A full-time public servant by day and dessert maker extraordinaire by night, Camille Young of Pip & Lou has fast caught the attention of sweets-lovers across the city with her breath-taking cake designs and creations.
Pip & Lou is quite literally edible art. Each piece is distinctively its own, hand-crafted and exclusively designed. Young says she aims for that 'wow factor' every time she embarks on a new dessert creation.
"I don't just make desserts and cakes, I design them," she says.
"I have a particularly distinctive style. I rarely measure and I don't follow a plan – I just create.
"I describe my creations as 'a beautiful mess'. Pip & Lou is about expression and signature style. I aim to create centrepieces that intrigue.
"I take inspiration from a flavour or design element and each creation just flows from that. I'm a bit of a rebel in the kitchen. Most trained bakers would be horrified at my lack of technique. I'm 100 per cent self-taught. I don't follow the rules; I just do my own thing."
Young explains that Pip & Lou started as a home-based hobby a few years ago out of a love of baking with her daughter Evangelique.
"We would make desserts and cakes for fun, and for friends and family. I then created a page and started posting my creations online and after a while people began to request orders and it really took on a life of its own," she says.
"I love mixing colours and making choccies with my mum!" Evangelique adds.
But who are the characters that are Pip & Lou you ask? Young explains that the name came about one candid day when she was watching Evangelique play.
"I was trying to think of toddler-friendly names for two birds that I wanted to buy my daughter. At the time Evangelique was outside attempting to teach her toy dog 'Lou' how to skip. Instead of saying skip she repeated 'Pip, Lou, pip!'," she laughs.
"We never did get the birds, but when the time came to choose a business name I wanted something completely removed from the generic cake-related business name and Pip & Lou just stuck."
Despite her creative flair coming quite naturally when it comes to the kitchen, this line of work wasn't something that Young aspired to pursue as a career.
"Originally I wanted to be a florist and an artist. Pip & Lou enables me to combine all three," she says.
Young has some big plans for the business with goals for it to evolve from a home-based business into an exciting full-scale dessert studio and coffee shop.
"I really love what I do and I'm looking forward to one day being able to design 'a beautiful mess' on a full-time basis," she says.