shelly-101 Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 5:25pm
post #1 of

My very first cake disaster happened last night the wedding cake didn't make the ride so well it was a topsy turvy the back of the bottom tier just split causing the other two tiers to go tumbling. i got to the venue the brides dad was screaming at me like I did it on purpose i have never been made to feel that bad ever. i had to ask the brides mom to ask him to leave so i could figure out what i was going to do and how i could fix the cake I could not think with him screaming at me like he was. I ended up putting a dummy tier on the bottom recovering the top two tiers some of the petals on the gumpaste stargazer lilies were broken so i just removed the broken petals i just left the bottom tier in the back and told them to still cut and serve it. I did the best i could with what i had the cake was still pretty but not what it was before. i feel like i do owe the bride some sort of refund or compensation do i offer her a full refund? a partial refund since they still had cake? or do i offer a free cake? never had this happen so not really sure what to do any advice would be appreciated. icon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gif

21 replies
lilbitacake Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 6:07pm
post #2 of

I would give her a partical refund. Yes she did have cake for the cake cutting and for the guest to eat but it was not what she ordered. I do know what you went through. My first wedding cake the top of the bottom tier split and the royal icing decoration ran (dummie me used royal icing instead of buttercream) and the back half of the buttercream icing was on the box. Luckly i fixed it and the back half was next to the wall so they couldn't see it. Well to make a long story short I only charged her just the deposite which was half of the total. Everyone say it was pretty and didn't think it looked that bad, but I know that it wasn't what she ordered.

elliespartycake Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 6:13pm
post #3 of

Too bad this disaster happened and that it was made worse by the screaming dad. I would offer a full refund. The cake was not what they had ordered even though they still had cake to serve. The good will gained by refunding their money will be far more positive than haggling with them or only offering a partial refund. Don't wait for them to ask for it either, just send it to them with your apologies.
Cake disasters like this are awful, and they aren't anyone's "fault". I much prefer traveling with separate tiers and assembling at the venue, but sometimes that isn't possible. Good luck.

shelly-101 Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 6:32pm
post #4 of

thanks for the input

ReneeFLL Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 6:47pm
post #5 of

That is terrible that happened to you. I personally would give a partial refund. I would keep the amount for the cost of supplies and refund the rest.

cathyscakes Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 7:01pm
post #6 of

Wow, I can't believe how awful people can be. Accidents happen and I can see being disappointed, but to scream at you is just plain wrong. This is the main reason I have never gone into business, just do cakes for friends, the thought of someone doing what happened to you, really scares me. Your cakes are so beautiful, and i'm sure you made a presentable cake. I'm not sure about the refund aspect of it, but wanted to say that I was sorry he attacked you in this way.

FullHouse Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 7:37pm
post #7 of

I'm sorry this happened to you and it was completely wrong for the dad to be screaming at you like that. I would offer a full refund, even though it would burn to do so after he had yelled like that. The wedding cake did not make it there in one piece and what was served had to be kept in the kitchen and was broken. I would not expect my client to pay for that. Sorry.

nicunurse Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 9:46pm
post #8 of

Shelly, Your cakes are amazing!! I agree with a few of the others. (Gulp) I think a full refund is appropriate in this case. I think we all have had one disaster or another, and probably most occur during transport. A necessary evil in this job. So sorry this happened, we can all empathize with you icon_sad.gif

MimiFix Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 10:04pm
post #9 of

shelly, I am so sorry to hear about your cake. And the bride's Dad was a real jerk. You should be proud at how you handled the situation... If it were my customer, I would refund the entire amount. A wedding cake is more than just cake, it's an essential part of the special event. They were depending upon you for this part of their celebration and although you were able to provide enough cake for the guests, it clearly had a negative effect upon the family.

shelly-101 Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 11:37pm

thanks so much everyone... i am going to give a full refund. and a free anniversary cake if they even decide to come back and use me again...lol i am really trying to make things right. I still feel so bad today thanks again everyone for your input.

traci_doodle Posted 15 Apr 2012 , 11:59pm

Oh, hang in there! *hugs*

cakelady2266 Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 12:39am

Sorry that happened to you. I know it didn't help that the father was screaming at you.

I would give the bride a full refund. Although they had some cake to serve and something to display it still wasn't her dream cake.

elliespartycake Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 1:12am

Remember...you did nothing wrong. You made every effort to provide what was ordered and an accident happened. It sounds like you made the very best of a difficult situation and hopefully the refund will smooth everything over. The father was the bad actor in this. Hope all goes well.

Apti Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 1:42am

This was an accident, pure and simple. Although it was not your fault, you (representing your Business) were unable to deliver what had been paid for and what was expected. I agree with the others that a full refund is in order. I also agree that you should send an immediate email that a check is in the mail with a 100% refund for the cake. Do NOT allow any time to pass, not even the brief time it takes to mail tomorrow and have it received Tuesday.

I know you feel awful, and I'm very, very sorry that you had to endure a screaming father. There have been a few posts in the last couple of years where the "screamer" (usually the MOB) calmed down and realized their bad behavior after the event. Weddings are highly emotional events.

I worked with massively disabled children who required wheelchairs for about 10 years. Part of my job was to endure the screaming of the parents/family/friends if even the tiniest little detail went "wrong". Even though it was difficult (to say the least!) to hear it, the clinical part of me recognized that they were not screaming at me in rage, they were venting the rage that their child was disabled. I actually received some apologies over the years from the 'screamers'. PLEASE, try NOT to take it personally.

Personally, I would NOT offer a free Anniversary cake. A full refund is sufficient and they may still be too "raw" to consider another cake from your bakery.

Be careful about your wording in both the email and the letter with the check enclosed. (BTW, a cashier's check would be a nice gesture.)

A suggestion: "I take pride in my bakery and the wedding cakes I have delivered to many brides in the past, but, unfortunately, cake is fragile. I am sorry the cake for your special day was accidentally damaged, and I am enclosing a check with 100% of the payment made by you for your wedding cake. I wish you and your husband many years of happiness."

Sincerely,

xxxx

nicunurse Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 5:29am

Apti, wonderful wording on the refund letter! Shelly, you have my permission to stop beating yourself up now!! thumbs_up.gif It's done and you are going to fix it! icon_smile.gif

shelly-101 Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 10:02am

thanks so much everyone i have one more question i also did a grooms cake it was fine do i keep that portion of the payment or do refund that as well?

Apti Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 4:55pm

IF the buyer was made aware of 2 different prices at the time of purchase, one for the Wedding Cake, and one for the Groom's cake, then I would suggest only refunding the amount for the damaged product, plus any delivery fees for both cakes.

IF the final contract between you and the bride did NOT show an exact price for each cake, then I'd refund the entire amount for both cakes. Now is NOT the time to be providing a new invoice which breaks down the pricing for each cake.

Here's the new wording suggestion for the new email and letter IF the contract specified an amount for EACH cake:

"I take pride in my bakery and the wedding cakes I have delivered to many brides in the past, but, unfortunately, cake is fragile. The Wedding Cake was damaged while the Groom's Cake was not. I am sorry the Wedding Cake for your special day was accidentally damaged, and I am enclosing a check with 100% of the payment made by you for your Wedding Cake. I am also refunding the entire amount paid for delivery. I wish you and your husband many years of happiness."

Sincerely,

xxxx

----------------------
I would attach a copy of the original contract which states the specific price for EACH cake.

cathyscakes Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 5:35pm

I really don't see why you should give a refund for the grooms cake, it wasn't damaged. Did you get a picture of the damaged and fixed cake, would love to see how you made it work.

shelly-101 Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 9:34pm

thank you Apti for all of your help i sent her that email today and told her a full refund was in the mail i just went ahead and refunded the total cost for both cakes i think it will be better in the end for everyone........no Cathyi did not get any pictures i had planed on taking a picture of the cake once i got to the venue and with her dad screaming at me like he was i did not stop to take a picture and when i finally fixed it best i could i just wanted out of there......lol

Apti Posted 16 Apr 2012 , 11:35pm

You are very welcome, Shelly. I think your assessment of refunding for both cakes was the best decision.

Now, don't you dare beat yourself up on this matter for one more minute!!! Accidents happen, you took a professional approach and made the client "whole" (legal term for "ok") and did what you could to mitigate the damage when it happened.

Your cakes are gorgeous, and anyone fortunate enough to be able to purchase one of those cakes is very lucky indeed!

vtcake Posted 20 Apr 2012 , 3:34pm

It was not an accident...it was accidentally broken. You did not have a car crash, but you did not secure the cake well enough.

It was not her dream cake, and you should ask them what they think is fair and work accordingly.

And I think you should demand an apology from the dad by saying that while the cake was not broken on purpose, the screaming at you was on purpose and uncalled for.

SoFloGuy Posted 2 Jun 2012 , 7:45am
Quote:
Originally Posted by shelly-101

My very first cake disaster happened last night the wedding cake didn't make the ride so well it was a topsy turvy the back of the bottom tier just split causing the other two tiers to go tumbling. i got to the venue the brides dad was screaming at me like I did it on purpose i have never been made to feel that bad ever. i had to ask the brides mom to ask him to leave so i could figure out what i was going to do and how i could fix the cake I could not think with him screaming at me like he was. I ended up putting a dummy tier on the bottom recovering the top two tiers some of the petals on the gumpaste stargazer lilies were broken so i just removed the broken petals i just left the bottom tier in the back and told them to still cut and serve it. I did the best i could with what i had the cake was still pretty but not what it was before. i feel like i do owe the bride some sort of refund or compensation do i offer her a full refund? a partial refund since they still had cake? or do i offer a free cake? never had this happen so not really sure what to do any advice would be appreciated. icon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gif




Yeah you should give a full refund, but just for the wedding cake.

If the man was screaming at me I would have turned around and gone home. No cake for you, and given them a refund. If I had been taken to court I would have told them I gave a refund and felt threatened so I left.

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%