I have been baking and decorating more involved cakes for about 6 years, but have only been open for business as home baker for about a year and a half. Yes I am licensed, no I am not the cheapest baker around, and I try hard to not underprice my cakes. However, I do feel like it takes me forever to make and decorate my cakes. I tend to have a lot of sculpted decorations, and I know that attention to detail takes time, but I tend to have a hard time with the hourly rate part of the pricing equation because I think it takes me longer than it should. Many say it's a learning curve, but I really I think I'm just a slow decorator. How to do you compensate in pricing for that? For example, I baked the cake below and made the fondant one night, made the icing, torted, filled, frosted, and made & and applied all the fondant decorations the next night. From torting to final picture took about 7 hours. It's an 8" four layer chocolate cake with coffee buttercream filling that's covered in vanilla buttercream with fondant accents. The castle, pail, shovel, and sea shells are hand sculpted from marshmallow fondant. Sand is crushed cookie crumbs. Doesn't that seem like a long time? Remember that doesn't include baking time, or time to make the frosting and fondant. So all in all, oven time aside, it probably took me about 9 hours to make this cake. If supplies/costs are about $20, and I pay myself a measly $10 an hour (never mind that sculpting time should be closer to $25 an hour!), that makes this cake $110. Is that what you would charge? How long would this take you?
Thanks in advance!