Whoever came up with the phrase, "you can't have your cake and eat it too" clearly didn't come across Lin Lin Cake because they would've realised it is totally possible to have a beautifully designed cake that tastes as good as it looks. From its signature vintage-inspired piping to minimal yet vibrant looks, Lin Lin Cake shows the endless possibilities to cake decoration that make it a shame to dig in. Below, we spoke to the baker and decorator behind the brand, Charmaine on how she started her business, the key to making pretty cakes of your own and more.
When did Linlin Cake first begin and what is the meaning behind the name?
Lin Lin Cake started baking last November 11 (online) and I'm thankful that the response has been amazing up till today! As for the name Lin Lin Cake, there's actually no deep meaning behind it except that it's actually my Chinese name! Back then, I came out with all sorts of names but in the end I wanted a name that speaks to my personality and style which ended up being 'Lin Lin Cake'.
How would you describe your artistic and creative direction?
On the artistic and creative front, I am strongly influenced by the Harajuku and anime culture. But as an entrepreneur, current trends such as the comeback of vintage and retro styles also play a big part in spearheading my personal creative direction. However as an artist, I like to put my own twist and quirk into the art I make because I like standing out.
What are the secrets to a good cake?
A secret to a good cake for me has to come in a package of a good flavor, texture, design and a well planned celebration because at the end of the day, I want my cakes to leave a positive impact on my customers. I want my creation to become my customer's experience that only Lin Lin Cake can offer.
What are some of your favorite or most memorable custom orders you've received thus far?
My favorite as of now has to be the recent Demon Slayer, Giyu Tomiaka anime design that I did! Before Lin LinCake, I was doing lots of painting and anime art for custom clothing's and I really missed it so having the chance to finally do an art I like on cakes was really exciting! It was a little challenging because I had to use a different medium and clearly I wasn't painting on a canvas or paper but I was so happy with the outcome. But what's more important is that my customers are elated with my creation.
The most memorable one though, would be my first cartoon character cake, which is the 2000s retro style Kuromi x Melody design, the double tier Vintage Flower Design topped with real fresh flowers and not forgetting the Prince Charming Frog Cake that I believed it was a pretty good hit during Valentine's but also gave me the most pressure because this particular design had intricate little details yet I had to make so many of them! Talk about dedication.
I want my creation to become my customer's experience that only Lin Lin Cake can offer.
While Linlin Cake's aesthetic is very much inspired by retro and vintage designs, each of them are still different and unique in their own way. Can you share with us the creative process behind your cake designs?
To be honest there isn't any creative system I follow to create a design. Some days I would be scrolling the internet, inspired by other bakers or current trends which prompted a design idea in my head and sometimes ideas just come to me out of the blue and I just develop it from there on. Part of my creative process is to engage with the customers to understand their interest and then to influence them with my ideas.
What are some of the common pitfalls for people trying to bake and decorate cakes of their own at home? What are some tips to avoid them?
I was born as a 'home baker' and I did not have any education on culinary or baking. All I had was an interest in baking cute things in my own kitchen as a past time since a young age. So venturing into a new field brought me a lot of ups and downs. I had to go through so many trial and errors that I wasn't prepared for. Thankfully with my past working experiences and coming from a background in fashion design, I always had to be quick witted in terms of creativity.
I believe these character traits did help me tremendously while working on Lin Lin Cake. My tips for those who wants to start up a baking business, or any business in general is to educate yourself well and be prepared for unforeseen circumstances.
Who is the lovely team behind Lin Lin Cake?
At first it all started with me, myself and I but today I have my mom and dad helping me with the accounts and baking! I work alone on the creaming and designing of the cakes, customer service, delivery arrangement and content creations.
What are Lin Lin Cake' goals and vision as a brand?
It is in my plan to grow a team and to open a physical shop for Lin Lin Cake. My goal is to build a creative team that can serve our customers together in our work place and I have a vision to open up a concept cafe down the line.