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Posts by cupadeecakes

I use a carpenter's level and a long serrated knife to level my cakes.
Listen to your "Spidey Senses"!  Tell her you're no longer available and offer her the number of your most hated competitor! ;-)
I have used a pen like this before to paint / write on cakes.  Usually I will fill the pen with vodka and then dip it into my luster / petal dusts, but it might work if you put titanium white food color in there.   http://amzn.com/B0015AOVEK
I never order the flowers either, I leave that up to the customer, although I have no problems communicating with florists to make sure they understand what type / how many flowers are needed for the cake design.   If it's a business relationship that you value, I would call them and tell them about the situation and your concerns.  If they can't give you a satisfactory answer, then you can move on to another vendor with a clear conscience.
I think you have answered your own question, but if not, here's another vote for keeping away from this person.  As far as the referral/design fee, since he will not be "designing" then he's only open to the possibility of a referral fee.  15% is way too much, especially if you don't need the business. 
Great job!
I have tried every method imaginable and I agree with @Chef_Stef- I think you can get a non-crusting buttercream way smoother than a crusting buttercream. Then work with it while it's nice and cold. Http://tinyurl.com/buttercreamtut
That sounds JUST like Tasha! LOL!!
No offense to anyone with a official culinary training, but I don't think it's a requirement.  When I first got the bug to open my cake business, I couldn't afford to go to culinary school so I got a job at a bakery / pastry shop.  I had a working interview where I had to show my proficiency with cakes (basketweave) and that I could follow a recipe.  I have to admit that I did learn a lot about how a bakery storefront was ran and a lot of the tricks of the trade.  Enough...
No, I believe they are edible.  I think someone cut gumpaste or modeling chocolate into the bird / branch shape using a cutting machine like the Cricut or Silhouette.
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