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What would you do....Bride changed order

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

Last year, I had a consult with a bride and her mother.  They loved our cake and put down a deposit.  They wanted a wedding cake and cupcakes for the guests.  Today, I received an email stating that they want to change the order.  They want us to do the cake but want someone else to do the cupcakes.  

 

In the past, I was asked to do a dummy cake for a wedding with someone else making servings for the guests.  I turned it down before we even consulted.  If the other bakers cakes were not good, I didn't want someone thinking that we made it if someone asked "who made your wedding cake?".  

 

Now it is happening again!  Only this time, they have had their consultation, they placed their deposit to hold the date.  They also want us to make a real cake so some of our cake will be there but someone else's cake will be there too only in a different form.  They will be cupcakes so people will know the difference.  I am torn.  Do I tell her "no thank you" and give her deposit back or should I just hope that nobody will confuse some other bakers cake for our cake?  I am really torn.  

 

Advice please!  

post #2 of 22
If you don't feel comfortable with someone else's cupcakes there you can tell the customer, but I would refund the deposit since it's your choice to cancel the order.

Another option would be finding out who is making the cupcakes and checking the reviews for that vendor. If the cupcakes will be made by an unlicensed baker you could talk to the venue to see if they will even allow them to be served at the event.
post #3 of 22
Quote:

Originally Posted by inspiredbymom View Post
Hi inspiredbymom

I have strong views on this kind of arrangement  requested by customers....for the exact same reasons as you posted below.

No, i don<t supply one cake or Cupcakes only to have another Baker/Caker do the other half of the order.

My reasons are... no two Bakers/Cakers make the exact same cakes - or decorate in the exact same way.

Sadly, if half of the order is not up to par, then your good name and reputation can be harmed due to the other suppliers downfall.

If your customer is going to be demanding and wants her cake order completed in this manner - then i would offer a refund informing them that this is not your policy. Yes, you may loose the order - but you could loose more than that if the cupcakes (in this particular situation) aren't up to scratch.

 

I was asked to decorate someone else's fruit cake... which i turned down.

Imagine if the fruit cake was dry and horrid... no one at the wedding would put their hand up to claim it - instead i would/could get the blame. Not worth the hassle and drama that goes with this type of wish from a customer.  The Mother of the Bride even phoned me twice, asking me to reconsider... the second phone call i bluntly told her AGAIN my reasons and left it at that... some just don't like No for an answer..

No way would they walk into a florist and slap some flowers on the counter and say...arrange these for my wedding.

No way would they have a wedding gown made by someone and then say - Ohhh leave the hem, we will take that up.

Same goes for us Bakers and Cakers...its either all or nothing.... or it should be.

 

 

Last year, I had a consult with a bride and her mother.  They loved our cake and put down a deposit.  They wanted a wedding cake and cupcakes for the guests.  

 

Today, I received an email stating that they want to change the order.  They want us to do the cake but want someone else to do the cupcakes.  

 

In the past, I was asked to do a dummy cake for a wedding with someone else making servings for the guests.  I turned it down before we even consulted.  If the other bakers cakes were not good, I didn't want someone thinking that we made it if someone asked "who made your wedding cake?".  

 

Now it is happening again!  Only this time, they have had their consultation, they placed their deposit to hold the date.  They also want us to make a real cake so some of our cake will be there but someone else's cake will be there too only in a different form.  They will be cupcakes so people will know the difference.  I am torn.  Do I tell her "no thank you" and give her deposit back ...Yes, do this...

 

or should I just hope that nobody will confuse some other bakers cake for our cake?

I don;t think that's going to happen...you have your style and another Caker has theirs...  I am really torn.  

 

Advice please!  

 

Bluehue

post #4 of 22
Quote:

I was asked to decorate someone else's fruit cake... which i turned down.

Imagine if the fruit cake was dry and horrid... no one at the wedding would put their hand up to claim it - instead i would/could get the blame. Not worth the hassle and drama that goes with this type of wish from a customer.  The Mother of the Bride even phoned me twice, asking me to reconsider... the second phone call i bluntly told her AGAIN my reasons and left it at that... some just don't like No for an answer..

No way would they walk into a florist and slap some flowers on the counter and say...arrange these for my wedding.

No way would they have a wedding gown made by someone and then say - Ohhh leave the hem, we will take that up.

Same goes for us Bakers and Cakers...its either all or nothing.... or it should be.

 

Oh yeah, I would like to see someone plunk down flowers and try to get them arranged! That is a very good comparison!

 

Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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post #5 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Annabakescakes View Post

 

Oh yeah, I would like to see someone plunk down flowers and try to get them arranged! That is a very good comparison!

 

It actually happens a lot! I have a family member that is a florist, and she gets calls ALL the time from brides wanting to order roses from costco and have her arrange them.

We cakers aren't the only ones that people try to nickle and dime, lol.

 

I agree with the others, I don't provide cake/cupcakes to an event unless I am the only baker providing them.

I would talk to her and let her know it's your policy to be the only baker, and I would explain why. It can be done very professionally, it doesn't sound like you're bad mouthing the other baker, of course. And I would offer the deposit back, since like Jason said, since it is your choice to cancel.

post #6 of 22

And maybe add this to the terms and conditions of your contract, so that if someone else tries it in the future you won't have to refund the deposit.

elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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post #7 of 22
Thread Starter 

Thank you all for your responses!  I was just gearing up to talk to her and offer her the deposit when I received an email from her cancelling my services.  I really don't know what happened or why, but I get to keep the deposit!  icon_biggrin.gif  I am sure that I will eventually hear the scoop!  

 

I am glad that I am not the only one who feels this way about two bakers/one wedding.  I thought maybe I was just being a cake snob!  I didn't want to be thought of that way but I don't want someone else's liability!  

 

Thanks again all!  I appreciate it!

post #8 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by kikiandkyle View Post

And maybe add this to the terms and conditions of your contract, so that if someone else tries it in the future you won't have to refund the deposit.

That sounds good in theory, but from the customer's perspective it seems pretty hostile. People don't like their money to be held hostage, and if they decide to continue with the order to avoid losing the deposit they may just bring in outside cupcakes anyway or retaliate by complaining about the quality of the cake and stopping payment on a check or disputing the CC charge.
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by inspiredbymom View Post

I was just gearing up to talk to her and offer her the deposit when I received an email from her cancelling my services.  I really don't know what happened or why, but I get to keep the deposit!  

Is the customer clear that she is forfeiting her deposit by cancelling the order?
post #10 of 22

I'm sure that offering the deposit back as a gesture of goodwill (minus a fee for the tasting), assuming it's not too close to the booked date, goes a long way for customer relations. But I don't think businesses should refund as a matter of policy, and stating it is non-refundable in the terms covers those occasions when you don't think a refund is warranted. 

elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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post #11 of 22
Why the heck would people expect there money back if they cancel? That just seams plain stupid to me. Everybody knows you don't get the deposit back and anyone who tries it are the ones being hostile. What an imbecilic thought. Of course there are people who will try but the vendors who give them.back are the ones with a problem. Reminds me of a neighbor who would return her kids clothes back to the store when they grew out of them. For real. The store always did it, so she kept coming back to do it again.
post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by annabananana View Post

Why the heck would people expect there money back if they cancel?

It depends on the contract. If the contract does not specifically say that the deposit is non-refundable, it's a valid question. The customer also may not have read the contract very carefully. In any case, it's better to sort this out now instead of waiting for things to escalate (in the case of a misunderstanding).

It's also probably best to avoid calling the customer names too. icon_wink.gif
post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 

She is fully aware that the deposit to save the date was just that, to save the date.  She also mentioned it in the email that she sent to me cancelling.  I was going to offer it back because I thought I would have to break the contract, but that was not the case.  The "save the date" money is to hold the date and not accept anything else that date.  She had not finished her decisions on the size of cake yet so we did not get the 1/2 down yet.  It was a work in progress but we have had many hours in the last six months in correspondence and consults.  I feel better about it (other than not doing a 380-400 serving wedding!) and now know to add that to my contract!  I have already turned down several orders for that weekend.  I will follow up with those and see if anyone is still wanting to book.  It is still 6 months away!  

 

Ah, the joys!  Deep breath and roll on!

post #14 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by inspiredbymom View Post

She is fully aware that the deposit to save the date was just that, to save the date.  She also mentioned it in the email that she sent to me cancelling.  

In that case it shouldn't be a problem, glad to hear things got resolved so easily.
post #15 of 22

I'm guessing her cupcake person had a no co-star rule too...

elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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