Mariyam Shafana, known as Shafa to her close friends and loved ones, used to be a workaholic in the corporate world and her obsession with cakes didn’t begin until after she quit her job and became a stay- at- home Mom.
“I never dreamt that I would be doing something like this. It was my sister in law who told me that we should do something additional while just staying at home. So first, we both started to sew little children’s party dresses which was really hard to do as we didn’t really know much about sewing. When one of my sister in law’s friend suggested doing a cake course, we then decided to try it out.”
After completing her diploma course from Efes institute, she started making small cakes for her family. “When I first started cake decorating it was a hot mess, but it was so much fun. I had always loved crafting things and painting while in school, but when I discovered sugar, everything else faded away and it became a passion and my favourite medium. I loved sugar modeling which is very similar to clay. When I discovered it, it was like a revelation, and I started to develop it in a self-taught kind of way.”
When she got her first cake order and with her husband’s support, she got the courage to try her hand at 3D figurines. It proved to be a success and she decided to launch her page “Cakes by Shafa” in 2012. And that was the beginning.
From wedding cakes, children’s cartoon character cakes to most recently cakes with dragons, Shafa receives a lot of orders and her future plans include starting her own bakery and she dreams of making her own designs of cakes, as well as expanding her range into unique cakes such as structured, gravity defying cakes and more artistic cakes.
Words by Sama Nasheed
Photography by Cakes by Shafa