Wedding Cake Terms and Conditions
Holding Fee Terms
I will hold the date for your wedding for 4 working days once initial starting prices have been sent out to you to allow you ample time to discuss and decide if you’d like to proceed. Please bear in mind that starting prices are the base costs of the order, and the final cost will likely be more than this based on the work in the design and delivery and set up on the day. On average, the final investment will be 30% more than the starting price, not including delivery fees.
If no contact has been made after this initial grace period I will attempt to contact you to discuss. If no further contact is made and I am unable to discuss the order with you, I shall assume you do not wish to proceed, and the date may be offered to another party.
The holding fee covers the cost of any design work and initial admin regarding your order. Design work will not start until a holding fee has been sent.
I will need £100 of the cost of your order as a holding fee to reserve the date for your wedding, the remainder must be paid no later than the week before delivery if your cake is being delivered, or on collection if you’d rather collect.
Any issues with the quote for your order or delivery must be brought up before paying the fee.
If subsequently any issues with the cost of your cake arise you must inform me no later than 4 weeks before your wedding so we can make alternative arrangements.
The holding fee is non refundable unless for whatever reason I cannot fulfil the order, however it does come off the total cost of the cake. If in the unlikely event I am not able to make your cake I will give you as much notice as I possibly can depending on the situation.
I reserve the right to cancel the order if the client exhibits unreasonable behaviour, or differences cannot be overcome. The holding fee will be refunded in this case, minus whatever costs have already been incurred, at my discretion.
Changes and Alterations
Any alterations to the agreed design and flavours can be made until 4 weeks before the wedding, but please note that any drastic changes, including the flavours may affect the price. You are welcome to make up to two major design changes after booking in, at no extra cost. Any subsequent changes will incur a design fee of £40 per design, to be added to your final bill.
If the date needs to be changed for whatever reason, as long as I have more than 2 weeks notice and I have availability for the new date then there will be no charge for this. If for whatever unlikely reason the order is cancelled by yourselves however, then a partial refund may be given on my discretion.
Advance Booking and Price Increases
If you are booking your cake more than a year in advance, an approximate quote will be given at the time of booking. The final quote will be sent to you a year before the wedding. Whilst I will endeavour to keep the cost down as much as I can and will honour the original pricing structure used when you booked, please note that this may mean due to rising costs and inflation, your final quote may increase from the approximate quote. However, unless you make any changes to your design which would increase the price such as changing to more expensive flavours, or adding additional design details, once the final quote has been sent, I will not increase it any further, even if costs rise again.
Storage and External Influences
Once the cake has left my care I cannot accept any responsibility for it. It is the responsibility of the client to ensure that the cake is safe. Caritas Cake Design cannot be held responsible for any damage to the cake, whether it be accidental, malicious, neglectful or through interference by a person not directly employed by Caritas Cake Design will in no way be the responsibility of Caritas Cake Design. Any claim made should be pursued against the person who caused the damage or their employer. This includes any damage sustained by moving the cake, the platform it is on, or anything above or nearby the cake once it has been set up by Caritas Cake Design.
It is important to understand that a cake is a perishable item made from flour, butter, sugar, etc. While we use materials that are relatively stable, heat / movement / pests / etc. can damage your cake and render it inedible. We cannot be on site to police the environment during your event, so cannot be responsible for ensuring it’s safety after delivery.
If the weather is unusually hot, etc. we recommend bringing the cutting of the cake forward so that the cake can then be moved to a cooler place. In the case of a cake being left out in heat for too long or being attacked by pests, the person serving the cake may take the view that the cake is no longer safe to serve. This is a necessary food safety measure and liability does not rest with either Caritas Cake Design or the server.
Collection or Delivery
Location is important and may prevent me from taking your booking. Unknown venues will be checked before sending a quote to avoid as many issues as possible, as some venues, particularly city centre ones, are simply not conducive to delivering and setting up a wedding cake safely. Sometimes issues are not always apparent and cannot be discovered until later. If after a quote has been sent and agreed and it transpires there is not a suitable loading area, if there are access issues, if the cake would need to carried up / over / through or for a long distance (creating excess risk), if the floors are liable to move (so jiggling the cake), if the cake is liable to be left by a sunny window, etc. I may need to rescind an inital offer of service and return your booking fee, lesser any fees already incurred. I do not say this lightly. There are many venues that I love the look of, that offer great accommodation and exceptional food… but that are just not wedding cake friendly. If I cannot be reasonably sure of the security of your cake, I just can’t take the risk and would not be comfortable taking your money.
In some cases (e.g. for larger cakes or ones that need to be pre-stacked due to design demands) extra staff may be needed for safe delivery, incurring additional fees. Late delivery times may incur additional fees due to extended working hours.
Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure that I can gain access to the venue at the prearranged time. If I cannot gain access or the venue is not ready for the cake to be set up, Caritas Cake Design cannot be held responsible for any delays incurred in the setting up of your cake. Please bear in mind that I may have other deliveries to make that day. If access cannot be gained within a reasonable timeframe, I may need to leave to set up another event and come back to set up later. This may mean your cake is not available to be displayed in the location you want, or ready to be cut at your ideal time. Caritas Cake Design cannot be held responsible for any delay in proceedings or the need to rearrange the schedule for the day.
We have found that some venues have limited or no facilities for supplier vehicles. While we will avoid extra charges to the best of our abilities, cake is heavy and susceptible to damage from inclement weather / heat / excessive movement / pests / etc., so cannot be carried long distances. Plus, there are usually many tools required to set a cake up successfully that must also be carried in and out of the location. It can take some time to do this and parking can be limited / expensive. We may therefore be put in a position where unexpected parking costs / parking tickets may be issued against our vehicle. Sadly, if this is the case, as the person / people who chose the venue to be suitable, you would be liable for these additional costs and any other resulting costs. A further invoice would be sent to you to recover the expenses, which should be paid within the stated timescale.
If, for any reason not directly associated to Caritas Cake Design (eg. access is unsuccessful, venue is not prepared as agreed, topper is not ready, florist has not arrived), additional time is spent in the delivery or set-up of your cake, Caritas Cake Design reserves the right to invoice you for the additional time.
In the case of injury, serious emergency, road closure, road traffic accident or similar issues rendering us unable to deliver your cake as agreed, Caritas Cake Design may choose to offer a partial refund, but cannot be held responsible for any perceived compensation claim as a result of the cake not being present. This does not mean that we won’t try. Your satisfaction is always a priority.
If I have delivered and set up your cake I cannot be held responsible for any issues that may arise from moving it from its final position if it wasn’t moved by me. If it is being collected, I will go through care and transport with whoever collects it, but it will be the responsibility of the collector to ensure it’s handling and storage does not adversely affect your cake. If you decide to hire a courier to transport the cake please ensure they have experience transporting cakes, and the necessary insurance before hire.
Your cake will be very heavy. Please remember this when considering stands and location of your cake at the venue. If you are unsure of your chosen stand if you are using one, please check with me before you spend any money on it. I will not be held responsible if your chosen stand is not strong enough to hold the weight of your cake, and catastrophe strikes.
Your cake will be set up at your chosen location at your venue, and it will not be left until it is safe, stable, well and safely decorated, and ready to serve. Please note that if you have chosen to use a stand or base which is not level, such as a log slice or similar, I may choose, on grounds of safety, not to use it. If your cake can safely be displayed on your choice of stand, please note the cake may not be straight or level, and I cannot be held responsible for any aesthetic issues caused by this. It may also potentially be more at risk from knocks to the stand. If this is the case I will make you aware before I leave the venue and it can be your judgement call as to whether to use it. If I cannot get hold of you I will make the call, but cannot be held responsible for any issues which may arise from this.
In the case of table, barrels and other supports, please ensure that the surface is clean, flat, even and level. If your table is placed on an uneven surface it will not be suitable. If you have a barrel with a convex top I cannot place a cake on it without risk of the cake suffering damage.
In the case of using natural wood stands including log slices, please be aware that untreated, natural wood may still have dust, small insects and chemical treatments on or inside. If you choose to use this as your stand, particularly if you do not wish to use a base board in addition to the thin board under the bottom tier, then please do stress to the server that the outside of the cake is to be cut off before serving as the outer edges may not be food safe by the time it is cut. This is your responsibility to ensure none of your guests consume contaminated slices of cake.
Please protect your linens and surfaces. Cake boards, stands, icings etc can stain or scratch your belongings if care is not taken.
If you are hiring a stand from me, a standard hire fee of £30 is charged, plus a refundable deposit of £100, to be paid when final balance is due. The stand will need to be returned to me within 5 days of the wedding in the same condition it was left. If the stand is able to be dismantled (such as my cupcake tower stand) then you may do so for transport. Once I have agreed all relevant parts are accounted for and it is in good condition, the deposit will be returned to you via BACS. If the stand is damaged beyond repair or parts are not available to replace the broken section, or not returned, the deposit will not be returned to account for the loss. If parts can be replaced, the cost of this will be taken out of the safety deposit, and the remaining balance will be returned to you. If you require me to come and collect the stand after the wedding, then additional charges may apply for the time taken to do so. Please inform me within 2 weeks of the wedding if you would like me to do this, so I can make arrangements.
I will have checked about any allergies with you during your final consultation. Your cake will contain gluten, wheat, dairy, soya and egg products unless otherwise discussed. It may also contain fruits, traces of nut, and sulphites, depending on the flavour you have chosen. It is your responsibility to inform any guests which the ingredients of your cake may affect, and take steps they do not unknowingly consume any. Neither Caritas Cake Design, or the server can be held responsible for any allergic reaction caused from consumption of your cake. If you have chosen to have fresh flowers on or around your cake, please read carefully the notes on the use of fresh flowers and foliage below.
Storage and Best Before Timings
Once your cake is collected/delivered it must be eaten within 4 days for an uncut cake, and 2 days once cut, if wrapped in cling film to prevent the sponge from drying out. After this time I cannot guarantee the quality of your cake. However you may choose to eat it after this point at your own discretion. Your cake will be made using only high quality ingredients, with no artificial preservatives, so please don’t expect it to last the same length of time as a cake bought off the shelf. Any uneaten cake may be double wrapped in cling film and frozen as it will not have already been so, but please be aware that fondant does not freeze well, and may go sticky once defrosted. The actual sponge and filling will not be affected as long as it was not dry before freezing, and has been wrapped well before going into the freezer. Your cake must be kept in the freezer no longer than 1 month. Once defrosted do not refreeze.
If your cake has a fondant/sugarpaste finish, or has any sugar flowers or models on, do not at any point allow your cake to be put in the fridge unless specifically told do by myself for food safety reasons. This will cause the sponge to dry out and the fondant to go sticky. It will also ruin any sugar flowers or models on your cake.
If you have chosen to have cream cheese frosting in or on your cakes, please note that this must be stored in the fridge, and must not be kept out the fridge for more than 4 hours, or less if the weather is particularly hot for food safety reasons.
If you are having fresh fruit as part of the display please note that any uneaten fruit will need to be stored in the fridge at the end of the evening. If there is fruit on any cupcakes, the whole cake can go in the fridge.
If you are having cupcakes, brownies or other tray bakes as part of your wedding cake display, these are best eaten within 2 days of your wedding. I will leave a couple of cupcake boxes at the venue to store any uneaten cakes in. Unless they have fresh fruit or cream cheese frosting on, they do not need to be stored in the fridge. Any sugar flowers or fondant decoration on cupcakes will form condensation and go floppy if stored in the fridge or in airtight containers, so I do recommend storage in the boxes provided. Any brownies or tray bakes are best stored in airtight containers (not provided).
If any of your tiers are traditional fruit cake, once cut it will need to be eaten within two weeks. If you are planning on keeping the cake to serve at a much later date, then double wrap the cake in a plastic wrap such as cling film, then silver foil, and keep in an airtight container. If you are serving it within two months, then you need to store the cake in the freezer. Please note that whilst the cake itself will keep for many months, it will probably need stripping and recovering before serving as marzipan and sugarpaste doesn’t freeze as well as the cake within. Ideally the cake will need to be eaten within a year of freezing. When you wish to remove the cake from the freezer, take the cake out and leave unwrapped and uncovered to defrost and dry out at room temperature, on a pile of kitchen roll sheets or other highly absorbent cloth. Please note the cake will be sticky, and may develop significant condensation. Do not touch it at this stage. Once fully defrosted, this may take up to 12 hours, you may find the icing remains sticky. It will still be fine to eat if eaten within three months of freezing. After this point, I suggest you remove the icing before serving, or recover as needed depending on the event it was kept for. Do bear in mind that the process of decorating a fruit cake takes around two weeks, so defrost it in plenty of time if you do wish to redecorate.
Photography and Photograph Usage
I will set up your cake, if part of the agreement, and not leave it until it is stable, well and safely decorated, and ready to be served to your guests. I do take photographs to show where the cake was set up, and from all angles to show there are no problems. These photographs may be used as evidence to discuss any potential problems after I have left your venue.
I may also use these photographs on my website, Facebook page, and Instagram accounts as examples of my work. In almost all cases there will not be any person or persons in these photos. Should anyone appear in the photos, I will ensure to ask permission before publishing the photos.
I will never post any images of your cake before the wedding. The earliest I will post anything is the evening on the event, after all your guests will have already seen it. If you’d like me to hold off longer than this please do let me know. Generally however, most photos are shared a few days afterwards.
I love to see our finished creation in ‘use’, and I would love to see any photos of the ‘cutting of the cake’ or similar after the wedding if you choose to send them to me. I may ask at this point if you would be happy for me to publish them on my website or social media pages, again as examples of my work.
Any photos taken by yourself, or your guests remain property of yourselves and may be removed from any of my platforms at any time if you change your minds, just simply ask. Any photos taken by a professional photographer remain the property of the photographer until you pay for them, and are subject to copyright. In these situations I may liaise with the photographer to gain copyright where needed. Again I will not do so without informing you, as I do wish to respect your privacy and wishes.
Refunds, Partial Refunds and Compensations
Once I have delivered your cake, if there are any problems with it I must be notified immediately so that I can return to fix the issue before the cake is served to your guests. In some situations I may not be able to return if I have travelled away from the area, or the problem may not be able to be fixed, but I will do my best to address the situation at that time. Once the cake has been cut I will not return to discuss any problems. If I am unable to return, please take photos of the area you are concerned about, before the cake is taken to be cut, and do not serve that tier to your guests so that I can look at the problem. If no evidence is provided, and the cake is no longer there, I will not accept that there was a problem.
Should there be any problems regarding quality or the cake itself which could not be seen before it was cut, such as the wrong flavour cake was provided, the cake must not be served to any guests. If it is unsuitable it must be returned to me in its entirety for any refunds to be considered. If you do choose however to serve the cake to your guests, then you are accepting the cake, and a full refund will not be given. A small, discretionary refund may be offered depending on the situation and the extent of the mistake.
I cannot be held responsible for spoilt cake due to poor storage at your venue, or any damage caused by moving the cake from its original location.
Any unserved cake kept on grounds of quality must be returned to me the next day so I can look into it. This cake must not be kept in the fridge, and must be well wrapped in cling film so it does not spoil and dry out overnight. I will not agree there is a flaw with the quality of the cake if the cake isn’t actually spoilt or unpleasant to eat. If the cake is not well wrapped and stored as per instructions, I can not determine the problem and no refund will be given.
Any other problems regarding your cake must be brought up no later than 2 days after your event. After this point no discussions will be entered into, you will have accepted the cake as it is, and no refunds or compensations will be offered.
No two cakes look exactly the same, no matter how hard you try, so please be aware that some degree of variation is inevitable. Sketches are an impression, not a photograph, and plans are only plans, and there may be occasion to alter details for reasons of aesthetic or structural improvement. If these changes will significantly alter the look of your cake, we will inform you as soon as we are able. We will always strive to give you the best product possible and go above and beyond your expectations.
During the design process the cake will be fully described, and sketched up for you. You will be asked to confirm these details, and any subsequent changes. If you are ordering on behalf of someone else, you are responsible for confirming the design and details with the other party. If there is anything incorrect in the design, quote or description, we cannot be held responsible for anything not picked up by the client.
If once we have delivered you feel the cake is not as previously described, you must inform us immediately so we can return to fix the issue.
Cake design is an art form, therefore is subjective. If the cake is as described, and there have been no major alterations affecting the design you haven’t already been informed of, yet you simply didn’t like the look of it, then whilst we would do our best to rectify the situation if we are able, we cannot be responsible for personal taste or opinions.
Serving and Edible Or Inedible Decorations
If your cake has more than one tier then it will contain thin cake boards and plastic support dowels. These are food safe but must not be eaten. If you are serving the cake yourself please remove these before serving to your guests.
If your cake has sugar flowers or models on then unless I tell you otherwise these will not be edible as they may contain support wires. They may also be attached to the cake by a food safe plastic pick inserted into the cake. Again these are not edible and must be removed prior to serving.
If you are providing me with silk, sugar or other artificial flowers not made by me, please do check with me first so I can bring the relevant materials to attach them to the cake safely. I do reserve the right not to attach any decorations to the cake if I deem them either structurally unsound, not food safe, or if I do not think they are in the best interest of the cake for any reason. In this event I will make you aware of the situation as well as my concerns. The decorations in question will be left with the cake, and you may add them at your own discretion. Please note, that attaching the decorations yourselves will be done so entirely your own risk, and any adverse stability/display issues with the cake, or any dietary reactions caused by contact with the decorations will be entirely your responsibility and not that of either the server’s or Caritas Cake Design.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING THE USE OF FRESH FLOWERS
Towards the middle of 2023, the UK Food Standards Agency changed their policy on the use of fresh flowers on food. This means that the flowers that can be used on or near your cake must be organic (pesticide free), and non toxic. This means I can no longer use the same flowers that would be part of your normal arrangements unless you are already using organic blooms. Please do not provide me with flowers that are not organic, and ask for them to be dressed onto your cake, as I will be unable to do so for food safety. This also applies for any other arrangements that you are thinking of dressing sufficiently near the cake to be touching it.
If your florist is providing fresh flowers and foliage, please ensure they know to provide me with FULL STEMMED FLOWERS, in good condition. Foliage and flowers for the cake cannot be simply “what is left over” from the other arrangements. Your cake is a focal point and the flowers provided should reflect this.
The exact style of the arrangement is dependant on the style we have discussed, and the flowers and foliage provided on the day. For example of the flowers provided are of poor structural nature or poor quality, it will affect the arrangement. I will do the best I can with what is provided, but it may not be to the exact specifications provided. Please also bear in mind you may wish to provide extra to arrange around the stand.
Fresh flowers and foliage must have been kept AS CLEAN AS POSSIBLE, AND IN NO WAY CONTAMINATED / TOXIC / POISONOUS. I cannot be held responsible for identifying plants provided, nor for any adverse reactions experienced. I am not a botany expert and cannot reasonably be expected to be so. This safeguard is the responsibility of the commissioning client and of the florist who has been commissioned to provide appropriate materials.
If I feel that there may be a risk of contamination or toxicity I reserve the right to refuse placement of vegetation on the cake, for reasons of public safety, however SAFEGUARDING AGAINST TOXICITY AND ADVISING THE CATERERS OF ANY POTENTIAL ISSUES IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY and categorically does not rest with Caritas Cake Design or representatives of Caritas Cake Design. This safeguarding includes asking guests if they could have a reaction to any plants present.
Caritas Cake Design cannot be held responsible if flowers are not provided by the florist within the prearranged timeframe available for cake decoration, nor if the flowers are of bad / unsuitable quality, affecting my ability to create a pleasing display. This is the responsibility of the florist.
Please note the following, whilst widely used as part of floral displays at weddings, and occasionally on cakes, are TOXIC, and SHOULD NOT BE PLACED ON OR NEAR ANY FOOD. They can cause stomach cramps, diarrhoea and vomiting, and/or constriction of the airways leading to breathing problems. This list is only an example of some popular floral additions, and not a full and comprehensive list. It serves only to highlight some popular choices to be avoided when choosing flowers for your cake.
Gypsophila / Babies Breath
Nigella (Love in a Mist)
As you are aware, the outbreak of coronavirus has brought to light a need to prepare for such events. If this or any other pandemic either continues, returns, or another unexpected one occurs before your wedding date, then the following terms will apply. These terms overrule any other previous terms mentioned above, and will only come into effect in times of a national pandemic or epidemic. All other terms not related to the ones set out below will remain unchanged.
If I can safely make your cake, and the wedding is going ahead as planned, then I shall do everything I can to ensure you receive your order as discussed. The only exception would be if I cannot get hold of certain key ingredients needed for your cake due to demand and supply complications. In which I may need to either substitute some ingredients, or offer an alternative flavour. In this event I will contact you to explain the situation and discuss options with you. I wouldn’t simply give you a different flavour unexpectedly.
If I do become ill, then I am part of a 30 strong group of cake makers, who are all prepared to help each other out where needed, and I’ll do everything I can to make sure you get your cake, even if it isn’t made by myself. Of course if I cannot make your cake, and another suitable cake maker cannot help, your deposit will be refunded.
I will always follow government guidelines, and if it is deemed unsafe for booked weddings including larger gatherings to go ahead by the British government, or if social distancing measures are implemented again, then I will close my kitchen for the safety of all my customers. In this case I will be in touch to rebook your wedding for a future date. If you do decide to go ahead with the wedding regardless then I will be unable to fulfil your order and your deposit will be lost. If smaller gatherings are allowed then as long as I am still able to bake whilst staying within government regulations, then I would be happy to either make a smaller version of your cake design, or we can discuss the use of ‘dummy’ tiers so you get the same visual effect, but less actual cake, so there is less wastage. Obviously the cost of doing either of these options, if chosen, will effect your total bill due. I won’t be charging full size cake prices for a much smaller design.
Normally I’d ask for 4 weeks notice of any changes to the agreed design or arrangements. However, I am aware that viruses don’t always oblige us with sufficient notice periods. Therefore, if you do need to postpone your wedding, assuming I am still trading, then I do ask 2 weeks notice minimum so I don’t start your cake and waste time and materials. Please do give me as much notice as possible though, so that alternative arrangements can be made in good time.
My regular terms stipulate that once paid, deposits are non refundable and non transferable, but if your wedding needs to be postponed due to coronavirus complications, then as long as I can accommodate the new date, then I am happy to transfer the booking with no impact on the deposit. The only exception to this would be if insufficient notice (less than 2 weeks) has been given and I have started the work, and what I have done will not keep till the new date. In which case the cost of the materials and work involved will come off your deposit, at my discretion, depending on the situation. However, if I cannot accommodate the new date I’m afraid your deposit will be lost. If you decide to cancel your wedding completely then again I’m afraid your deposit will be lost as per my regular terms.
I am prepared to move the date of your wedding up to 2 times if the dates become compromised by a national pandemic. The wedding must take place within 12 months of the original booked date in order to retain the original quote, within the same terms. I cannot guarantee to be able to offer the same order at the same price after 12 months, so if you’d like to book your date after this time has passed, then whilst I am happy to move it, the cost may increase slightly in line with increased materials and ingredients costs. I estimate this to be approximately 10% of the order. The terms and conditions may also be subject to change after this time. All final costs and terms will be confirmed 12 months before the new due date
Your deposit cannot be transferred to a celebration cake or series of orders, and cannot be transferred to another person or party. It is to be used against the cost of your wedding cake only.
Please be aware that if a pandemic affects you, then it will also affect hundreds of other couples, and there will be a rush to book in new dates, as well as new bookings, so available dates will go faster than they have ever done before. If you do need to rebook, then I strongly recommend booking in as soon as you are able.
If you are thinking of taking out wedding insurance, please do check if it will still cover you against pandemic related issues, as many insurance companies have withdrawn their cover in these instances.
Agreement and Payment Instructions
By paying the holding fee you are agreeing to these terms. If there are any elements you are unsure of, please ask before payment is made. Please also note that until a holding fee is paid, the date is not booked and may be given to another party. I will not do this however without attempting to contact you and inform you of the situation to allow yourself the chance to book in.
Payment can be made through BACS account number 66079322 sort code 60-02-31 with my name Mrs Carity J Raymond. Please ensure you use your name as a reference so I can match it back to your order. Payment can also be made by cash, as long as social distancing measures are not in effect.
I look forward to your response.
Kind regards and many thanks,
Caritas Cake Design
Tel: 07793 678187