Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Adding a little green to our pink...

It's an absolutely gorgeous day out, and the store is filled with adorable children creating their own cookies. The kids definitely got lucky this week, the weather is supposed to be amazing all week for their March Break. And of course, who isn't in a good mood when it's this sunny out?

It's also the day before St. Patty's Day, so we're 'going green' for the occasion. The bakers are whipping up some green popcorn (white chocolate covered popcorn with green colouring), green cupcakes, green chocolate chip cookies, and green DC Crunch. Oh, and of course, some decorated green shamrock cookies.

I also thought I'd share some photos of the shop, for those who haven't been by yet. Check us out:

The store wouldn't have looked the way it does without my fabulous designer and best friend, Erica Gelman from House of Design. She doesn't have a website up yet but you can check out her blog at ericashouseofdesign.blogspot.com. And these awesome photos were taken by a very talented photographer, Assaf Friedman (check him out at http://www.assafphotography.com/) who really made the colours look fantastic in his shots.

Speaking of colour, let's move on to our green stuff for tomorrow. First is my fav, the St. Patty's Day beer absorbtion kit, which are filled with our signature DC Crunch (Cookie peices, popcorn, pretzels, skor bits, and other goodies all covered in green chocolate - it's really addictive and super yummy).

More St. Patty's day photos to be posted tomorrow. It's supposed to be 17 degrees out tomorrow, so why not come by the shop and pick up some green goodies? We'd be happy to see you in our very festive St. Patty's Day hats :)

Eat sweet. Live happy.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Long time, no sweet!

I can't believe I haven't updated this blog in so long...I've been so, so busy with the first few months of the store being open, but I promise to update more often from now on.

It's Monday, and we're closed today, which gave me the chance to finally change the layout of this blog, as well as catch you guys up on the happenings at the store. Specifically, wanted to show you some of the awesome specialty cakes we've been creating over the last few months. Et voila...

A really fun 'workout' cake for a guy who loves to work out. The character is supposed to be Russell from the movie Up! Ain't he cute?

Top view of Russell the worker outer

Retro operation game cake for a surgeon's birthday

'Prescription' for operation game cake

iPod touch cake for my good friend Rachel's younger sister

A pretty Cherry Blossom cake

A cake for a little girls' Christening

One of my favorite cakes to date - A colossal poker table cake complete with gumpaste playing cards, fondant poker chips and cigars, and rice crispy treat/fondant heineken bottles with gumpaste chips. Everything is edible!

Close-up of the edible details

A cake for a 25th birthday - a Coach purse filled with all the things she loves! The Cosmo mag, Leafs tickets, iPod, Starbucks cup and Blackberry are all gumpaste, while the makeup is all fondant.

Closeup of details

Thomas the tank cake for a 1st birthday

Another view of the Thomas cake

Another cute 1st birthday cake

Well, that's all for now. Don't want to post them all now, gotta keep you guys coming back for more afterall. If you haven't visited the shop yet, we'd love to see you! In case you don't know, we have about 4 cupcake flavours available daily, as well as 3-4 cookie flavours which are baked on-site daily. You can also come in and create your own custom cookie! Just choose from three different types of dough (classic, oatmeal or double chocolate) and 24 different mix-ins and one of our bakeristas will bake your custom cookie in under 2 minutes! 

And, as always, we're available for custom orders for our cakes, cupcakes, designer cookies and printed chocolate. 

Eat Sweet. Live happy. 

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Location, location, location

My first week of not working 9-5 is almost done, and I've gotten quite a bit done. I met with the Toronto Business Development Incubator on Monday afternoon, and was basically told that I needed to add about another 10 pages on my already 30-page business plan. Oye. More detail? I thought I had given enough, but apperently not so much.

Also, this week a goal for myself - to secure a location and sign a conditional lease. Well, I did, in fact find a perfect spot - and I mean absolutely perfect. Comes fully renovated and is just gorgeous - moldings, pot lights and even a walk-in cooler and production area, plus a finished basement! But a few hours after speaking to my realtor about putting in an offer, I was told that the landlord was weary about food uses. She was also super skeptical because the former tenant had bailed after 8 months. I didn't get to speak with her directly, but if I did I think I would all but cry to her about just how committed I am, and how passionate I am about this business. It is, afterall, my dream.

On another note, because I haven't been doing the deliveries myself for quite some time (my hubby has been the official TDC delivery boy up until this week), I almost forgot the look on people's faces when they see the products for the first time. Today, I delivered a 'get well soon' gift basket, and just loved the expression on the woman's face when she saw it (it was for her husband). She was absolutely delighted, which in turn, made me feel amazing. And that, after all, is what it's all about. Making other people happy makes me happy. It's just that simple.

And so, I will keep my fingers crossed about this location, and take comfort in the fact that if it's meant to be, it will be. If not, I will find something else. But damn, I really loved those moldings!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

So it's only Wednesday, but already I am in dire need of the weekend to be able to get some work done on the business. Wait, how does that make sense? Work should be done during the workweek, no? Ah yes, but this is not always the case when you're an entrepreneur! I still have another 12 days to go at my full-time job (but who's counting?), which makes the preliminary planning all the more difficult. I am making progress though. Met with my accountant today who will be covering all the nitty gritty (financials) for my business plan. There is still so much more to be done, now that I've taken a look at other sample business plans that have um, much more girth than mine. But I am confident that if I take the weekend to really get into it, I can get my part done. 

Now for the fun stuff! I've almost finalized my new logo. Still can't decide on the layout, but the main concept has been hammered down so for that, I am glad. Here are my options:

I've also been working on a bunch on new samples to take photos of for the new site. You can check them out below:

That's all for now. Wish me luck with the business plan - I don't enjoy numbers so I will need it. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Welcome to The Designer Cookie's very first blog post! 

The Designer Cookie was launched back in 2003 as very part-time venture by myself, Monica Krasny. Baking my entire life, I would frequently bring in freshly baked cookies to work, only to have them gobbled up within minutes. To make a long story short, after multiple marriage proposals and countless suggestions to market my cookies, The Designer Cookie was born. 

Initially, I started out with gourmet cookies, jam-packed with tons of yummy, high quality mix-ins. Not afraid of 'too much', my motto was 'more crunch, less dough', and it seemed to work. Being extremely creative, I also offered sugar cookies decorated with chocolate, icing, and pretty much anything and everything I could find at Bulk Barn. I would offer the cookies through my coworkers, and soon enough, people were talking.

This wasn't enough for me though. I wanted something different; something unique. It was about a year later that I discovered edible imaging; a pretty new technology in those days. The thought of being able to place photos onto cookies and chocolates - and be able to eat them - was too enticing to not pursue.  So, I did.

Throughout the years, I kept the business part-time while working full-time in many different fields. I planned events, wrote copy for various publications, did marketing for a few companies, and even started a not-for-profit committee. However, at least once or twice a year I'd come back to my dream; of one day opening up a retail shoppe for my cookies. 

And now, at long last, the time has come. This past monday, I gave in my resignation from my communications manager role at an online software company, and in 4 weeks, will be a full-time entrepreneur. Over the next 6 months, I will build and plan my opening, and blog about the process. I expect many hurdles and roadblocks along the way, but I'm ready.

So, I invite you to subscribe, or follow me on Twitter (@monicookie) and join me in the journey that lies ahead. 

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