Looking for a unique twist on a birthday cake? Or a sweet treat to show someone your appreciation? Or how about a creative venue for a get-together or celebration?

Sweetology is a brand new shop designed to meet all those needs, with a little fun on the side. Just opened in Ladue by business partners Kara Newmark and DeAnn Bingaman, Sweetology is a place where individuals or groups can come to decorate their own cupcakes, cakes or cookies. “We wanted to develop something that was fun and novel and new, and lightning struck about two years ago with this concept of marrying what Build-A-Bear and Paint-Me-Pottery have been so successful at doing—with treats,” Newmark says. “The feel of our brand is somewhere between sprinkles and chocolate martinis—we have a liquor license and it’s elegant, but there’s a little magic, a little Willy Wonka. We have frosting dispensers and walls of sprinkles and sugar art. We have chandeliers, but there’s not a white-glove feel to it.”

Open to kids and adults alike, Sweetology offers undecorated treats through a partnership with The Cup. “You can come for a party or you can walk in off the street, and you’ll be able to purchase already-decorated stuff if you like, or you can come by yourself on a whim to make cupcakes for your child’s birthday, or a cake for your mom’s birthday,” Newmark says.

Not so sure if your decorating skills will be up to snuff? “You will not be left on your own,” Newmark says. “Our ‘Sweetologists’ can guide you and answer questions. If you want to make a fondant bow but you don’t know how, I can show you in three seconds. People will be there in support.” She adds, “We did several focus groups, and we found that basically 100 percent of the participants who weren’t bakers or decorators, and didn’t consider themselves cooks ended up with a product they felt really excited about. It’s not rocket science—we can teach you little tricks, and then the imagination takes off! Everybody who comes in can produce something beautiful or fun or exciting. It’s like finding your heart’s intention in creating a piece of art. Perfect is not the goal—I don’t even know what perfect is. It’s about putting your heart into something that you can celebrate with.”

The shop also is open for birthday celebrations, private and corporate events, and classes and camps for those who really want to hone their skills. And to relax and enjoy the sweet success of your creation, Sweetology’s ‘drinkery’ serves coffee and wine pairings, along with drinkable chocolate.

Newmark and Bingaman also believe strongly in giving back to the community, so they’ve partnered with Friends of Wings to donate cupcakes each month to those served by the nonprofit. In addition, every month, there will be a Cupcake of the Month that is designed for a different nonprofit and whose proceeds will support that group, Newmark says. And from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 3, Sweetology is partnering with Saks Fifth Avenue for Catwalk Cocktails & Cupcakes, a mother-daughter fashion show to benefit Friends of Wings.

“This is about fun and entertainment, and creating something special for someone,” Newmark concludes. “Remember, there’s no such thing as perfect, and everybody’s welcome!”

On the Cover: Sweetology, a create-your-own cookie, cupcake and cake destination, is now open at 9214 Clayton Road in Ladue. Pictured on the cover: Kara Newmark and DeAnn Bingaman. For more information, call 736-4800 or visit sweetology.com.

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