Treats maker takes pride in custom work

Self-taught entrepreneur grows confections business from her home in Grand Rapids.
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Brandi Allaway uses edible ink in her printer so she can print edible designs and graphics directly onto the treats. Courtesy Brandi Allaway

Many times, a business is born when someone sees a product and thinks, “I could improve on that.” Brandi Allaway’s home-based treats business falls into this category.

Allaway, a Grand Rapids native with a background in marketing and title management, launched B.Creativ Confections in 2012 after attending a bridal expo with a friend’s mom and seeing a table containing candies in all different shapes and shades of blue.

She turned to her friend and said, “That looks like something I could do, and if I could do it, it could be your wedding gift.”

Sure enough, Allaway pulled off a similar table for that friend’s wedding, then shortly after, the bride’s cousin hired her, then Allaway’s sister, and the fledgling business took off through word of mouth and social media.

Allaway has grown her home-based business under Michigan’s cottage law over the years and produces customized confections in a kitchen that’s in compliance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s COVID-19 safety policies and the National Restaurant Association’s ServSafe food handler certification.

She specializes in custom dessert tables for events large and small across Michigan, with a range of treats including chocolate-covered fruit, pretzels, Rice Krispies treats and Oreos; candied and caramel apples; hot cocoa bombs; cake pops; chocolate-covered doughnuts; doughnut towers; and cheesecake shooters.

Many of the clients she makes treats for have requested she work within a specific theme for baby showers, birthdays, bridal showers and weddings, so she bought a printer that uses edible ink so she can print edible designs and graphics directly onto the treats.

After forays into sidelines like centerpieces, custom wine glasses, T-shirts and other merchandise, Allaway came to the conclusion in 2018 that she was spread too thin and wanted to return to her first love of treats and candy tables, which is what she has been doing with the business ever since.

“There really was no way for me to make a profit, or even like invest in just one of those things, because I was doing so many different items for my customers. So, at that point, I decided to just figure out which one was best for me, and which one I (was) in love with, and so I chose treats,” Allaway said.

Allaway is 100% self-taught when it comes to making these creations, taking inspiration from Instagram and working out her process through years of trial and error. 

Recognizing she learned a lot from other creators, she is passionate about sharing her knowledge with her followers and therefore does occasional quick Instagram tutorials and offers more in-depth, hands-on virtual and in-person classes for a fee. 

Allaway said she hopes to be able to go full time one day and establish a physical location once she gets to the point where the business is more regular year-round instead of seasonal.

Those interested can book orders from Allaway and inquire about classes at bcreativconfections.com and follow her on social media at instagram.com/bcreativc.

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