Sweet Treats By Melissa - Small Shop Feature
Am I the only person that thinks it is crazy that Halloween is in 2 days?! TWO DAYS?!? Where in the world has 2018 gone? I swear we just welcomed the new year. And in the blink of an eye it is going to be Christmas. WHAT?!? I don’t know about you but I do not feel prepared for the holidays. But I do love them so and welcome them with open arms.
The first thing I think of when the word holidays pops into my mind is baking. It brings back such fond memories of my childhood. I admit I haven’t been into any sort of baking mode since I found out I had to be gluten free almost 7 years ago. But this year, I have some massive inspiration that is getting me in the mood to start my oven. Melissa from Sweet Treats by Melissa has some mad skills!!! And that is an understatement! She literally creates works of art with her cookies. I am in awe every time that she does it all by hand. Read on to find out about this amazing woman and her small shop.
1. What motivated you to start your shop?
I first got started by making Italian style cookies. Many of the recipes came from my grandma. She made the most amazing cookies ever. I remember being a little kid and during the holidays, my grandma would have these huge platters of all different types of amazing, beautiful, delicious cookies. As I got older, I would help my mom make these cookies, and once I moved away from home, I continued to make them (while also calling my grandma to ask for tips) and would give small plates of them to friends. With lots and lots of encouragement from friends (and my grandma’s blessing), I decided to start selling the Italian cookies. I went online to explore avenues to get the word out to sell them, and I stumbled across different websites for decorated sugar cookies. They were so beautiful and unlike the sugar cookie cutouts that I was used to making during the holidays and I decided to give them a try. After lots of google searches and YouTube tutorials, I made my first ever sugar cookies. The rest is history!
2. Where does your inspiration come from?
I get a lot of my inspiration from my two daughters. My favorite sugar cookies to make are those for little kids. Kids are so fun and creative and they don’t care if an idea seems too out there or absurd. They also seem to know what sorts of things are trendy, which helps keep me hip to what’s cool at the moment - something that I’ve never been good at previously. When making the Italian cookies, I always think about my grandma and how much love she put into our family and the food she made for us. She was such an amazing woman, and I’m proud to carry her legacy through her cookies.
3. Is there a special meaning behind your shop name?
Ha, I wish. I feel like I have the worst business name ever. It’s so boring. I didn’t want it to just say cookies, just in case I ever expanded beyond cookies...but here I am, just doing cookies :)
4. What is your mission with Sweet Treats by Melissa?
My mission is to make the world a slightly sweeter place, one cookie at a time. I hope to bring a tiny bit of joy to people’s special days and big events with my cookies. I am always so grateful to be a small part of someone’s happy days.
5. Are there any special events you will be attending with your shop?
I will be at the Jackalope Art Fair for sure and a couple of pop ups at Lone Tree Brewing Company in the fall. I think that’s it for now.
6. What do you like to do for fun?
I love all things outside - hiking, skiing, being near water, playing with my girls. You can also often find me at protest marches and rallies. My stack of books to read is always too tall. When I am able to do it, I always enjoy sleeping.
7. Who is someone you consider to be a hero in your life?
My younger brother, Matt was a hero to me. He was developmentally disabled and couldn’t do so many things that we simply take for granted everyday. He couldn’t read. He couldn’t drive. He didn’t know when his next seizure would come (he had epilepsy). He passed away 6 years ago, and I miss him tremendously. I try to remember daily to be grateful for the little things, and not take anything for granted.
8. What is a big lesson you have learned on this journey?
I’ve learned that as with all things, practice is key. The more you work at something, the better you will get at it. Persistence is key! I’ve also learned that teaching kids how to decorate cookies, no matter how hard you try, is very, very messy.