You see that amazing and talented woman to the left?
Well, her name is Amber, and she’s the reason that Commie’s Cupcakes has the name it has today.
So as you may have clued on by now, Amber and I share the same first name. So confusing! Especially since back in the day we were BOTH graphic designers AND working together in a small office of 5 people. Can you imagine the confusion?
Co-worker: “Hey Amber…”
Both of us: “Yes?”
Co-worker: “Amber can you please make this design change for me…”
Both of us: “Which one are you talking to?”
After a few weeks of starting the job, it was decided that I should have a nickname to make it easier for everyone. The names started off pretty simple: ‘Big Amber’ (because I was taller than the other Amber) and then ‘Ambs’. But it still continued to be confusing...
One day, I made the mistake of mentioning my Grandpa’s nickname, which I personally thought sounded ridiculous (sorry gramps!). In the true old fashioned Aussie way, his friends shortened his last name ‘Comadira’ and nicknamed him ‘Commie’.
Now for those of you unfamiliar with Australia, we LOVE to shorten everything and having your mates give you a nickname is like a right of passage. Here’s a taste of our Aussie slang:
Australians = Aussies
Tradesmen = Tradies
Afternoon = Arvo
McDonalds = Maccas
Bottle shop (liquor store) = Bottle-O
...you get the idea.
To my disappointment, my managers loved the nickname ‘Commie’ and dubbed me as Commie from that day onwards. And I hated it! I thought it sounded silly and it was embarrassing, but they wouldn’t call me anything else.
Eventually, the nickname started to grow on me...and eventually I embraced the nickname completely.
‘Commie’ really became part of my identity. For YEARS I have been affectionately known as Commie amongst work colleagues and friends. Some people didn’t even realise I had a “real” name and found it odd calling me Amber.
So when the time finally came to name my cupcake business I was kinda stumped. The name ‘Amber’s Cupcakes’ sounded so un-original, and any of the other names I invented I couldn’t really relate to or had no connection with.
Then a co-worker said to me one day, “Why aren’t you naming it ‘Commie’s Cupcakes’”? I really had to pause and think on that for a moment.
Admittedly, I was a bit embarrassed about calling my company that name. Although I was happy for people to call me ‘Commie’ as a nickname, I thought that no one would take me seriously with such a “silly” business name. I was afraid of being judged.
After some internal back and forth, I decided to hell with it, and - spoiler alert - decided to call my business ‘Commie’s Cupcakes’.
I was growing into a young adult and finding my feet in the world, and the name ‘Commie’ had grown with me through all the big adult milestones...it was truly ‘me’.
So the lesson for today? Embrace yourself! Own your little quirks and embrace your unique-ness. Life is too short to worry about fitting into the ‘norm’.
Once you accept yourself, you’ll be able to truly give 100% in everything you do in life.
And can I tell you a little secret? Being different is exactly how you’ll reach your success.
I fully embraced my identity in my business and I can honestly say that it really encouraged me to grow and flourish, and ultimately find my feet in the cake world.
It’s funny to look back on these memories and consider that I was actually going to name my business something that felt foreign to me, all because I was a little embarrassed to embrace the true me.
So really...without my lovely friend Amber, there really wouldn’t be a ‘Commie’s Cupcakes’ at all.
Thank you my lovely friend!