Sunday, October 25, 2015

There's No Amount Of Money That Would Make Me Do Certain Cakes.

Last time I wrote about added fees for jobs that are inconvenient in whatever way. This time I'm addressing the issue of jobs that you really, really, REALLY don't want to do.

Everyone has something they don't want to do. I'll use the example of a certain Hokie cake topper I made multiple times for  wedding cakes due to its popularity. Problem was, this topper was popular with the customers, not with me. They were pretty solid so they shipped well, and I had it listed in my Etsy shop. I sold a lot of them, then I decided the aggravation wasn't worth the price of making them.

There was nothing "wrong" per se with the topper...I just don't enjoy figure modeling, and even with the basic shape it wasn't enjoyable to make. I realize that you don't have to like everything you make, but I REALLY didn't like it.

It got to the point where I hated this topper with a passion. I hated making it, hated dealing with the details that people wanted on it, I just hated it.

So I raised the price, thinking that would make it more palatable. But the orders kept coming in and I winced every time I saw that one had been sold. So I decided to quit making them entirely.

I de-listed it, took it down and felt very happy to never have to deal with it again. then I started getting inquiries about it.

Problem is, the Hokie is a very popular mascot, and Virginia Tech alumni are very loyal, So when people saw the topper on google they really wanted one. I had one woman pretty much begging me to do it and saying she would pay any price because her daughter wanted one so much. I still said no.

Why would I stop making something that sold consistently and that I could make fairly easily based on having made it a million times before? Because sometimes a surcharge isn't enough to make it worth making something that sucks the life out of you, and everyone has a limit.

No, you don't have to like everything that you make, but you also don't have to make everything people ask for. Sometimes the answer to "can you make this for me" is "no, I can't."

I'd guess that everyone has a limit somewhere. Some people won't make "naughty" cakes, some people won't do staircases and fountains, some people won't do naked cakes. Whatever it is, if you hate making certain things and adding a surcharge won't make it easier to take, don't do it. If increasing the asking price will work for you then do that, but if it won't, don't feel bad about referring the job to someone else.


Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC,  online cake supplies at  www.acaketoremember.com and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com

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