We had the good fortune of connecting with Tiffany Barden and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Tiffany, what’s something about your industry that outsiders are probably unaware of?
The “Cookier” community is an amazing group of small entrepreneurs who support each other, feed off each other’s creativity, and look for ways to collaborate. When I started my business in 2018, I had no idea what I was doing, but quickly found that people were willing to offer advice, feedback, and lessons they’ve learned. The industry is definitely all about collaboration over competition, and I think part of that comes from the fact that many Cookiers are stay at home moms, like myself, who turned a hobby into a business. Not only are we connected through our love for cookie artistry, we also share the common bond of trying to juggle multiple responsibilities at once. What people may not realize is that many of us work when we’re off the “mom” clock, which sometimes means working late into the night. While there have been some exhausting nights, it’s been such an uplifting experience to be able to build a network of talented and hard-working women who constantly lift each other up.

What should our readers know about your business?
I specialize in hand-made custom sugar cookies, decorated with royal icing. I am a one-woman shop, which means I design, bake, decorate, photograph, and package all of the orders myself. I take pride in working with my customers to make their vision a reality, and love seeing the reactions on their faces when they get something that exceeds their expectations! It’s hard to say what sets me apart from other Cookiers… there are so many talented people in this industry, and I have so much respect for everyone’s work. What I think sets custom decorated cookies apart from other businesses is that everyone in this industry is so encouraging and uplifting. I am constantly overwhelmed with happiness by the amount of support and positive vibes shared. When I started this journey, my husband and I agreed that we only wanted to do this if I enjoyed it and didn’t stress out too much. Thankfully, I have found so much fulfillment from making cookies and expressing myself through them. It feels good to put myself out there and be able to provide beautiful and delicious treats to compliment someone’s special day. To my surprise, the business took off quicker than I ever expected. I think my biggest challenge has been learning on the fly and trying to keep up with it all. Admittedly, I am my toughest critic. I have high standards for what I put out and I have spent numerous sleepless nights re-baking and fixing icing consistency. I strive to produce cookies that I love and adore, because that’s what I think my customers deserve! I’ve had to learn my limits (sometimes the hard way), and knowing how to say no. There is also the business aspect that I continue to learn, such as how to properly price orders to they are worth my time. I am still learning every day.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
There are so many unique things to see and do in Southern California. Here are a few highlights I would include in our itinerary. Assuming Covid-19 restrictions have been completely lifted: Head down to Laguna Beach, which is about an hour away from Pasadena. Grab lunch at one of the quaint little restaurants by the ocean and then relax on the sand or go for a bike ride on the Newport Beach boardwalk. Have dinner at Javier’s or Mastro’s Ocean Club in Newport Coast. Hike to the Hollywood sign then dinner at Sugarfish in Pasadena Go for a jog around at the Rose Bowl, visit Huntington Gardens and have lunch in the Chinese Garden. Shopping day (or window shopping day) on Rodeo Dr. in Beverly Hills Day trip to Santa Barbara for some more beach time, seafood and wine tasting. Catch a Clippers or Chargers game depending on the season!

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
First and foremost, it wouldn’t be possible without the support of my family. The kids are the reason I started decorating cookies, and my husband gave me the encouragement to go for it. I can always count on him to help with product packaging, track expenses, set up my pop-up shops, distract the kids when needed, and most importantly, taste my cookies (quality control). I also want to give a huge shoutout to my friends from my local “Mom Tribe”, as we like to call ourselves. These women were my very first customers, have always cheered me on, and have celebrated every milestone with me. Whether it’s a pop up shop, holiday pre-sale, or taking a cookie class, they ALWAYS show up to support me. They helped spread the word about Rose Villa Cookie Co., which has helped my business tremendously! Most importantly, the friendships I have developed with the women in this group help keep me grounded and sane as I try to balance my role as mother and a business owner. Lastly, there are two particular Cookiers who have had a big impact on my business, Whitney Hoffman of Apron and Heels, located in North Fontana, and Krissi Galvez of Konfections and Konfetti, located in Elk Grove . These two inspiring women started as social media connections that have developed into true and meaningful friendships. They are always willing to share their knowledge about the things they have learned through experience, and engage in brainstorming sessions which often lead to conversations about our lives and our kids. I have so much admiration and respect for them and feel so grateful to be on this journey together.

Website: www.rosevillacookieco.com
Instagram: www.instagram.com/rosevillacookieco/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rosevillacookieco/

Image Credits
Kristina Hill Photography

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