Tareka Lofton is a creative force. Her cakes gained national attention during the pandemic when she had the tongue-in-cheek idea to craft a toilet paper cake, a wink at the country’s shortage of toilet paper. It boosted sales during the pandemic, and her business continues to boom. Her signature cakes – with flavors like lemon berry, orange sherbet, animal cracker, cereal and milk, and cookie monster – showcase just how far her creativity takes her and her team in the kitchen.
Tareka makes beautiful wedding and birthday cakes, teaches baking classes and her team has been recognized by publications across the nation. And her fondness for the Fort Worth community is baked into every delectable morsel.
Tell us about yourself!
"I’ve always been an artist at heart. [Formerly a sculptor,] I’ve also done pottery and watercolor. Baking was a leisure activity for many years (before graduating from Le Cordon Bleu Dallas in 2013).
"I wanted to learn the proper skill set, not just dabbling. I wanted to be a pastry chef, to know the art form. I took lessons and combined them with how my Arkansas grandmother cooks – with love and a pinch of this and a dash of that. I like combining technique and intuition."
Are there any local entrepreneurs that inspire you?
“Lots...I'm inspired by something different from them all. Just to name a few, I love the vibrant drive of Kari Sehar of Melt, the great consistency of Mia Moss with Black coffee, and the heart for community of Katrina Carpenter of Carpenters Catering.”
What's the best part of being a local business owner in Fort Worth?
“The best part is being woven in the fabric thread of so many innovative creatives, artist and like-minded individuals. Also, the way Fort Worth gathers around you and holds up your arms, no place does partnership better than Fort Worth.”
What advice would you give to other young entrepreneurs?
“Know and remember your reasons ‘why,’ you will need it on so many days when things get on the tough side.”
Okay… the Toilet Paper cake…
"I had done a few of these in the past. People were asking for a gag cake, a “Holy Crap, You’re Old” cake. Ours is all buttercream frosting with a thin layer of sugar to make the top crinkly. Other bakers do this, but most do fondant, and we were able to execute it with buttercream."
Then The Today Show came calling...
"It was a rollercoaster of emotions. We had calls came in from all over the country. I had 900 emails [immediately after the spot aired] and we had to install a second phone line. We made 150-200 cakes a week for a whole month. We couldn’t get enough supplies and couldn’t get ingredients."
Loft22 Cakes is located in Fort Worth’s Near Southside neighborhood on E Daggett Ave.
Find them on social media @loft22cakes.