I'm a little bummed. I was supposed to do a volcano cake like the one in my photos, only bigger for a party this weekend. I was only charging her $50 since it's a friend, not a good friend, but friend. I thought she was wanting a cheap cake because the last couple of weeks she's been saying things like "it stinks for you to have to do cheap cakes for people to get your name out there and get practice." I let her know that I'm really not practicing anymore, and I'm not doing cheap cakes. I sold a farm cake this weekend for $100, and they were thrilled with the price! Well, she called me last night and told me that she doesn't have $50 to spend on a cake. She goes ALL OUT for her kids parties! She said last night that she'll just try to do it herself and put some dollar store dinosaurs on it trying to make me feel bad I know, so I would offer to do it at cost. We went to their parties last year! What's $50 for a cake? That was a deal anyway! I think she was wanting a cake at cost since we're friends/neighbors, but I can't do that anymore! Decorating takes time away from my kids, and I'm not doing that for free! Thanks for letting me vent!
It is soooooo obvioius that she wanted you to lower the cost of your cake. Good for you for not backing down on the price! Truthfully it would cost her at least $50 for a well decorated bakery cake, which if she really checked it out would find that out for herself!
Good for you for not caving in to the guilt trip that I think she may have been putting on you (not on purpose of course heehee). Keep in mind that she wouldn't go into a bakery and poor mouth to get a discount and you should feel the same way about your business. Your time is worth as much as anyone else's!
Love the farm cake btw! the cow kills me!
In my opinion only... After reading your thread I thought about what my husband said to me when I didn't charge anything for a friends son's Birthday cake I made- the Pool Cake. He said Friends are Friends and Business is Business... I could kick myself for not asking her to pay for it instead of telling her to consider it his Birthday present. Once your friends tells her friends what a great deal you gave them they will expect it too... I actually got a order for a CCC from a lady at the party and was so surprised when she gave me 50.00 and said she thought it was worth it and more. So I agree... Don't do anything for cost or free- unless it's family of course.... Don't be bummed, just consider it more time with your family
I'm sorry you lost the order, but Good For You standing your ground on the price!!!!! You're right - it takes time away from other things and you should be paid for that, not cost for a cake!!! Some people just don't get it!!! Suggest she go to work for a day without getting paid except for the gas it took to get there!!!! cause that is what she expects you to do- not get paid for your time!!
Sorry to hear about this cheapo "friend", keep your chin up and stick to your prices!! You do nice work, and eventually your cakes will attract people who are willing to pay good money for them.
Ditto on good for you for not giving in, and lowering your prices. The same word of mouth that gets us referrals is the same word of mouth that would've spread if you HAD lowered her price. Don't think that people wouldn't be ringing your phone off of the hook if they knew that all that they had to do was offer a sad story to get you to lower their price. It's hard to separate personal/professional, but once folks know that you're doing this as a "business" and not just a hobby or practice anymore, they'll EXPECT to pay, just as all other customers do. What you did takes guts, especially if you're friends/neighbors. I had to do the same thing to my neighbor, and it about killed me, but now she knows that I'm doing this for a career.
Thanks everyone. I wasn't going down anymore on the price, since she was already getting a discount. Thing that really bugs me is, every cake I do, she wants to run over to see it. She knows what my prices are like! I'm sure she wouldn't take advantage of a bakery like she tried to do me. I don't even give my family cakes at cost! Now I get to go to the party Saturday, and giggle to myself knowing that she could have had a cool cake for her little boy, and was too cheap to ante up for it!
It IS really hard, this issue comes up all the time. It's hard to say no to distant family and friends when they want stuff for free/on the cheap. I don't have any suggestions just wanted to agree with you. I think there comes a time when you do start having to put your foot down, orders come in and you can afford to lose a few in order to appear professional. I wouldn't expect my brother in law to fit my kitchen at cost for example.
Neighbors, bah! I have a neighbor who asked me how much I would charge for a 1/4 sheet cake for her neice and nephew and I told her that $30.00 each was the price due to the fact that she wanted FBCT's on each cake, plus filling. Well, this particular neighbor likes to feel as if she is good "pals" with me (I manage the apartment building), but in reality I just shine her on.... anyway, I digress... So after telling her that each cake would cost $30.00 she balked at the price and said she could buy a bakery cake for less so I told her to go ahead and buy a couple of quality 1/4 sheet cakes made to the exact specifications she gave me. She went to the bakery on the other side of town and bought a quarter sheet cake for $35.00 and it wasn't decorated to her specifications... generic decorations, nothing fancy. She told me she got it for $25.00 but her BEST friend was there and admitted to me that the cake did cost $35.00 and that the neighbor felt that I should have given her a break on the cost because we were such "good friends". Truth be told, I have a handful of "good friends" and a lot of acquaintances, but business is business.
Don't feel bad - as you can clearly see, everyone here agrees and applauds you! I've got an example of something kind of similar but with a twist - I have a coworker who has been a great supporter of mine, who has a daughter - for the past 2 years, he and his wife have requsted that I make them a birthday cake for this treasured child (they adopted her from China). Well, this year, I made a 1/2 sheet rectangular, and 6" round, all covered in fondant, with hand-made fondant flowers and butterflies. All told, it took me roughly 6 hours. Well, I delivered the cake, knowing they would try to pay me. They had already written me a check for $150!! But my husband made me return their check - how do you like THAT one?! LoL...
Stick to your guns, and stand by your gorgeous work - your photos are exquisite...
Ali in MA
Thanks everyone. I wouldn't be surprised if she called me tomorrow evening becasue she couldn't make her own. Too bad, so sad! Well, maybe for double what I originally quoted her
Yeah she was trying to get a little cut off of the price. I'm glad you stuck to your guns. P.S. something tells me she'll be back with the $50.
When I first started thinking of selling cakes a friend of mine told me NEVER give a discount, not to friends, family, nobody. (She also owned her own business). She said the moment you give a discount everyone is going to want that discount and they will want it everytime. Friends and family will try to take advantage of you. To this day I have not given a discount to anyone, not even my own sister. The only time they get a cake, is if it is their birthday gift. (They don't get anything besides cake). I know it doesn't help now, but remember to stick to your guns. You are worth what you are charging. Some people just don't understand the value of a GREAT cake! (Plus her's wouldn't look as good as yours.) That is something to smile about....
Took a look at your volcano cake..fondant work, all the different colors, and decorated cookies!!! Seems like a lot of work and a friend should appreciate it. Maybe she should come over earlier and see what it takes to make that kind of cake instead of after all the work is done!!
I guess she's making her own cake today...we shall see how it turns out! I have a sneaking suspicion that she'll be calling me for help later...too bad we are having company for the weekend and I have a ton of stuff to do! I just don't get people spending big bucks on parties, and acting like $50 is too much for a dang cake!
I only do a $15 family/friends discount. I won't sell a cake for less than $35 right now, so if the cake is a less expensive one, I jack the price up $15 so that their discounted price is regular price. I know, that's bad, but they have no idea. Most of my neighbors who order cakes will tell me they need a cake for ____ and give me what you can for $__. They tell me colors, etc, and I decide on my own. Oh well. Her loss. Can't wait to see her cake tomorrow! She doesn't even make slice and bake cllokies, so this should be interesting. I may cry if I get there and there sits a bakery cake that I know what she paid for it, and it's not much less than what I would have charged. I'll let you guys know later this weekend!
What happen at the party? How was the cake?? Just curious.
I think you are totally right with cake decorating there is a lot to invest at first (FREE CAKES & cakes at cost) but it is a sacrifice you all as a family have to do at some point you have to stop and profit and benefit from it. this lady who goes all out for her kids parties didn't want to spend $50 on a cool cake that's her own stingy fault may be next year she will change her mind. Don't feel guilty about it you did the right thing and her kids are taken care of and don't answer her calls until after the party she is probably only calling to pick your brain. A good friend would pay the $50 and volunteer to help that's a lot of work for a volcano cake but she may not realize how much work it is
Anyone here ever felt like you walk in somewhere, and everyone has been talking bout you? Well, we went to the party Saturday, and the way everyone looked at me when we walked in, I'm POSITIVE they had been talking about me and the gull I had to charge her $50 for a cake. The mother tried to call me Friday evening and I din't answer. She was freaking out because she couldn't find any bakery around that would make a volcano cake, and sheet cakes with plastic dinos were more than what I was going to charge her for the volcano. She wanted me to come over and "help" her make a volcano. We had company for the weekend, so I didn't return her call. I knew she was going to have a hard time since she doesn't even make slice and bake cookies. Got to the party, and she was up most of the night working on her volcano. It didn't even resemble a volcano, and was covered in runny green frosting that was obviously from a can and timted with liquid food colors. She stuck a ton of plastic palm trees and dinos on it, and some pieces of the cake when cut were almost ALL frosting since she had to patch so many places. They all made a huge deal to everyone who walked in saying "You HAVE to go see the cake that Shannon made!!!" I don't think they were really happy with it, they were just trying to make me feel bad! Oh well, her kid, his party, she got a cake that didn't cost $50, but probably really close to it with all the canned frosting and plastic toys that were on it. I'm interested to see how she acts around me out back now when the kids are playing!
You did the right thing- some people just have to learn things the hard way! I hope she doesn't hold it against you personally. I bet she never questions price again!
I agree - you did the right thing - I have a neighbor that I charged $75 for a baptism cake (it's in my photos) and she was so cool with it. In fact, I think she understands the difference between me needing to make money on my business and our friendship. We have been becoming even better friends since then.
I think mature, adult people understand the difference, and perhaps next time she will be willing to pay the discounted price to forego the trouble she had making the cake herself - at least now she knows the skill and the work that goes into a cake!
I saw her at the pool today and she kinda avoided me...I think she may be a little embarassed about the entire thing. Who knows. I'm sure she'll get over it, lol.
I can't help but laugh a little.
I'm sure she's embarassed b/c she now knows what goes on to make a cake, well...........how hard it is to make a cake.
I'm glad you got to see her cake. Not everyone is a cake decorator or close to it, but I think you probably got the last laugh in a way!