Was I Rude?

Decorating By MJbakes Updated 17 Jul 2012 , 7:07pm by pinky73

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MJbakes Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:00pm
post #1 of 12

So I get a call from the lady inquiring about a cake. I told her I would need to know how many people it was serving the type of cake etc. And she says to me it's a wedding cake and it has to serve 190 people. So I tell her my prices start @ $4/serving for fondant and $3/serving for BC. She then replied with well my budget is $200.00 So I apologized saying that I couldn't make a cake that size for that price, and told her that there aren't alot of places that will make one that size either. She yelled at me on the phone saying I was rude and my prices were too high and she was going to call someone else who makes better cakes then me. I wanted to laugh so hard, because I know shes not going to find a wedding cake to serve 190 people for $200. But I just stayed calm and thanked her for calling and told her to have a nice day and good luck.

Some people I tell you!

But while I'm here, when your selling a wedding cake do you give them a discount? Because if I charge her $4/serving @ 190 ppl it would cost her $760.00 And thats just a simple design, no gumpaste flowers flowing down the side of the cake. What do wedding cakes actually go for out there?

11 replies
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idgalpal Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:07pm
post #2 of 12

Why would you give her a discount?
I think she is the rude one. You're right. she won't find anyone to do a wedding cake to serve 190 for $200.
I don't think you can just make a blanket statement that cakes (everywhere) cost $X for buttercream and $XX for fondant - it depends on the location, the market, the design, and probably a lot of other things I'm forgetting.

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BakingIrene Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:08pm
post #3 of 12

Get on the phone and call three bakeries at the top of the range and three at the bottom. Pretend you don't know anything about cakes but need a tiered cake for 190 people.

You will be surprised at how reasonable your price is. Then you can stop worrying when people are too cheap to pay you for your time. $1.00 a serving will cover the cost of ingredients and the hydro bill for the oven. Period.

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FromScratchSF Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:15pm
post #4 of 12

I think she was probably embarrassed that "just cake" could cost that much and was completely taken aback. And probably also angry that the wedding of her dreams is completely unrealistic and totally out of budget. It's a hard blow for many in this economy, and you just happened to have gotten a sliver of her wrath. Feel sorry for her family instead. icon_biggrin.gif I wouldn't take it personally and I wouldn't second-guess your pricing structure.

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inspiredbymom Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:18pm
post #5 of 12

I live in a very small community where some think that $2.00 is too much. On the other hand, some think that I don't charge enough. Just consider yourself lucky. She sounds negative. That wouldn't be fun to work with, no matter how much you charge!

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auntginn Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:20pm
post #6 of 12

You were not rude. She obviously had not done her homework. AND... how does she know others do better than you? Is she an existing customer or tasted your cakes from another event?

Don't beat yourself up over it. Only you know the cost to operate and you charge according to that plus the profit margin.

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MJbakes Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:32pm
post #7 of 12

Yea I called around pretending to be "the bride who just got engaged a month ago". lol I called 4 places,
Place #1 $855.00+
Place #2 just gave me between $5.75-10.00 per serving
Place #3 $830.00+
Place #4 $840.00+

So I agree that my price is reasonable. But I guess it's also because I'm the only one making the cakes, I have no employees. But I don't think I would actually have the space to make a cake this size lol. I've never done a wedding cake because of this issue. The biggest I've done was a 3 tier grad cake which took me about 8 hours to decorate!

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MJbakes Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:35pm
post #8 of 12
Originally Posted by auntginn

AND... how does she know others do better than you? Is she an existing customer or tasted your cakes from another event?

Exactly, I've never met the woman, I don't know if she's tasted my cakes she could have if she's been to an event where someone has had one of my cakes. But if she doesnt know what a cake costs she can't judge me because obviously I was the first person she called. I think this is the early stages of "Bridezilla-ism" for her lol

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BakingIrene Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:40pm
post #9 of 12

Wedding cake for 190 is 4 tiers with the bottom one about 14" or 16" depending on shape.

I did that with a dedicated full size fridge and a full size oven at home, no problem. What you need is to be real careful with the dowels, to cut them square with a mitre box and all the same length.

FYI a bakery doesn't use the skilled decorators to bake cakes...they have minimum wage employees for that. They also have ovens that bake hundreds of pans at a time. You should pay a visit to Jeannie's and ask for the backstage tour...

If anybody asks, you can say that you don't have bakery rents or overheads (until you do for tax purposes).

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MsGF Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:44pm
post #10 of 12

I think your prices are very reasonable. I think she has called bakeries and found she couldn't afford them so she figured she call a home baker instead. Maybe she thought you'd be cheaper. I think she is just frustrated and uninformed. I believe very few people really truly understand what is involved in making and decorating beautiful cakes. The only experience the majority of people have with purchasing cakes is at there grocery store. So it comes as a huge shock that a wedding cake is so much more expensive. She probably thought it would be the least expensive part of the wedding.

Anyhow you weren't rude. I've taken calls like that too. A lot of us probably have. I just politely inform them of my prices, and wish them all the best.

Don't worry about it. Her lack of knowledge isn't your problem. She just lashed out at you because you were convenient.

Good Luck and Happy Baking.

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MJbakes Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 6:52pm
post #11 of 12

Another question.
When I called around to investigate, the people I spoke with would ask me "Are you have the cake with dinner or as a late night snack? If it's a late night snack not everyone will have cake" Do you discuss this with the bride? If so how do you figure out how many people will or will not have cake if it's the late night snack? One company said I would I need a cake for 130 servings one said 120 and one said 100. I've never heard of this. At the weddings I've been to, (friends and family) Everyone eats cake minus maybe 2 or 3 people.

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pinky73 Posted 17 Jul 2012 , 7:07pm
post #12 of 12

You were definitely not rude...just because she didn't like the answer, does not mean you were rude in "breaking the news" to her. In my job, which is just an office position, I have noticed a significant rise in ugly attitude from the general public who call in. I can't tell you how many times I have been called rude or worse simply because someone didn't like the answer to their question..and those questions usually have something to do with some sort of outrageous demand and hateful attitude. SOmetimes it's that they misdialed the number or thought they were calling somehwere else, when I say "No, this is not the Fire Department but their non emergency number is xyz" I will more times than not, get an argument from the caller, insisting thay have the right number. I don't get it. Simply put, there are alot of people out there that act like spoiled children when they don't get their way and have no hesitation to take it out on whoever is on the other end of the phone. It also doesn't matter how accommodating or polite you are, if they don't get their way, they are all too happy to start throwing insults and tantrums.
Your caller was a jerk..not you.

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