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Hidden Gems: Meet Shakira Upshaw of T2S Creations

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shakira Upshaw. 

Hi Shakira, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself
I have always had a passion for baking. I grew up being called Betty Crocker. In March of 2019, I decided that I was going to try and make my daughter’s birthday cake and treats just to see if I could do it. It was quite a challenge and not the best job but she absolutely loved it. I was encouraged by close family and friends to start a business. I officially started my business in April of 2019. I struggled with finding a name that fit because I wanted it to have a significant meaning for me. I finally decided on T2S Creations. The “T” is the first initial of my mother’s name (Terra) who passed away unexpectedly in Sept 2018. She was a pastry chef that preferred cooking over baking. The “S” is the first initial of my name (Shakira). So, it’s like she passed the torch to me to carry on. I have worked diligently over the last 2 and a half years to build my skill set by investing in online courses, hand-ons course, and everyone’s all-time favorite, YouTube. It has definitely been a journey. Many tears, smiles, long nights, disappointments, achievements and so much more but I don’t regret any of it at all. I look forward to continuing to grow my business and eventually becoming full-time. 

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Finding my niche. There are so many in this industry and everyone tends to follow the trend. I found it worked for a bit but eventually, like all trends, they fade out. Once I started to find my own way in the business and surrounded myself with individuals that challenged me, my skills developed, my technique changed and I really began to find my real purpose and passion. 

As you know, we’re big fans of T2S Creations LLC. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about the brand?
T2S Creations is a home-based bakery located in Land O’Lakes, Florida… We specialize in custom cakes and treats for any event you are planning. We never make the same thing twice so every order is uniquely customized to my customer’s request. I am most proud of my ability to be able to develop my skillset in such a short period of time as I am completely self-taught. I would love for the readers to know that I am just a regular mom of 5 trying to show my children that anything is possible with hard work and dedication. Every order gets a little piece of my heart and I give my everything to make sure that the outcome exceeds my customers’ expectations every time! 

Any advice for finding a mentor or networking in general?
Finding a mentor was a challenge as I am very particular about who I allow in. I had to find someone that understood how I function, someone that genuinely inspires me to want to do better and push me beyond where I thought I would be. Finding a mentor doesn’t always mean that person has to be in the same industry. Most business techniques and models can be used across the border so you may connect with someone that may not be able to help you with everything but can in things you didn’t know you needed help with. It’s also ok to have more than one mentor as you can be given knowledge from one mentor that you could not get from the other. 

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Image Credits:

Shakira Upshaw

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2 Comments

  1. Ru

    November 16, 2021 at 9:59 pm

    So Very Proud of You Kira. Love you Keep baking an creating – Darling❣️🎉❤️

  2. Angie Whalen

    November 17, 2021 at 7:07 pm

    Shakira does AMAZING work! I’ve truly enjoyed watching her grow in her business & in life. Beautiful job young lady! I’m honored to know you. Your work is Beautiful

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