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Early Days & Mistakes

Updated: May 14

So I headed into the cake world knowing what I wanted to do and where I wanted to go and had so much to learn and despite having an arty streak and ambition I was quite happy with where I was, then I fell upon Facebook. WOW! What a wealth of information for cakers and like minded people there was on there. It was an amazing way of connecting with customers. Little did I know what some people could be and can still be like in the cake world. We are our own worst critic as cake makers but I can tell you there's some REAL critics out there that will stalk you and try to pull you down. Even 9 years on I still get the odd one. I started out pricing really 'reasonably' shall I put it, and soon the customers came flooding my way keeping me exceptionally busy and I loved it although I was worn out working almost 60 hours a week making all these wonderful creations at £25 a go! Other bakers used to message and say I was undercutting them and who was I, was I registered and insured, which I most certainly was and that I wasn't being fair taking all the custom by undercutting them. I didn't drag people in through the door, they willingly came and I didn't know what anyone else was charging, I plucked my prices out of the air in those days. Another lesson learned and that story is for a future blog. I did make a bit of a rod for my back though by pricing so cheaply and I didn't realise just how cut throat caking could be :) But I was busy, getting returning customers and happy customers too. I was so happy working for myself. It helped me to build my confidence, well, slowly anyway.

The biggest mistake I made was building a small album of images of cakes that I could make to give ideas to customers on my page, something to build my portfolio with I thought as I hadn't made many cakes generally before I started up. What a mistake that was! I used social media pictures and google images and didn't ask if I could so I was definitely in the wrong. There wasn't a polite message asking me to take it down, it was full blown abuse which made me wonder whether this was the job for me after all. Ok I made a mistake and I held my hands up to the cake police. I politely apologized and shakily removed anything that wasn't mine. I was so upset by the abuse that I even left groups Id joined as Id been talked about to a lot of people. I was very naive I know now. The comments would make you hair curl :) I wish I'd kept some of those messages to see if I'm friends now with any of those writers. Well it's one way to get your name out there I suppose although I don't recommend it reader. Below is the first giant cupcake I ever made with ice cream cone cakes. I charged £32 for the whole order and free delivery. And it was in a chocolate case I made over and over as it kept cracking, it took me ages. If I could go back 9 years and tell the naive Nichola what she shouldve done AND CHARGED! Thats is for now. Next blog is all about training and tools X


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