Everything was going well between our emails, except she kept on asking questions about this and that, and can we do this, blah blah blah. She NEVER said, ok this all sounds good. Let's place the order. All she said was "can you call me?" At that point I was working on 3 different cakes and found it difficult to take out the time to call her. And why couldn't she call me? I wrote quickly to her between work and taking care of my kid about how busy i was and that she was welcome to try and call me whenever she wanted. Never heard from her.
The worst was that the cake was for this past Saturday after Thanksgiving when I was having relatives and friends over and cooking for Thanksgiving! So on the Sunday before thxgiving I really didnt want to do the cake because she never even looked at a contract or sent me a deposit. But I felt bad if I left her hanging too because she kept on telling me in the emails about how she loved my work and how even though it was a lot of money for her she really wanted to order from me. So I wrote to her and asked her if she wanted to go ahead with the order, should I order a cupcake stand for her? She wrote back over a day later saying "Last night I was just speaking with a friend of mine about having yet the opportunity to speak with you. The party is sat. and I am sure that you could understand my concern. However I am just hoping that it all works out." Which I thought was a strange thing to say. why couldn't she call me?
I had let her clearly know that I would only have a day and half to work on her order, which is obviously not a lot of time, but she wanted to go ahead. So I sent over a contract to her and didn't hear from her until of course, I emailed her again. I told her since it was so last minute, she could just give me the cash when she came to pick up. So she never asked for my address or when should she pick up. When I asked her she said, she wanted to pick up the order as early as possible on Saturday. She never sent back the contract. I didn't hear from her until Friday evening at which point she said that she couldn't open the document. So i resent it to another email address and also changed the format to pdf and resent that. She never emailed me back the contract with her initals as I requested.
Then I stayed up until 3:30 am in the morning trying to finish!!!! It was so hard trying to get at least 11 different toy story characters all out of fondant! I did half the logo in fondant and I did the blue border of "Toy" in buttercream while the base was yellow buttercream. It looked like the logo and it was cute. Some of the characters were a little less than great, but I was super tired and was just tyring to get them done before morning.
Well, the time came for her to pick it up and she never showed. I called her and she casually said that her dad volunteered to pick it up at noon and sorry for not calling. Well, I was tired of waiting for clients to pick up cakes sometimes 2 hours late, and I said that I had to be out of the house in 30 minutes and she needed to come and pick it up. So she said she would. She came 45 minutes later and when I answered the door, she didn't look happy or excited to pick up her order. I showed her the cake, which she unenthusiastically said was cute. Then I showed her the cupcakes and she looked less than impressed. And asked weird questions like what the letters on some of the cupcakes were. I reminded her that she wanted "Happy 2nd Birthday Dylan" written out in letters. I had noticed that some of the cupcake wrappers were peeling away, which I thought was not cool, but I couldn't do anything about it at that point. I gave her some extra baking cups that she could replace them with and I apologized saying that I really didn't have time to bake more cupcakes which was the truth. A lot of the cupcake wrappers coming off had happened overnight in the fridge! She looked unhappy so I offered to give her some money back which she did and left.
then 5 minutes later I get a phone call from her and she says how this is not what she ordered and that this is not what I advertised on my site and that the blue buttercream on the fondant had started cracking and how nothing was presentable. And the cupcakes look terrible, etc. And I tried to explain to her about what went wrong and she started crying asking if I was blaming her. I was trying to be understanding and offering my apologies. But the order really didnt look as bad as she was making it out to be. She kept on going on about why me why me? Why does this always happen to me whenever I try to do something on my own? Etc. Strangely there was another voice of a woman in the background who was egging her on and saying how my work was just amateur and how sorry just doesnt cut it. I offered to refund her the money and that I was going to take back the order. She kept on saying how her sister got cupcakes at Pathmark and how great they looked and she only paid this amount of money, etc. So she agreed to have me refund the money and to take the order back but could I come down because she was by herself. That was very strange since I had heard another woman. When I came down with her money, she was alone! I decided to be heartfelt with her. She wondered what she was going to do where she was going to find a cake so last minute (uh, Pathmark!?) She showed me pictures of the pathmark cupcakes/cake. Needless, to say they were awful and I felt insulted that she would even compare my stuff to that. I offered to redo the work for her and that someone could come to pick it up later that afternoon since the party didnt start until 3. She thought it sounded like a good idea. I felt that I had calmed her down and that we had made a connection.
I worked and worked again!!! I redid the logo, all in fondant, and baked another batch of cupcakes, sans peeling wrappers, even redid some of the characters faces! I called her like 10 times to no avail, emailed her, etc. She simply did not pick up. No reply, nothing. i never heard from this woman again! I feel so horrible. I know it's my fault because I really shouldn't have gone through with this order. I never work without a contract or deposit, but I felt so bad for leaving her hanging. Ugh! But wasn't she really weird? I have this feeling that she never had any intention of picking up the order or was she trying to get it for free? Who was the mysterious voice egging her on in the background? Oh, and it turns out the blue buttercream cracking was her having smashed top of the cake with the box lid.