Lost My Confidence

Business By gapger Updated 15 May 2006 , 9:56pm by mushbug9

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gapger Posted 8 May 2006 , 11:13pm
post #1 of 20

hi everyone, about 4 months ago, I was ready to start taking orders and finally making some money doing cakes. But the last few that I have done seem to trouble me. I am having a hard time smoothing the frosting and sticking my finger through the fondant on my first wedding cake (I will attach a photo)

so tell me have you been ready to take orders, then re-think that your not really ready.

after the last b-day cake I did, I got four calls inquiring about cakes, I stated that I am not taking new orders for the next few weeks.

19 replies
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TastersDelight Posted 8 May 2006 , 11:17pm
post #2 of 20

I'm having the same problem, things going great until I'm ready to jump in, then start having issues. My first wedding cake is in a month, so i've been practicing every weekend, just hoping it pays off.
Also, I look at the pictures on here from other people and feel like I'm way out of my league, but I'm just gonna keep forging ahead and see where I end up.

Good Luck and keep your chin up.

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cakesondemand Posted 9 May 2006 , 2:58am
post #3 of 20

Id say go for it your cakes look good enough to me.
The one thing about decorating is we see all our flaws and question ourselves but no one else seems to notice the more cakes you do the better youll be at it. Got to start some where.

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loriemoms Posted 9 May 2006 , 11:31am
post #4 of 20

I agree completly..we see all the flaws that others don't see! Also, as you take orders, you will learn new techniques that you just don't learn when you are just making a cake now and then.

also, there is nothing like seeing people smile when they see your cakes, I have had a few cakes where I thought man, the cusotmer is gonna hate this and they LOVED it!

And you will never know until you just jump in!!!

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LoriannaN Posted 10 May 2006 , 2:54am
post #5 of 20

Absolutely.. They're right.. I actually made that exact comment somewhere else on the forum- about how we all see things that no one else sees, just cause we have a different eye than they. They see something that they could never have done and they don't see your mind's eye. That makes a big difference.
I have not had the courage to start my business yet for this reason- feeling like i'll get in way over my head and people will be ordering stuff that I can't fulfill. Or when I try, not being satisfied. It makes you vulnerable. You just have to bite your own bullet and keep on keepin on, and like cakesondemand said- the more you do the better you'll be.
And practice in the mean time! (I'm sure you do, but it has to be said icon_smile.gif)
You'll be ok icon_smile.gif It's juse part of the business icon_smile.gif

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quills Posted 10 May 2006 , 6:30pm
post #6 of 20

Your cakes look terrific! I say "hold your breath & jump right in." I'm REALLY new to decorating, but starting my own business anyway. What keeps me from totally freaking out is remembering who I'm really competing with: not the incredible people on this website (whose ideas I need like I need oxygen), but the local grocery & discount stores. Now I KNOW I can do better than Costco - if only because I'll custom design every cake instead of making a cookie-cutter, same-old, same-old kind of thing. I'm not doing wedding cakes for a while, though - that still scares the heck out of me. It just seems that a wedding cake needs to be absolutely perfect since it's (hopefully!) a one-time only thing. Of course, I can't remember what my own wedding cake even looked like, so maybe I'm overstating things . . . In any event, GO FOR IT! You're definitely your own worst critic.

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missmelbox Posted 10 May 2006 , 6:39pm
post #7 of 20

I've lost my confidence, I just re bought a usb cord so I can now post my pictures, but please believe me when I do you'll see why I have no confidence. My first two wedding cakes were decent, my third and fourth were diasters. I did both in square pans and for some reason they looked a mess. My first square pan cake I couldn't get the corners smooth, then my last cake I did was for my cousin's wedding and I ended up giving it to them for free. I worked soo hard, but the cake was lopsided and I couldn't get the icing real smooth. Sometimes I get soo upset and say I'm selling all my stuff on ebay-I quit.

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natascharenee Posted 10 May 2006 , 11:48pm
post #8 of 20

Missmelbox, please don't give up! Like others have said, you WILL get better with practice and experience. I am having the same problem with my decorated cookies. But I am going to keep at it because I get so much advice and encouragment from these boards. You can too!!

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gapger Posted 13 May 2006 , 8:14pm
post #9 of 20

thanks everyone! sorry for the late response but I had an emergency out of town, everything turned out ok!

I think I am going to stick with family cakes for a while, maybe when school starts I will start sells. I have a REALLY small house and it is hard to decorate when you have two big wheels running over your toes every 35 seconds! icon_wink.gif

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tatetart Posted 13 May 2006 , 8:26pm
post #10 of 20

Don't give up! Strive for the best and prepare for the worse. That is my motto.
Everyone experiences difficulties. Everyone!

Just relax...and start enjoying the creative process. You'll hit your stride again in no time!

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dydemus Posted 13 May 2006 , 8:32pm
post #11 of 20

Gapger- we all go through those down swings. I was ready to throw in the towel a week ago, and again when I was working on a new kind of icing and my gumpaste creations were breaking!!! Just remember we all go through this - and people are asking for your cakes because they've seen what you do and LIKE your work!!! Keep at it!!

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SugarFrosted Posted 13 May 2006 , 8:48pm
post #12 of 20

I think it has to do with being a perfectionist. Everytime a client picks up a cake and tells me how great it is, I find myself telling him/her all the things I did wrong and how something could be better. I can't seem to stop myself. I have been decorating cakes for almost 20 years and I still get overwhelmed when someone asks me for something new. I decided when I first began taking cakes orders that I would not do weddings, because of the time involved on weekends, time taken away from my family. But now that my son is going to college, and I will have an abundance of free time. So, in the past year, I have purchased wedding cake pans and stands and stuff so I can now do weddings. And after saying no for 20 years, I have to tell each and every client "yes, now I will do wedding cakes." But I am scared to death someone will order a wedding cake. Isn't that just silly? icon_eek.gif

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deijha Posted 15 May 2006 , 4:09pm
post #13 of 20

I hope you don't quit, either one of you. Just take a look at the "post your worst cake" thread. We all have cakes that we wish we didn't. Practice, practice, makes all the difference. And a good pat on the back here at CC is worth its weight in gold. Hang in there and be patience it will come like all good things it just takes a while.

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fearlessbaker Posted 15 May 2006 , 4:23pm
post #14 of 20

You should look at Martha's first books. Her basket weave was way off. Kinda like mine! It is really not a good idea to compare yourself to others. It's O.K. to copy and learn. But to compare can be pretty destructive. It is the road to the loss of objectivity and that can quelch your creative juices. So just keep going and learning and yearning to do your best. Going to other cake sites help too so you can see all levels of acheivement. Some great and many more like Martha's first published cakes.

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Pootchi Posted 15 May 2006 , 4:57pm
post #15 of 20

Don't give up!!! Your cakes are so beautiful!!! The key is to practice and practice!! I even practice some cakes when doing a simple dessert for my family, and my kids love the practice cakes!!! Sometimes I'm not pleased, but that's why I keep practicing!! I know that some people are better than me (actually a lot of people) but hey, that's not a reason not to go on with that!!! Practice makes perfect!! don't give up!!!! we're here for you!!!

Lorris icon_smile.gif

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LOVEME Posted 15 May 2006 , 5:12pm
post #16 of 20

Gaupper....In the pasted I have run a cake decorating business and a creamic shop .Both out of my home.When I operated the ceramic shop I had over 100 students a week.I had regular hours set up BUT that did not matter to anyone..JUST because I was there they thought I was there to help anytime they showed up.I had 2 small children at the time and was a very busy mom.I had to learn to say NO..very hard for me to do.But my point is..if you want to operate any kind of business out of your home you must first set aside
regular times to work at it.If you don't all you will do is drive yourself and the rest of your family crazy.It's just me and my husband now..I am 64 years old...my time is my own.I do make cake's & cookie's on the side and I sell on eBay.But I still try to do it in a regular time frame so not to destract from my family.It's a fine line there but one that needs to be drawn if you expect to live any type of a normal life.You can get so bogged down with everything and that's when you can get discouraged.JUST don't give up you dream!Your cakes look great just hang in there.

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partsgirl25 Posted 15 May 2006 , 5:30pm
post #17 of 20

sounds to me like you have cold feet. I think everyone has those doubts. I know i hesitate to commit to a cake for someone other than family. I always feel pressured to make it perfect. think about how you used to think the wal-mart & costco cakes were so beautiful when your eye was untrained. Our customers have that same untrained eye. I promise they don't notice a dimple in your icing or that maybe you think your rose doesn't look the greatest. we tend to feel like there is a bullseye around all our flaws.

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butternut Posted 15 May 2006 , 6:15pm
post #18 of 20

Hi all. I can relate to everything that has been said. I made my mother in law a cake for Mother's Day. It was only the second rectangular shaped cake that I had ever decorated. The first was my mom's Mother's Day cake the day before. Anyway, I had this idea of make a two tone cake. I had no idea how to do this but I managed to get it done. Everything was going well and then I smoothed out the top of the cake and I started noticing these dark specks in the pink icing. Hmmmmm. I had no idea what was going on but I did know that I was sooooooo upset. I wanted that cake to be PERFECT. Now in reality, there's no way it would have even come close because I still don't have a clue as to what I'm doing as far as cake decorating goes. But I sure hoped that it would be nice enough to present to my Mother in Law. I finished it up in hopes that somehow the darker specks would disappear somehow. Well, instead as each hour passed the specks got larger. I finally narrowed the problem down to the paste color that I used. Well, that was just great. So, I knew what caused the problem but still had no way to fix it. I was so upset about it. I was going to toss it out but my hubby said that he thought she wouldn't even notice. Yea, right. He kept on and finally I said OK, and off we went to bring her the cake. I so hesitantly presented her with the cake, all the time hoping that it would accidentally slip out of her hands. No, such luck. She opened the lid and said, oh my gosh, this is the prettiest cake I've ever seen. I just looked at her in dismay. Then she said, I love those dark pink dots, it really brings out all of the colors in the cake, how did you learn to do that? I near bout fell over. She actually thought it was supposed to be that way. I just chuckled and never told her differently. So, see, what we see and know are flaws, may very well be overlooked as part of a beautiful designed cake by others. I am going to attach the picture of the cake so you can see for yourself. It was so funny. I'll never forget this Mother's Day.

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jacksjoyce Posted 15 May 2006 , 9:44pm
post #19 of 20

Hey everyone...well what a topic! I too have my doubts about my own skills even to the point of taking a class!
I have gone on and on for the last year about Earlen's Cakes. (It was her web-site that I stumbled on a few years back that inspired me to get into cake decorating)I refer to her many times in my "cake conversations" with my husband....I told him I thought she was the "diva" of cake decorating in my opinion. Well, yesterday for mother's day my sweet husband along with my wonderful daughters and son -in- laws gave me a gift certificate complete with airfare and hotel room to take a class with Earlene in Texas! I am thrilled and also scared to death. The first thing that came to my mind was...I can't even ice a cake smoothly....you have to know what you're doing to move on to her level! I think my family would of liked to see me act a little more excited when I opened the card...but all those fears and insecurity took over. I'm hoping I can muster up some courage along with all the experience I can fit in before taking the class in October!
See...it happens to all of us!

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mushbug9 Posted 15 May 2006 , 9:56pm
post #20 of 20

I can't agree more with ALL that has been said here, both the possitive AND the negative. I have looked at some of my cakes and wondered why I was even bothering. The cake I hated the most since I started decorating in Jan was the one in my profile that has the figuers on it. I KNEW how much better I could do. I was SO dissapointed in that cake. It was a donation for a local school's "fun night". I just got my second cake order today. The person who ordered the cake was the organizer of the fun night. She informed me that my cake...the one I HATED...was the first cake picked that night, and that it was talked about all night and at the next PTO meeting. I was amazed. Now she ordered a birthday cake for this week and let me know that she has another birthday coming up later this month as well. What you think is horrible even, other people, people who don't make or decorate cakes, see as amazing. I looked at your profiles (both of you) and see great cakes. Good luck to all us newbie's. We'll all make it. LOL

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