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Would I be unreasonable to say no to this wedding request, or should I grit my teeth and try?

(206 Posts)
babybearsmummy Mon 22-Jul-13 10:53:26

I'm a cake baker by trade, but since the end of my pregnancy I decided to cut my workload down and only bake for family and friends occasions.

My friend got engaged a year ago and one of the 1st things she did was call to ask me to make her wedding cake and I was very excited for her, especially when we'd get a few mins here and there to plan it.

2 weeks after asking me, she emailed me to say that she and her fiancée had decided to go with another cake maker as her fiancée's family had always used that company for their special occasions and her o.h had presumed they would just have that company. I was futted but thought it was their day so no point getting upset.

She messaged me yesterday in a state as the wedding is on Friday and her the company has pulled out of making their cake last week. I've called my suppliers this morning but they can't get everything I need sorted until Wednesday at the earliest, leaving me with just a few hours on weds evening and Thursday evening to make it. I don't have anyone to look after dd as my o.h is working til 7pm this week and his parents are not well and there's no one else close to have her. And I don't think I'd want her to be away all day for 2 days as it's not fair on her (if I'd even get it finished in 2 days as I'd originally planned 4-5 days to get it all done)

So would I be really horrible and unreasonably selfish to say no to her? Or should I just try to get something together for her in the space of those 2 evenings? WWYD?

Longdistance Mon 22-Jul-13 11:14:34

Get her to babysit, so then you can make the cake?

Or tell her to go to Costco's...

DonDrapersAltrEgoBigglesDraper Mon 22-Jul-13 11:15:19

Exactly - roll-out icing, some ribbon and a floral top and Bob's your uncle. I'd say it is doable.

But if you don't want to do it, that's fine too.

ruby1234 Mon 22-Jul-13 11:16:23

M&S do ready iced cakes suitable for a wedding - she could get one(or more) of those.

diddl Mon 22-Jul-13 11:17:12

Did the other people really pull out or did she get all Bridezilla on them & was dumped?

As someone said, if it's a traditional cake, wouldn't it be made by now?

And yes, if it's their fault, isn't it up to them to help her?

AndHarry Mon 22-Jul-13 11:18:21

Honestly, I would probably do a very simple iced cake as freddie describes.

Fakebook Mon 22-Jul-13 11:25:32

Send her directions to the nearest M&S Food store.

ChippingInHopHopHop Mon 22-Jul-13 11:26:55

Don't do it.

You wont be able to do a good, professional job in that time and it wont do your reputation any good to deliver a sub standard job.

There are plenty of wedding cake places around who will already have the supplies, staff working full time and the roses etc pre-made.

Don't stress yourself out, present a less than brilliant cake & make his family look 'right' in not going with you in the first place.

Asking an indicidual to make a proper wedding cake at such short notice is madness.

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Mon 22-Jul-13 11:33:30

See you've already decided to go back and say you can't.

I think this is 100% right decision. I think she had a nerve.

freddiefrog Mon 22-Jul-13 11:40:41

Did the other people really pull out or did she get all Bridezilla on them & was dumped?

Yes, I was wondering that. Fruit cake should have been made weeks ago, and marzipanned by now.

Waitrose/M&S, and I've even seen them in the larger Tescos and Sainsbury's all sell plain white iced fruit or sponge cakes, to stack and decorate yourself.

Or, if you're so inclined, a cake I used to make a lot, was quick, easy and looked quite spectacular was 3 or 4 tiers of cakes, covered round the sides with chocolate cigarellos, tied with a big ribbons, then filled the edges of the tiers then the centre of the top tier with fresh fruit - strawberries, blue berries, etc

squoosh Mon 22-Jul-13 11:44:52

No chance, why should you get stressed out of your nut while there are cake shops from which she can buy a few cakes and chuck them together.

No one eats the bloody cake anyway.

IWipeArses Mon 22-Jul-13 11:53:05

Buy the cakes, ice them, simple decor.

LittleprincessinGOLDrocks Mon 22-Jul-13 11:54:13

Tell her to try Tescos. I got my wedding cake from there, 3 tiers, a bit of fancy ribbon and an elegant cake topper and it looked (and tasted) great.
It is too short notice for you to put together a professional wedding cake. She should never have cancelled you, and I think she will realise that now.

bornagaindomesticgoddess Mon 22-Jul-13 11:56:11

Yes, go to Tesco's. Bloody cheek angry

squoosh Mon 22-Jul-13 11:57:43

Why doesn't she go for three massive pork pies or a few wheels of cheese, much more 'now'.

Unexpected Mon 22-Jul-13 12:00:44

Don't do it! If one of your suppliers can't deliver to you by Wed, you will be unable to deliver a cake to her. Also if anything goes wrong with one element of the cake, you have no time to redo it. And if it doesn't turn out perfectly, it will be your reputation on the line. Everyone will think of you as the baker who supplied a sub-standard cake, the original bakers who failed so spectacularly won't even get a mention. If those bakers pulled out last week sometime, you obviously weren't even her first thought as a back-up as she didn't contact you until Sunday!

pictish Mon 22-Jul-13 12:00:50

I think ypu would be completely within reason to tell her you can't take it on. You haven't got time if nothing else.
The fact that she ditched you for a better offer in the first place, only makes the decision easier imho.

I certainly wouldn't bear a grudge over it or anything, but I definitely wouldn't go to any special effort to help out either. No.

Mumsyblouse Mon 22-Jul-13 12:13:01

Just let her know asap that you can't do it- that it takes 4/5 days to do a wedding cake, your suppliers can't get you the stuff and you'd need childcare. Even just one of these is a good reason not to do it- as others have said, you can go to Tesco and get a wedding cake, it's something to giggle about at the wedding, not something to get stressed about.

Thumbwitch Mon 22-Jul-13 12:13:24

Jumping on this just to see what friend says when you decline.

Since you couldn't put in the extra time because of your suppliers (although what can they supply that you can't get in the supermarket?) then I think that declining was really your only option - if you'd put together a substandard cake, you'd be really pissed off and it wouldn't have done your professional rep any good; plus you'd have put all that time and effort in for no good reason.

Shame for your friend but I'm sure she could get another company to put together a cake for her, even if it's not exactly what she wanted.

justmyview Mon 22-Jul-13 12:14:54

At first I thought you should probably do it to help her out, but a simpler version, to save the day. On reflection I think that' risky. Guests will see it and think that's the best you can do. Not so good if you end up deciding to upscale your business again in future

specialsubject Mon 22-Jul-13 12:15:57

it's a cake. You don't have time to make it, and so you should not agree to do so.

all she has to do is go to a shop and buy some smart cakes. No-one at the wedding will give a stuff.

Allalonenow Mon 22-Jul-13 12:16:03

I think politely refusing to make the cake is the best thing. But have a couple of suggestions to give her, such as M&S cake or Sainsburys cake decorated with fresh flowers and ribbons, I've seen this done and it looked very good, with flowers in a spiral down the cake. Also M&S do a Cheese Board which is spectacular, and a bit different.

Groovee Mon 22-Jul-13 12:17:51

I think you are right to say no. It's not a lot of time to be doing a lot of fancy things that it sounds like she wants. I'd just say no.

mirry2 Mon 22-Jul-13 12:19:35

Tell her to go to Marks and Spencers. They sell off the shelf wedding cakes and all the paraphanalia that goes with them. nobody will know.

GladbagsGold Mon 22-Jul-13 12:21:08

We didn't even have a wedding cake as we're not that keen on cake. I don't understand the fuss over them. Tell her there isn't enough time and don't worry about it for one more second, honestly.

parakeet Mon 22-Jul-13 12:21:41

If it was something that was more or less essential, then I would do it, as long as she came round and provided the childcare, to make it physically possible.

However, she is being unreasonable because this is only a cake. Newsflash you can buy cakes on the high street. Yes, even wedding cakes. I got mine from M&S, it had tiers, pillars, white icing.

The guests don't give a stuff what the cake looks like.

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