2011 , 6:26pm
post #7 of 7

Are you sure the dummies are "quite a bit cheaper than cake"?

If you figure the cost to you of the dummy as follows:

dummy + shipping + materials to prep the dummy + your time to prep the dummy to the point of being ready to cover with your choice of buttercream or fondant = $X.xx OR

dummy + cost to shop for dummy + materials to prep the dummy + your time to prep the dummy to the point of being ready to cover with your choice of buttercream or fondant = $X.xx

as against whatever the cost is of two layers of cake of a comparable size prepared to the point of being ready to cover with your choice of buttercream or fondant = $X.xx

Everything from that point on is exactly the same cost to you. And don't forget that outside of the cost of running your oven and your mixer for the time it takes to mix the cake, the rest of your overhead is the same whether you are decorating a dummy or a real cake.

You really need to cost out both options. Having done so you might find that decorating with dummies may in fact be equal or higher in terms of cost to baking and decorating actual cake.

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