Cake Decorating Community - Cakes We Bake

I live in a state that hasn't passed the Cottage Home law yet.  I make cakes and cupcakes for friends and family for donations only.  But it seems that the donations are getting smaller and smaller.  I can't even get my investment back.  If one of my friends ask me to make them a cake, I make sure they understand that I cannot charge them and they need to make a donation........the cake I just made for a co-worker, two tiered, three layered home made carrot cake with cream cheese filling, covered in fondant and fall leaves.........the donation was $35. How do I get these people to make donations that would cover at least my initial expense?  It is getting really frustrating because I'm coming more and more out of my own pocket.  Is there a way I can say "The minimum donation for a cake is ________ and the minimum donation for cupcakes is _________? 

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Crystal, I would give each person a list of all the ingredients that they need to purchase first from their own pockets for whatever kind of cake they want, and then tell them that you accept donations toward the decorating of that cake above that. That way, they would at least cover all of the expense of the actual cake. Usually, they will give you a whole dozen of eggs, a whole can of Crisco or vegetable shortening, a whole bottle of vanilla, and whatever other ingredients that you need, etc., and that way it helps to build up your supply for future cakes.

Thanks for the great idea Linda.

I agree with Linda.  Make it clear that the donation is over and above the actual cost of ingredients.  Either get them to purchase the ingredients, or keep a running cost of how much you have spent, for which they reimburse you plus a donation.  I use a spreadsheet to calculate the actual cost of ingredients used per cake to make sure my costs are covered.

the cottage laws thing is so frustrating. none where i live either. i have the same problem. so hard to spend all that time and creativity on something and not get what you are worth. yet people tell me what i should be charging. feel your pain sista.

"Due to state regulations, I can not legally charge for my work.  If I were to charge, this particular cake would be priced at $.  State regulations only allow me to accept donations."

very well put! 

Laney Cowan said:

"Due to state regulations, I can not legally charge for my work.  If I were to charge, this particular cake would be priced at $.  State regulations only allow me to accept donations."

There is an inexpensive software online you can buy called, CakeBoss. It's not affiliated with the show at all. You load into it your recipes and ingredients and supplies, then you can price your cost right down to the tsp of vanilla you used and it prints out a cost report. You'll never underprice again if you do this.

http://www.cakeboss.com/

All the best!

 

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