I grew up baking cookies for my family but never really thought about it as a career. Even now I sometimes don't think of it as a career but just as that thing I do that pays the bills! Nevertheless, it is something that I enjoy and somehow also am somewhat good at!
I created the name, Signature Sweet Shoppe, because I had this idea to make customized cookies of corporate logos - and my first byline was, "your logo, our sweets," but that seemed too long. So I just changed the byline to "Custom Cookies," which is what they all are. My clients tell me how they want them decorated, and I make it happen. Are any two orders alike? Yes. One person orders pink baby dresses and so does another. But it's so nice when the client says to me that I have carte blanche to decorate the cookies, and then I can just see each one as a little blank canvas.
I didn't take courses in cookie decorating. I'm of the "monkey see, monkey do" school of learning, and through trial and error taught myself about working with royal icing and piping bags. I thought I'd never feel comfortable piping, and now I don't give it a second thought. It also took me a while to tinker with a sugar cookie recipe that was sturdy enough to be shipped, certainly not like those flimsy things you buy in the supermarket which are too delicate and filled with who knows what preservatives to keep them "fresh" on the shelves. My cookies are sturdy enough to be "dunkers," and I encourage people to dunk them in their tea, coffee or even hot chocolate. My cookies can take it!