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I am not just a cake baker...!!!??? - Page 3

post #31 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by emi

I'm amazed how bold some people are, When they called to confirm, we asked if we were to bring anything. No, they said. They had everything. We got there around lunch time, then they asked if we brought our own food, since they brought enough for only 3 of them.
Did we miss something? It amazes me how people can be!



See, that's why most people think I'm a "witch"..I would've packed up my family and car...and said...

"Oh, I'm sorry..( with a S*** eating grin on my face!..lol) I should've realized that you were having financial difficulties when you asked me to make a cake for 40...on your budget of $25.00 dollars..."

That would've been on a bad day...lol but I STILL would've gotten back in my car and left!

Grrrrrrrrr..I am NOT a nice person am I? But I only allow someone to fool me once...they fool me twice shame on me!
post #32 of 53
It all comes down to my saying. "Good cakes aren't cheap, Cheap cakes aren't good"
Happy Baking,

Twin Dees

"Good cakes aren't cheap,
Cheap cakes aren't good" (TM)

I am a very proud Mom of Nia , Jada, & D.J.
Reply
Happy Baking,

Twin Dees

"Good cakes aren't cheap,
Cheap cakes aren't good" (TM)

I am a very proud Mom of Nia , Jada, & D.J.
Reply
post #33 of 53
that's very true. I wish my people couldn't understand that. icon_cry.gif
cakes are great!
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cakes are great!
Reply
post #34 of 53
Thread Starter 
Just wanted to post an update to this topic....

The chairman of the committee called me again today... seems other members of the church got wind what was going on and they took up a collection for the cake. Something I think they should have done in the first place. That is what my church does.

Anyway --- I am making the cake after all and getting the price I quoted for it. icon_biggrin.gif
post #35 of 53
Good for you and the committe..!
post #36 of 53
I read through the whole post and before I read the outcome I was going to write the following:

Perhaps the person who asked really had zero knowledge about cakes....I doubt very much they were snickering to eachother behind closed doors saying..."he he...watch how cheap I get this cake...he he.."

I would simply state the facts to them and suggest that they discuss the cake budget amongst themselves again because it just doesn't work for that amount....

Secondly...I may stand alone on this because several members posted the opposite, but just because it is a church....YES...I do discount. Especially my church...or my mother's church. Like I said...this is just my humble opinion...

I'm very glad that it worked out for you because now you can continue doing this without resentment.

DEEVE....(My new name for Diva)...are you always a witch or just for Halloween? Ha Ha...just kidding....
icon_biggrin.gif
post #37 of 53
*...Diva cackling...lol

( I also discount..at times...when I'm in a good mood..lol)

I'm waiting for your call...hehehehe!
post #38 of 53
You always make me laugh! Thanks and have a great Floridian night...it's cold up hear in NYC!!!! Gotta go...my eyes are closing........
post #39 of 53
* tucking Advent in...

and looking out for that PAINTED EYE!...

Now..THAT'S spooky!
post #40 of 53
Well, I am glad it all worked out in the end. Good news!
I discount too, heck I used to only do for cost or for free. But I have found, that the people that get you to do these cakes for charity type groups, also expect the same prices for their own cakes. You get the line, "well that is how much you would charge someone else, but what is my price?"
And you may get one of these folks that sit on the committee for everything their children are involved in, so it isn't one cake a year, it is one cake a month. The cakes are often highly specialized and they tell their friends and before you know it, half of your business is with people who want a discount. It snowballs, trust me.
I spent many, many years doing freebies for friends and family, neighbours, schools, churches, any organization my children were involved in. I saw that as being useful and giving back to the community. I still do that often.
But you have to exercise caution. Because before you know it you are investing a good portion of your time and money in charity works. And it can get so that your own family will resent it and your bank account will be crying out for a good paying customer. Next thing you know, you need a full-time job to cover your charity works alone. And not only that, but you get yourself stuck doing cakes that you have no interest in, no fun at. You get burnt out.
I was recently in a situation where a friend of a close relative was interested in having me do cakes and desserts for her two restaurants. Turns out, she had been buying Costco desserts, even though she has a culinary school graduate chef working for her. Apparently his product was not consistent or was consistently bland and she did not want him making her desserts. No, what she wanted was Costco prices and to get her 300% mark-up and for me to have her purchase the ingredients at her wholesale prices, so she could control whatever I stated costs to be. I don't think so, I don't work for slave wages or work that hard for someone else to be getting a 300% mark-up. I told her very politely, sorry not interested.
Where I am heading is here, sometimes we have to teach people how to treat us. Personally, I am not much for being a doormat, I am flat enough thank you. I don't have a sign that Welcomes people to step on me.
That is why I lecture people on sites about charging a fair price, fair for them. You have to stand up for yourself, stick to your guns and protect your time and your bank account. You are going to have some people that are always going to find your prices too high. Some will be bragging at weddings about how they bargained down your prices to dirt cheap. But I have very rarely heard anyone say that somebody charged what they felt was a fair price, at least not behind a cake decorator's back. And if you do hear that, chances are you undercharged them, haha!
Hugs Squirrelly
post #41 of 53
[quote="SquirrellyCakes"]

I was recently in a situation where a friend of a close relative was interested in having me do cakes and desserts for her two restaurants. Turns out, she had been buying Costco desserts, even though she has a culinary school graduate chef working for her. Apparently his product was not consistent or was consistently bland and she did not want him making her desserts. [quote]

some culinary school graduates don't specialize in Pastry Arts. I know that at my school they are just taught the basics and they don't bake from scratch really. They are taught how to make pie dough...for quiche and fruit pies..fruit pies made with commercial fillings) they make cookies and I think danishes...

they specialize in culinary skills.

Now, if this is someone that has gone through a baking and pastry program....ewwwwwww! double ewwwwwwwwwww.

I would run not walk to you and get on my knees to have you bake for me!! She's lost out on a good thing for having her eye on the bottom line and not on getting the best for her customers!

SC, you're better off not working for someone like this!
post #42 of 53
Haha, knew I should have been more specific, after I posted. Apparently he is both a qualified chef and pastry chef. I think his issue is that he does his own thing and doesn't listen to feedback. They had to throw out a lot of his creations.
It is like anything else, a person can be trained but sometimes they get it in their heads that they know better than the experts that trained them and I think this is one of those cases. Since the dessert market is a minor part of the business and a part that the owner is just beginning to explore, she is happy to retain his services for main courses and look elsewhere for the desserts. As you probably know, there is a huge turnover with chefs and rather than deal with someone new, he is being kept on because he does well in other areas.
Didn't mean to imply that all culinary graduates are of the same cloth, goodness, all training and education is invaluable. In fact, in my opinion, anyone that can afford an education in this field or any other, should go for it if they want to pursue a career. A certificate or degree usually gets you in the door faster and at a higher rate of salary when your years of experience are limited. Unfortunately, we live in a time when education is often considered a more valuable commodity than many years of practical experience in a field. But I would like to think that talented people no matter what their education or experience, will achieve success based on their reputation.
But I do sometimes take issue with the quality of commercial product. I think, that food cost budget restrictions often also restrict the quality of the finished product. You cannot make a quality diamond ring using a zircon. And I suspect this owner "bottom lines" it too much when producing a product. Some wholesale grocery product outlets do not deal in quality ingredients and when you use less than good quality, it will always be detectable. That is a key issue that I have with most bakeries in my area. The products are fairly similar and bland, for the most part. They are likely using the same ingredients from the same wholesaler. I know that these desserts, other than the purchased Costco items, are "from scratch" and are not "bake-off" or from mix products.
Interestingly, there is another restaurant nearby that has just a few desserts on their menu and these choices change from time to time. I was surprised at the quality of a dessert that I had there recently and asked the waitress who was making their desserts, because the cake used in this dessert tasted very much like a recipe I use and it had the same texture. In other words it tasted homemade. Apparently the chef liked to dabble in desserts though that wasn't his main field of expertise.
I take issue with commercial product where the time element is the issue that the products produced are most often based on, along with keeping the ingredient costs low. I find that this results in many items tasting the same, not necessarily good. They use the same sleeve fillings, the same artificial whipped toppings etc. There is often an almost chemical taste to the items offered.
And yes, there is most definitely a difference between what is expected from a commercial bakery and what is expected from a pastry chef. But I am finding that the line is very much so blurred.
As in just about any other product being produced it has become an issue of what people are willing to pay for and what they are willing to accept for the price they want to pay. Sometimes quality doesn't stand a chance.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes
post #43 of 53
I have definately had to learn not to be shy about pricing my cakes! People really do not understand about cake pricing. I recently made a bridal shower cake for someone, it was 60 servings (actually its in my photos, its a 2 layer 11x15 victorian cake with a hat and gloves and pearls)... I told the lady to just pay whatever she wanted but she didn't have to pay....it was basically a gift and that's fine...

She gave me $50, which to her I guess was alot for cakes! What she didn't know was that after I bought the lace mold and the ingredients and the luster dust, I was pretty close to that amount out of pocket! Which is okay....I offered, but it just goes to show how people do not understand.
post #44 of 53
Yes, that cake looks more like $150 to me! What a beauty, that is just perfect! The guests must have been thrilled! Love it!
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes
post #45 of 53
What a bummer! People just don't understand what goes into creating a cake like this.

I'm glad you stood your ground with the pricing. They'll soon have a rude awakening when they start to get prices from other places and find out your's was the least expensive!

Sammy
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