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As a 4-year Leukemia survivor, Stacey Mertes is heavily involved in fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society as well as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) and the American Diabetes Association. Her 7-year-old son, Logan, is a recently diagnosed Type 1 diabetic, but keeps Stacey on her toes with his own active fundraising endeavors such as the Columbia Tower climb (for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society), WaMu stair climb (for Cystic Fibrosis), and several triathlons and other stair climbs around the city. Originally from a suburb of Chicago, Stacey has lived in many of the local neighborhoods (including spending 11 years next to the Pike Place Market), since graduating from the University of Washington. She finally settled down in the most diverse zip code in the country, Columbia City, where she enjoys walks to the many restaurants, farmers market, and art events nearby. Her favorite hobby of late is finding the most fun “free” things to do around Seattle with her son. She loves movies, plays, visiting the Pacific Science Center and other museums, and finding those geocaching adventures.

Recap: Trophy Cupcakes And Parties Book Launch At Watson Kennedy Fine Home In Seattle

Jennifer Shea, co-founder of Trophy Cupcakes promoting her new book (Photo Credit: Stacey Mertes)

Jennifer Shea, co-founder of Trophy Cupcakes promoting her new book (Photo Credit: Stacey Mertes)

Watson Kennedy Fine Home store in downtown Seattle hosted a book signing of Jennifer Shea, owner and founder of Trophy Cupcakes. The book, Trophy Cupcakes & Parties, helps you throw an elegant celebration with simple details to inspire you to celebrate the little things as well as the big things. It’s no wonder it was hosted at Watson Kennedy, because her first book fits perfectly with the Watson Kennedy’s eclectic and exquisite home furnishing items, a place I could wander through for hours and want everything in it.

Shea’s cupcakes graced our Seattle streets in 2007. Receiving the Home Ec award in school among other awards, Shea always loved baking but never thought of it as a career. When the cupcake store boom happened in 1996, she followed the growth of the industry through a cupcake blog. Known by her friends to always supply the cupcakes at celebrations, she finally thought she might be able to begin her own store.

With a background in nutrition, she launched Trophy Cupcakes ironically enough. When she began, there were only 25 cupcake stores nationally. She stands out amongst a lot of other cupcake businesses by creating a store that inspires creativity and fun. As a fan of the European bakeries and candy stores, she wanted a shop that felt precious when you entered…a place where the cupcakes were part of the décor. You are immediately inspired when you walk into a Trophy Cupcake shop to Martha Stewart things up (if Martha Stewart were a verb) – or perhaps it’s Jennifer Shea things up. But that’s not what sets Trophy apart from the other cupcakes. Shea insists on having only the finest ingredients, like European chocolate, Madagascar bourbon vanilla and local sweet cream butter, where she does not falter. Shea makes sure that these ingredients are used in each of her store and that each store provides the elegant, party atmosphere, by visiting each store each day, and even tasting the cupcakes to be sure they are worthy of our palettes.

Trophy's Chocolate Salted Caramel (my favorite) (Photo Credit: Stacey Mertes)

Trophy’s Chocolate Salted Caramel (my favorite) (Photo Credit: Stacey Mertes)

With her own style and elegance, Shea makes Trophy Cupcakes her own. With her eye for detail, her new book teaches you not only how to create a delicious cupcake, but to throw an elegant party around them. Her goal of the book, 3-years in the making, was “to inspire people to party more…People are moving too fast, they need to slow down and appreciate the little things.” Her book helps organize simple to elaborate celebrations including crafts, decorations, and themes. It’s not your ordinary cupcake cookbook.

Trophy proudly donates to a wide variety of very worthy causes, particularly those that improve the health and happiness of children in our community. In a typical year, they donate nearly 100,000 cupcakes to local food banks, schools and non-profits. They’ve provided thousands of fun and tasty prizes for the Seattle Mayor’s “Be here. Get there.” campaign, which has increased student attendance in Seattle Public Schools. They have also provided cupcakes and support to Neighborhood House, benefiting in need families all over Seattle. Their  support even extends to animal welfare groups and organizations such as Woodland Park Zoo — since kids adore animals, and vice versa.

Trophy Cupcakes & Parties cookbook and party planning (Photo Credit: Stacey Mertes)

Trophy Cupcakes & Parties cookbook and party planning (Photo Credit: Stacey Mertes)

To buy her book, you can find it, of course, in an elegant display in any of her shops or you can find it online.

LOCATIONS: To find a Trophy Cupcake near you, please click here.

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