Tell us a bit about yourself
My name is Stacey Anderson, I live in Greenvale, Melbourne, with my husband Luke and our 3 kids, Riley 8, Jessie 5 & Judd 2. We have 2 dogs, Ned & Dara, both Hungarian Vizsla & a cat called Marmalade.
I grew up around animals & started working early on, whilst I was at High School at our Local Veterinary Clinic.. I worked at a couple of places, including the University Of Melb in the ICU & of late managing a Small Animal Clinic in Carlton. This was my Full time career until I had my 3rd baby. I started making Cupcakes more often, whilst I was on Maternity leave. On my free weekends I would spend my time baking & sampling new recipes. I would bake and decorate cakes & cupcakes for my kids’ parties & family occasions. This became a regular thing & I was asked to make Cakes & Cupcakes for friends of friends. This grew rapidly and before I knew it I was working every weekend on top of my “Real” Job- as my husband called it! Word of mouth made my hobby business grow , quite rapidly to my surprise. Having worked in the Veterinary profession for over 18 years, I decided to focus all of my time on my Cupcake business and have a change of pace & scenery. Working from home allowed me to be close to School & Kinda. And all of the other Mum duties, from Play Group, Kindagym, to Music classes etc..
Over two years ago, I custom built an entire kitchen & shop front, from which I work out of. I have 40 or more books on Cake Decorating & Cupcake recipes, which were purchased from all over the world. Which I’d refer to for ideas & yummy recipes. My Made it business started back in August 2011, giving Mum’s a chance to bake & decorate their own cupcakes at home. And to be able to match their party theme at the same time. As everything is custom made we can colour match & make any designs.
As decorations were very hard to find apart from the plastic ring variety & edible images, I began making & designing my own. I’m all about the little details.. everything has to match & tie in with party scheme or colour. So instead of settling for the plain & boring, I wanted to add colour to parties & personalisation too.
Can you explain your craft/art and the material you like to use?
We use Edible Fondant & Sugar Paste to make our Cupcake Toppers. All of our toppers are hand cut & designed to match your party theme or colour. We offer personalisation too. We can add any writing to a Topper, to match your event.
Where do you get your inspiration and what is your creative process?
Inspiration comes from many places, whether it be an invitation, cartoon, fabric & scrapbooking paper. Sometimes the designs on kid’s clothes inspire me to create a fondant replica.. Especially kids PJ’s they have some really cute themes.
How long have you been creating and how did you get into craft/art?
I have been making edible Cupcake Toppers for over 6 years now. It all started as a hobby & making my kids Birthday Cupcakes & Cakes. I could never really find anything suitable in the colour party theme that I wanted. There wasn’t much available other than simple flowers & plastic rings, so I began making & designing myself. Before that I loved dabbling in arts & crafts. I went through many phases, from jewellery making to making & designing an entire range of Bride & Groom Figurines made out of clay for Wedding Cakes. Now to date , I’m making them out of edible fondant & sugar paste.
How did you come up with your business name?
I actually purchased a canvas painting from a local market, for my daughter, it was to hang above her big girls bed. It was painted in soft pastels with 2 cupcakes with the wording “Sugar & Spice & Everything Nice!”. So the name was taken from there.
What resources 'have or do you' use to help your creative pursuits (i.e. groups, classes, shops, websites etc)?
I utilise Google images & children’s books to research the characters we are making. I’m not familiar with all of the Characters out there on TV . Most toppers are designed off the top of our head, they are generally everyday items. There are no classes really available for what we do, other than Sugar Art/Figurine classes held interstate . But there is generally no spare time in my day to attend! I’m self taught, with a general rule of trialling ideas & designs, until I’m happy with the finished product.
What's your best advice for someone starting up?
Promote your product starting with family & friends- this is a great avenue to get your product out there. Allow time for any project. You need to dedicate time to design, make & communicate with potential clients. You don’t realise how much time is taken up with the planning & processes, before you get to the fun part of making. Use your friends & family as a sounding board for your designs, especially when creating something new.
Do you have any advertising/promotion tips for sellers to be successful?
Facebook is a great source of free advertising. However we have found that “Word of mouth” is the best way to be successful. Along with offering the ‘Best in Customer Service.’
Can you share any lessons that you have learned the hard way?
Ensure you have quoted your product price correctly- especially when extra time is taken to make fiddly items. You need to be logging your production/making time, materials & include workplace expenses too!
What do you like to do besides creating?
Spending time with my family, friends & fine dining. Love going on day trips, exploring new holiday destinations.
What is your favourite music, television show, film, book, website?
Music - RnB, Pop & Rock
TV - Private Practice, Revenge, My Kitchen Rules
Film - Pretty Woman, Ghost, Shaw Shank Redemption, Dirty Dancing
Book - Bryce Courtenay, Power of One
Websites - www.allthingscupcake.com, www.cinnamonbay.co.uk, www.nameframes.thesoftdrinkfactory.com.au
What would be your perfect day?
Going out for Breakfast with my Family & spending the entire day together – preferably somewhere on holidays in a tropical climate!
Who is your favourite madeit seller, explain why in less than 10 words?
Creations138 - Handcrafted Artisan Jewellery- Jay has lots of lovely jewellery. I have purchased on more than 10 occasions. It’s lovely giving a personalised gift to a friend or family member.
Sugar & Spice Cupcakes visit store
8 July 2013