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How to tell a bride she's too difficult to work with

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 

Never had to do this before but 2 weeks ago I had a bride approach me about a cake for early January and provided me with a thumbnail picture from the internet. I found a larger version of the cake and made a dummy "mock up" that she requested. Well I meet with her and she loved that the design was perfect but she wanted to tweak all the colors...no big deal. A week later she calls and asks what day we have set to meet up so she can check out the second "mock up" something I had not agreed to do since I just planned to show her the colors later but I said ok my next order for supplies is going in soon and the bulk colors were on backorder until the 18th so she would have to wait until then. She then started saying "If I couldn't do this particular cake we could go with her second option (her second option is twice as time consuming intricate piping and with my other orders that weekend I'm not sure I would want to do it)" Considering her only problem after the first meet was the colors and she is now thinking I "can't do this cake" my gut is telling me to run!!!! 

 

She just called again and after the last call I went ahead and ordered some of my metallic colors to do this mock up again sooner. Well now she justs wants to change it to her second cake option but she wants the cake more ivory than pictured...I feel like she will find a major flaw with anything. She had approached a number of places here in town and they all told her the first cake was too time consuming and they wouldn't do it exactly that way and I'm sure they would say the same about the second. The design of the original cake was something I can do and did to her liking the first time and I told her my stuff would be in this week and I will do the mock up for next week but if there are any more phone calls I think I will just find a way to end this one.....what would you do?

post #2 of 38
Are you charging her for each of the mock ups? I would show her the second mock up, tell her this is what you can do, take it or leave it!
post #3 of 38

Oh dear, well she's got you by the neck already, and since you've done one mock up and planning to do another....why is she only a pain in the butt now? I can't think of a single decorator I know who would have done a mock up, let alone agree to another. There's a good chance she won't like it and will disappear on you, and leave you high and dry. I'm guessing she hasn't paid you a retainer yet either? You gave this bride a very long leash and she is taking advantage of it. :(

 

I honestly cannot answer this because I would not have done things to allow it to happen in the first place. Had I though, I'd be gritting my teeth, collecting money ASAP before I lifted one more finger, and plow ahead and hope for the best.

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post #4 of 38
Thread Starter 

No I'm not charging her and I really should have. I've never had anyone ask me to do one for them and I just figured her nerves were shot (blah, blah, blah) so I would do one and she would be ok. WRONG!! I think it just bothers me because the design was "perfect" her own words but she wanted to change the colors a bit (No Problem) but all the phone calls and "if you can't do it"'s makes it sound like I screwed up?!?

post #5 of 38

It sounds like she isn't sure what she wants and will spend the entire time second guessing herself.

 

What is a cake mock-up?  My brides get a sketch it looks like a 6 year did because my drawing skills are very lacking.  Which I tell my brides this in a joking way "I can decorate, but I can't draw".  I would never do a dummy design for a bride.  Way to much work.

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post #6 of 38
I'm assuming there is no contract yet. If that's the case, RUN AWAY!
post #7 of 38
Thread Starter 

I know AZCouture....that meeting was the first aside from the email asking for it and like I said I just figured it was nerves. She did pay a deposit and I'm sure that I can easily pull off the wedding cake but I'm not sure anything would please her completely. I'm going to do this second mock up and if she's not 100%, calls, texts, or emails again, or I still get the vibe that no matter what I'm screwed on this one. I'm out. And NEVER again will I do a mock up for free or otherwise. Lesson Learned

post #8 of 38

Plow ahead....it will be ok. :) Love that sprinkle cake. 

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post #9 of 38
Thread Starter 

cai0311 I usually only do sketches as well but she asked specifically for a dummy. Lol didn't know I was going to end up being the dummy :)   Lfredden there is absolutely a contract in place with a deposit....

post #10 of 38
Thread Starter 

Thanks AZ and everyone else....I think I just needed to vent to people who would understand that even decorated dummys take time and money not to mention I take pride in my work and I want them to be happy with it. Just not at the expense of my sanity. I think it's really working my nerves because this wedding is one of 2 (the other is quite large for 400 people) and it's 2 days before a bridal show so my nerves are shot as well.

post #11 of 38

Let us know how it goes next time you meet with her.  Good luck/Mary
 

post #12 of 38

Hi there, sometimes you just get a bad feeling about a bride and while most people are great to work with, there are a few who will be a pain in the bum.

 

I agree with everyone else on the mock up. This is something I would not do. I design a cake during the consultation.

 

I have had on very rare occasions a client that I decided I did not want to work with and because I work for myself I can make that call. However if she has paid a deposit you may have to deal with is as professionally as possible and be better prepared for the next awkward customer who wont arrive for a very long time hopefully. 

 

Amanda xx

Visit my blog, Crumbtales or have a look at my gallery of amazing cakes at amandamacleod

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Visit my blog, Crumbtales or have a look at my gallery of amazing cakes at amandamacleod

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post #13 of 38

So the wedding's a month out?  You may be stuck with her.  And yes, never to a mock up with charging for it.  And the charge is 80% of what a "real" cake would cost.  That will put a stop to that nonsense.  The biggest red flag is that no other cake vendor in town will work with her.  The minute I heard something like that, I ran.  All those people can't be wrong.

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post #14 of 38

Oh, and good luck.

Answers to the most often asked questions re: SPS. SPS instructions are on Page 15 of the Sticky at the top of the Cake Decorating Forum. Supplies can be ordered from Oasis Supply, Global or BakeryCrafts.
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Answers to the most often asked questions re: SPS. SPS instructions are on Page 15 of the Sticky at the top of the Cake Decorating Forum. Supplies can be ordered from Oasis Supply, Global or BakeryCrafts.
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post #15 of 38
Thread Starter 

Thanks guys. I am a home baker so I guess I felt the need to prove to her that I could do it. Really I shouldn't have felt that way since I am booked all but 6 weekends from Feb. into Oct. next year. Working my way into a shop hopefully in the next year. As far as the other bakeries in town not doing it to my knowledge none of them work with fondant. The local Market Street bakery started doing fondant accents recently but that's it. The two other really known and frequented bakeries ONLY work in buttercream.

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