The businesses are bouncing back after the pandemic turned life and their industry upside down.
Lauren Dupler, owner of Laurelea’s Sweet Treats, says business during the first few months of the pandemic was rough. “I was only able to do two weddings last year,” said Dupler, “and both of them were small scale. I think the biggest order I did last year was maybe six or seven dozen.”
Fully committed to her business and expecting a baby later in the year, she got creative and sold home cooking kits, mini cookie packs and even offered virtual cooking lessons to try and make a profit. Jessica Martin, owner of Crowned Cakes by Jess, was in the same boat, seeing business dry up virtually overnight.
Dupler left her job at Toledo Hospital in December 2019 to pursue her online cookie making business full time. But just a few months later, the pandemic hit. “To have my business completely shut down and have no income come in for me, it was really really scary,” said Lauren.
“It went from a full calendar, you know a month out maybe even further, to nothing,” said Martin.
Fast forward to this year, business for both women is returning. “These amazing tiered cakes I was used to doing for graduation season, I started doing these tiny ones,” added Martin. “But we had to do what we had to do.” She started her online business back in 2016, but had to close up her storefront in Rossford this past January, after opening in the fall of 2019. With no large gatherings last year, the business shifted back to completely online.
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