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First time someone has complained on a cake of mine? - Page 7

post #91 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by morganchampagne View Post

If you're posting in here it is going to be assumed you have a business! That this is not your hobby.

 

There's no gatekeeper. Over the past few years, judging by some responses I've read in this forum, I'm fairly sure that hobby bakers and Facebook-style (illegal) "professionals" have stated their opinions.

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post #92 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by MimiFix View Post

There's no gatekeeper. Over the past few years, judging by some responses I've read in this forum, I'm fairly sure that hobby bakers and Facebook-style (illegal) "professionals" have stated their opinions.

Yes. But if you post in the business section of this forum I think that you should expect a certain level of criticism. As someone else said its rarely the OP that gets crazy. It's everybody else. I'm just saying that if you post in the business section the criticism will be much harsher maybe
post #93 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis View Post

to continue this great line of thought here --
  • what if it was a cancer patient--
  • what if it was someone who had been battered
  • or someone who had been assaulted and was baking to try to recover their life--
  • or what if it was a veteran trying to forget the screams in the night--their own--
  • what if it was your mom or your loved one--
  • what it if was a recovering addict--
  • what if it was someone very fragile, already near the edge--


i think this is wendelyn b's awesomest quote

If any of those were the case, I would empathize with the cake artist/baker. If the finished result was less than what was promised/expected, I would still advise a refund.

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
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www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
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post #94 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmom View Post
 

You charged appropriately, many would charge more!

She is cheap, plain and simple.

so email her back u r chp.

 agree ! :)

Sweety Grane lovin' the baking  
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Sweety Grane lovin' the baking  
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post #95 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by wendelynb View Post
 
 
I agree, when there is teaching there is learning and when you ask for others advise on such as this you are learning, this is where constructive criticism comes from. Constructive criticism doesn't have to be harsh or disrespectful to learn from it. I don't care If you are a "newbie" or a decorator who's been at it for 30 years, there is always something new to learn regardless. You may think some of the folks on here, specifically the ones that don't post much, just because they say they are new doesn't mean they are, they could be here to watch and see whats going on in a world they are no longer a part of, possibly working more the commercial side. It seems clear to me that even though some of the others on this thread are more experienced they either aren't in a place of teaching others their craft or they are really not teacher worthy. You don't have to use harshness to get your point across. If showing a general respect to others means shooting rainbows out your bum then let the colors fly, maybe it's contagious. Sounds like an episode called cake natzi's round here.

:)

post #96 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts View Post

If any of those were the case, I would empathize with the cake artist/baker. If the finished result was less than what was promised/expected, I would still advise a refund.

Yes.
post #97 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts View Post


If any of those were the case, I would empathize with the cake artist/baker. If the finished result was less than what was promised/expected, I would still advise a refund.

 

 not the point.

 

of course the 'truth', as some of us are loving to brandish about like a fiery sword with cutting effects, does not change.

 

but being careful to stop brandishing said sword is the point because we do not know who is asking because i think we should always be respectful--

 

my point is temper the truth--not dilute it--delete the harshness--shoot straight and true and be nice about it or at a minimum be neutral about it--

 

i have been crystal clear about my opinion.

one baker's never ever do is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
 
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one baker's never ever do is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
 
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post #98 of 121

the further point of those lists is that you & i don't know which of those conditions pertain to me or to you or to any one of us-

 

those who bash would also be on that list--i just hope we stop & think a bit more about how we say things.

 

just say no to cake rage

 

belt it out, aretha!

one baker's never ever do is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
 
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one baker's never ever do is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
 
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post #99 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis View Post
 

the further point of those lists is that you & i don't know which of those conditions pertain to me or to you or to any one of us-

 

those who bash would also be on that list--i just hope we stop & think a bit more about how we say things.

 

just say no to cake rage

 

belt it out, aretha!

;-D

post #100 of 121
I'm going to post one last time then I'll just bury the dead horse that I seem to be beating. I come from a teaching background, not cakes, kids. Having said that my opinion on the matter has nothing to do with treating grown adults like children, dancing around emotions etc.

I think any time you ask for advise and/or opinions on something you have to be prepared for whatever is said be it good bad or indifferent, that's a given. No matter what business you are in when you are part of a group thats members all have the same type of business regardless what kind it is; the people there share a kinship. In posting I'd value each persons opinions and advise because I know that it comes from someone who likely shares in the same day to day challenges that I face. That is after all why there is such a place as this am I right? To share with one another, learn from one another vent or maybe cry after a bad day and maybe visit over a virtual margarita or two. I don't think that anyone's advise on this thread was bad advise or wrong and I realize that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Advice can be taken or left and it can be appreciated or resented.

It seems as though by saying that this is a section (correct terminology escapes me at this moment) is for businesses not hobbiest and that because of this fact comments to posts may seem harsher. I realize that people that are in any profession see things in a light that others do not. An artist aside from being his/her own worst critic is another artists worst critic because they know the potential and have seen and possibly can do things better. That's exactly what I meant in my earlier post, think of yourself as being a mentor to whomever you are posting (except ego aside) and who wants a mentor that is harsh in their criticism? Even if it's not about a mentor since I know many of you will likely have a problem with that whole idea but just being a person that others trust your experience enough to come to you and ask for advise to me that should be done in a way that is respectful to others.

If I were to post a pic of a cake and ask for advise about how to better make a particular cake, any idiot can say to me "hey your cake looks like crap" but the one that says to me "I can see that you spent a lot of time on it, maybe next time try .......and see if you get better results". That's the kind of advise that I am looking for and that's the reason we are all here. Each and everyone of us can teach another one something, I don't care how good you are. How long you have been in the business means that you are experienced not omnipotent. I wouldn't treat any of you any different than I would one of my customers, my jokes may be different but then most of my customers are or have become friends so likely I would share the more risqué jokes or personal ribbing type joking with them more so than here. Maybe it's a matter of how I was raised but to me each human being has the right to be treated with a certain amount of respect regardless of their experience, skills, knowledge, business or anything else that can be thrown into the mix.
I don't post often at all, in fact most of the time I come here if I have a problem or a question about something and I see how others have delt with the same or similar problems. When I saw a few of the posts that were left I was a little.....um.....(ok I will be honest southern style cuz that's how we roll round here, "I said Daaannnngggg girl- ya'll don't pull punches do you, nothing like being brutally honest!") it's not about being thinned skinned because I am the one who jokes around and harasses everyone and it's always expected to be harassed back, and the boundaries are pretty wide when it comes to subject matter. Even so I know that I will think twice about posting my own work, it's not enough that I am my own worst critic and that I am the bottom feeder in this pond (as far as skill level goes) but I sure as heck don't need my face rubbed in it. I waller around in my own dose of reality, I certainly don't need any more mud thrown. How many others out there that do the same will be discouraged from posting because they see the same thing that I see?

We are all teachers whether we want to be or not. There is always someone watching that you didn't see or hear or know was there. So, what are you teaching?
post #101 of 121

wendelynb "How many others out there that do the same will be discouraged from posting because they see the same thing that I see?"

 

Exactly!! I've been doing cakes for over 30 years as a hobby and a little bit here and there for extra income via local caterers, etc. Quit my full time job of 29 years and started my business from home when we got the cottage foods law in Texas a couple years ago. Another home caker told me about Cake Central at that time and it was a HUGE help to starting my business. But, there is no way that I would be brave enough to ever post one of my cakes and ask for criticism or pricing advice. Not because of the legitimate helpful criticism from most but because of the snarky comments from a handful of frequent posters. I'd be so fearful that a client might see the comments.

post #102 of 121
~~~this post has nothing to do with legitimate criticism, and direct unflowery advice~~~

 

lemme get this straight, goodvibrations and wendelynb,

 

you mean when the original poster explains their problem and (very few but one is too many) responding posters think, "i can not only re-word this problem back to everyone with some colorful language I can also have some fun at op's expense plus get rid of some aggression right here right now-- step back, girls, let a pro handle this, i own a business"

 

you think it unfair for the responding cakers to impugn the integrity of the op, their clients and their hard work? 

 

that this makes you uncomfortable?

 

interesting

 

this post has nothing to do with legitimate criticism, and direct unflowery advice

one baker's never ever do is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
 
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one baker's never ever do is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
 
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post #103 of 121

To Shorn....

I'll try not to repeat what others have said, because obviously, it has been stated over and over again.  I think by this point you understand what is wrong with the cake and with the customer.

Instead, I'd like to focus on avoidance of having a repeat, which will start with a story from my own experience.

I'm in the process of building my commercial kitchen, so I don't speak with years of professional experience.  However, I work on cakes with a friend of mine and early in the summer we had a friend of a friend find out about us and ask for us to do a rush order on a cake.  It wasn't 24 hrs, but it was only a few days.  When we both worked, went to school, and were in our early stages of planning our bakery we were going to open, having only a few days notice is not feasible for us.  The person sent us a picture of a 2 tiered buttercream b-day cake they wanted.  We quoted them $x, which for the details they wanted, it was lower than what we could have asked for, but we both felt that we could do a good job with it being that price.

Our issue was, they knew we did a small 3 teired fondant cake for someone for only $y a year earlier (it was when we first started doing cakes together we we mainly just charged for ingredient cost and a tiny bit extra to buy new decorating tools).  So they told us they couldn't pay more than $y.  We told them that if they wanted the cake in the picture and for it to be rushed, then it would be $x.  If they truly couldn't spend more than $y, then we could create a basic cake with the colors for their theme, and they could buy toys on their own to put on them to make it match the theme.

The finally told us they found someone else (I think  it was their daughter or sister or some other family member) that could do it that cheap.

 

I came to CC for help when we first got this order.  I didn't post it on a forum, but I did read stories about others dealing with pricing issues.  It made me realize, customers who expect something to be done cheaply, are generally not worth the headache and almost always create problems later.  Like others have said, that's why we have grocery stores.  That is where you find cheap, low quality cakes.

 

With that being said, take you experience form this order and sit down and figure a few things out.  How many days/weeks do you need an order to be placed in advance before you would feel confident you can make it to their standards.  It will be different depending on the order.  Obviously big wedding cakes or complicated orders, require more time.  For me, I need about 1 week for simple orders.  Right now I'm not even taking orders because of the craziness of trying to get our bakery open so I'm not doing any side jobs.  But, before I needed at least a week for simple orders because I had to plan around work and school.  I'm a planner, I like to keep things organized, so even a week feels like a rush to me, but, I know my abilities, and I know that if I have a week notice, I can do a good job with 1 week notice.

 

When you know your time frame of when things need to be ordered, then figure out a base rush fee.  I start ours at $20.  It goes up based on how big or complicated the order is and how short of notice it is.  But at $20, you can ask a friend to help for 2 hours ($10 per hour) if you needed an extra hand last minute, or send the family to pick up dinner elsewhere so you can stay focused on the cake....These are the types of things you have to take in account when you get rush fees.  What must you have to make sure you can give the customer what they want and when they want it.
 

If they are unwilling to pay the price, you can offer them an alternative, if there is one.  Like we did with the cake mentioned earlier.  We could make them a basic cake, no decorations, for the size they wanted.  It would meet the price they wanted, and you could actually get it done really well.

 

If they say no to that as well, then tell them you are not the right cake decorator for the job.  Maybe even find a couple other locals both hobbyist and professionals, that you can refer them too.  Don't just randomly pick people, but try to make connections with locals in the area.  Ask if they mind if you refer customers to them that bring you orders you know you don't have the skill or time for.  Find someone great with buttercream, another with fondant, and then maybe someone who does a mix of both.

 

My only other advice is, make sure you have time for what they bring you.  If you do not have the confidence that you can deliver the product that they expect and in the time they expect it, then don't do it.  If it is someone you are close to (like a good friend or family member) and it is a rush order, then you can tell them you'll do it but you can't guarantee it'll be identical do to the rush.  But only save that response for people you know would be ok with that.  Some people have a picture of what they like, but they are very laid back and open to the idea of it looking different.

 

Ok, just a few more to wrap this up. :)  Learn to read people.  When they place an order early one, learn how to read their body language (if ordered in person) and their tone of voice or the way they word things (one of the reasons never to take an order through text!).  As you grow and learn, you will learn how to read people and know they are more trouble than they are worth.  Like the order earlier, they seemed like people that probably wouldn't be happy no matter what we did.  You stick to your guns with people like that.  If you have a set price, you don't lower it because those are the type of people that will try to get you to lower it again.  I learned that one after years of working fast food!  People who haggle you over price, are almost always just in it for themselves and really don't care about your, or even what they had ordered.  They are just after a cheap (or free) deal.  Not everyone is like that, but that's why it is important to learn how to read people.

 

Sorry that ended up so long!  I hope it helps bring something new to think about though.

 

-Rebecca

post #104 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis View Post
 

interesting

 

 

Interesting, indeed. Unfortunately, as I've already stated, there is no gatekeeper. If we don't like what we see, we can choose to read and not post, or stop returning. The choice is ours.

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post #105 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by MimiFix View Post

Interesting, indeed. Unfortunately, as I've already stated, there is no gatekeeper. If we don't like what we see, we can choose to read and not post, or stop returning. The choice is ours.

And if one finds that they are incapable of ignoring the posts of people who bother them, there is also the option of automatically hiding all someone's posts by hovering over their username and clicking "Block Member".
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