Cake Decorating Community - Cakes We Bake

A few weeks ago a woman that I know through working with our local school fundraising committee, emailed me for a quote to do a christening cake/birthday cake. Without asking more info I said that my prices started at $100 and went up from there depending on the level of decoration required. I never heard anything more about it. No worries; all well and good.

Then last week someone else was chatting with me and told me how this woman had been telling everyone at a party they were at, that my cakes were too expensive and she couldn't believe I was charging so much blah blah blah, but the kicker was "I'm thinking of doing some cake decorating and charging reasonable prices"!

At first I was shocked as I had seen her on several occasions and she had said nothing to me. Then I started to doubt myself and THAT was the worst! All it had taken was some uninformed trailer trash to make me think I was being unreasonable!

Why did I give that comment that power over me? Because secretly I can't believe people pay so much for a CAKE that I bake and decorate because I certainly wouldn't!!
But then I would be able to make my own and deep down I think I assume everyone else could do the same if they put their minds to it!! I know, I'm an idiot! I'm not being at all logical and not everyone has the time, patience or inclination.

So what did she get for her child's christening cake? An unmemorable, store bought slab cake with a bit of piped buttercream and some writing No other decorations. This cake cost her $140; but I'm too expensive remember.

I did this christening cake for the weekend and charged $150 for it. It was 10x10in chocolate mud cake/ganache/fondant.
http://www.cakeswebake.com/photo/christeningcake-booties1?context=user

THEN a "friend" of mine celebrated her daughter's 18th birthday. She told me that she didn't get me to do the cake as I was expensive, then proceeded to tell me how she had got this 10inch round cake covered with strawberries and chocolate for $160, she had to drive 45min away to get it and bring it back; but I'm too expensive??

Apparently it's fine to charge if you have a store, but not if you run your business from home! I'm not about to change what I charge as people have free will and I'm not going to be emotionally blackmailed into dropping my price for anyone. I have plenty of return business and customer testimonials and that's good enough for me.

Those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind.

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Well said Bettina. People think just coz we do this from home means we should be cheap. They dont mind paying extra at a bakery for a crap cake. But then I guess we should learn to ignore such people, be it a customer or friend. Atleast thats what I am trying to do. Keep smiling..........take care
Thanks for sharing this, I needed to hear it from someone else.
I don't understand people. Had someone recently ask about my hand decorated sugar cookies. ( I charge $24 per dozen for my decorated sugar cookies.) They wanted a quantity discount because "...after all you do work out of your house." Now I know this person works from home sometimes for their job, so I asked them..."does your boss pay you less on the days you work from home?" Of course he doesn't!! So why do they expect us to work for less!!! Some folks just don't get it.
I totally understand your frustration! A lot of times I get asked for quotes and then nothing else, only to hear well it was too much....for example this week I quoted $150 for a three tiered buttercream iced cake, and indicated that for extra detailing, it would extra. Oh no, Faith must be crazy. But I called around all of the bakeries/custom cake stores, and one of them said tiered is classifed as wedding, regardless of the size and start at $600!! Sometimes I wonder if I'm charging too much, but when I work out the costs, if I went any lower I'd be working at cost. I finally made a decision, that I can't do the work for anything less...otherwise I'd be giving the cakes away. If that means that they won't buy from me, oh well.

Your work is GORGEOUS. And I'm sure that your "friend" who is "going into business" will soon realize how much time and effort goes into caking, and her "more reasonable" prices will start to look more like yours!
Bettina when that trailer trash starts getting the tools and equipment to do the cakes she will start to regret it and charge more because one day she will realize that you cant stay in business and charge nothing for your efforts. Plus you have alot of experience on her and her cakes wont be on the same level....everyone thinks they can slap on some buttercream and do a little piping and sell their cakes....because of all the cake shows the public can see what quality and skill level is out there and she wont be ANY competition for you...you dont want bottom feeders who wont pay more than 20 bucks for a sheet cake....nah put that crap behind you girl and hold your head up!
Thanks everyone for simply reinforcing what I know logically to be right.

But couldn't you just slap people? I used to work as a registered nurse and there were times when I just wanted to throw my hands up and say, "when God gave out the stupid he gave to you and just kept on giving didn't he?"

Bill Engvall is a commedian and he goes on about stupid people. He felt that stupid people should come with a sign. If they had a sign you wouldn't treat them like normal folk and speak slower.
You want a cake with what for how much? Oops, sorry I didn't see your sign. you need to look at these purdy pictures while I talk to the responsible adult.
The story that he told that cracked me up the most was when he walked out into a car park and there was a fella there trying to break into his car with a coat hanger, as he'd locked the keys inside. He walked up to him and before he could stop himself he said,"Lock your keys in the car?" and the guy just looked at him incredulously and said, "No I've just washed it and I'm hanging it up to dry!"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p5ZkdHImCuQ
You can overcome most things in life except abject stupidity.
Thanks for posting this.
We pay more for boutique, hande made one of a kind items in other industries (well some people do i can't afford them lol)
Limited edition items make people a re fortune.
What you do, in your home, is no different to that sort of thing. The only copnsideraton you ought to be having here is perhaps talking the cakes up a bit. Your work is beautiful, perhaps people would start thinking twice about looking you over if the 'one of a kind' approach was put forward.
I don't know if it would help. I am not game enough to try selling what i do, yet, but it's an idea to be considered maybe.
Sux that your freinds are doing this to you. Hope you find that confidence again.
These people you know aren't very bright. If you can't afford an expensive cake and go to the grocery store and spend $20-$30 bucks; I get it. I couldn't afford to buy a custom cake (not to say I don't think they are worth every penny and know exactly what does go into them). But to tell someone their prices are too high, but then go somewhere else and pay the same amount or more? ??? and??? how in the world does that make any sense? Another reason I generally like dogs more than people:)
This is how I feel too:

Julie F said:
These people you know aren't very bright. If you can't afford an expensive cake and go to the grocery store and spend $20-$30 bucks; I get it. I couldn't afford to buy a custom cake (not to say I don't think they are worth every penny and know exactly what does go into them). But to tell someone their prices are too high, but then go somewhere else and pay the same amount or more? ??? and??? how in the world does that make any sense? Another reason I generally like dogs more than people:)
This all depends on where you live, but one of the reasons I've baked all my life is that there just aren't any good bakeries where I live. But these lousy bakeries still charge a lot of money. So, to me, given these circumstances, there's a logical reason why a home baker deserves his/her price. Quite simply, while the customer's money may not be paying for overhead, that same money is going towards the cost of quality ingredients. Many of the bakeries around here get their icing out of a can. It all boils down to the very simple, worn out concept: You get what you pay for! Plain and simple! How much do you want to bet that $140 cake didn't taste anywhere near as good as yours does?

Yes, I'm always flabbergasted at the number of stupid people on the planet. So, what does that tell you? If they don't understand why you charge what you charge, they're stupid. It doesn't make you wrong. Why not educate new customers about the effort that goes into making your cakes and point out what you do differently from the local bakeries?
I am so agree with you and keep up the work as said people think because its from home the cake should be cheap but when its from home it honestly is more time consuming than if we were in a bakery

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