Chapter II

Styles & Trends

Evolution of David Cakes cake designs 1982-2012

At the first store of it’s kind launched 1982 in Liverpool

PRESENTED IN SCROLL PAGE FORMAT

Celebrating 30 Years

Of Bespoke Creativity

1982-2012

The Complete Wedding Cake Experience

Presented at David Cakes Liverpool England

Celebrating in Style
Charlotte and John cut their bespoke wedding cake 
Created by David Cakes 2009
£5000 commission

Niche in The Market

Being In The Right Place – At The Right Time

When David first set up ‘David Cakes’ in 1982, he operated his new, very small and literally unique (at the time) wedding cake supply business from a spare room at his family home that had been converted into a work shop. David started to create more and more display cakes, but ran out of space. So, his supportive Mum and Dad also gave up their back lounge which became David’s temporary in-house’ showroom where he greeted potential clients. In order to raise more awareness of the ‘David Cakes’ brand, the Mum and son business team attended many small local bridal fairs where Hilda greeted potential clients, while David showcased his cake decorating free-hand piping skills to a captivated audience. At one such event Hilda was approached by a lady who was interested in commissioning David to create a lavish 6 tier design (David’s first ever request for such a cake!). Hilda invited the client to attend a private wedding cake design consultation with David at their family home. On the evening of the appointment a ‘Porche’ sports car pulled up outside David’s humble family home and the lady stepped out of her car, continued to make her way up the path and rang the house bell. Hilda and David greeted the client and after a successful consultation, a bespoke wedding cake commission was secured worth over £1000 (and that was in 1982!) Delighted with David’s finished cake creation, the lady invited him to attend her daughters wedding which was taking place at a luxurious hotel location in Lancashire England. Feeling most honoured David attended the society wedding where his free-hand edible art was an instant hit with other guests, who in turn commissioned him to make their sons and daughters wedding cakes. David had found his niche in the market – creating spectacular wedding cakes, which as his journey evolved attracted many celebrity clients, as well as a request from Buckingham Palace! 

David Cakes Showroom
From a back lounge at home – to the high street boutique
1982-2012
Liverpool England

Gentle Sales Approach

Creating the perfect mood with warm hospitality

The transition from working at home to running his business on the high street was completed when David opened his cake shop – the first of it’s kind launched in Liverpool. Taking the ‘relaxing in the lounge at home’ concept into the cake store proved very successful, creating an instant calm atmosphere, embraced by clients, as they stepped into the store from the everyday bustle of the high street. Greeted with a warm smile and invited to browse around David Cakes showroom with no obligation, the wedding cake shop experienced was heightened with a mixture gentle romantic music playing softly in the background as mouth watering scents of cake and sugar filled the air, stimulating the senses. With no pressure, no pretence or hard selling sales tactics, Hilda and David greeted clients as they had done in their lounge at home, encouraging time-out to relax, view catalogues of photographs, be pampered with free samples of assorted cakes and a glass of champagne (or a light beverage) while being surrounded by over 50 unique cake designs – all to ensure the ultimate cake shop browsing experience.
There was never any urgency made to push for a booking to be taken on the spot, unless the client desired to do so. Every client (whether they booked a cake or not) was sent home with free box of cake to share with family and friends – which (once the internet arrived) allowed the client to relive the entire cake shop browsing experience as they viewed David Cakes cake shop website in the comfort of their own home, while enjoying more free cake. There was never a strategic plan of sales technique and approach set out by David and Hilda – everything just evolved naturally. A gentle sales approach worked and created a high volume of sales, so it was embraced – becoming an outstanding asset to David Cakes business growth and ultimate retail cake shop success.

David Cakes Clients
Presenting their own creative ideas
Embracing the design process
Ensuring a unique and bespoke cake is achieved

The Design Consultation

Developing the design and creating together

The design consultation process was always intended to be a very exciting part of the wedding cake experience for David Cakes clients. Once a commission had been taken, each client was encouraged to get involved with the creative design process in order for their cake to customised exactly to their specific requirements, resulting in a bespoke cake – exclusive, unique and never to be repeated. Hilda made appointments for each client to spend time with David in his workshop (as many times as required) in order to get their cake creation just right. Some brides attended with their future partners and family members, presenting sketches of their own creative ideas, which David always welcomed and embraced. Once all the ideas had been gathered, David would present a sketch a final design which once approved, the next stage of the creative process would begin. Clients would be invited to return at a later date to view a prototype of the proposed design, approve piping patterns, or sit with David as he colourised bridal flowers, matching the colours of the bridesmaids dresses or floral bouquet into the finished design.
Nothing was ever too much trouble – David and Hilda simply wanted each client to receive the best customer service possible. By doing so, David Cakes reputation for supplying an excellent customer service added to David’s Cakes appeal, especially during the late 1990’s, when the wedding cake market started to become overwhelmed with so many other cake shops opening in Liverpool and across the UK, as well as supermarkets also competing for a slice of the wedding cake business. Today the wedding cake shop market is bigger than ever and remains fiercely competitive. Ensuring all aspects of business services are incorporated into a working business model is more crucial than ever to achieve long term cake shop survival and continued success. 

Society and Celebrity Weddings
Created for TV soap stars and footballers
David decorates the designs on location
Many David Cakes are featured on TV, in the press and celebrity magazines

Delivery & Set-Up

Making your wedding cake experience stress free

From design to creation – the journey of the clients’ cake is now reaching it’s ultimate conclusion – to be set up and displayed for all to admire, photograph and enjoy! Once a cake creation was completed the client was invited to view the finished design ahead of schedule to ensure that all details were in order. If for any reason changes needed to be made, there was adequate time to do so, rather than creating additional stress on the day of the celebration. Some clients preferred to collect their cakes from David’s cake shop, while others requested delivery and set up the cake at the event location. In this case David would contact the venue event organiser in advance to ensure the cake would be displayed in the best area at the venue location. Working as a team with other wedding service suppliers, hotels, etc, created a friendly association while giving David’s clients reassurance that their cake would be treated with care and priority. Much more extravagant designs were finished on location, which David sometimes performed as a novelty in front of the wedding guests during their arrival, adding an additional entertainment to the celebrations. The larger the cake, the more logistics involved. Health and safety issues would always be addressed, some designs were insured with a broker – especially really tall and /or fragile designs. David along with his assistants would deliver and set-up multi-tiered giant wedding cake designs and then remain at the wedding for the entire duration of the event, should the cake need to be moved into another area of the wedding venue for the evening party, but also to slice up and serve the cake design. Nothing was ever too much trouble – David Cakes objective was always to supply an outstanding customer service of excellence from the very start of the wedding cake experience, that became one of the many exclusive signature trademarks of the David Cakes retail brand.  

Wedding Cake Catalogue

1982-2012

Retro cake designs and cake shop business facts

Showcasing the styles and trends of the time

Chapter III

Clients & Cakes

David Cakes true cake stories 1982-2012

Read the next exclusive chapter of ‘The Cake Shop’

The Cake Shop
Retail Business Story of David Cakes
Written by David MacCarfrae
All material copyright © 2020 David Cakes.  All rights reserved
All artwork and online chapter layout presentation created by David MacCarfrae proudly hosted by SPARKZ NETWORK Liverpool England. 
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