I recently met with a bride that wanted a cake with real ribbon and real flowers on it. I told her the cost would be $3.75 per serving. My base price starts at $3. She emailed me back the next day all upset that the cake wasn't $3 per serving. She wanted to know what that 'extra' money was for since she was purchasing the flowers and ribbon. I told her it was labor for having to prepare the ribbon to go on the cake, put the ribbon on, contact the florist, put the flowers on, etc. I never heard back so I guess she didn't agree with me.
So 3 days later, another consult, another cake that they just want the frosting to look 'a bit messy' (a swirly pattern through the buttercream) with a bead border and fresh flowers. I tell her $3.75. She says she only has budgeted $300 for her cake for 120! I think she thought the price was just going to be $3 per serving also.
I do state that my prices start at $3 per serving and will go up depending on design. I guess they feel that with fresh flowers there is no design? What do you tell people in these instances? I'm considering raising by base prices or getting a better idea of budget/design before wasting my time in the consult. Wondering if others have encountered this and how they handle it.