Tell us about yourself and World of Crema. What inspired you to make a career from cake making and styling?
My name is Tia, I’m 24 years old and I graduated from UTS with a business degree in finance and marketing. I’m a fairly lively, relaxed person. My friends and family are everything to me. I search my feelings through all mediums of art; music, painting, food, dance!
After graduating, I found myself in a flurry of jobs from retail to media sales. Positions I didn’t feel passionate enough to be in but felt it was the only sensible path for me. This all changed when my sister Claudia began to work in kitchens as a chef. I was instantly inspired by the creativity she had found in herself and longed for that unbound self expression that your own two hands could offer.
Within a few months I had left my stable job in media sales and commenced my first job as a baker at Flour and Stone. I learnt the fundamentals of kitchen etiquette here, I learnt what it meant to be part of a team and felt addicted to the rhythm. I was honoured to have been offered an apprenticeship by my idol Nadine Ingram but it felt wrong to commit to it at the time. I suffered with the idea of commitment and being stuck in one place for the next three years. I left the job and travelled for several months back to my home town and all around italy.
I landed a summer job as a cook in a beautiful villa in Tuscany called Villa Cozzano. I hosted a few cooking classes and catered to intimate and large groups of guests. I did feel out of my depth, I really am a home cook and am not a chef in any sense, but I cooked from the heart and received really great feedback. The experience affirmed my path in food. It helped that co-owners Manuel and Sofìe were my cheerleaders and left me to my creative devices every mealtime!
On my return to Sydney, I felt a little lost. I was recruited as a chef for my sister and her partner’s former restaurant Bar Berkelo in Terry Hills. So I helped develop the menu and recipe tested.
In search of a creative outlet and freedom of expression, my sister Claudia and I decided to start CREMA in March of this year. Unfortunately Claudia is no longer baking with me, however I am so grateful we started it together because as a younger sister I really needed the initial support and encouragement from her to feel confident enough in myself to do what I do now.
It’s come really far from where it started, my visual style and flavours have definitely been at play but it finally feels like home to me. I’ve found my groove and I’m so happy to be here!