Today we’d like to introduce you to Tara Konitshek.
Tara, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Sweet As Bliss started off as just a hobby that eventually turned into a full blown business. I started my business back in 2010 after obtaining a degree in health science and struggling to figure out what I wanted to do. While I’ve always had a love for baking since I was a kid, I’ve honestly never had professional culinary training or even a business degree. What I do have, is a strong drive, persistence, and a willingness to learn. I remember spending hours reading through various books on different styles of baking/running a business (blogs weren’t “a thing” back then), watching YouTube videos on cake decorating, and developing numerous recipes. I’ve literally built this business entirely from scratch and I am so proud of the progress I have slowly made over the years. These days, I am running my business out of a commercial kitchen located in Sorrento Valley and taking on 50-60 weddings yearly, along with hundreds of other custom orders.
Has it been a smooth road?
Oh, if only that were true! Running a business is never a smooth road. It is by far, the most challenging thing I have ever done. Going into this, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. SO many tears have been shed, numerous mistakes made, and there have definitely been days where I felt like giving up. But that would be too easy right? It’s true what they say, “Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart”. In order to thrive, you need to be extremely self-motivated, patient, and have a willingness to constantly learn and grow. The industry I am in specifically, is a very evolving and creative industry (both which I love), yet it is SO vital to be flexible and to keep up with the trends. I remember when I first started out (during the whole cupcake craze), I wanted to just stick with selling cupcakes. To be honest, I think I was just scared to take on the challenge at the time. However, over the years I learned how important it is to not be so rigid. Turns out, cakes are now my most favorite thing to make! They are truly individual works of art! In terms of struggles, well, I’ve definitely had my fair share. One thing specifically, is with comparison. It is so easy to fall into that trap with social media around but with loads of practice, I’ve taught myself to just focus on my strengths and try my best to stay in my own lane. I’ve also struggled with taking on too much work and learning how to say, “no” to jobs that weren’t a good fit for me. I’ve pulled several all-nighters (too many to count) and even struggled with time-management. With God’s grace though, I’ve managed to get through it all in order to keep doing what I love.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Sweet As Bliss story. Tell us more about the business.
Sweet As Bliss is a custom order dessert business specializing in cakes and dessert bars. We are known for our cheesecakes, French macarons, and of course our cakes! We also specialize in accommodating special dietary restrictions such as, vegan, gluten-free, and reduced sugar. Our desserts are always baked fresh to order and we refrain from using hydrogenated oils and preservatives. The ingredients in my desserts are SO important to me which is why I have spent a great deal of time over the years researching and experimenting with various ingredients. The dark chocolate I use, comes from Berlin, the cocoa powder (literally THE best) is from Holland and our red premium salt for our chocolate salted chunk cookies & salted caramel are from the Maras Salt Mines that I’ve personally hand selected after taking a trip there in 2016. I learned all about how they produce the salt and loved it so much that I’ve decided to use it in my desserts. I also love supporting businesses that give back. The cinnamon & ginger we use for example, is from Red Ape Cinnamon. Not only does this company produce organic ingredients, but they donate 5% of all proceeds to the protection of orangutans and their habitat. They also work with the Pearl Buck Center which provides work and vocational training to adults with developmental disabilities by having them package all of their products. I absolutely LOVE that and it has even inspired me to work on a special project of my own (currently in the works)!
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
It’s honestly hard to foresee that far into the future with the wedding industry. Trends change year after year and as a vendor, when you feel like you’ve seen it all, someone does something to change that mindset. Remember that whole cupcake craze when Cupcake Wars was airing? Well, people are now reverting back to tiered cakes and full dessert spreads, especially since not everyone enjoys cake. I have done weddings where the couple will order everything from cookies to creme brulee and southern banana pudding shots but no cake or cupcakes! They’ll also rent a gelato bar or s’mores bar from other vendors. That is SO rad! In my honest opinion…do YOU! I think that’s what I love most about our industry, is the creative freedom it allows. And with the rise of popularity in blogs and social media, it is SO easy to become as creative as you would like. It really is such an evolving industry…the sky is the limit!
- Address: 9932 Mesa Rim Road, Suite A.
- Website: www.sweetasbliss.com
- Phone: 858-610-6500
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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