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Meet Laura Magardechian of Chubby Cheek Cakes in Northeast LA

Today we’d like to introduce you to Laura Magardechian.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Laura. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Chubby Cheek Cakes started as a hobby and a creative outlet. The real turning point came a few weeks before my 21st birthday. I wanted a specific cake, so I went searching at all the local bakeries. Most bakeries turned me away saying they were unable to recreate the design, and others said they would attempt it but it would come with a costly price.

Determined to have my cake and eat it too, I decided I would take on this project myself. After watching several YouTube videos and doing some research, I had successfully created a Hello Kitty birthday cake. All of my guests were stunned to find out that I had actually made my own cake! I began using every excuse to make more cakes; every birthday, holiday and celebration I could think of. After months of making cakes for fun, the word slowly spread and I officially started my new business, Chubby Cheek Cakes!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Its definitely been a challenging road but also very rewarding.

It was extremely difficult to take a hobby and turn it into a business. I had a lot to learn about my craft. I had no professional baking experience when I started CCC. I had to do a lot of self-teaching and research about baking and decorating. My background in ceramics and sculpture helped with the designing side. But after receiving my bachelor’s degree in communications arts from Otis College of Art and Design, I decided to go to Le Cordon Bleu Culinary school to pursue becoming a Pastry Chef. I was going to school full time and had a full-time job as a Marketing Manager. It was one of the most difficult years of my life but it helped me build confidence in my business.

I also had to learn to wear many different hats as one woman business owner. I became the owner, designer, pastry chef, head of marketing, customer service and everything in between.

A year later in 2014, my business was booming! I had to convert my home garage into a commercial kitchen in order to keep up with the demand. Once I finally had my commercial kitchen up and running, it seemed like everything was going better than expected. Then, just a few months later on one hot summer morning, our HVAC system caught on fire. This fire was devastating and our home was barely standing. The firefighters did the best they could to save as much as they could, but it was almost a complete loss. Even though my kitchen wasn’t attached to the house, the debris left it unsafe to use. My family and I had to relocate and I had to put Chubby Cheek Cakes on hold for the time being. Eventually, our home was rebuilt and we were able to move back, but I never remade my kitchen.

For six years, I have continued to work through the various challenges of growing a business. Due to the steady growth over the years including new and repeat customers, I am now working on Chubby Cheek Cakes full-time and its been great!

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Chubby Cheek Cakes – what should we know?
Chubby Cheek Cakes is a custom cake and dessert studio. I specialize in custom cakes for any occasion but am probably known more for fun and creative birthday cakes. I love clients that give me a new challenge to work on, such as a cake design I’ve never done before. It gives me an opportunity to grow and improve my techniques.

One aspect that set me apart from other custom cake bakeries is that CCC is truly a completely customizable cake studio. We do have our staples and recommended cake flavors and fillings, but if you have a specific preference that you don’t see on our website, chances are that we can create it! I also pride myself in having a delicious product. The misconception is that a great looking cake is usually not a great tasting cake. I want to make your experience with me and CCC an enjoyable one from beginning to end. I pay a lot of attention to detail and want your event to be perfect!

I am so proud of what Chubby Cheek Cakes has become over the past ten years and I am really excited for the future. It is amazing to see my dream come to fruition with hard work and dedication. But recently, I am most proud of a new idea that I’ve been working on called “Cupcakes for a Cause.” The main goal is to raise awareness and money for different organizations and charities. In July, over the course of a weekend, we were able to make over $1,000 in donations to Armenian Relief for soldiers and families. It was such a humbling experience to be able to give back and I hope to continue this charitable giving with other matters that are near and dear to my heart.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Communication is key! A lot goes into bringing a client’s vision to life. I like to get as much information as I can about the client’s style and event before we start designing. Cakes are such a fun part of a celebration and I love to show that in my personality. Being authentic and genuine is really important. I think clients can feel the difference when they work with someone who really loves what they do.

Pricing:

  • Dozen cupcakes- starting at $36
  • 6 inch cake- starting at $85
  • 8 inch cake- starting $100

Contact Info:

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