I'm very new to cakecentral and this is my very first post .
I've done several dozen cakes on the side and I've figured out that I very much prefer the decorating part to the baking, icing, stacking, frosting part of the job.
Now, I've decided to focus my work on gumpaste flowers and other decorations. Can you please provide input on which flowers you'd rather buy than take the time and trouble to make? A poster on another thread said hydrangeas. Any other flowers?
I would be concentrating on making them very realistic (so they may be quite delicate) but I figured since I'll be concentrating on local sales, shipping won't be so much of an issue...
thanks in advance for your feedback!
I love making any g/p flower. I wish i had a job making them all day!!! lol!! I love the idea of making them realistic looking.
I agree with you TOTALLY! I love making the flowers all of them. I think if you buy a hydrangea mold which at one time I looked into they would be much faster. They looked real too. So no I can't say there is a flower I don't like making yet, but I'll let you know. :)
I enjoy making them, and actually make them in large batches in white, so that I always have a huge stash. That said, I will order the little filler flowers if I need a lot. I still colour them myself, but that can save me hours and hours of work if I need a ton.
I gave up making them pretty fast. It's just too time consuming. I bought from www.AvalonDeco.com. David is a small biz like me, and I like to support other small businesses.
I buy them!! I only make ones I can't buy and that's really rare. So start looking at what is available wholesale.
- Then consider making them larger or smaller then what what's available.
- Make 'cool' flowers, ones that are being shown by top decorators.
- You've got to get your prices down which means getting your production HIGH. So you can be competitively/reasonably priced. There are a lot of people selling gum paste flowers but their pricing is way too high for me to buy from them.
thank you for your responses, everyone.
@stitches , thanks for your specific suggestions.
- what are your price ranges for the non-filler flowers? (I'm trying to see how much is too much to charge)
- what factors would make you buy from a wholesale place versus a local custom flower maker?
- if you couldn't find a flower online, would you consider custom ordering one?
- what factors would make you buy from a wholesale place versus a local custom flower maker? I'm not aware of any local custom flower makers in my area, although I'd bet there are a bunch of them. I prefer to shop on the internet (on my own time schedule) and see photos of products. I want to easily do a web search and find what I need instead of calling around to places. I'd also rather pay for delivery then drive all over town finding flowers. I'd be interested in some unique artistic large flowers just to use on my own displays.
- if you couldn't find a flower online, would you consider custom ordering one? If the flower was something I could possibly make myself, I'd do that before custom ordering. Custom ordering means more cost and I don't have people willing to pay for custom items. So no, I wouldn't custom order.
what are your price ranges for the non-filler flowers? (I'm trying to see how much is too much to charge)
Hopefully you can see my spread sheet on gumpaste flowers below.
Order Number Name Description Company To Order From Price Per Box Shipping Number of Flowers Per Box My Price Per Flower x4 profit PRAN White Glam Rose Caljava $24.17 $3.00 3 lg & 3 sm $4.52 18.08 XDAH Dalhia Caljava $16.53 $3.00 3 $2.17 8.68 RRWH Lg Full Bloom Rose Caljava $21.56 $3.00 9 $2.71 10.84 RRM,WH Med Full Bloom Rose Caljava $24.36 $3.00 9 $3.04 12.16 XQN Queen of the Night Caljava $17.19 $3.00 3 $6.73 26.92 STG4,WHT Stargazer Lily Caljava $12.10 $3.00 4 $5.03 20.12 XLOT Lg Lotus Caljava $16.53 $3.00 3 $6.51 26.04 LOTWH Sm Lotus Caljava $31.79 $3.00 8 $4.35 17.4 394401 Ex-large Rose no wire Cakedeco $12.00 $3.00 16 $0.83 3.32 390896 Tulip Singles closed petals Cakedeco $42.30 $3.00 18 $2.52 10.07 Peony Ex-Large wired petals Cakedeco $3.00 390696 Ranunculus Cakedeco $17.90 $3.00 4 lg & 6 sm $2.09 8.36 390752 Med. Chrysanthemum assorted colors Cakedeco $24.50 $3.00 32 $0.86 3.44 390462 Fruit Blossom Cakedeco $23.10 $3.00 108 $0.25 1
Sorry my price chart didn't post that well. But I think you can still understand it. That's what it costs me to buy those flowers. I'd love to buy better looking ones that were already colored. I'm now discovering I don't enjoy coloring the white flowers..........or I should say, I still haven't figured out how to do so well.
Your math is off... these are the largest error differences:
Should be $6.51 ea.
and $3.78 ea.
Thanks for finding that! Sheesh I must have done those numbers myself...
I take the cost of the flowers to me X 3 = retail price.
If the flowers were already colored nicely, than I'd be good with X2 pricing.
If they were really well done (not thick and detail-less) with great coloring THEN I'm totally interested and price becomes less of a factor. I'd love to be able to buy LARGE showy flowers.
leah_s: when you say cost, do you only take into account your material cost and then multiply by 3 to come out with what you would pay retail for?
stitiches: yes, large, showy flowers are what I wanted to make. I'd definitely stay away from the generic ones that the large gumpaste and royal icing flower makers make (can't compete with their volume pricing).
By custom making, I meant more like made-to-order ... I don't expect to keep a large stock of ready made flowers for same day orders... more like how you would order a cake with lead time ... I'd expect cakers to order from me at least a week or two in advance, in the colors, tones, finish that they want. Do you think this is a good way to go about it? Or do bakers usually expect the product to come right away? I'm sooo new to business-to-business sales and I don't know what established bakers like all of you expect.
Also, when would be a good time to visit a bakery to let them know about my business? I don't want to cold call or just drop a brochure but I expect that bakeries would prefer to keep their days open for cake consultations and not people looking to sell to them. How many of you set aside time for vendors and what are your pet peeves?
I know I've been expanding the scope of this thread... please bear with me. I really appreciate the feedback <3 <3