A baking fairy tale

To look at Peggy Porschen’s eponymous bakeries based in London, you would think you were looking into the setting of a magical story. Creative director and founder, Peggy Porschen has poured all of her creativity and inspiration into making Parlours that are not only known for their fantastic baked creations, but also their highly artistic outside façades.

Baking was something that Peggy Porschen had always dreamed of as a young girl growing up in Germany. As a teenager, she always knew that she wanted to be a cake designer.

“To my delight, I discovered the art of ‘British Sugar Craft’ while working as an air steward, a job which took me on regular trips to London,” Peggy says.

This was the beginning of Peggy’s journey into the world of cake.

Owner and founder Peggy Porschen standing in from of her eponymous bakery

“Soon after, I quit my job, and the rest is history. I never looked back and feel truly blessed that I was able to follow my calling,” she says.

Following this epiphany, Peggy completed training at Le Cordon Bleu and was able to launch Peggy Porschen Cakes, a bespoke cake business, in 2003, after working several pastry chef jobs in London. This later morphed into Peggy Porschen, which is now known around the world for its beautiful outdoor decorations and even more stunning cakes.

“Opening our Belgravia Parlour in 2010 was a dream come true. I felt so at home amongst the artisan boutiques in this quiet, pretty London neighbourhood,” she says.

It was at this Parlour that Peggy decided to experiment with bringing her love of the whimsical to her business.

“It was instinct that led me to paint the shop front an icing-sugar pink,” she said.

“This hadn’t been done before, and it could have been polarising, but instead it was magnetic. This was finally my chance to share my love of fairy-tale pinks, modern romance, and whimsical cake art on a ‘ready-to-eat’ basis.”

Now, one of the main things that attracts customers from across the world to Peggy Porschen is the incredible design and aesthetic of the locations, which resemble otherworldly fairy tales.

“Inspiration comes from everywhere,” says Peggy.

“I love many forms of art, fashion, and film and series production, as well as simply spending time getting lost in antique shops, flower markets, and food halls. I’m naturally drawn to a pastel colour palette, beautiful blooms, and pretty detail.

“I’m always thinking, planning, and collecting. I have cupboards full of home and table accessories that often come in handy for photoshoots. Once I have the seeds of an idea, I always create virtual mood boards for my collections, and for this, Instagram and Pinterest are treasure troves. At this point, I start to bounce ideas off my creative team, and we quickly have a gut feel for whether something has legs.”

This is something that Peggy has brought not only to the brand’s initial store in Belgravia, but also to the flagship Parlour in Chelsea, which opened in 2019. The second location has given the team behind Peggy Porschen the ability to expand and accommodate more customers.

“As we’ve evolved, our little corner of Belgravia has become hugely popular, but it is not possible to grow the small space in size. We are lucky, however, to have a wraparound terrace, and this is a wonderful spot to sit and soak up the atmosphere of the neighbourhood on fair-weather days,” says Peggy.

“For this reason, in 2019, we opened our Chelsea location as our flagship Parlour. It mirrors the same corner positioning, floral archway, and seasonal installations and collections, yet with a much larger interior space. We have a beautiful five-metre-long patisserie counter at Chelsea, with many more internal seats, plus a lower ground floor private events space.”

The interior and exterior of the buildings tie in together to ensure that customers are able to visit the globally renowned stores and enjoy the visual experience alongside the pleasure of consuming wonderful baked goods.

“The season informs our ingredients and any new dish additions. And the visual look plays a huge part too. Everything we do has to look on brand for us, therefore all dishes require an extra level of attention to detail and understanding of our brand’s aesthetic to get the right level of prettiness, that not only photographs very well but tastes just as good too!” says Peggy.

As for the future, there are many different plans in many different directions for the brand.

“It’s been a challenging few years for hospitality so we will continue to evolve as we have always done. We’re always very aware that it’s hard for international visitors to take home a souvenir from our Parlours, so we would say watch this space for a growing retail range in the future,” says Peggy.

“We’ve held a long-term vision to expand the Peggy Porschen brand internationally. We feel the time is right to make these next steps and hope to be able to share more details soon.”

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