I thought it was worth putting my own blog out there as I have seen some unreasonable blogs out there claiming that you should expect to pay between £100 - £300 for your wedding cake, and that simply isn't true and unrealistic for genuine small businesses trying to make a living, different parts of the country may differ but London, Surrey based companies things are generally more expensive.
Why your cake will be more expensive
If you are purchasing your cake from a small independent business like ourselves, you are purchasing a beautifully handmade to order cake, which is not mass produced, with many hours invested in it.
We still have overheads, i.e. taster boxes to sort and send out that can take 3 hours just to get two prepped, travel to post office, postal costs, then we have websites to maintain, fairs to attend, literature to have printed, telephone bills to pay, payment card machine payment, wear and tear on our vehicle, fuel, maintaining software, electricity, admin time, preparing accounts, quotes, maintaining equipment, virus protection, insurances, advertising, taking various training courses that are required to run a cake business, washing equipment, accounting for the taxman, keeping up with social media to try and stay relevant, invoicing and responding in a timely manner.
Time is money to everyone you shouldn't undervalue that side of the business.
These overheads are everyday/monthly expenses before we start on the cake itself.
It normally requires months/days in advance to make all the decorations out of an edible medium which isn't cheap, a full cake of flowers can take four days alone in time to make all the flowers necessary, and a cake makers day isn't 9am - 5pm, we are usually working well into the early hours.
We bake all cakes fresh to order nothing is ever frozen, we only use quality ingredients and we honestly mean that, no cheap margarine, no cheap supermarket sugarpaste etc, we use quality real butters, we have our eggs freshly delivered weekly from a free range farm of very happy hens these alone are 0.55p each, we also have our organic flour delivered to us directly from Shipton, we use high quality sugarpaste, callebault chocolate in and on all our cakes.
For a guide an average three tier sugarpaste covered cake for the ingredients alone is around £150.00 this doesn't include boards, dowels decorations, profit margin and labour so you can see why your cake is starting to add up.
There are bakers out there that have second jobs and there are also hobby bakers who aren't inspected or registered as a business and use social media for all their business and go under the radar and don't pay their taxes, hence prices are low.
We are a serious business and Cakes by Nina is Nina's full time job not part time and I do not subsidies it with a second job just for fun.
We are fully inspected every three years and pay for liability insurance.
Some cake maker work on a volume basis and think that shows level of success without real gain, we work on a quality of order basis, as we have to allow enough time to make all the decorations required, and we believe each cake deserves special attention.
The bake from start to finish takes three full days as nothing is ever frozen it is always baked to order, even naked cakes as simple as they seem are very time consuming to produce as you can not really bake them until the night before the wedding, they still need sandwiching and butter creaming, and can take up to an hour to set up at the wedding venue as you cant decorate or stack in advance it has to be done on site.
Then if florist flowers are to be used 9 out of 10 times, even though the florist will say they will decorate the cake they don't actually as they are always running out of time, or just nervous to do so, so we provide that service, which entails prepping flowers, supplying posy picks and florist tape, more expenditure, as well as the extra time this takes.
We have noticed that our main stable ingredients have gone up by nearly 20% but our prices and hourly rates hasn't changed in three years.
We are also unique in that we do disclose all our prices on our website against each picture so it shouldn't be a shock that you like something at say £765.00 and then try and barter with an £500 budget for the exact same cake and are shocked when we say it isn't doable.
Our prices I can assure you are not just plucked out of the air they are there for a reason, of course if you want to pick another design within your budget or reduce a design we can come down a bit, but please be mindful that even if you have dummy layers, they aren't cheap and we still have to use our quality sugarpaste to cover them so it all matches and there are still the decorations to decorate this part of the cake even if it isn't a real tier. Our prices are mainly based on how much work is involved in your design than rather than reducing a cake size.
So what should You Pay
There is no definite answer to that question, it really depends on what you want, as a guideline our prices generally start from £465.00 upwards but it will vary where you go for your cake
So to finish we do believe you get what you pay for and we are definitely not the most expensive around we feel we are in the middle but what we charge is what we are worth.
Remember its not just about cake it far more than that.
Happy wedding cake shopping This blog is based on our business Cakes by Nina and factual for Cakes by Nina