By Lindsay Doty
When 23-year-old Paige Barnhart was a little girl she loved baking with her mother.
“We always baked as a family,” Barnhart said. “My mom is the best baker that I know. When we were little she was known for her snickerdoodle cookies.”
Since most of the family time was spent at the ballpark watching her big brother play baseball (readers may know him as Cincinnati Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart) Barnhart was relieved to do anything else.
“We traveled all the time, so baking in the kitchen was always fun, and it was something that wasn’t baseball,” she chuckled.
The warm memories turned into a lifetime hobby. Years later, the IUPUI graduate started baking cakes for people while she was in nursing school. In the last year, she’s been creating custom and wedding cakes out of her Brownsburg home.
“I just always said, ‘I wish I could bake cakes for my job.’”
This past Memorial Day weekend, the baker fulfilled her dream and opened her own shop called Sweet Paige’s at 405 Main St. in Brownsburg. The brick house in her hometown is now filled with a large KitchenAid mixer, ovens, pastry tools and the sweet smell of buttercream icing.
Each day, Sweet Paige’s (her dad has called her that for years) will offer five to six cupcake flavors, cookies, brownies and individual pies and cakes. Her money maker will be wedding and celebration cakes. She uses classic American buttercream icing and works with a florist for flowers. Barnhart’s calendar is already booking up for wedding season.
The first week in business, Barnhart put the finishing touches on a three-tier almond sour cream wedding cake for 150 people. It had an Oreo cream cheese filling with American buttercream on top and white and gold floral accents.
“I really like simple cakes,” she said, pondering as she decorated. “That’s my personal favorite. The bride wants it to be plain with gold and white as her wedding colors, so I might have my florist put some gold on the white flowers.”
The business owner is already clocking in long hours as the solo baker, but she doesn’t mind.
“I think that’s what makes it a dream,” she said. “It doesn’t feel like work even when I’m working all day every day.”
She’s looking forward to being part of many Hendricks County celebrations for years to come.
“Since this is my first year and a half doing cakes, I’m getting to the point now that I’m doing a second birthday for the same kid,” she said. “I had a girl last weekend in with her daughter who was turning one, and I had done all her baby shower stuff the year before. It’s cool to be part of that. The best thing is when people tell you it’s the best cake they’ve ever had.”
Address: 405 E. Main St., Brownsburg
Contact: (317) 306-9561 or on Facebook @sweetpaigescakes
Hours: 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday; 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Closed Monday and Tuesday.