If you are a member of UTAR Kampar Facebook group, you probably have come across these unique custom cakes and desserts. From decent-looking cupcake bouquet to custom-made cakes to deliciously-crafted tarts and cookies. Have you ever wondered who are the people behind these creations?
Meet Jane, the self taught baker who creates gorgeously-baked cakes.
“I started to bake since I was in secondary school because I love to eat. “said Jane Lim Min Li, the founder of Mamajanenoms. At first, she began with using cake mixes and it was only a hobby. As she got more into it, she was trying out different flavors and designs.
The 24-year-old self taught baker has never attended professional baking class and learn how to improve her cake decorating skills from YouTube videos. Until now, Jane still loves to experiment with ingredients and stated that, “Not everything works but I will learn from my mistakes and keep experimenting and have fun.”
Jane studied Bachelor Degree in Accounting in Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR) and had thought that it would be her future career until her internship experiences forced her to rethink her future. “I realized that a 9 to 5 job wasn’t right for me.” she said.
So, how everything started?
Before Jane started her business, she had a lot of support from her friends as they really like the stuff she bake. After her internship, her friend encouraged her to start her own cake business and even helped Jane to create an Instagram account. On January 2017, Mamajanenoms was founded.
When asked about why she named her bakery ‘Mamajanenoms’, Jane explained that it is named after her nickname. Her friends often called her ‘Mama Jane’ as she loves to bake, just like the mother of her friend group. Noms represents the sound made when someone is eating or chewing something and really enjoying it.
Looking back, Jane stated that she sacrificed her sleep in order to start and grow her business. “I was constantly stressed and tired as I had to juggle between FYP project and work.” she said. However, baking helped her to release her stress and she was overwhelmed with the positive customer feedback about her product.
Jane chose not to enter the workforce after graduating from UTAR on September 2017. It was not an easy decision. Many of her friends were ready to find a job and it is social stigma in Malaysia to not enter workforce immediately after graduating. However, her parents were really supportive and respect her decision to pursue her dream.
What about now?
Jane is staying in Kampar with her younger sister, Joyce Lim Ke Li to run her business. She has no helpers and does everything herself.
Joyce, 19, who is currently studying in Foundation in Arts said that she supports Jane’s decision to pursue her dream. “I don’t know how to bake, but I help Jane to cut up fruits or fold cake boxes.” she said.
Custom-designed cakes are typically more expensive compared to what you can buy in the store because they are made to order and are usually one-of-a-kind designs. However, you can get inexpensive custom cake from Mamajanenoms, as it starts around RM35. Cake prices vary based on size, complexity of structure, detail work and overall design.
Jane explained that,”I was a student so I understand that most students are living on a budget.” She further added that, her products are made fresh from scratch and with high-quality ingredients even though it is cheaper than most custom designed cakes.
“I only promote my business on UTAR Kampar group and it is a really good platform to engage customers.” Jane said. She stated that her customers were mostly from Kampar, she also received orders from Ipoh and Kuala Lumpur.
It is a wonderful thing if your hobby starts making money, however you should also think about how Jane maintain her business and pay her bills and living expenses in the meantime. Jane declined to disclose her revenue, but says that she makes enough of money to take care of her sister.
Jane told J-On reporter that she would like to achieve a few goals and one of them is to build her own team, just like The Buttercake Factory. She also considers to provide catering business for special events.
“I’ve learned so much in this short period of time,” Jane said. She mentioned that she will continue working to step up her baking skills so her dessert bake better and deliver the products that customers are looking for.
Jane said, Mamajanenoms is working very hard to develop a strong reputation for design of their custom designed cakes to make their brand recognizable.
“I hope that one day people can tell it’s our cake, without reading any words or the logo.” she said.