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Help, Can anyone please tell me how much I should be charging for these cakes?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi, I'm a self taught baker. I usually make cakes for family and friends but lately I've had people ask me to make cakes for their parties. I don't know how much I should charge. I want to make a profit, but still be cheaper than professional cake shops. Thank you for your help![IMG][IMG]
post #2 of 15
You need to add up your costs (ingredients, labor, and overhead such as license fees and insurance), then add a markup for profit based on the market price for cakes in your area. You should not be undercutting professional cake shops.

Also note that if you will be reproducing copyrighted characters (e.g. Mario and Luigi) you will need written permission from the copyright owner first.
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
Wow, never thought of all that. I dont think my cakes are as good as the cake shops, I still have lots to learn about cakes. I just enjoy making the little characters. I'll stick to doing this for fun, I think I should just keep it that way for now. I never thought about getting permission from the copyright owner. So much work goes into running a business. I'm just going to wait until I have a pastry chef title.
post #4 of 15

If you do sell your cakes, don't undercut the bakeries...sell them at market value.  There are many, many threads about this subject.

post #5 of 15

Your fondant figures are AWESOME!

No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government...

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No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government...

Reply
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
I wouldn't try to undercut the bakeries, One day I want my own. I just never thought they were cake shop quality, my fondant work is very sloppy. I get lots of bubbles, elephant skin like texture, cracks. I just try to cover them best I can. I know there's lots of room for improvement. I don't think it would be fair to charge for a cake what a professional would charge for. It takes me a very long time to make the accents that it would be ridiculous to consider charging someone for the labour hours. It's just a hobby for me know. The Mario cake took almost three weeks of work ( few hours a day) to make the characters. I would want to charge market value once I have mastered covering the cakes with fondant. I just don't know what that would be. I plan on taking a pastry arts program once my children are in school.
I'm extremely happy I came across this site, it's great how everyone shares their experiences, and tips!
post #7 of 15
@ jason_kraft what are the going "labor" rates? I never have though to really figure that in. How much do bakers employed in specialty cake shops make? Is that the labor rate I charge or not so much because I'm only paying myself?
post #8 of 15
Labor rates will vary according to skill level & the area you live. Depending on the skill I'm using, I factor $10-50 per hour.

"Only paying yourself"...you should still be earning at least minimum wage.

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
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www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply
post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your advice, I would have to check out the local market price for cakes. I at least have an idea of where to start when it comes to charging for skill level.
post #10 of 15
Thanks DeliciousDesserts!
post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLoveOfSugar View Post

@ jason_kraft what are the going "labor" rates? I never have though to really figure that in. How much do bakers employed in specialty cake shops make? Is that the labor rate I charge or not so much because I'm only paying myself?

Depending on local cost of living, cake decorators typically make $10-20/hour unless they have specialized skills.

If anything, you should be paying yourself more than what you could earn working for someone else, since you have the added responsibility of running your own business.
post #12 of 15
Im wondering if some one might have some advice, I started at local grocers & my work got wonderful revues, people taking pics of my cakes in the display & if you want to check out my work, http://kccakelady.blogspot.com
Let me go, cause i was getting overtime
My husband had a medical emergency & was out of work, so i built a Website & started doing them in my own
Now i work pt in Leavenworth, ks and i make cakes from home, got a job offer once from a prestige hotel in Florida didn't make the cut from kc. Everyone says i need a tv show, as i only do Amazing Buttercream Wedding cakes, never covered in fondant but look like they are, Id Like to have a store, or work for some one willing to make my time worth while, to get the benefits , and I'm unsure the legalities of a cake business from home & at a loss how to either get a store with bad credit from medical bills & no place in KC, that I've found that does the type cakes i do
post #13 of 15
I don't think I would have any useful advice for you, but I just want to tell you that your cakes are beyond beautiful. Credit Unions are more likely to give out loans to someone with any kind of credit issues. I'm sure there are grants you can apply for, and in the mean time, check into what it takes to be licensed out of your home. You might be surprised! Good luck. You are one talented lady!!!
post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by kccakelady View Post

Im wondering if some one might have some advice, I started at local grocers & my work got wonderful revues, people taking pics of my cakes in the display & if you want to check out my work, http://kccakelady.blogspot.com
Let me go, cause i was getting overtime
My husband had a medical emergency & was out of work, so i built a Website & started doing them in my own
Now i work pt in Leavenworth, ks and i make cakes from home, got a job offer once from a prestige hotel in Florida didn't make the cut from kc. Everyone says i need a tv show, as i only do Amazing Buttercream Wedding cakes, never covered in fondant but look like they are, Id Like to have a store, or work for some one willing to make my time worth while, to get the benefits , and I'm unsure the legalities of a cake business from home & at a loss how to either get a store with bad credit from medical bills & no place in KC, that I've found that does the type cakes i do

If you live on the MO side you may qualify to run a home-based bakery with some restrictions, you would just need to contact your county health dept. But if you are in KS there is no cottage food law so you would most likely need to find a commercial kitchen to rent.
post #15 of 15

Thank you both of you, appreciate any advice and kind words are very appreciated

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