We had the good fortune of connecting with Janine D’Amico and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Janine, what habits do you feel helped you succeed?
As far as tangible habits – meditation, mindfulness and journaling have been so important to my success. Like so many small business owners, my brain is always going. I have made meditation a daily habit and it helps me to slow down, and has also helped me learn how to incorporate mindfulness habits into every day life. It looks different everyday, sometimes it may be a short grounding exercise when I feel myself getting overwhelmed or deep belly breaths in between decorating large trays of cookies! I find that it has greatly helped my focus and productivity.
Journaling is another habit I believe has contributed to my business success. I love to brainstorm by putting pen to paper. There is something about getting creative ideas on the page that inspires me! It has also helped to keep me more organized.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I started Sleepy Sweets Baking Company as a side hustle in 2019. At the time, I was teaching full time in New York City, and making custom cakes and cupcakes on the weekend mostly for friends and family.
At the end of 2019, we moved to Charlotte, North Carolina and I began to book parties and events — again specializing in custom cakes and cupcakes. Business picked up quickly and I was soon booked out 2-3 months ahead. That was until March of 2020, when the Covid-19 lockdowns began, and all the events and parties were cancelled. I was forced to make a decision, either give up my business for the time being, or make a change to survive. I chose the latter, and tried my hand at making cookies that could be shipped out across the company. I quickly realized that I enjoyed designing custom cookies more than anything else, and it expanded my business reach to all 50 states!
One of the inspirations behind the name of my business is my very sleepy French Bulldog, Hamilton. He is also the inspiration behind one of my fan favorite custom cookie designs – the Frenchie Cookie. Eventually this inspired other breeds of dog cookie designs. My clients love to incorporate man’s best friend into their custom cookie boxes.
One of my taglines is “let me cookify it!” — if you have an idea, I will find a way to make it happen. The sky is the limit with custom cookie designs and I always try something new. I have made cookies for all different types of occasions, and the design process is so much fun, from character cookies for children’s parties, to logo cookies for local businesses, there is nothing I can’t turn into a cookie!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Without a doubt, hands down, the person in my life I want to dedicate my shout out to is my soulmate and my forever partner in this crazy world, Jeff. The other person I need to dedicate this shout out to is baking and business owner queen Christina Tosi — and these two stories intertwine: let me explain:
A few years ago, I was struggling to figured out a place or hobby where I could to channel my creative energy into.
One night, Jeff said to me “Janine! You have to watch this episode of Chef’s Table. I promise you’re going to really love it” It was CEO of Milk Bar Christina Tosi’s episode. I was immediately inspired by her story. She is this incredibly down to earth, hard working, relatable woman who is also a superhero!
I was completely inspired. I decided that night that I wanted to bring joy into people’s lives by creating and designing delicious baked goods. I got to work to learn and hone my craft the very next day.
So thank you Jeff — for being my rock and my person, and thank you Queen Christina Tosi for being the most fierce woman the baking industry has ever seen!