I got a quote from you, that means my order is booked, right?
No, not yet. An inquiry and even a quote is just the first step. It’s just like how getting an insurance quote doesn’t mean you are covered. No order is considered booked until I have received your nonrefundable 50% retainer fee. Why nonrefundable? Because I take such a limited amount of orders and once I have yours, I’m often turning down other orders based on that. If you decide to cancel, I’ve already passed on other opportunities that I cannot get back. Often I have already spent money ordering certain things needed for your cake. Some supplies are not available locally and thus cannot be easily returned. While the 50% retainer is NOT refundable, any balance paid over that is refundable up to two weeks before the event. If there is a change in the date of your event, I will do my best to accommodate you but your new date cannot be guaranteed. I take each order very seriously and value the trust you’ve placed in me to follow through and expect the same in return. Quotes are good for 7 days from the time given. I will let you know if someone else is requesting the same date during this time period as a courtesy, but the first person to pay will get the booking. You can pay online, in person or by mail. The date is considered open until I receive payment.
Can I just pick up an already made cake? You know, whatever you have just lying around, I’m not picky.
That does sound nice but no. I am a custom baker who works out of my home under the Louisiana Cottage Food Law. I do not have a drop-in storefront and meetings are on an appointment only basis. I only make the cakes I have orders for and nothing more. I do not keep extra ingredients on hand and am not available to make a cake with less than a week’s notice, although I’m often booked up weeks, sometimes months in advance.
Why are you always booked up?
Well, because I’m awesome. Just kidding. A little. The truth is that the cakes that I specialize in are very time consuming and I’m working alone. So from our first interaction, emailing, shopping, baking, making icing, fondant and fillings, decorating, more decorating, even more decorating, massive amounts of clean up, deliveries, and super fun stuff like accounting, I am my only employee. In order to produce the high quality, detailed cakes I’m known for, I can only accept 1-2 orders per week. Even if I was a superhuman cake artist who could defy the laws of time, the Louisiana Cottage Food Law puts a cap on the amount of sales I can have per year and still work out of my home, so that limits my orders as well. The farther in advance you contact me, the better your chances are for getting booked. The first person to put down the 50% nonrefundable retainer fee gets the opening, no exceptions. I cannot hold dates without it for any reason.
Why are you so much more expensive than the grocery store? I can get a cake there for $20.
Yes, that is the case, but keep in mind that what you are getting is not comparable to the product you get from me. I don’t think there is anything wrong with grocery store cakes and will still love you just as much if that’s where you choose to get your cakes from. No hard feelings. Promise. But here’s how it works. Often, cakes in grocery stores are what are considered “loss leaders.” Which means they sell at or even below what it costs the store to make them. In theory, when you go there to buy a cake, you’ll also buy other things with a much higher markup that they can profit on. So while they may lose a few bucks on the cake, they’ll be making more on other things to make up for it. And they can sell approximately a billion cakes in the time I can make one. (Ok, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but stay with me) My cakes are all made fresh to order especially for you. No quick assembly line production using icing from a bucket with only a few predetermined basic designs available. Each of my cakes takes a minimum of 6 hours from start to finish, and many of them can take 20+ hours to complete. Yes, more than twenty hours for ONE cake. Crazy, right? I purchase all of my ingredients at retail and it costs me more to make a cake than to buy one before I even factor in labor and overhead. Just like you probably get paid by the hour at your job, I do too. This is not just my passion, it is also my job and I do it well. All custom items come with a higher price because of the specialized skill, supplies and time involved. So yes, there is a major price difference, but there is also a major difference in quality, ingredients, attention to detail, and personalization as well.
Why do you use fondant so often? I hate fondant.
I hate it too….store bought fondant that is. But have you tried mine? It’s as simple as marshmallows, powdered sugar and vanilla extract (the recipe can be found here if you want to give it a go yourself) and most people are surprised that it tastes nothing like what they’ve tried before. Fondant gives a flawless finish that works well with many designs and is often necessary for certain techniques. It’s like cake magic. Things that could never be done in buttercream are possible with fondant. Not every cake has to be fondant covered though. As long as the design allows, a buttercream finish is always an option, with all fondant decorative pieces being easily removable. *breathe your sigh of relief here* If your design calls for it but you still find it’s not your favorite, every fondant covered cake has a generous amount of my all butter American buttercream underneath and can be peeled off if desired. Win Win. (My kids actually ONLY eat the fondant and leave the cake…true story)
Can I just call you to get a quote?
All quotes are given over e-mail only. There are many different variables that go into pricing custom cakes and I need all of your specific details in writing to quote correctly. Some quotes may even take some research if they require tools I do not have or techniques I’m not familiar with, and simply cannot be given on the spot over the phone. You may send as many pictures as you like to help convey what you are looking for or you can simply give me your theme, your budget (as long as it falls within my pricing chart) and trust me to come up with a special design just for you. Sketches available after deposit has been received. Having everything in writing also protects both of us and gives me a reference to look back on to make sure everything is correct for every detail of your cake. A phone number will be given for communication the day of delivery or for wedding planners. Other than that, e-mail is the method of communication and you will receive responses within one business day.
I’ve got this amazing fundraiser for a great cause coming up, can you donate a cake?
That’s awesome! Unfortunately I have already chosen my outlets for charitable giving but I wish you the best of luck. I am a proud Sugar Angel for the FABULOUS organization Icing Smiles. Icing Smiles is a nonprofit organization that provides custom celebration cakes to families impacted by the critical illness of a child. Check them out, they are doing an awesome thing! If your child has a critical illness, you can request a cake here. Who knows, they just might match you up with me. Any extra baking outside of my paid orders and cakes for Icing Smiles will be for my children’s school. I do appreciate you thinking of me and I hope your fundraiser is a great success.
Does it make you sad to see someone cut into a cake you worked so hard on?
NOPE! It’s cake! It’s for eating and enjoying! My favorite part is the picture. Once I have that, the cake can live forever AND be enjoyed. Having your cake and eating it too…isn’t that the dream? So don’t hesitate. Order that gorgeous cake, look at it for a little while, then eat that bad boy without an ounce of regret! I’d be happy to send you the files for the photos I take of your cake, just let me know.