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First professional cake collapsed, Im so devestated.

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
I made a cake for a friend/ first customer. It was a birthday cake for her daughter turning one. This was also the first cake I'd ever made for a profit. It was a 10, 8, and 6 dense vanilla bean cakes stacked. I place supports on the bottom cake i placed supports in the middle cake what was on a cake board. I placed the top cake on and sharpened a long wooden dowel and shoved it through the top through the cake boards to the bottom cake. I put it on a 12x12 1/2 thick piece of plywood covered in fondant I built it last night. I also purchase a durable cardboard box that was 14x14x14 and cut the top off (it stood at 18in) so the cake could easily slide in and out with ease The customer came to pick it up today. It appeared very sturdy and not likely to move, I was very confident in my work I had informed his wife prior to them picking it up that it would need to sit flat and air conditioner would be almost necessary as it is getting warm where I live. I walked w/ him to the car and reminded him of a/c and sitting flat. He sat it in the back seat of his car and used something to 'level' it. I was hoping it would hold but was concerned because it was not sitting flat. I encouraged him to place it on the floor, he was certain it would be fine where it was. I reminded them so many times. I just received an email stating that the bottom cake gave way. I'm almost positive it's because the cake was not sitting flat in the car. They gave me an additional amount of money because they were late picking it up and it far exceeded their expectations. I feel terrible that the bottom gave way. The customers live 1.5 hours away. I have to wonder if it was something I did because I can't help but feel guilty. I took their money they drove off w/ the cake and the bottom gave way.
LL
post #2 of 25
adorable cake !! That story is why i always deliver my own cakes. Once the cake leaves your hands, and you have provided the support needed, and gave instructions, there really isnt anything else you could have done. IMO

hopefully someone who's experienced this will see your post.
laughter isn't the best medicine. It's the cure.
Grabbing my bowl of faux-'nache and running from the ganache police!!
link to Jello MMF recipe: http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopicp-6934662-.html#6934662
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laughter isn't the best medicine. It's the cure.
Grabbing my bowl of faux-'nache and running from the ganache police!!
link to Jello MMF recipe: http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopicp-6934662-.html#6934662
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post #3 of 25
Thread Starter 
I called my mentor and asked her, and she gave me the same exact answer you did. I can't help but feel guilty. I know it wasn't me. I even made sure it was a really dense cake because I didn't want it to collapse.
post #4 of 25
I LOVE the design of this cake! And I can't stand Yo Gabba but this is a darn cute cake. haha.

I do notice though that the bottom tier does seem a bit lopsided...or is it just the way the photo is taken? From that particular photo I can kind of see how it could be risky.

Was the cake cold or room temp when you handed it out?

If the bottom tier was not lopsided on the bottom and it was cold when you handed it out, then a very good chance something happened during transport.

If a customer is transporting what I feel is a risky cake (I had a three tier transport the other day..the Abby one I just loaded...we took it over an hour and the customer took it an additional hour or so.) I do have them sign a waiver that has them read the instructions for transporting it, and accepting responsibility for getting it home safely. I don't do it most of the time, but only if its a taller cake that needs extra care.

I'm very sorry this happened. icon_sad.gif
post #5 of 25
First your cake is great. I'm sorry to say this situation will never end. We now have a business, tell people all the time to have a level spot, we even have a waiver (idiot clause) to sign and they still call. You don't won't to give money back, but on the other hand you are running a business and once in awhile it may be a construction issue. We have had lots of excuses and they honestly must think we are stupidwith what they come us with , but you do want business and unfortunately they will tell tons of people how your cake fell apart, more than how great it was. We will try to not give a credit, appoligize alot and stress how this is cake and it does not like to travel. Sometimes you just have to pick and choose what is worth fighting for. Good luck with all your future orders.
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Co-Owner of Fat and Happy Confections
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post #6 of 25
I am so sorry this happened.... icon_sad.gif
post #7 of 25
gosh, i don't even travel with 3 tiers stacked!! so very sorry this happend to you but it sure sounds like it could have been from sitting unlevel on the back seat--never a good idea. i have a customer pick up form that they sign and it says that once it leaves me then it's all on them.
post #8 of 25
I think the problem is theirs. I know you feel awful, but if you constructed it properly, the way you have described, there is nothing you can do. Especially if he put it on the seat in a 'not really all that level' position. You should not let this eat you alive. You warned them repeatedly.

That cake is very, very adorable. You did a fantastic job, and should certainly be proud. I agree that I don't like 'letting' customers pick up tiered cakes, but for a three hour round-trip, I think I'd relax my standards! icon_lol.gif

Please take a deep breath and know that the bad stuff usually only lasts a minute, but the good stuff will hang around a lot longer!
Melvira: Mistress of the dark... chocolate!

Well that's just great. Peanut butter in my crack.
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Melvira: Mistress of the dark... chocolate!

Well that's just great. Peanut butter in my crack.
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post #9 of 25
Thread Starter 
It was chilled but he was over an hour and a half late and it was the middle of the day and for the first time this spring the sun finally became noticeable. The cake was level I took the picture at an awkward angle. as to try and not get my ugly retro yellow oven in the way.
post #10 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by micahleech1986

It was chilled but he was over an hour and a half late and it was the middle of the day and for the first time this spring the sun finally became noticeable. The cake was level I took the picture at an awkward angle. as to try and not get my ugly retro yellow oven in the way.



Oh okay! I'm sorry for sounding like I doubted you. The cake is spectacular!!!!

I hate when people prop cakes in back seats. thumbsdown.gif
post #11 of 25
So sorry to hear about your cake issue. After a similar incident early on in my business, I made it a point to include a print out about how to care for your cake which also includes that the customer takes full responsibility of their order upon possession. VERY important. Hope this helps. Don't stress over it though, you did a great job on the cake, girl!
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post #12 of 25
sorry that happened... I do agree with KIita as to how the bottom tier looks... it looks like the middle tier is already "digging" in the bottom tier..... and the fact that he placed the cake on the seat instead of the floor... didn't help....

BTW: Cute Super Cute design!
Happy Caking!
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Happy Caking!
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post #13 of 25
I'm sure you'll hear it from others, too, but get the SPS system! It makes your cake so incredibly stable - it won't go anywhere!

After trying it I really never want to use anything else. It's the peace of mind - and simplicity of the whole thing!

Jenny
A genius is seldom orderly, an orderly person is rarely of genius.
A. Einstein
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A genius is seldom orderly, an orderly person is rarely of genius.
A. Einstein
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post #14 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalis4joe

sorry that happened... I do agree with KIita as to how the bottom tier looks... it looks like the middle tier is already "digging" in the bottom tier..... and the fact that he placed the cake on the seat instead of the floor... didn't help....

BTW: Cute Super Cute design!



I LOVE the cake. You did an awesome job. I agree with dalis that the middle tier looks to be "digging" in the bottom tier. I'm sure that the trip in the back seat didn't help either. For your peace of mind I'd suggest having customers sign a form accepting responsibility for the cake once they leave with it.

I also recommend the SPS system.
everyday is a good day, some are just better than others.
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everyday is a good day, some are just better than others.
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post #15 of 25
SPS was originally designed for bakeries that don't offer delivery - customers had to pick up their own stacked cakes. It's perfect for that!

Also, I would have been very reluctant to let the cake leave on the back seat. I have held the cake box and demanded that the customer put it n the front floorboard and clean out the front car seat, or even clean out the trunk.

Totally cute cake, though.
Answers to the most often asked questions re: SPS. SPS instructions are on Page 15 of the Sticky at the top of the Cake Decorating Forum. Supplies can be ordered from Oasis Supply, Global or BakeryCrafts.
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Answers to the most often asked questions re: SPS. SPS instructions are on Page 15 of the Sticky at the top of the Cake Decorating Forum. Supplies can be ordered from Oasis Supply, Global or BakeryCrafts.
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