need help on another cake-

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need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 11:36 am

okay, I have a friend who I have breakfast with every friday

its a weekly breakfast of about 4-8 girls, some I have been friends with for years, some I've just known in passing, but we get together on friday mornings and bitch about everything, laugh, cut up and have a good time.

One of them is having a birthday- she just started a photography buisiness.

the other thing is she collects crosses.

I plan on putting the cross in her cake somehow.

We are all God fearing women, we are not your preachers wives or the quilting circle, all of us have 3 or more kids so we are crazy as loons, we cuss, we laugh, we 'discuss current events' , and we bitch; about the kids, hubby's, school, the backstabbing bitch who you constantly run into at functions. But we all know that we owe who we are and the fact that none of us are crazy enough to be committed to Him Smile


anyway, I need some ideas.

I thought about a 2 tiered cake, and the only thing I can come up with is like wrapping some 'negatives' around it. I dont think I am good enough to make a camera.. seriously.

anyone got a better idea??

She is real blingy. wears chunky jewerly, has slightly big hair (not as big as mine),

ALSO, her and another of the girls went on a 'skinny bitch' diet. well, I told them that meant no cake and buttercream.

SO , as a joke, I thought I would do a cake out of diet stuff.. Like rice cakes covered in something- I just dont know what.... cottage cheese?? and put some candles on top- then give that to her first.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by edbson on Sun May 23, 2010 12:57 pm

I would just do a cake with bling, and pics, maybe blingy pics?

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 2:00 pm

oh and another thing. just normal sheetcakes.. how much do I charge. Like if someone doesnt want a celebration cake, (decorated) but just wants to grab a strawberry cake with divinity frosting- ??? I'm sooo lost! I hate trying to fiqure all this out!

it takes me anywhere from about 4 cakes and 2 things of frosting, plus 3 hours, about $16.00-18.00 in supplies for 1/2 sheet cake.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by Lori on Sun May 23, 2010 2:28 pm

LOL
Chelle, you went into so much detail in your post about your relationship and how you get together to blab and snark and all, that when you said you thought about putting "negatives" around the sides...I thought you menat negative comments (I had in my head: Skinny Bitches Don't Get any Cake!, Oh no, she did NOT do that!, Can't Live with 'em, Can't Kill 'em)! But then I remembered you saying that you weren't going to ruin another cake by writing on it, and I knew I was missing something.

I agree with Erin, do something blingy and fun.

I can't say about the 1/2 sheet cake. Find out what superstores or groceries charge and jack the price up from there. Cuz if they want a store-bought sheet cake and will be happy with that, there's no way you can go lower than that if you have any respect for yourself.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 2:53 pm

OMG lori- that is actually a great idea!! We are good enough friends for that... LOL and she would LOVE it.. almost make it 'snapshots' of her favorite sayings... LOL

and I could paint those on, not write them with icing! LOL

Erin, I dont really have any pics, plus cant afford to copy any on edible paper- I had thought about putting pics of her and her kids and such in the negatives around the cake, but .... LOL

Okay, I was wrong on the pricing. a half sheet costs me about 28.00 to make.

the grocery store charges 25.00

of course, the grocery stores get their cakes in frozen, already cooked and they cost about .50 cents each. honest. I talked to someone who worked at one. all their icing is premade, they dont even color it themselves most of the time.

see- I cant compete with the grocery stores. period.

I would have to have at least 35.00- and that doesnt pay me for my time at all. thats the truth.


If i charge like normal specialty bakers, which is by the slice, you are looking at my price of 2.00 a slice being REALLY cheap. but for a half sheet- which feeds about 48- thats 96.00- noone would pay that for a silly little cake with nothing on it.



this is normal: http://www.cakecentral.com/cake-photo-1628609.html
and thats 150.00 for a simple cake you can make in your own kitchen. who pays that?? seriously??



Okay, how about a simple cake being 1.25 a slice (buttercream, no piping, no nothing) ,
a fancier cake, buttercream piping or with fondant and a little decoration being 1.75 (like the john deere or the reeces cup)
ones with lots of fiqures, differnt textures, etc basicly a 'story' cake being 2.00 a slice. (like the beach one, or hoovers hunting one)

that would mean the reeces cake would have been 80.00 (78.75 actually, and I made 75 on it, but the 'plain' version comes up to 60.00)
it was 1/2 sheet.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by thebigscott on Sun May 23, 2010 3:54 pm

If you wanted to do a camera on the cake, I think I have it figured out. Put a rectangular piece of sheet cake on it, put a circle of cake on top of that. Cover in black fondant. Then make a lens out of gumpaste that you form in the bottom of a small bowl so it will bulge out like a real lens. Put that on top in the center of the circle cake. Then put a little square of gumpaste over in the corner for the viewfinder.

Here's a simple looking camera:

http://www.bundlehub.com/Product/Price/Canon_PowerShot_SD780_IS_Digital_Camera_Black.html

It won't match her professional camera, but it might still look nice.

As to what to charge, I wouldn't do it if I didn't get at least minimum wage. Your cakes are beautiful and worth a lot. You can't compete with Wal-mart on the costs, but they can't compete with you on the results. Just make sure that you get a basic wage for your time for now. As you get more experience, you'll spend less time on each cake and get better deals buying the ingredients in bulk. So you'll end up with more profit on each cake.
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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 4:45 pm

Thats a good idea karen, its just the little details that worry me- and I'm so scared it will end up looking like this:

I hate to make fun of someones cake- but damn...



And the pricing is KILLING me- I just know that being poor, or even if I had money, I wouldnt pay someone to make a cake for me. which is why I started doing them to start with.

Of course, I also wont pay someone to do my nails, fix a toilet, build a building, remodel my house, paint a room, hell, it KILLS me to pay someone to change my oil when I'm under warrenty on a car and have to for legal purposes... LOL I just cant do it if I can fiqure it out on my own...

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by KellyM on Sun May 23, 2010 5:38 pm

Chelle you could do something like this one
http://www.pinkcakebox.com/images/cake915a.jpg

or this
http://www.tastylayers.com/images/CanonCameraCakeRS08.jpg

or this
http://6.media.tumblr.com/e2szWQjMkqog9vk6xUBUIUK3o1_500.jpg
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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by Lori on Sun May 23, 2010 5:59 pm

chelle wrote:

And the pricing is KILLING me- I just know that being poor, or even if I had money, I wouldnt pay someone to make a cake for me. which is why I started doing them to start with.


That's just it, Chelle. People who want a special cake made will come to you. It's not like you're twisting their arm or holding them down till they cry Uncle. You would never ask someone to make a cake for you because you can do it yourself, but not everyone can cope with making a cake. Whether it's inexperience, lack of baking skills (you know Rachael Ray doesn't bake), lack of supplies, lack of imagination, or lack of TIME. Everyone's time has value to it, so don't undersell yourself.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 8:07 pm

Thanks Kelly, I'll check those out Smile

Lori, I know in my heart that you are right, but honestly, it just seems... silly I guess. LOL to pay that much for a cake. Plus, how can it be worth that if I can do it? I'm not being self deprevating here, its just the truth, if someone with no artistic talent, formal training, or knowledge can do it, it cant be worth that much. LOL

This is what I came up with
*Level one : 2 layer Buttercream filled cake, sheet only- no decorations, etc

1/4 cake aprox 20 servings, 30.00 (1.50 serving)
1/2 sheet aprox 45 servings, 60.00 (1.33 serving)
full sheet aprox 96 servings 100.00 (1.05 serving)

*Level 2 cake: 2 layers buttercream filled- covered in fondant or butter cream simple/moderate piping or precision cutting (like the reecesí cake or the John Deere- basically a 2D cake * complete hand painted fondant covered cake slightly more.)

1/4 aprox 20 servings 45.00
1/2 aprox 45 servings 75.00
full aprox 96 servings 155.00

*Level 3 cake: 2 layer buttercream filled cake covered with fondant / buttercream/effects with 3D figures, scenes, complex piping, intricate detail, high detail etc. (the beach or the hunting cake)

1/4 aprox 20 servings 60.00
1/2 aprox 45 servings 90.00
full aprox 96 servings 180.00

This is for 2-10 small/medium fondant/gumpaste decorations, large structures, extra peices will be added at a time based rate.


*stacked cakes, multi tier cakes etc.

1.75 for level 2 and 2.00 for level 3.



This is what some friends who buy from me decided:
*Level one : 2 layer Buttercream filled cake, sheet only- no decorations, etc

1/4 cake aprox 20 servings, 30.00
1/2 sheet aprox 45 servings, 60.00
full sheet aprox 96 servings 100.00

*Level 2 cake: 2 layers buttercream filled covered in fondant or butter cream simple/moderate piping or precision cutting (like the reecesí cake or the John Deere- basically a 2D cake * complete hand painted fondant covered cake slightly more.)

1/4 aprox 20 servings 60.00
1/2 aprox 45 servings 135.00
full aprox 96 servings 288.00

*Level 3 cake: 2 layer buttercream filled cake covered with fondant / buttercream/effects with 3D figures, scenes, complex piping, intricate detail, high detail etc. (the beach or the hunting cake)

1/4 aprox 20 servings 70.00
1/2 aprox 45 servings 160.00
full aprox 96 servings 336.00

This is for 2-10 small/medium fondant/gumpaste decorations, large structures, extra peices will be added at a time based rate.


*stacked cakes, multi tier cakes etc.

3.00 for level 2 and 3.50 for level 3.






this is my compromise:

*Level one : 2 layer Buttercream filled cake, sheet only- no decorations, etc

1/4 cake aprox 20 servings, 30.00
1/2 sheet aprox 45 servings, 60.00
full sheet aprox 96 servings 100.00

*Level 2 cake: 2 layers buttercream filled covered in fondant or butter cream simple/moderate piping or precision cutting (like the reecesí cake or the John Deere- basically a 2D cake * complete hand painted fondant covered cake slightly more.)

1/4 aprox 20 servings 45.00
1/2 aprox 45 servings 95.00
full aprox 96 servings 220.00

*Level 3 cake: 2 layer buttercream filled cake covered with fondant / buttercream/effects with 3D figures, scenes, complex piping, intricate detail, high detail etc. (the beach or the hunting cake)

1/4 aprox 20 servings 70.00
1/2 aprox 45 servings 140.00
full aprox 96 servings 260.00

This is for 2-10 small/medium fondant/gumpaste decorations, large structures, extra peices will be added at a time based rate.

*stacked cakes, multi tier cakes etc.

2.50 for level 2 and 3.00 for level 3.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 8:22 pm

Kelly, Those are great- and honestly, I just dont know if I could do it.

And I think the reason is becaue I want to hold it, feel, it touch it to see what its like. I had the same problem with the tiki hut and tiki masks. But those were differnt, because I was making art, or building something, it could be my interpertation... but when you do a complete copy, like of a camera, you want it to come out and look exactly like it. I'm scared it would look like a big black blob. LOL

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by thebigscott on Sun May 23, 2010 9:05 pm

Chelle, from someone whose husband has been self-employed and run his own businesses on more than one occasion, here are some things to think about:

#1: You can price things high and give customers the occasional discount (10% coupon, referral discount, etc.) far easier than you can increase your prices if the costs of ingredients goes up. So just say you decide that $150 is a fair price, your PRINTED price lists should all say $165 so that you can give a 10% discount and still make money. That way, if there's an egg shortage or the price of marshmallows goes up for some crazy reason, you're still making money.

#2: Sadly, there will be people who don't pay. Not only that, there will be accidents where the kids knock the cake over or your oven timer doesn't go off and it burns. Plan a buffer for if you have to repurchase ingredients or redo work. That doesn't mean charging double, but add a few extra dollars in to each cake knowing that you'll be setting it aside to have money for a cake-gone-wrong scenario.

#3: Keep in mind that you aren't a legal business yet. Sometimes the local health dept. doesn't care but in some places it's a major PITA to come up to code and get a food handling license. If you're going to make a real run at having this business (and I think you should) you'll need to find out what it takes to meet all the legalities and make sure that you don't get fined.

On the plus side, if you do get legal, you can deduct all your baking expenses from your taxes. You don't even have to have your business make a profit on paper to deduct them.
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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Sun May 23, 2010 9:29 pm

Karen, you are right on all 3. and yes, since I sold my first cabbage patch kid 'box' (yes it was JUST the box, found in the top of a closet of a rent house) on ebay, I found out that EVERYTHING goes on a schedule C. LOL

But I'm not sure how many businesses you can have... BR has his tractor, I have my animals, LOL But I do keep recipets for everything. and I'm gonna find out what wattage my oven uses to run for an hour. Plus, the cost of a new blender will be added in there etc.

I think what I am going to do, is give the price list to my friends, they are my word of mouth anyway. and tell them, I will go cheaper than this, just tell the person you give it to "hey, she will give you the 'GGbreakfast girls club price if you tell her I sent you!" and then go down to MY list prices. And of course the breakfast girls get the original prices. LOL

and yes, that is why I am not advertising, I am calling the health dept tomorrow, but I think you cant cook from your home in Texas, of course there are at least 4 others in town who do cakes out of their homes and advertise and everything- (not like I do, they only do wilton cakes or the tiered cakes with zebra fondant and such)- and from what my friends have told me (they always ordered from them) they said their cakes are not good tasting at all. their fondant tastes awful, and their cakes are dry. which is why they want me to sell cakes. LOL and why they try to get their friends to order cakes from me- so they dont have to eat those cakes at parties. LOL

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by edbson on Mon May 24, 2010 12:30 am

Noone is going to mess with you about cakes, there are SO many people that do them out of their homes they would have years before they got to you. I know bunches of people that do cakes, catering etc from home, and nothing is ever said.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by thebigscott on Mon May 24, 2010 1:08 am

Around here, it's who you know that decides if they investigate you. There are plenty of businesses that are completely illegal but no one says a word because they're run by the magistrate's brother-in-law or because the judge likes their pies. But if you start up a business that competes with the magistrate's BIL then your ass is screwed unless you are 100% following the law. I wish it weren't that way. But that's how it works here.
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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Tue May 25, 2010 9:35 am

I calledthe health Department and asked him. He said he wasnt worried about it. I told him I do 2-4 cakes a month and he said that was fine, if I was doing high volume, then we would need to do other things, but that was fine and he had my name and knew I had called so I was good.

Smile

of course, he might be on his way to bust me now.. ROFLMAO!

Karen, thats how I fiqured it would be here. but..?? LOL and there are quite a fw that do it here with out permits or such.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by edbson on Tue May 25, 2010 10:07 am

See, I told ya!
There are just so amny people that do cakes, etc out of their homes, they don't have the funds/manpower to bust them all....so they ignore it. As long as noone calls and says they got a cake from you and it had bugs in it, you are good.

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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by thebigscott on Tue May 25, 2010 12:04 pm

Around here they pay for the manpower to bust up start-up businesses by fines, fines, and more fines. But I'm glad to hear that it's OK and that you're good to go. That's the way it should be! If you had to have everything perfect to even start a business, no one could afford to start them.
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Re: need help on another cake-

Post by chelle on Wed May 26, 2010 9:41 am

LOL erin, I know, but with my luck.... ROFLMAO!


Karen, I worked for a resturant/convience store for 2 years, we hadnt been checked by the HD inthat time and our last one was 2 years before. It was very clean, but still.... its sad. WE are 20 miles out, and so theyeither forget about us, or just plumbdont care. LOL

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