24.10.14

KITCHEN TABLE BUSINESS: Audrey's Little Cakery.


        
Hello lovelies,
I spent yesterday afternoon with the lovely Lisa from Audrey's Little Cakery. We sat in her lovely vintage kitchen and shared a pot of tea and a slice of lemon cake. This is how Lisa greets all of her brides for their wedding cake consultations. Whilst I happily ate my weight in cake, and snapped away she told me how she set her business up, created her brand and how she juggles family life. Plus she gives advice to others thinking of going into the ever growing business of master baker.



       

What made you start your business? 'I was on maternity with Ava my daughter and just wanted to stay at home with her. Initially I started making cards not cakes, but then my creativity escalated and my sister suggested I should make a business from selling my cakes. It seemed the perfect solution and I got to stay at home with my daughter'.

What has been the hardest challenge? 'Getting noticed! There are so many people doing this. You need to stand out and stand your ground with costing. It was hard to get my prices right in the beginning as there are a lot of hobby bakers selling cheaply and I thought if I was more expensive then people wouldn't buy my cakes. I soon learnt that propper costing is key when running a business. It takes time to produce fabulous looking cakes and source the best ingredients to make them with. Lots of my customers have said how hard they had found it finding a cake that tastes as good as it looks and vice versa, this has been my USP. I knew I'd reached this moment when at a wedding fair, a little boy sampled one of my cupcakes and then turned to his mother, and rather loudly announced - that this ladies cakes actually taste really nice, and they are pretty mummy! Haha we all know kids don't lie'!

Where do you find inspiration? 'I love vintage designs and take my inspiration from vintage jewellery, romantic blooms and gorgeous lace. I also love pinterest'.

       


How do you reach out to prospective customers? 'I use facebook and instagram, and I also have a website. Plus I attend lots of wedding fairs'.

Which social media network do you find works best for your business? 'Instagram! its amazing for getting your work out there'.

How do you manage working from home and juggling family life? 'It is hard. The children are still young so I do most of my work in the evenings when they are in bed. I know this will change when they go to school and I wouldn't have it any other way'.

Name one thing you wish you had known when starting up. 'Understanding costing. It took a while to get the time management to costing right, and I realised I had been selling myself short when I worked out the man hours I'd put into making a cake'.

      


What advice would you give for anyone wanting to start a home baking business? Don't under price! It's easy to think it's just cake. But a lot of time and money has gone into them. It's an art! It's not just cake'.

The legal stuff... What do you need to do? 'Inform the council and have local hygiene (trading standards) round to inspect the kitchen. You also need to do your food hygiene certificate to grade 2. Inform the tax office that you are now trading as a sole trader'.

Start up costs- £300 to £400 I was very lucky as was given a lot of things from my family.

What is the best thing about having your own creative business? 'I love working from home, having my family around me and being my own boss'!

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Find Lisa on Instagram at @audreyslittlecakery and visit her website at www.audreyslittlecakery.co.uk 

If you would like to see your business featured on the blog then please get in touch!

                I hope you all have a lovely week end.

Emma x




20.10.14

#shelfiesundaycomp instagram

Hello lovelies,

Yesterday was the first ever #shelfiesundaycomp on Instagram. I really want to thank everyone of you that sent pics of your shelfies! it was a huge success and so much fun!
I think by lunch time the hashtag was finally sorted under its proper header lol, but don't worry as I did get all entries.
Shelfie Sunday comp will run every Sunday on Instagram and there is always a little prize for the best shelfie, so make sure you tell everyone you think will enjoy playing.

I found it soooo hard to chose a winner! there really was so many fab entries!
In the end, and as its the first week, I decided to have joint winners as I just couldn't decide.

The winners are...




I loved this fab design by Daniel! how amazing to have a suit case set of shelves, and I love the wedding photograph of his parents.

And.....


How could anyone resist Lisa's colourful eclectic shelfie! crammed full of vintage finds.

Lisa and Daniel please send your address to emmaconnolly78@icloud.com so I can send out your prizes.

There were so many gorgeous ones so I'm just going to share a few more shelfies that entered 

I adore Tamsyns style and muted colour scheme and love the vintage clocks!

I just love everything this lady posts. such gorgeous stuff on her shelfie.

Sians beautiful bright shelves are utterly gorgeous and remind me of my great grandmother.
such pretty collections.



Oh I do love bunting on a shelf! and this lady makes some fab bunting! 
I love the muted pastels and gorgeous blooms!

This is a striking shelfie with fab bits n pieces. love that metallic phone.

Gorgeous contrast of that wall against that shelfie making its pretty china really stand out.

Once again thank you for joining in the fun and take lots of shelfies ready to play next Sunday.

Have a lovely week everyone.

Emma x


AUTUMN AT AMPTHILL PARK

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Hello lovelies,

We're so lucky to live near the beautiful Ampthill park! I used to play here as a child and be gone for hours, only going home when I got hungry lol.
This gorgeous place is steeped in history. King Henry the eighth placed the poor Queen Katherine of Aragon here when he wanted to forget about her whilst he was carrying on and marrying Anne Boleyn. There is something very magical in the air when your standing on the top of that hill.




Sunday was a perfect day for collecting chestnuts ready for roasting on the fire.
A great thing to do with the kids! just make sure you give them good gardening gloves!
Mr C makes sticky honey sausages and stuffs them in a carved out loaf. This is so easy to do, the sausages stay hot and the bread gets really yummy. Its the perfect autumn picnic treat... it doesn't last us five minutes!



I love autumn, the colours changing, the smell of a bonfire and wrapping up warm and going for a walk in the country.

I hope you are all having a good start to the week!

Emma x




19.10.14

Sunday ramblings

                   

Hello lovelies,

 I love Sunday's. I think it's my most favourite day of the week. It's were house work has been done (hopefully), and chilling out time really starts. It normally involves at least one house or garden job but that's ok. If the kids are on board then we'll go for a walk and collect chestnuts. I fancy making a cake today too. But let's not rush... For now it's cup of tea time and a good vintage interiors mag and back to bed for a lazy Sunday morning.

                                                             Have a lovely day.
                                                                       Emma x

17.10.14

CREATIVE CRAFT WEEK END

                         
                         
                         
        
                        

 Hello lovelies,

I'm planning on having a creative wkend. I'm not sure what doing yet, as that is the curse of the crafty sort! We're quite flitty lol. I may bake a cake, I fancy orange and polenta. And I fancy finishing some paintings too. I've just received some gorgeous trims so want to make some pretty cushions too. Then I think we'll go to Ampthill park and collect chestnuts so I must take out the big camera and get snap happy. Phewww being bored is for the boring lol. What are you up to this wkend? Whatever it is, I hope you have a fab one!

                                                                    Emma x
 





16.10.14

TEA N A CHAT AND A BIT OF PINK PAINT.

                     

Hello lovelies,

I posted this pic of our living room door earlier on Instagram. I'm going to give it a lick of paint. I can't stand orange pine, and those handles are going to have to go! I put pink to the vote and guess what?... You all agreed (smiley face). Great minds think alike. I've just managed to persuade Mr C that this is an awesome idea. (I'm very clever at that! What's even more clever is when he thinks it was his idea LOL). So after a bit of work Saturday morning I think I may just get the paint brush out and nip to Laura Ashley for a nice handle. 
I do love to paint stuff, and enjoy constantly changing our rooms around. There is so much you can do with a pot of paint, and although it has gone up a bit, it is still a relatively cheap option to update your home. Anyhoo, ramble over... Soon be the wkend!

                                                                      Emma x

15.10.14

MY DAILY SNAPS... PINK DETAIL

 
                            
                                      
                     
                            
 
                            
                           

Hello lovelies,
Was feeling in a pink mood today, can you tell...?
Thought I'd capture some of my fav things, blooms, china and pretty cotton.
Hope everyone has had a good day!

                                                          Emma x