A keen baker from Enniskillen has turned her passion for creating bespoke cakes for all occasions into her very own business with support of the Go For It Programme, in association with Fermanagh and Omagh District Council.
The Go For It Programme is part funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2020) Programme.
Stacey Lyons describes how she launched Wish Upon A Party in February 2018 when she decided that it was time to turn her passion for baking into a full-time business after becoming inundated with requests for bespoke cakes from family and friends.
“I have always been fond of baking delicious cakes and treats, and have been doing it for friends and family for many years. As I honed my skills, I started to design bespoke birthday and anniversary cakes and people must have really liked them, as the orders started to really take off.
“I was baking most evenings after work and day and night at the weekends, on top of my full-time job and looking after my kids and this got me thinking of starting my own business” Stacey said.
Wish Upon a party is based at Lackaghboy Industrial Estate in Enniskillen and specialises in handcrafted, bespoke cakes for all occasions, including: weddings, birthdays, christenings and communions, as well as novelty and corporate cakes.
However, it wasn’t until the mother of three was on maternity leave after the birth of her third child that she decided to give up full-time employment to pursue her passion for designing and baking specialist cakes and launch her own business.
Stacey took the leap and got in touch with the Go For It Programme, which is delivered free of charge by a team of experienced business mentors through Northern Irelands wide network of enterprise agencies. It provides expert advice and assistance to develop a business plan, which aims to turn ideas into a commercial enterprise.
Stacey added: “Whether it’s the surprise element at a birthday party, or a wedding cake for a newly married couple to share with their guests, I love that I can be a small part of achieving that happiness. I knew how to deliver a great product, but I wasn’t sure how to put it together into a financially viable business and that’s when I got in touch with the Go For It Programme.
“The business advisors are fantastic. They were a great help, advising me on everything from financial planning and forecasting to marketing strategies. They were the friendly faces I needed to help me get up and running. I would have really struggled without their help.”
Rodney Malone, Business Advisor with Fermanagh Enterprise on behalf of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council said, “We are all delighted to see Wish Upon a Party up and running. Working with someone as creative and talented as Stacey has been a real pleasure. Stacey got in touch with the Go For It Programme with the desire to turn her hobby into her career and was determined to make it happen.
“We worked with her to develop a business plan and focused her goals on key aspects such as financial planning, marketing strategies and food hygiene. This helped Stacey to secure a small business loan, which provided her with the financial support needed to get started and make her dream a reality.
“As with any of the business we support, it is fantastic to see Stacey up and running and we are delighted to have her as a neighbour in Lackaboy Industrial Estate. I look forward to seeing what the future holds for Stacey.”
If you have a business idea you’d like to develop or if you are thinking about starting a business call 0800 027 0639 or visit: visit www.goforitni.com.