Today we’d like to introduce you to Dawn Ki.
Hi Dawn, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I began baking shortly after my first daughter, who is now 14, was born. I grew up in Korea where cafe and bakery culture is very popular and diverse. I wanted to make pretty cakes made with natural ingredients for family birthdays.
Over the years, my calendar slowly filled up with reminders of the birthdays of my family and friends. And my cakes became more unique with designs and flavors that stood out from the cakes one could find in bakeries around. Still, baking had just been a hobby. I only gave my cakes as a personal gift.
In 2014, I organized a bake sale in our church to help fund a school bus for a missionary in Africa. In a couple of weeks, we raised around $3000. I received lots of positive feedbacks. Soon, people began reaching out to place orders for my cake. I have been a home baker since. And I often dreamt of having my own shop someday.
2020, as for all of us, was a challenging time. As an ICU nurse, I have had firsthand experience with the horrible impact of the COVID-19. My job had become increasingly arduous and mentally draining. Still, I tore myself out of my bed each morning and put on my scrub and mask, headed into the hospital.
However, at the end of August, we lost my father-in-law to COVID-19. It was heartbreaking. He really loved me like his own. And he was only 67. I couldn’t continue my work as a nurse. I came to face the fact that life is too short and unpredictable.
So I decided to pursue my dream and open a bakery. It was a conflicting decision. It made little sense to open a business during a pandemic. I read that many bakeries nearby were closing down due to quarantine and lost customers. But I was confident that I had developed a loyal customer base over the years in my home baking business. With a leap of faith, I signed a lease in a strip mall near my home.
I gathered all the notes and images that have accumulated over the years brainstorming about my dream bakery. With the help of my husband, we were able to open Whipped mid January 2021. Thanks to the generous support from nearby neighbors and social media, we are experiencing a modest success today. The greatest joy is seeing the expressions of our customers after they taste our product. The widening of the eyes and suspicious chuckles…. It’s a hard work. But the joy I feel is more than worth it. Thank you.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
Given the impact of the COVID-19, it has been a difficult start. Our bakery opened in January 2021. Dealing with social distance issues and infection control procedures have exhausted extra resources and time. In addition, the price of ingredients and supplies have gone up to 50 percent. Furthermore, it has been extra difficult finding employees. And increased labor cost is hurting our bottom line.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
We make sweet treats from scratch using the best natural ingredients. Our customers enjoy cupcakes topped with fluffy light whipped cream icing. We are also known for facarons (over-filled macarons) in 30 plus flavors. We also have hard to find deserts such as Basque cheesecakes, canales, and cookie chouxs. We also have a great espresso bar. One of our special drinks is called Dalgona latte. Dalgona is recently made famous by the Squid Game. We have been selling it since April.
Our customers often tell us that our deserts are not too sweet and very flavorful.
Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
We love Facebook, Instagram and TikTok.
- Cupcakes 3.75 to 4.5
- Fatcarons 3
- Cakes start at $30
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: www.whippedatx.com
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/whippedatx/
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/whippedatx/