October is Small Business Month! This year, we are working with the amazing project, Talking Shop, to share great stories of local small businesses. Read Talking Shop's article on Jeanette, local candymaker and owner of Tout de Sweet.
Celebrating Small Business Month with Talking Shop
Talking Shop is a project to tell the stories of the local owners and entrepreneurs behind your favourite shopfronts, especially as we battle through these difficult times. On the Talking Shop blog, you can find conversations with local small business owners and leaders and news from the industry. The aim of Talking Shop is to create a community of #supportlocal advocates.
Tout de Sweet
Near the end of September, Talking Shop posted the article “In Conversation with Jeanette // Tout de Sweet.” Jeanette, owner of downtown Victoria’s adorable and delicious candy store on Store Street, talks about the sweet and bittersweet aspects of her experience as a candymaker and entrepreneur. Scroll on for a few excerpts from the article, or simply read the whole thing now!
What is Tout de Sweet?
“Tout de Sweet is both a brand of organic candy that I handcraft here in Victoria (and wholesale to other retailers across Canada) and a flagship retail store in downtown Victoria.
What makes our Tout de Sweet candy unique is that it is allergy-friendly – nut-free, peanut-free, gluten-free (celiac friendly) as well as all-natural with no artificial colours or flavours. The flagship retail store downtown on Store Street is our retail hub where we sell other Canadian-made snacks, sips (drinks), sweets and gift items that are in line with the all-natural, organic, allergy-aware philosophy that is the core of Tout de Sweet.” (Keep reading.)
Inspiration is all around us. Can you tell us who or what inspires you?
“I find people within the food production arena so incredibly inspiring. Whether they are producing jam or tea or candy or crackers or whatever – they have put their faith into an industry that is unbelievably grueling. I have always worked very hard – super long hours and for huge stints in a row but I have never worked as hard as I do now because that is what it takes to just take a few steps forward in this industry. So when I see other people taking this leap I tip my hat.” (Keep reading.)
What are some of the hardest lessons you’ve had starting your business? How have you overcome them?
“Phew – SO many lessons, especially in these past few months. I would say the biggest has been patience. Nothing has happened as quickly as I wanted it to which means a lot of money has been spent in the process of waiting for things to take their course…” (Keep reading.)
Downtown Victoria’s favourite quote from Jeanette’s interview:
“I will always come back to growth in patience and gratitude. I don’t have any regrets and see everything as a lesson that we can take to our next jumping-off point.”