Kara & The Sweet Side : Cake & Sweet Bar Boutique

Two Bird Studio is thrilled to highlight Kara & The SweetSide as this month’s featured Friends of Two Bird.  We first met Kara when we photographed her wedding in 2011.  It was at this time that we fell in love with both her and her husband and have been friends & business associates ever since.  Kara is a fabulous cake & sweets designer in the Seattle area.  If you are looking for beautifully designed custom wedding cakes and sweet bars…Look no further!  The SweetSide pours love & creativity into every dessert they make. Visit them at www.ilovethesweetside.com


TBS:  Describe what you do as it pertains to the wedding industry.
Kara:  The SweetSide is a boutique cake and sweet bar studio. We create full custom cakes, as well as have a collection of cakes that clients can choose from. Our sweet bars offer a great section of bite sized desserts including cheesecake shooter, french macarons and Rice Krispie Treat pops.


TBS:  How long have you been in the wedding industry?
Kara:  We opened The SweetSide in 2011 and have focused on the wedding industry from the very start.


TBS:  What inspires you when you are designing and creating sweets for a wedding?
Kara:  So many things… I have, what is known in the indusrty as “cake eyes”.  I see a beautifully textured throw pillow and I instantly imagine it made of fondant on a cake; I see a recap of New York Fashion Week and see cake elements walking the runway; I visit an art museum a water color painting is the perfect pattern that I have been dreaming about for a particular client. Design inspiration for me is always just around the corner!


TBS:  Describe the perfect bride/couple.
Kara:  The best kind of client is one that is inspired to design something completely custom with me. They have an idea of styles that they like (and don’t), they bring samples of their invitation, linens, ribbons, dress, and any other elements that they love from their event.  With these inspiration points, we are able to design the cake that fits perfectly with their day and personality!


TBS:  What advice would you give to brides & grooms when planning a wedding?  (In general & regarding your industry)
Kara:  Have fun! Some would say this is easier said than done, but I have a couple pointers…
– Hire a planner… they will keep you focused on executing your vision to the fullest
-Start reaching out to vendors early! There is nothing more heartbreaking than having your heart set on a particular florist, cake designer, photographer, etc only to find out that they are booked for your wedding day! If you love someone’s work, book them!
-Don’t spend too much time online looking for inspiration. Sites like Pinterest are great tools, but it is SO easy to create a wedding that looks like so many other couples “Big Day” board. Look around at your favorite things… what do you love and how could you incorporate them into your wedding day??


TBS:  In this industry, you’re required to work long hours.  What is your drug of choice to get you through?
Kara:  Laughter! We work long and hard at The SweetSide, but my team is built from amazingly talented ladies that know how to have a good time! On any given day, you will find us listening to the standup comedy station on pandora, playing Ellen’s “Heads Up” at lunch or having dance parties with piping bag in hand. I am one lucky chick to have these girls on my team!


TBS:  Make a plan and stick to it or fly by the seat of your pants?
Kara:  Make a plan and stick to it …  until it doesn’t work, then fly by the seat of your pants! :)  The cake world is an interesting one… you can have the best plan, but in the end, it is food and will act up in unexpected ways… be prepared, have nerves of steel and be confident to know that you have the skills to get through it!


TBS:  Favorite season for a wedding?
Kara:  I  LOVE early fall weddings. The warm days and cool nights are perfect.


TBS:  When you’re not at the kitchen…, where can we find you?
Kara:  As a small business owner, days off are rare, but especially important… I am still so darn enamored with my husband, Mark, that it really doesn’t matter what we do, but my favorite days are spent with him (and our sweet/dopey dog, Murphy).  You are also likely to find me out running the beach trails here in Seattle, playing Bunco with some girls from the industry, or visiting at a coffee shop with a girlfriend.


TBS:  Name one thing about yourself that would surprise people.
Kara:  I HATE to say this, but I did not have a wedding cake.  My all time favorite dessert is great ice cream.  Mark and I have had countless date nights that end with ice cream cones at Husky Deli here in West Seattle. Since this has been something that we have enjoyed together for so long, we decided to skip the cake (and extra stress for me in days leading up to the wedding) and had Husky scoop up comes for all our guests!


TBS:  What is your super power?
Kara:  The ability to fall asleep anywhere. If I am tired and want to take a nap, I can! I come from a long line of great nappers.


TBS:  What is your spirit animal?
Kara:  An Iguana. They have the ability to sit for long periods of time soaking up the sun in pure stillness. I am not great at staying quiet or still and I live in cloudy Seattle… I am not afraid to say that I am jealous of the Iguana… Especially those living at fancy resorts in Mexico. 😉


TBS:  What is your favorite color?
Kara:  Currently, I am 100% on the gold bandwagon. I LOVE it! Gold jewelery, gold cakes, gold nail polish… Sign me up!


TBS:  Love it or hate it? Pinterest?  Facebook?  Twitter? Instagram?
Kara:  Pinterest…. Love and hate… See question #5.

Facebook…For business, I love it. Personally, I am not a huge fan.

Twitter… Not interested.

Instagram…. LOVE IT!! If you want to see what is happening in the life of The SweetSide, that is the place to see it… @thesweetsideseattle