“Become the cake lady?”
That’s what Kim Cooper asked herself when her husband encouraged her to take a cake class. At the time, after seeing the cakes she would make for her son, her friends and family kept nudging her to start her own business.
After three classes, she was hooked. “I started playing and learning on my own. My hairdresser was my first client. She wanted a baby shower cake. I tried to barter for haircuts but she insisted on paying. The business evolved from that first cake,” says Cooper.
Since 2012, she has not only made cake her business, but she has made it her passion. Though she was hesitant to do weddings—thanks to the bridezilla stereotype—she decided to dive into the wedding industry. Her first wedding cake was for a local gay couple that erased her “bride/groom from hell” reservations. Their cake was a two-tier coconut cake with purple and orange flowers. Cooper jokes, “they loved their cake, but didn’t get much of it because their guests devoured it.”
In addition to wedding cakes, she is busy creating cakes for different types of events and celebrations. Her love for edible art has made her the go-to cake lady for all occasions.
What is your favorite thing about working with wedding couples?
It is fun to meet a couple and listen to them talk about their wedding day. Some have multiple images of cakes they like or little details and colors they want incorporated. I even had a couple that wanted the front of their cake to look traditional but the back to have a mountainside with climbers at the base. It’s my job to capture a couple’s vision and create it in cake. It’s edible art.
What is a big misconception in your industry?
A beautiful or unique cake won’t taste great. The best feedback I’ve gotten was about someone going back for seconds and finding people eating the remaining crumbs off the cake board.
Why is it important for you to work with the LGBTQ community?
I grew up with a lesbian friend and have seen the bullying she endured. When I read a story of a baker refusing service to LGBTQ couples it ticked me off. It’s important for me to involved in LGBTQ events. The community is so open, warm, and engaging.
Is there anything you won’t do?
I was asked once to create part of the male anatomy for a bridal shower. I declined. That’s just not my thing. I also won’t create any cake I feel is homophobic or racist.
What can couples expect when they work with you?
I have a phone conversation to get a feel for their needs and any other special details. If they want a personal consultation, we set a date and time. Unlike other bakers, I come to their home, business, etc.
We discuss their design ideas, swatches, or colors. My goal is to have a clear understanding of what their dream cake would look like. I provide up to six mini cakes in their choice of flavors. They are boxed and can be sampled over a few days or they can dive right in. I don’t put a variety of cakes, fillings, and icings in front of people and expect them to imagine the combinations and make choices on the spot. They have enough pressure planning their special day, designing the cake should be fun.
How can people learn more about you?
They can read reviews on Yelp and visit my website www.CreativeCakeConcepts.com.