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Interviews with Shey: Leslie McCready

Shealynn Benner

Tell me a bit about yourself. (Married, kids, hobbies, etc.)

Hi! My name is Leslie McCready. I have been married for 10 years and we have 2 kids (7 and 4). I am a big time plant lady and bigger cookier. I am originally from Oklahoma but currently living in southern California. I love it here--it has everything hiking, great weather, beaches, and DISNEYLAND.

What are you most passionate about?

I am most passionate about my regular day to day job that I have had for the past 13 years. I am an enlisted active duty Coast Guard member stationed in southern California.  Most people want to know if I drive a boat, sadly I drive a desk and do mainly paperwork. I have been stationed in San Francisco, CA; Seattle, WA; Oklahoma City, OK; Ventura, CA; and Los Angeles/Long Beach, CA--and we are due to move again next summer.

What sparked your interest in making cookies? Did someone specific inspire you to start?

Baking has been a fun hobby that I have always enjoyed doing in my free time. I had a close friend teach me some very basics about cookie making. It was about a year later before actually trying to do it again on my own. I quickly fell in love with making edible art.

As a cookie business owner, what are you most proud of? And what has been your biggest challenge?

I started my little business as a creative outlet from my job. So one of the things I am most proud of is trying to create designs that are unique but familiar. One of the biggest challenges is moving every few years and trying to reestablish myself as a reputable person in a new community.  Also, I often find myself HATING to take orders for things that I find boring or lacking creativity. I don't take many orders a month, so I try to only take on orders that I find fun/challenging.

Do you have a logo? If yes, what is the significance of it? How did you come up with the name of your cookie business and brand image?

The Lazy Baker name is a clear reflection of me as a baker. I usually wait until the very last minute to bake and decorate a set of cookies. Some might think procrastination is a flaw, but working under pressure is where some of my best work happens. Also, I really need to get a logo--I'll get around to it someday.

How long have you been decorating cookies?

I have been decorating cookies consistently since March 2014.

Do you decorate and sell cookies full time? If not, what do you do when you’re not baking?

I most definitely do not sell cookies full time--and really only take about 3-4 orders a month. One year I did seasonal sales (Halloween, Christmas, Valentine's, etc.), however when you move as often as I do it is hard to reestablish in a new area and momentum is always so slow.  So now I just mainly focus on my career and use the limited orders as my main creative outlet/me time.

What is your favorite and least favorite part of the cookie decorating process?

My favorite part is drawing, sketching, and planning the sets. Also, I love it when the client gives me free rein on making what I want. Hands down worst part of the process is the cleanup.

Who is the biggest supporter(s) of you and your cookie business?

My biggest supporters have to be my kids and husband, AKA the quality control team.

Is there someone that has inspired you in the Cookie Industry? Why?

I am most inspired by Holly aka the @Doughmestichousewife. I am such a fan girl for her. I found her on Instagram back in 2013 and I love everything about her cookie style, colors, vibe--she does no wrong in my eyes. (Que the Lady Gaga clip: Talented, brilliant, incredible, amazing, show stopping,  spectacular, never the same..) 

How do you balance everything?(Kids, husband, activities, working out, cookies etc)

How do I balance?? Oh, I am a hot mess sometimes (especially these days). All kidding aside--I am a list maker. List and a routine are the only things holding me together sometimes.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what 3 things (not people) would you bring with you?

If I were stranded on a deserted island I would take: a Costco size of sunscreen, a hammock, and my weapon of choice would be a machete.

What is your best advice to someone wanting to start making cookies for profit?

1. Invest in a quality mixer.

2. I feel the quality of products/tools reflect in the cookie. 

3. Prices need to increase with your skill level. 

https://www.instagram.com/the_lazy_baker/






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