Meet Holly, chief baker of Once Upon A Cupcake, located in Vicksburg, MS! Holly designs custom cakes for birthdays, weddings, and other special events. Weddings are always great fun, but she also enjoys making cakes for kids’ birthdays. The themes are always different from week to week. There are usually lots of bright colors, and they just make her happy. On any given day she can be making mermaid tails, unicorns, or dinosaurs!
Preheating the Oven
About a dozen eggs ago — er, years — Holly’s hobby was making cakes for family and friends. Everyone loved her delicious creations and wanted more, please! Like many transitions from hobby to business, she lacked the time and confidence to go further. But a few years ago, she took a chance and went part time at her bank job, in the hopes of having more time to dedicate to growing her business.
First, Holly started her Facebook page. Then she opened her Instagram page and started sharing pictures of her work. To her delighted surprise, she discovered that she had created her own business! At the time, Holly says she never expected it to become full time, but that’s exactly what happened. She left the bank job in February of this year (2018) and never looked back!
Preparing the Ingredients
Holly’s advice to anyone who is interested in baking and decorating would be to just do it! Get in your kitchen, play around with recipes, and practice, practice, practice! She looks back at cakes made earlier in her baking career and wonders, ‘What was I thinking?!’ Hey, we all have to start somewhere. It takes patience and time, like getting your recipe just right. But if you think it’s something you’d be good at, just START.
“I still struggle with comparing myself to other bakers and thinking I’ll never be as good as them. You just have to forget about that and work hard at creating your own style.”
Baking the Cake
Holly worked with Lily and Beck during the branding process and was amazed at how easy they made everything. Business owners can turn over the logo creation and branding to the Autumn Lane experts, to create exactly what you’re looking for! Holly is ecstatic with all of her designs, and she’s convinced her business will move forward even more. She’s having shirts and car magnets produced, to make Once Upon A Cupcake more visible in the area around Vicksburg.
That Sweet, Delicious Icing
Someday, Holly would love to have a storefront. It will take a ton of work, but she thinks it will be so worth it. Even now she occasionally teaches cake decorating classes, and would love to have a space of her own for that as well.
Timing Is Everything
One of the hardest things for Holly in the last couple of years was just finding the time to do what she loves, making cakes. Even after she went part time at the bank, she still struggled to find the time to devote to orders. Her bank schedule wasn’t set in stone, but she could only take a few custom orders per week. That meant turning away orders pretty frequently.
She and her husband finally decided it was time to take a leap of faith, and she went to work for herself full time. Holly has worked harder than ever these last several months, but she’s never been happier!
Enjoy Every Delicious Bite
Holly is delighted that her business has grown so much in just three years. One of her early challenges was booking weddings. It’s a hard market to break into, because you need experience for couples to feel comfortable trusting you with such an important event. In 2016 she was thrilled to book one wedding!
This year, she’s booked nineteen, with several already lined up for next year. Holly declares, “I’m just amazed and so thankful for every person who lets me be a part of their events, large or small!”
In Vicksburg, MS and surrounding areas, you can contact Holly via the Facebook and Instagram links toward the top of this blog. (‘Preheating the Oven’) Or you can send her an email! Let her know where you read about Once Upon A Cupcake!