Jeremy Horland and Carolyn Sevos went from installing technology to managing flour and frosting. Ten years after starting their database developer shop, the business duo changed gears and opened YouCake, an edible photo art company. The idea came when Jeremy’s son turned two and he wanted to surprise his little boy with the ultimate birthday cake. His vision was for the cake to be a photo of his son with a children’s character, but quickly ran into some complications. Jeremy learned that he could use a personal or stock image, but no one could combine or Photoshop the two together. The determined dad was left to design his own cake and have it printed at Carvel. The finished product turned out to be a huge hit, and soon, friends and family started requesting their own custom photo cakes.

Thus, in 2007, Jeremy and Carolyn applied their experience as IT professionals to create their own online bakery. Carolyn tells me, “Edible photo art has been around since the early 80’s. The supplies are FDA approved and are manufactured by a half dozen companies in the US. However, the printing systems and design has been firmly stuck in 1990’s technology. What we have done is apply all the current tools available for advanced design, color control and printer technology so we are able correct many of the printing problems that you have with the current supplies.” Eight years later, YouCake operates out of a commercial kitchen in Long Island City, selling edible photos on top of cakes, cookies, and cupcakes.

YouCake is Global

YouCake ships globally and allows customers to order edible photo sheets or pre-applied toppers on ready-serve items, for which they’ve partnered with Bonne Fete Baking. They also offer kosher and gluten-free options and fill corporate orders — they just made 5,000 mini PayPal toppers for donuts to celebrate the company’s IPO, likely the first application of frosting sheets to donuts. Carolyn explains that they receive images from all nationalities and age groups, from ultrasound images to 100th birthday cookies.

A photo posted by YouCake (@youcake_inc) on


Soon, we can expect to see a YouCake cookie app for the iPhone to make ordering even easier. “Since YouCake toppers can be applied to any homemade or store-bought cake, cookie, or cupcake, our vision is to change the way we decorate our celebration cakes,” Carolyn said. With YouCake, we’re moving away from standard cakes that say ‘Happy Birthday Jill’ or ‘Congratulations Graduate’ and accessing custom products that are unique to each individual person, celebration, or event.

To order a YouCake visit www.youcake.com

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About The Author

Profile photo of Taylor

Texas native, NYU grad, and lover of sprinkles. Trying to expand my palette to be more than bagels and desserts.