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Life & Work with Jade Lee

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jade Lee.

Hi Jade, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
My name is Jade Lee, and I am an award-winning cake designer and sugar artist. I grew up in Taiwan and completed my graduate degree in business at Imperial College in London. Although baking and art had been my hobbies from a young age, being a professional baker had never been in my career plan. After graduated from business school, I started my career as a finance professional in Taiwan. My work life in the finance world was interesting and challenging, though very stressful.

During that time, I signed up for my first cake decorating class as the de-stress get away from my work life. It is easy to guess what happened… I felt like making delicious and beautiful cakes was my calling. I love people’s smiles when they are amazed by my cakes. Before I formally switched my gear from banking to baking, I spent all my free time and resources on drilling my skills and techniques in cake decoration. Luckily I got opportunities to learn from many world-famous cake decorating masters and even got a chance to work as an intern at Peggy Porschen, a famous wedding cake shop in London. In 2014, I decided to follow my true passion and fully dedicate myself to a cake career. That is how my sweet journey began.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
(1) From office job to self-employee: I have been teaching sugar art and taking cake orders a year before quitting my job. Even with all the preparation, I still wasn’t sure if I was making the right decision. Also, my family didn’t approve of this decision when I decided to leave my career in finance which provided stable and pretty decent pay. All the unknown is scary, but on the other hand, it is also exciting. How to keep optimistic rather than being scared by the high opportunity cost was the first threshold for me. Secondly, switching from an office job to a self-employee career means that I need to adjust the way I look at my job. There are some similarities but more are differences between these two. There is no more deadline or KPI set by the higher management. My work is not anymore about fulfilling my boss’s requests nor my company’s demands. I spent some time adjusting my attitude, from passive to proactive.

(2) From Taiwan to the US: When I moved to St Louis from Taiwan, my business in Taiwan was going well. Moving to the US means I would not be able to work for a long time due to my visa status at that time, which was frustrated. To prepare me well for future opportunities and also eliminated my self-doubt, I spent lots of time participating in cake competitions around the US and also in the UK. I earned lots of experience. connections, and awards through these competitions. It turns out the darkest period of my career brought me the most precious rewards.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I am a cake designer and sugar artist based in St Louis, Missouri. I am passionate about creating edible works of art for special occasions, including weddings, baby showers, and birthday parties. I also teach cake decorating and sugar-flower making internationally.

The competitions and awards: 2019 Birmingham Cake International- Gold Award, 2019 San Diego Cake Show- Professional Grand Prize, 2019 Show Me Sweets- Professional Sugar Flower Bronze Award, 2019 Show Me Sweets- Professional Sculpted Cake 3rd Place / Best Use Of Light, 2018 Ossas Competition- Best Of Division- Professional / 1st Place- Non-Cake Division / Squires Kitchen Show Stopper 3rd place, 2018 Soflo- Professional Non-Cake 3rd Place.

Can you share something surprising about yourself?
My business name is Cake By Jade. Most people know my business as a birthday cake go-to place, especially custom birthday cakes. Not many people know that my specialty is making wedding cakes and teaching sugar flower making.

Contact Info:

Image Credits:

Sijie Shi, Wei-Ting Liao, Jade Lee

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