Sometimes I just want to bang my head on a wall.
A couple of months ago and very young couple comes into the shop wanting a cake for their sons 1st birthday. She has a picture of a fondant covered, 3 tier, Dr Suess theme cake in 3 flavors. I explain to them that I do not do character cakes because of copyright but I can do something similar with the same colors and "feel". I give them a price but they couldn't afford it. I told them that it would bring the price down if we do buttercream instead of fondant. So we agree on price and design....$170 for 3 tier, buttercream, fondant decorations loosely based off Dr Suess, red and white fondant top hat, and candy trees. I ask if they need delivery or if they are picking it up. They tell me they are picking it up since they live an hour away. I inform them I can not promise it will make it there in tact once it leaves my store and suggest we make the top hat a separate cake since it was the smash cake and that would make it easier to transport. They agree so I write it up and tell them the deposit is $85 plus tax. They asked if they could pay part of the deposit and come back in a few weeks to pay the other part of the deposit. Being nice I agree.
Fast forward to November.... They come in to pay the other part of the deposit and the guy asks if we can do the trees with cotton candy. I told him that it would be a good idea but only if I could find cotton candy. But if I couldn't find it then we would have to do our original plan. OK sounds good.
Now its December and the week the cake is due. We are also looking to have a massive snow storm that weekend. I call them on Thursday and ask if they are still having the party that Saturday. He tells me they are having it and that I can proceed with the cake. So I do. Only something tells me to not put the decorations on. Of course I get a call first thing Saturday morning (after I braved the snow and ice to get to my shop for this one cake order) saying they are moving the party to the following weekend because of the snow and will it be a problem? After cursing in my head I tell him I understand and to be careful out there. Then take home 3 tiers of cake to my kids.....
The next week the cake is done and they come to pick it up. They pay the other $85 and ask if they can leave the cake with me so they can go out to eat. Sure! 10 mins later I get a call from the girls father saying they need a refund because his daughter is distraught and hates the cake so much shes crying. WHAT?!?!?! They were just in here saying how much they liked it. I did it exactly to their specifications. I told him there was no way I was going to be giving any refunds because there was nothing wrong with the cake. Not to mention that I had to pay for supplies and ingredients plus the 2 days it took me to make it. Then he asks if they can at least have a discount. Ummmm no! I then send him pictures of the cake so he can see for himself. 15 mins later she comes in looking all sheepish. I asked her what it was that she didn't like about the cake and maybe we could change it. she just keeps saying "It doesn't look exactly like the picture"over and over again. I thought we had discussed this in our first meeting????? I showed her the contract where we planned the cake and discusses the changes. SO NO.... its not going to look like that picture!!!! Then she keeps asking for a refund or a discount. I explain to her once again that I was out time and ingredients for this cake and that if I gave her a refund then I would also be out money. She didn't care. Just kept asking for money back. I finally told her that I would give her the money back that she paid me that day ($85) but she was not walking out with a cake from me. Of course now she is all over fb telling her friends how I ruined her sons first birthday because I wouldn't give her the cake she ordered. Sigh... you just cant make everyone happy. maybe I should have kept the other part of the money as a BS fee.
I honestly think that they didn't realize how much they would be paying me right before Christmas and figured if they said they didn't like the cake then they wouldn't have to pay full price for it. But once I stood my ground it became sense of pride for her.