Jean Blacklock

reflections on being an entrepreneur

Latest stories

New ideas: 3-step process

There’s a popular saying that Andrew likes: “throw stuff against the wall and see what sticks”.    I’ve thought of this a lot lately as we have been getting to know our customer base and what they want from Sticky. Some new items since we opened have been barn-burning successes: cakes; sticky buns without pecans; sticky buns with cream cheese icing; mini fudgies; cookies; and mini sticky buns...

Live and adapt!

I’ve learned that flexible thinking is a great thing. For example, a few years ago, I would not have agreed to a tipping option in a bakery – and now I have one. In setting up Sticky, we realized the landscape had changed and that some coffee/bakery places include a tipping option in the cashing out process. We decided that a tip option gives customers the ability to give the team something extra...

A Visit to Magnolia Bakery

Andrew and I were in New York on the weekend and as we always do, we stopped into Magnolia Bakery. This business first opened in the 1990s and is still going strong. I have such admiration for the owners’ business acumen over so many years. I also really like some of their products: their icebox pies and cheesecakes are very good, in my view, and those products I don’t like as much, well, so much...

3 Things I Know (about opening a bakery)

It’s been a minute since my last post on May 17th! As I write this on July 9th, it is hard to even remember the gjillion things about the opening of Sticky on May 27th – and the weeks since then. And even if I could remember all the details, that would be a boring litany anyway. Suffice to say that the HVAC broke and then was fixed, that many deliveries were late and then replaced, that...

Coming soon…diary of a new bakery

For most of the last month, the to-do list between Andrew and me has been like those soup bowls in comedy sketches that fill up as soon as a person reaches the bottom. But – knock on wood- the website should launch  May 30th and the store open on June 1st. Yippee! This time around in opening a bakery, we are really hands-on, and in that process, we are learning so much.  As well as Andrew seizing...

Diary of a new bakery – Week 2

Our friend Peter Phoa came to the bakery last week and took this photo of Andrew. I love it. Last week in this blog I suggested just doing the next obvious thing when you have a lot to do and let me say: this is a good strategy for opening a bakery. Really everywhere you look there is stuff to do. I’m sure in hindsight a lot of it will be wrong – like when we had the brainwave before we opened...

Day 1- Sticky on St Clair

Yesterday we got the key to 621 St Clair West. For a moment it was like being on one of those reality tv shows where a crew of people have transformed a house in the space of a week. Walking into the bright, light and airy kitchen that Leah and her team scrubbed for the last week….I gotta say, it was amazing and momentarily euphoric.“Momentarily” because have you ever noticed that when fantastic...

Here we are!

After months of looking at commissaries, commercial spaces for rent, and bakeries for sale, by early December I was really discouraged: I was close to finalizing the recipes with nowhere to produce and sell them. Then I remembered Leah of Leah’s Bakery at the corner of Wychwood and St Clair. Back in 2010, I called Leah out of the blue about selling coffee in a bakery. She was so helpful and...

Coming soon (ish)!

Sticky’s Classic Banana Pudding  Yep, once again, it’s been a minute since you heard from me. (It was New Year’s Eve!  Who knows where the time has gone since then?) Anyway – I have news! I’ve signed a lease on a lovely space near St Clair and Bathurst for Sticky’s home, and everything is on track for opening the bakery this spring, “spring” being a perfectly vague term meaning anywhere...

Why You Should Stay in the Game

A month ago here, I was discouraged, something that I’ve noticed happens a lot with goal-setting – “LOL” as they say. Anyway, I wrote that I had the “what” figured out – what business? what products? – but I was perplexed on the “where” and the “how”. Well, let me say: the Universe intervened and I have news, people, not to mention 3 good reasons to demonstrate that...

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