One of the pictures that I took at Bush Festival which got the most reaction (mainly in the form of stimulating taste buds) was this one, of the colourful cupcakes by Queen of Hearts Cupcakes, a small
Askew Road business run by a very lovely young woman called Valeri. I was lucky enough to be bought a cupcake (one of the blue ones on the far right of the photo) by local Bush Bloke Andrew (of rescuing a lost Shepherd's Bush cat fame) at Bush Festival and they really do taste as good as they look. It followed, being the nosey Bird I am, that I wanted to find out more about Valeri and Queen of Hearts Cupcakes.
Valeri is a paediatric nurse by profession but about 12 months ago she was encouraged to venture out doing what she loves, creating beautiful and tasty cakes, for a living and so she is currently balancing the day job with pursuing what has been a life long dream; to own her own bakery or pastry shop. As well as baking cupcakes and cake pops, she explained to me that her special and increasingly “edible bouquets” came about because she wanted to create and give an extra special gift to two people she calls her “2nd Mummies” as her family are all back in her native
. People were so impressed and receptive that she was encouraged to make more and eventually started selling bespoke bouquets far and wide. Valeri is currently preparing for birthday parties and weddings this year as well as providing the cupcakes for the Mad Hatters Tea Party at Winter Wonderland in Philippines Hyde Park in December.
One of the things I liked about the Queen of Hearts stall at Bush Festival was that they really engaged with the community spirit at Bush Festival; they took pictures of their happy customers wearing the “Queen of Hearts” crown and they also gave a big box of cupcakes and cake pops to all the volunteers. Some of the photographs she took really sum up the mood and importance of the day.
Valeri also told me that she’s using her business to support a cause very close to her own heart. After previously looking after poorly children with cancer as a nurse at
Great Ormond Street she supports the CLIC Sargent Charity selling flower pins on the same stall as her cupcakes. After all this you may think Valeri would think about taking a break, but no she emailed me after Bush Festival asking if I knew of any other local events she could support. (If you know of any please let me know!)
Here is a hard working, local, woman who is successfully combining focused ambition and honourable community intentions and what could taste sweeter than that?
Here are some photos of Valeri’s incredible and all edible masterpieces!
Visit the website for more information about Queen of Hearts and you can also become a fan on Facebook or follow on Twitter.