Self-taught baker and entrepreneur Danielle Smith has had quite the journey since leaving her job in oil and gas in October 2020.
The Newburgh-based entrepreneur, who started out by baking for friends and family 11 years ago, launched her business Sweet Toots Cakery in 2015.
It has grown at a rapid rate with Danielle now producing hundreds of bakes, including brownies, cookie pies, tablets and rocky roads, per week for local foodies.
And not only that, but she is also preparing to open her own pop-up shop at The Gym, based on Huntly Street in Aberdeen, this weekend.
The pop-up and offering
Danielle’s pop-up space will be open one weekend per month from 10am to 3pm until July, however, she is “hoping to book further if things are successful.”
The opening dates are as follows:
- Friday February 18 to Sunday February 20
- Friday April 1 to Sunday April 3
- Friday May 6 to Sunday May 8
- Friday June 10 to Sunday June 12
- Friday July 29 to Sunday July 31
The baker will be selling a variety of goods that are made in her purpose-built cake kitchen.
The Gym is a four-storey make-up bar and hair salon which also acts as an events space, hosting social and pop-up events and workshops.
Danielle said: “I noticed The Gym was looking for businesses so I thought it might be a great opportunity for me to have my own space in the city centre.
“I hope it will be easier for customers to visit. I am looking forward to being in such an amazing space with lots of other small businesses and seeing how things develop.
“The menu will change each day and feature items like cupcakes, brownies, blondies, brookies, stuffed cookies, cookie pies and Scottish tablet bags.”
‘I haven’t looked back’
Eight years on from starting a career in oil and gas was when Danielle decided to bite the bullet and take on Sweet Toots Cakery full time.
The business’ name comes from the nickname Toots, which was given to Danielle by her family who have inspired her from a young age.
“My job was always at risk in the oil and gas industry,” she said. “Sweet Toots kept growing year upon year so I knew I should keep focusing on it.
“I haven’t looked back, it’s been great to focus all my energy on my business and watch it grow.
“I’ve always wanted to have my own business. Both my parents, Kim and Billy, have their own and this inspired me, however when I was younger I had no idea it would be a baking business!
“My granda Ronnie is also involved as he likes to collect and drop off the eggs I use in my bakes from a local farm, which is lovely.”
Danielle continues to attend farmers’ markets regularly but is looking forward to the return of larger-scale events this summer, including Gordon Castle Highland Games and Taste of Grampian.
“I always make sure to have a variety of bakes on offer and like to change up each market or event I attend,” she added.
“The amount of bakes I make varies so much between seasons and when I have my markets. It can easily be four or five cakes per week plus a handful of cupcake boxes.
“For markets, it’s hundreds and hundreds of cupcakes, brownies, cookies and Scottish Tablet bags.
“Our wonderful converted trailer will be back this summer at a number of events, so keep a lookout.”