One of the forum leaders suggested that I post my question here. Hope this is O.K.
Would any of you CCer's mind sharing how you bake out of your home? I don't have a business, just do this for friends and for fun. I don't have a basement to store things so I have a card table set up in our front entry next to my kitchen. I have everything stored in boxes under the table and things in progress on top of the table. The issue is, I live in Michigan where it can be humid in the summer, and we don't have air conditioning. We usually open the front entry door to catch a breeze when we can. I don't know what to do with my cake stuff. My WONDERFUL husband thinks we should get something like a used house trailer that we could use for storage and my cake decorating addiction. I hate to put that expense out there. Things are tight and I hate the idea of putting money into this. Not only the cost of the trailer, but having to fix it up, run water to it, have to heat it, etc. Any suggestions.
This has been heavy on my mind. Thanks for listening.
Sounds like your husband is brainstorming ways to keep your passion for baking alive...thats a good thing! I understand the issue of space and the lack of. It might be possible for you to put a smaller size shed (if you have room) and then hook up a used fridge and some shelves. If it gets really hot you might have to worry about plastic?? Just a thought.
Wishing you the best of luck!
I wouldn't worry about it terribly for STORING your supplies. As long as the perishables are in reasonably sealed containers, that's fine, since I assume you refrigerate that which requires refrigeration, anyway. If you're talking about when you're working with the perishables or when you have a finished cake, why not by a window AC unit and put it in your dining room or kitchen window?
Edit to add: Sorry, misread and it sounded like you were most worried about the heat and humidity. Actually, a shed is probably not a half-bad idea, especially if you have a shaded back yard.
I don't have a basement, either, and all of my cake stuff is piled up in my room, since I live with my parents, in a big plastic tub at the foot of my bed. When I bake a cake, I take up the big toolbox that has all the smaller tools (colors, tips, hand tools, etc..) and whatever of the larger tools and pans I need. I have the perishables in the kitchen, since I share most of them with the family--cake flour and cane sugar by request only--and I buy what I need for the project of what I don't have. Then, everything sits on the dining room table (which we rarely eat on) for the better part of a week as I work on my project. After I use the tools, they either go back in the toolbox, or back down to my room if they're larger items, once they're washed and dried.
And yes, I have to wash them before I use them each time, too, but I tend to do that, anyway, just in case.
If you don't want to get a shed, do you have a spare bedroom, room under your bed or in the bottom of your closet, etc?
We've tried to think of ways to use air conditioning but our house is an open floor plan. Cathederal ceilings with a loft and no doors (except bedrooms and bathroom) to close off rooms. We don't have a formal dining room, just the kitchen table that we eat at every night. No extra bedrooms either. Our house isn't all that small, just a very open floor plan with no place to stash things. My concern with humidity is that I have been doing a lot of sugar work and the humid days coming worry me. Just worrying ahead of time.
Ooh, I think the trailer idea sounds GREAT! I also have a very open-plan home and cannot wait until my basement kitchen is finished so I can have MY space to spread out, make a mess, have everything out and not have to clean up, tidy up and put everything away because it's dinner time.
I'd say if there's any way to make that work, go for it!
We've tried to think of ways to use air conditioning but our house is an open floor plan.
Well, then, I would suggest either the trailer or a shed. Our shed has electricity run to it--my father's an engineer--but you can snake a heavy-duty indoor/outdoor four-plug outlet cable to it from the garage or back door, and then you can plug in one of those free-standing A/C units.
I'd suggest renting a climate-controlled storage unit, but I'm not sure how well that would work. Though you might be able to set up like a card table in there and work...but they might not like it if you did that.
I'm not sure where you are located in Michigan. I have a rental kitchen in Ferndale and although I store most of my stuff at home they have given me plenty of space there to keep all of my cake stuff and use of the commercial fridge as needed. They rent the space for all kinds of occasions but we've just agreed that they give me advance notice prior to renting so I can make sure I don't have anything important in the fridge. The rest of my cabinets have locks on them. You might want to look into something like that in your area.
I've got a very similar problem with storage...my kitchen is tiny, and the storage space is minimal. I have been keeping all of my supplies in a large rubbermaid container as well. My fiance is actually a carpentar, and he's in the process of building me a roll around island...something I can use to store all of my cake supplies, pans, tips, bags, you name it...and I'll be able to leave it out of the way and against a wall when not in use. You can usually find them online for fairly reasonable prices, but if you know anyone mechanically inclined, it can be built for a fraction of the cost.
Duplicate post, please also see: