Sweet Treats

Published 2:45 pm Tuesday, May 15, 2018

A little more than a year ago, Keyona Vickers and Kyra Melton were trying to think of ways to earn some spending money for a trip to Orlando with Vickers’ mom, Debra Smart. When they put their heads together, Smart thought of baking, something she was already doing.                                                                    

None of them realized then how much the business would take off, but K&K’s Sweet Treats is on the rise.

“We wanted to go on a trip to Orlando, and we thought of a way to make some money. My mom came up with the idea to start making cupcakes,” Vickers said. “It just gives me a proud feeling just to think that I’m doing something good for somebody else and putting a smile on their face just makes me feel good inside.”

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The girls love baking and decorating, and they enjoy seeing the customers’ reaction even more.

“I’m glad when it makes people happy,” Melton said. “There’s just something about putting a smile on the customers’ face when they like it and enjoy it.”

Melton said they always have a good time together when they’re baking at Smart’s home.

“I get a lot of joy coming in here and baking,” Melton said. “We have a lot of fun baking. We listen to music, we just talk about things that are going on. We watch the news, so we talk about the news. We just do a lot while doing them. We make sure that we have fun.”

Smart’s family and friends passed their favorite recipes to the girls, and after some tweaking, they started their business. But over the past year, they have grown into making several different flavors of cakes and cupcakes, whoopee pies and more. They have strawberry, red velvet, Italian cream cheese, chocolate, German chocolate, carrot, coconut, vanilla and more. Their signature cupcake is probably the strawberry, made with fresh fruit. Many times, they make a new flavor based on what a customer wants, and sometimes just for fun. Either way, work goes into creating a new flavor and making it just right.

“We have had some trials and tribulations with some stuff,” Melton said laughing. “We make sure our parents test it before it goes out to actual customers.”

Vickers agreed, saying it’s all about trying new things and seeing what works.

“We go through a lot of trial and error, and when it works, it works,” Vickers said. “We think this and that may taste good together, so we try it. If it fits, then we’ll sell it.”

Constance Phillips, Melton’s mother, said she had no idea the business would grow like it has, but she enjoys watching the girls succeed and learn while they partake in the journey.

“I am very proud of them,” Phillips said. “I feel like it’s teaching them good work ethics for them to be as young as they are and still trying to balance school and extracurricular activities.”

The two girls met a few years ago, but became friends when they were in the same classroom in eighth grade. They’ve been inseparable since.

Now in the classroom at Selma High School, the girls say their classmates are always making requests for cupcakes, as well as supporting their business.

“Our classmates are very supportive of what we do,” Vickers said. “When folks see you doing good, there’s always somebody in the background that’s probably looking at you differently, but for the most part, we have very supportive classmates.”

Last summer, the two had the opportunity to make cupcakes for two prestigious women in Alabama.

“This past summer, we got a chance to do the ceremony for the first female acting general of the Alabama National Guard [Major General Sheryl Speed Gordon],” Vickers said. “We got to make cupcakes [for the ceremony] and Gov. Kay Ivey.”

Smart said she is proud of the girls and all of their accomplishments thus far.

“I am very proud of them,” Smart said. “Myself and Constance are both single parents and we’re proud of the fact that they’re taking initiative on their own and being productive citizens. I’m very proud of both of them.”

Smart said it’s nice to see other people enjoying her family’s recipes.

“We’re glad that everybody is enjoying them,” Smart said. “We love them, but we’re glad that other people love them too.”

Melton enjoys the process of baking and making the icing.

“My favorite part is the baking process,” Melton said. “I’ve always watched the people on TV and was like I want to do that one day. I like it.”

The girls are only 16, but they hope to stick together and continue with their business.

“I could see myself in the future with a bakery with different branches,” Vickers said.