Twenty-two year old Floridian entrepreneur Jill Fontaine wants to make your life a little sweeter. This baker and marketing maven has a sugar-coated proposition for everyone stressed out from the daily grind: “Stay calm, have a cupcake!” And she’s looking to help you do just that with Stay Calm Cupcake Shop.
Jill’s creativity in the kitchen began at a very young age, when she’d sit on the counter and help her mother by stirring the brownie mix. But that doesn’t mean that Jill chalks up her baking ability simply to her love affair with the culinary arts. “Baking is a practiced craft, and either you have it or you don’t,” she says. “I like that not everyone can pick up a whisk and call themselves a baker.” Her customers know how lucky they are that Jill has turned her well-honed talent into Stay Calm’s cupcake crusade.
“I started baking cupcakes more seriously about a year and a half ago. Up til then, I was a novice baker and baked anything and everything that my friends and family would agree to eat,” she says. But sweet snacks aren’t her only pursuit. When she’s not making tiny treats, she works as a marketing director, helping companies to better package themselves for success. “I like the creativity that marketing requires,” Jill explains. “It’s a great job to have while I’m waiting to open up my own store-front bakery.”
Most of Jill’s days are spent at the marketing company’s office from 8AM till 5PM, then she goes home and starts concocting her confections. “By 10:30 at night I usually have flour, frosting, and sprinkles all over my face and hair!” Jill says. These days come at a price, though: sleep. “If there were 34 hours in the day, I would be set. It’s hard because I can’t quit my day job and sustain myself financially, so that means all of my Cupcake Shop stuff has to be done in the evenings. I don’t have a lot of free time, or sleep time. But that’s okay. We can sleep when we’re dead, right?” she jokes.
Courtesy of the Internet’s magic, Stay Calm Cupcake Shop doesn’t come across as the type of business that’s run by a lone woman working 8-5. The online storefront features an array of cupcake kits, cupcake jars, mini cupcakes, and custom orders in a variety of frosted flavors, from red velvet to dark chocolate orange, peanut butter chocolate to Bailey’s Irish Cream. All of her dainty cakes are decorated in a way that makes them seem almost too pretty to eat…almost.
Jill’s involvement in marketing has definitely given Stay Calm a distinct advantage. Her use of Twitter, blogging, and Facebook have allowed her to cultivate relationships with her customers that go beyond that of the traditional store-front bakery. Her customers have digital access to all the flavors, colors, and sizes that Stay Calm offers, courtesy of Jill’s Etsy shop.
It’s her goal to have a cupcake truck within the next year, and to open up a store-front cupcakery in the next three. “I love everything about cupcakes, and can think of nothing else sweeter than owning my own shop!” Jill says. “I love selling on Etsy now, but I want to expand Stay Calm Cupcake Shop into the great business I know it can be.”
For frosting her creative and professional cakes, we think that Jill Fontaine is a totally Cool Girl! Check out her blog that features recipes, party ideas, and delicious freebies at Stay Calm, Have a Cupcake! (www.fontgirl.wordpress.com) or find her on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Stay-Calm-Cupcake-Shop/175155575862669) and Twitter @staycalmcupcake