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Vancity Vendor: Heather and Hunny

July 20th, 2012 by Jeannine

 
Heather and Hunny

I first met Heather Beckley last year when I was looking for a baker to provide a cake for the Budget Royal Wedding shoot that I helped produce. She made a cake for our shoot in the midst of making her own cake for her wedding that was just days after the shoot… and she was all smiles about it! I could just imagine how stressful that was for her but she handled it like a pro. I decided to get to know her a little more.

Heather has been baking since she was a little girl. Her mother was an amateur cake decorator and handled cake requests from friends and family. Heather took after her mother and learned from her through the years. She’s proud to be a self-taught baker and is always on the lookout for new cake decorating tips and tricks to help improve her skills. Heather & Hunny has been churning out cakes for over 2 years now, and the referrals keep on coming.

Heather and Hunny provides unique custom cakes and cupcakes to Metro Vancouver clients. In addition to the usual flavours, Heather has created delicious concoctions such as The Canadian (maple/bacon), Root Beer Float, Caramel Apple Pie, and Key Lime Pie. She wants everybody to be able to enjoy her cakes so she offers options for diabetic, celiac and vegan clients. Other baked goods are available like specialty muffins, cookies and these organic energy balls made with dried papaya, cashews and organic orange juice.

Heather & Hunny’s Pricing

  • Cookies – $1.50 – $3.50 each depending on size, detail & packaging
  • Cupcakes – $1.50 each for minis, $2.50 each for regular size, with bulk discounts applicable for orders of over 100 cupcakes
  • Custom wedding cake – a basic starting point is $2.50 per person with a minimum $150 for a wedding cake (Additional details like piping, fondant accessories or fresh flowers will add to the price)
  • Basic 3-tiered cake to feed 50-75 people – starts at $200, tiers sized 6″, 8″ and 10″ with each tier 4″ high
  • Cupcake or cookie wedding favours – starts at $1.00 each and packaged in individual boxes, if ordered with wedding cake/cupcakes

Heather says she is sensitive to every bride’s budget and can assist with planning to ensure she has the cake of her dreams. When possible, delivery is included in the quoted price but if your wedding is outside Metro Vancouver, a small delivery charge may be applied.

Keep up to date with Heather & Hunny on her Facebook page and Twitter. She announces new flavours, market appearances and even giveaways on her Facebook and Twitter so check it out!

A Few Words With Heather…

What do you have to offer for brides with lower budgets?
“Let’s face it, weddings are expensive. But the goal is to come away from that day confident with the value received for the dollars spent. When I got married earlier this year, I was a little naïve in thinking I could tame my spending. That didn’t happen, so I found ways to budget realistically for the things I really wanted and saved on the things I could. The cake can be a fantastic centerpiece and should be budgeted for appropriately. Unfortunately, not all brides have the luxury of budgeting for a $1500+ couture cake. That’s where I come in! Fake cakes, or display cakes, are a great idea for the budget conscious bride. She can order a glamorous display cake and serve sheet cake or cupcakes to her guests. This cuts down on the cost of a fully edible cake and can save valuable budget dollars. Omitting a fondant exterior and opting for a buttercream finish is also a great way to save. Minimizing details and going for a clean look can also add up to savings. Some brides scrap the cake altogether and simply serve cupcakes. These are a great finger food and may save on the cost of renting extra plates and serving utensils.”

What sets you apart from others in the same field?
“I’d like to think that all cake and cupcake vendors have something special to offer their clients. Heather and Hunny takes a personal approach to each order, looking out for the unique details that will make a statement. I have an eye for detail and make sure that each of my creations says something special about the recipient. My flavours speak for themselves; I’ve perfected a Black Chocolate Cake and a Vanilla Cake which form the bases for most of my baking. I use quality ingredients including Dutch process cocoa and Callebaut chocolates. Only unsalted butter makes its way into my buttercream and I use minimal salt in my cakes. My vegan baking uses organic coconut milk and/or oil and does not use any products that come from animals. Everything that comes out of my kitchen is made from scratch, no matter the size of the order, the cakes are always made from real ingredients; no mixes here!”

Where do you get your inspiration when making cakes?
“Everything inspires me! Usually a client will come to me with an idea and as they are talking to me, I’m building the cake in my mind. Pictures help too, and the internet is a great way for clients to see what options are available. I think some clients limit themselves because they don’t know what’s out there and what truly ingenious ideas exist. Once a client comes to me with an idea, we talk about the details and then settle on a final ‘look’ for the cake or creation. I’ve done a two foot tall Rapunzel tower, a three tiered river rafting cake complete with a waterfall and a teapot cake for a high tea themed wedding. The ideas are endless!”

Do you often come up with new flavours or if a customer has a special request, are you able to accommodate that?
“I encourage my clients to think outside of my list of flavours, in fact, I usually ask about flavour requests before the client has seen my list. That way, they tell me what they want to experience flavor-wise and I can make it happen. I’ve been inspired by Hearth & Larder’s Strawberry Lime Jam which resulted in my Strawberry Daquiri Cupcake and a recent experience with a grocery store cupcake prompted me to make my new Root Beer Float Cupcake. New flavours are debuted at the Tri-Cities Community Bakers’ Market where marketgoers tell me what they like and what they’d like to see. My Maple Bacon Cupcake is next.”

What is your favourite creative wedding cake you’ve made and why?
“While taking dance classes for our wedding, my husband and I met a lovely couple who were getting married and had next to nothing planned (except their first dance!), not even a cake. I passed along my business card and we began discussing their teapot and Doctor Who themed wedding.  A few months later, I created a lovely teapot wedding cake with the new Doctor Who logo. It was not your typical wedding cake, but it was personal and unique to their theme. No one else will ever have that wedding cake and they loved it!”

What is your favourite traditional cake you’ve made and why?
“On June 4, 2011, I married my best friend and “hunny,” Jordan. For our wedding, I made a four tiered cake with handmade ruffled flowers adorning two of the tiers. This cake was special to me not only because it was ‘my’ wedding cake, but because my sister was in town from Ontario and helped me hand roll the flowers. It was great bonding time as I had not seen her in two and a half years and the time we had together pre-wedding was short and chaotic. The cake turned out beautifully, a tall centerpiece that mimicked the ruffles in my wedding dress.”

Do you prefer making creative cakes or traditional cakes and why?
“There is something satisfying about creating a piece that has never been done before. Although, now that there are so many cake shows on television, it’s hard to find something that hasn’t been tried at least once. Creative cakes allow me to use tools and techniques I may not get to use on a traditional or simpler cake, and they allow for a bit of fun. I created a cake for a 50 year old coworker who loves sharks. A large cake shark head peeked out of the water, jaw open, at the fondant birthday boy in a fishing boat with his line in the water. The joy in a creative, one-of-a-kind cake is that the client knows without a doubt that it was made with them in mind.”

What do you enjoy most about your job?
“Is this really a question? Cake and buttercream! I don’t know how I haven’t gained 50 pounds in the past year. More remarkably, I don’t know how my husband keeps his figure. He is my steadfast taster, my hunny, and together we taste cakes, cupcakes and buttercreams to make sure my clients are getting the best tasting product available under their fully detailed and decorated cake. Aside from the edible benefits of my part time passion, I love to meet brides and mums who have special visions for their cakes. Weddings are a big part of my business but children’s cakes are being created every week. There’s a certain enjoyment about creating a new birthday cake for a child year after year.”

If you had one piece of advice for a bride and groom, what would it be?
“Have fun. Really. When Jordan and I got married earlier this year, there was one word that could have been used (and was used) to describe that entire day. Fun. It was all about us, our passions, our family, our friends. I think a lot of brides lose focus of what the day is actually about and it’s important for the bride and groom to take time for themselves. I’ve heard ‘enjoy every minute, it goes so fast’ and it’s true. Take it all in, save any unpleasant conversations for after the honeymoon and focus on what brought you to this amazing day. Oh, and eat cake!”

To contact Heather, visit her website.
Do you have what it takes to be a Vancity Vendor? Apply here.

Photos courtesy Vancity Bride, Kelsy Nielson Photographer, Victor Saidov Photography, Edward Yee Photography (Heather’s photo), Helena von Sivers Photography, and Heather and Hunny
Mouse over each photo to determine the photographer.

Vendor prices are subject to change. All prices quoted are accurate to the date published.

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