Name: Karla Fiol de Pérez
Organization: TENTEMPIÉS DULCES, Valencia (Spain)
Country: From Venezuela, living in Spain
FROM ARCHITECT TO ARTISAN: THE SWEET RESILIENCE OF KARLA
The story of Karla, the resilient Venezuelan architect turned custom cake designer, is an inspiring tale of passion, determination, and adaptability. Her journey as a migrant and her ability to reinvent herself is a testament to the power of pursuing one’s dreams in the face of adversity. Karla’s business, TENTEMPIÉS DULCES, has blossomed into a thriving enterprise that brings joy to countless clients with its exquisitely crafted sweet treats.
The path to success has been anything but straightforward for Karla, who arrived in Spain in search of stability and a brighter future. The challenges she faced as a migrant fueled her determination to forge her own path, transforming her passion for pastry making into a thriving business.
Karla’s background as an architect has provided her with a unique perspective on cake design, allowing her to create intricate and innovative edible masterpieces. As she learned to appreciate the artistic legacy passed down through generations of women in her family, Karla discovered a newfound sense of purpose in her work.
TENTEMPIÉS DULCES is a testament to Karla’s dedication, creativity, and mastery of the art of custom cake design. With an emphasis on personalization and a keen eye for detail, Karla creates confections that are not only delicious but also visually stunning. Her relentless pursuit of excellence has garnered her a loyal clientele who seek out her delectable creations for their most cherished celebrations.
Karla’s journey as a migrant businesswoman is a shining example of persistence, adaptability, and the power of hard work. Through her dedication to her craft and her ability to connect with clients on a personal level, Karla has built a business that transcends borders and brings joy to people from all walks of life.
Her story serves as a powerful reminder that with passion, determination, and a bit of help anyone can overcome even the most challenging circumstances. As Karla continues to delight clients with her custom cake creations, she embodies the spirit of a true trailblazer – a resilient migrant who has carved out her own path, leaving an indelible mark on the world of custom cake design.
Provide a brief description of your business. What do you do in a nutshell?
TENTEMPIÉS DULCES is a bakery business specializing in the creation of custom-designed
cakes. I don’t just make ordinary cakes, instead, I focus on artistic and unique cake designs
tailored to my clients’ preferences, making every cake a memorable centerpiece for special
occasions and events.
With over 10 years of experience in creating custom-decorated cakes, I am are constantly
evolving through self-learning, mastering fondant techniques, and innovating with
textures, styles, and the crafting of character figures and other personalized details
tailored to the client’s preferences. I consider also myself resilient to be willing to adapt to
new trends, ensuring that each dessert is completely personalized and exclusive for my
Which sector does your business idea belong to?
Describe the opportunity: What problem does your business idea solve? What challenges and pain points are you resolving for users/customers?
My business idea addresses the need for unique, personalized, and visually stunning cakes
for special occasions and events. The opportunity lies in providing a tailored solution for
customers who seek to elevate their celebrations with an impressive centerpiece that
reflects their personality, preferences, and the event’s theme.
I try to solve several challenges and weak points for our users/customers with:
– Personalization: Traditional bakeries often offer limited customization options, making
it difficult for customers to find a cake that truly represents their vision. My business
focuses on creating custom-designed cakes that cater to individual tastes and desires.
– Artistry and Craftsmanship: I have honed my skills in fondant techniques and the
creation of intricate character figures and designs. This allows me to craft visually
stunning cakes that can’t be found elsewhere, making my creations truly one-of-a-kind.
– Adaptability to Trends: I keep up to date with the latest cake design trends and popular
culture, ensuring my creations remain fresh, relevant, and appealing to a wide
– Exceptional Customer Experience: I work closely with my clients to understand their needs
and preferences, guiding them through the design process to ensure the final product
meets or exceeds their expectations.
By addressing these challenges, TENTEMPIÉS DULCES helps customers celebrate life’s most
important moments with a memorable and personalized dessert that leaves a lasting
impression on both them and their guests.
Describe the company: What does your company do?
TENTEMPIÉS DULCES specializes in crafting custom-designed cakes for special occasions and
events. I focus on creating visually stunning and personalized cakes that cater to my clients’
unique preferences, themes, and visions. I try to prioritize craftsmanship, attention to detail,
and exceptional customer service, essential elements to enable me to bring my clients’ visions
to life through exquisite and personalized dessert creations.
Describe the Team: How many people were involved from the beginning? How were they involved?
My team is just me, Karla, a resilient Venezuelan architect who is passionate about pastry
making. I initially turned to cake design due to a lack of job stability in Spain. However, as time
went on, I realized the significant legacy the women in my family had left me in terms of baking
and cake decorating. This realization sparked a desire in me to create true works of art through
My educational background in Architecture has provided me with a keen eye for design and
attention to detail, which I now apply to my cake creations. As the sole founder, I am involved
in every aspect of the business, from cake design and baking to customer service and marketing.
My dedication to my craft and commitment to providing exceptional, personalized desserts
have driven the success of the business and allowed it to grow over time.
Describe the Target Market: Who is your target market? Who makes up your target audience?
My target market consists of individuals and organizations looking for unique, personalized,
and visually stunning cakes for special occasions and events, which includes:
– Private clients: People celebrating milestones such as birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, baby showers, graduations, and other significant life events. These clients seek a custom-
designed cake that reflects their personal taste, the theme of the event, or the preferences of the person being celebrated.
– Corporate clients: Companies and organizations hosting events, product launches, or
celebrations where a customized cake serves as a centerpiece or a conversation starter,
showcasing their brand or the theme of the event.
– Event planners and coordinators: Professionals who organize and plan events for clients,
looking to partner with a reliable, creative, and skilled cake designer to provide memorable desserts for their clients’ events.
My target audience is diverse in terms of age, gender, and cultural background, but they share
a common desire for high-quality, personalized, and visually appealing cakes that elevate their
celebrations and create lasting memories.
Implementation Timeline: Briefly, how did your business roll-out? Which phases were involved until it was up and running?
My business idea was implemented through a series of steps aimed at refining my pastry skills,
building a solid foundation, and creating a stable livelihood. Here is a brief outline of the
– Decision to pursue the business: I decided to fully dedicate myself to improving my baking business and unleashing my full potential in pastry making.
– Acquiring knowledge and training: Recognizing the importance of a solid knowledge base to navigate the many aspects of running a business, I sought training and mentorship opportunities. I joined the “Incubadora con Valores” program, which provided me with valuable education and guidance from experienced mentors.
– Developing a business plan: With the support of my mentors, I created a detailed business
plan outlining my target market, product offerings, marketing strategy, and financial projections.
– Building a portfolio: I focused on creating a diverse range of cake designs, showcasing my skills and artistic abilities. This portfolio served as a testament to my expertise and a key marketing tool for attracting clients.
– Launching the business: With a solid foundation in place, I officially launched my cake
design business, offering custom-designed cakes for special occasions and events.
– Networking and marketing: I actively promote my business through social media, local
events, and networking with event planners and coordinators to establish partnerships
and attract clients.
This journey involved continuous learning, adaptation, and growth, enabling my business to
thrive and providing me with a stable means of living while doing what I am passionate about.
Funding Required: How much did it cost to begin approximately? Where did the initial funding go? How did you acquire that funding?
Starting my custom cake design business required a modest initial investment. The approximate cost to start the business was around 5.000€ to 10.000€ This covered essential
expenses such as:
– Baking equipment and supplies: High-quality mixers, ovens, bakeware, utensils, and other
– Fondant and decorating materials: Fondant, food coloring, cake boards, and other
specialized supplies for cake decoration.
– Marketing and branding: Designing and printing business cards, creating a website, and
setting up social media profiles for promotion.
– Legal and licensing fees: Registering the business, obtaining necessary permits, and
complying with local health regulations.
– Workspace: Setting up a clean and functional workspace in a rented commercial kitchen.
To secure the initial funding, I utilized a combination of personal savings and support from friends and family. As the business grew and generated revenue, I was able to reinvest profits
back into the company for further development and expansion. Additionally, participating in
the “Incubadora con Valores” program provided valuable resources, mentorship, and potential
access to additional funding opportunities through grants, loans, or investors.
Brief Financial Profitability Estimate: How long did it take for your business to become profitable?
For a custom cake design business like mine, profitability depends on various factors such as
market demand, pricing strategy, and operating costs. Typically, it can take anywhere between
1 to 3 years for a small bakery business to become profitable.
In my case, it took approximately 18 months to reach profitability. This was achieved through
a combination of effective marketing, networking, and delivering exceptional products and
customer experiences. By steadily increasing my clientele and maintaining a reputation for
quality, I was able to generate enough revenue to cover my operating expenses and start
making a profit.
It’s important to note that profitability can fluctuate, especially in the early years of a business. Continual investment in marketing, skill development, and adapting to market trends is crucial
for sustaining and improving profitability over time.
Industry Analysis: What are some key elements related to being successful in your industry? What does your business have that your competitors don’t?
In the custom cake design industry, several key elements contribute to success. These factors help businesses like mine stand out from competitors and create a unique value proposition
– Creativity and Artistry: Success in this industry hinges on the ability to create visually appealing, unique, and memorable cake designs. A strong artistic sensibility and the ability to innovate are essential to capturing clients’ imaginations and setting your business apart from competitors.
– Skill and Craftsmanship: Mastering various techniques in cake design, such as fondant
work, character figure crafting, and intricate detailing, ensures a high level of quality and professionalism in the final product. This expertise helps to build a strong reputation and attract discerning customers.
– Adaptability to Trends: Staying current with the latest cake design trends, pop culture, and
consumer preferences is crucial for appealing to a diverse clientele and staying relevant in a competitive market.
– Personalization and Customization: Offering a high level of personalization and catering to clients’ unique tastes, preferences, and event themes is a key differentiator. This level of
customization sets a business apart from competitors who may offer more generic or standardized designs.
– Exceptional Customer Service: Providing a seamless, enjoyable experience for clients—
from initial consultation to final delivery—helps to build long-lasting relationships and
generate repeat business and referrals.
– Effective Marketing: Showcasing your work through a strong online presence, social media, and networking with event planners and coordinators can help to raise awareness of your
business and attract new clients.
What sets my business apart from competitors is the combination of my architectural
background, which informs my design approach, and my dedication to continuously improving my skills and staying current with trends. Additionally, my commitment to providing a highly a personalized experience for each client, working closely with them to bring their vision to life,
creates a unique value proposition that distinguishes my business in the marketplace.
SWOT Analysis: What are the main Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of your company?
– Unique artistic approach: My architectural background provides a distinctive design
perspective, resulting in innovative and eye-catching cake creations.
– Skilled craftsmanship: Proficiency in fondant techniques, character figure crafting, and
intricate detailing ensures high-quality products.
– Personalization and customization: A strong focus on catering to clients’ individual tastes
and preferences sets my business apart from competitors.
– Exceptional customer service: Working closely with clients and delivering a seamless
experience from consultation to delivery helps to build long-lasting relationships and
generate positive word of mouth.
– Limited resources: As a small, one-person operation, I may face limitations in terms of
time, capacity, and the ability to handle large-scale projects.
– Scaling challenges: Expanding the business may require hiring additional staff, which could
lead to increased overhead and potential difficulties in maintaining quality control.
– Fluctuating demand: The custom cake industry can be seasonal, with periods of high
demand (e.g., wedding season) followed by quieter periods, which may affect cash flow
– Partnerships with event planners: Building relationships with event planners and
coordinators can lead to a steady stream of referrals and increased business.
– Expanding product offerings: Introducing additional products, such as dessert tables or
themed cookies, could attract a wider audience and increase revenue.
– Online presence and marketing: Strengthening online presence through social media, a
user-friendly website, and targeted advertising can help reach a broader customer base.
– Competition: The custom cake industry is competitive, with many businesses offering
similar products and services.
– Economic downturns: Economic fluctuations may lead to decreased demand for luxury
items like custom-designed cakes, as consumers may prioritize essential expenses.
– Changes in consumer preferences: Shifts in consumer tastes, dietary restrictions, or a
preference for healthier alternatives could impact demand for traditional custom cakes.
Staying adaptable and offering alternative options (e.g., gluten-free or vegan cakes) can
help mitigate this risk.
By understanding and addressing these factors, I can continue to build on the strengths of my
business, overcome weaknesses, capitalize on opportunities, and prepare for potential threats.
Legal Requirements: What are the basic legal requirements for someone to start this business in your country? Are there any licenses they need to obtain?
It is essential to consult with a legal professional to ensure full compliance with local
regulations, but overall:
– Business registration: I registered my business with the local authorities, choosing the
legal structure of Autónomo (self-employed).
– Tax registration: I registered for tax purposes with the Agencia Tributaria (Spanish Tax
Agency) and obtain a tax identification number (CIF/NIF).
– Social security registration: I registered with the Spanish Social Security system (Tesorería
General de la Seguridad Social) to ensure I am covered for healthcare, pension, and other
– Food safety and hygiene: I need to comply with food safety and hygiene regulations, which
may require obtaining a food handler’s certificate (Carnet de Manipulador de Alimentos)
and ensuring that your workspace meets the necessary sanitary requirements.
– Licenses and permits: Local business license from the city council (Licencia de Apertura)
and a permit for food-related activities (Licencia de Actividad).
– Insurance: To protect my business from potential risks and claims.
Which hard skills and specific knowledge will the individual require to become successful if they implement your business idea?
To succeed in implementing a custom cake design business, several hard skills and specific
knowledge areas are essential:
– Baking skills: A strong foundation in baking techniques is crucial for producing delicious
and well-structured cakes. This includes understanding various recipes, ingredient ratios,
and baking times and temperatures.
– Cake decoration skills: Mastery of a wide range of cake decorating techniques, such as
working with fondant, buttercream, royal icing, gum paste, and modeling chocolate, is
essential for creating visually stunning designs.
– Sculpting and modeling: The ability to create lifelike and detailed character figures,
flowers, and other decorative elements using edible materials like fondant or gum paste is
a valuable skill in the custom cake design industry.
– Food safety and hygiene: Knowledge of proper food handling, storage, and sanitation
practices is vital for maintaining a clean and safe workspace, as well as ensuring the quality
and safety of your products.
– Basic business management: Understanding essential business operations, such as
budgeting, inventory management, pricing strategies, and financial record-keeping, is
crucial for running a successful business.
– Marketing and promotion: Familiarity with online and offline marketing strategies, such
as social media promotion, website development, and networking with event planners,
can help you attract clients and grow your business.
– Customer service: Effective communication skills and the ability to manage client
expectations and address their concerns are essential for providing an exceptional
– Time management and organization: Balancing multiple orders, meeting deadlines, and
efficiently managing your workspace requires strong organizational and time management
Which soft skills will the individual require to become successful if they implement your business idea? (communication skills, leadership skills, etc.)
– Communication skills: Effective communication is crucial for understanding clients’ needs
and preferences, providing clear instructions to suppliers, and networking with industry
– Active listening: Carefully listening to clients’ requirements and feedback enables you to
better tailor your designs to their preferences, resulting in a more personalized and
satisfying customer experience.
– Creativity: A strong sense of creativity helps you develop innovative and visually striking
cake designs that set you apart from competitors.
– Adaptability: The ability to adapt to changing market trends, client preferences, and
unexpected challenges is vital for staying relevant and maintaining a successful business.
– Problem-solving: Being able to identify and address potential issues, such as design
complications or supply shortages, enables you to find solutions that maintain the quality
and timely delivery of your products.
– Attention to detail: A keen eye for detail ensures that your cake designs are executed
flawlessly, resulting in a high-quality finished product.
– Patience: Cake design can be a meticulous and time-consuming process, and maintaining
patience throughout the creation process is essential for producing the best possible
Please provide any final comments, links and resources related to your business idea.
It’s truly rewarding when you find a career that not only allows you to express your passion but
also brings joy to others during their most memorable moments. Custom cake design is an art
that not only showcases your creativity and skill but also plays a significant role in the
celebrations of your clients’ lives.
As you accompany people during their happiest moments and contribute to their celebrations,
you’ll not only find fulfillment in your own work, but also leave a lasting impact on the lives of
those you serve. The joy and satisfaction my designs have brought bring to my clients
undoubtedly fuel my passion and it is the driver of my business to greater heights.
TENTEMPIÉS DULCES – https://www.instagram.com/tentempies_dulces/?hl=es
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