I never know what to charge people. Two girls I work with asked me to make them a birthday cake. They want a Mad Hatter topsy turvy cake three tier 8"6"4" white cake with white buttercream and pink and black fondant decorations. I have no idea what to charge them. What would you charge??
Thanks so much!!
I would Charge by the slice any where from 1.50 to 4.00 a slice
I started decorating cakes 18 years ago for work parties and families. Then people at work would want me to do a birthday cake or anniversary cake. I never knew what to charge because I felt bad charging friends too much. But when I would give them a figure, Id get $10 more when they paid, so I'd go higher, and again 10 more dollars. So, after reading all the valuable info on this site, I too charge by the slice, usually 2.50 for a simple cake to 3.50/slice or more depending on how much work I have to do. Being that this is more a hobby (ICU nurse by trade, cant afford to quit that job!) it does take alot of time on my days off. Plus people keep wanting cakes so I guess they dont think its too much, even the friends kept telling me to charge more!
A lot of times when I make cakes for people I know (I don't know how close of friends you are with these girls) I ask myself why I am doing the cake for them. Is it a gift for the birthday girl? A favor? Are they paying for the ingredients? Do you want to make a profit? Are you using it to practice a new technique? That really helps get a clear idea of why you are doing the cake, and what your expectations are. Have you made a cake like that before? Tricky! Are you going to be delivering it? Something else I like to do is call a couple of local bakeries, and see what they would charge. Obviously you wouldn't charge that much, but it does give you a ballpark of how much these people would be paying if you weren't doing it for them. Add up all your ingredients, dowels, cardboard, soap, etc. to see how much the cake is actually costing you. Then consider your time and, in my case at least, stress and anxiety! I have said no a time or two, just because when I thought about all that stuff, and factored in my three kids under the age of 4, it just wasn't worth it. Sorry, for rambling, but that's all the stuff that goes through my head when someone says, "oh, and you could make the cake!" lol.
That is a cake involving a lot of expertise with a high degree of difficulty. Shouldn't start any lower than $7 a serving to be fair to other decorators and to set the right tone for your friends. I mean unless they crochet or make quilts or scrapbook or paint houses and are going to do a big time-consuming costly project for you in kind.