Starting A Business

Decorating By pamiez Updated 16 Sep 2008 , 12:55pm by pamiez

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pamiez Posted 9 Sep 2008 , 2:44pm
post #1 of 7

Hello my CC friends,

I have been baking cakes for around 6 years now. I love it and would like it to be my full time job. I do work as a Marketing Coordinator, 30 hours a week, but find myself daydreaming of my own home cake business. I want this so bad I can taste it (no pun intended), BUT am afraid to take that leap because of all the "What Ifs"

What if I'm not busy enough to help cover the bills?
What if I'm not good enough?
What if I will be giving out more than taking in?

I just don't know where to start. I have an extra room to convert into a 2nd kitchen, so I can be legal by our Counties Health Dept. and the cousin who's in construction to help keep costs low. I just can't seem to push myself enough to make the leap. I keep looking for the right part-time job to pay the bills, be home with the girls and do the cake thing. I do have regular clients and would have a tone of teachers at our daughters' school if I was legal, but am so scared that I would put my family is such debt, that Bankruptcy would not be fare behind.

Maybe I'm over thinking and stressing too much. Any advice or stories on how you "made your leap" would be very helpful.

I live in Western New York about 30 minutes from Niagara Falls. So if anyone out there is from my area and has specific pointers, I'd love to hear them.

Thanks so much and Happy Caking!

6 replies
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gingersoave Posted 9 Sep 2008 , 2:56pm
post #2 of 7

I had my own business out of my home but was not "legal", I just did cakes for "donations". Maybe you could start that way just to see if your business will take off during construction???

I want to get my own shop someday but with the economy the way it is (here in Virginia at least) it would not be a good time to start up a cake shop, so many little businesses are closing.

I wish you luck, and I am sorry I am not much help.....but I would like to find out what you decide!!!!

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Mencked Posted 9 Sep 2008 , 2:58pm
post #3 of 7

Playing devil's advocate here:

What if you're so busy you have to turn away customers?
What if you're so good people rave about you and tell everyone they know that they must get all of their cakes from you?
What if you set your prices so that all costs are covered and you make a huge profit?
What if you do a very detailed plan to appeal to hubby from that logical standpoint men have?

I'm in the exact same boat as you! Decorating for 5-6 years now, getting legal--slow process for me, but it's coming together! If cake decorating is something you love, love, love to do--it will be so worth it! There are tons of stories on here about those that took that leap and had great success. Those stories have encouraged me to do the same and I hope you will too!

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MaisieBake Posted 9 Sep 2008 , 7:40pm
post #4 of 7

If your first post is worrying about bankruptcy if you fail and making time for your kids, maybe this isn't the time to make the leap.

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pamiez Posted 10 Sep 2008 , 3:29pm
post #5 of 7

Thanks for the encouraging words. Becoming legal has been a slow process but I will get there and you are right Diane, I need to look at the positive "What ifs".

You will never succeed and make something or yourself if you don't try, right?

If things get tough, so what if I have to go back to working full time? I need to dig in and at least give it a try. I don't want to look back and regret that I never tried.

Thanks again,

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jjandhope Posted 15 Sep 2008 , 3:36pm
post #6 of 7

Any great accomplishment begins with some amount of risk.

If you start it, don't get discouraged. Dont ALLOW it to fail! If you dont have business, hit the streets, with flyers, put up signs, give away free cakes now and then and get the word out. Put your name on everyhting that goes out. Advertise! If your business ever seems to be going down, advertise. If you are doing people a good job and people know about you, you will succeed.

Having said that, on the issue of getting your husband to agree...
Let me say this, if he thinks it is a bad idea, I wouldnt do it. Simply for this reason: You are going to need his support and encouragement. If he's not saying, "Come on baby, lets open a bakery!" right now, he might not be cheering you on later either. You will need him to tell you to hang in there when it gets hard, not to agree with you and let it cost your family. And if I were you, I would make up my mind right now that it would NOT cost my family. I would either save and wait till I had cash, or was financially able to close without bankruptcy. You need an exit strategy that doesnt involve hurt for you or your family. If that happened, it would turn something you love (cake making) into a painful memory.

I think you can do it, but you have to think so too and be dedicated to make it work or plan ahead for a way to bail out without putting the family in a bind.

Just wondering...why would this cost so much for you to start up? Would you have to have a commercial kitchen? You could buy things cheap and used and lessen your risk.

For more on this topic, you might want to go to the thread, "Would you share your numbers?" in the business category. Best wishes!

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pamiez Posted 16 Sep 2008 , 12:55pm
post #7 of 7

Thanks jjandhope!!!!!

What wonderful things to say.

Let me clarify. It is not that hubby isn't behind me, if nothing else he is my biggest supporter. The first person to tell me when I see an amazing cake..."You can do that!" or "That's nothing compare to what I've seen you do." It's more of spending the money for the second kitchen. In order to get the business I have been turning down from our daughters' school or companies in my area (which has been so much it's making me sick) I need to be Health Dept. certified and that means a second kitchen. Yes, I know if I put in the kitchen it would pay for itself in time, but it's coming up with the initial costs. One would not think plumbing would be as expensive as it is and Hubby is more of a "Tim the Tool Man Taylor" than a "Extreme Makeover Team".

So I am saving and doing my best and I will get there. Unfortunately not as fast as I want. But that too could be a good thing. Grow slow and strong not fast and mess things up.

I just have to have faith in myself and know I can do it and with all of the support one can get through here than how can you not succeed?

Thanks to all.

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