A LETTER FROM CHRISTINE
Creating something for someone else to enjoy has always been my passion. It was clear to my parents that I would become an artist when, at the age of 6, I drew Tarzan swinging from the trees in the jungle after watching television. Throughout grade school and high school, and a year and a half at Wayne State University, all forms of art excited me: sculpture, texture, pen and ink, painting, theater background, design, wall murals. In all these experiences, what media would I choose to excel in?
An experience I had at the age of 13 seemed to point the way. After spending the night at a friend’s house, I was intrigued by her mother’s work on a wedding cake. A love affair with culinary arts began, as I taught myself the basic techniques from How-To books.
With cake decorating, all my God-given abilities could be utilized at one time. This realization did not come immediately, but only after opening my first storefront bakery.
To be a stay-at-home mom was a priority to me, as I had three sons, a husband who worked a night shift, and only one car. It was more convenient to work from home. From time to time, when the need for extra cash arose, I would take on a brief part-time bakery position to meet the need. Over time, my clientele began to grow. I had honestly never considered opening up a storefront, because I really enjoyed the freedom of working at my own pace; and I always thought that it could remain manageable.
In 1993, after making $30,000 from my home, my husband and I came to the realization that I needed a food license and we should look for a storefront. The alternative? Either stop decorating from my home, or get a job working for someone else. So, in the next unbelievable year, we opened Christine’s Cakes and Pastries (CC&P) in Clinton Township with no more than a $10,000 gift from family. With that amount, I bought me the most miserable used-but-functioning equipment available. In two years, we expanded to the space next door and purchased new equipment! There was yet another expansion a few years later. In 2004-2005, we had again outgrown our space, and in October of 2006 opened a new and improved CC&P in our current address in Shelby Township, Michigan.
As I write this, I am still surprised that we own a storefront and have such a talented group of employees. If I ever have the pleasure of meeting you, I could tell more of the story: some most important details. In over 20 years, do I have some stories!
As a girl, I always imagined having my own “art studio” with clients hiring me for their portrait or a wall mural or a painting. But it has been said, “Sometimes on the way to a dream, you get lost and find a better one. After all, CC&P is not the studio I had thought I would have; but it is the “art studio” that God purposed for me to have.
Owner, Christine’s Cakes & Pastries
DID YOU KNOW?
In an average month we go through…
- 3,900 pounds of Butter and Margarine
- 1,850 pounds of Sugar
- 1,200 pounds of Flour
- 1,200 dozens of Eggs
- 1,045 gallons of Vegetable Oil
- 45 gallons of Milk
We put out approximately 375 cakes a week, not including the 10-12 wedding cakes.
Every product is mixed, rolled and baked in this location everyday, 6 days a week, with the exception of our canolli shells and 2” sweet tart shells.
- 5 Cookie Artists
- 8 Cake Artists
- 11 Customer Service Representatives
- 2 Pastry Chefs
- 2 Dishwashers
- 2 Managers
- 2 Bakers… and Christine herself!
We have 32 employees with two shifts running at all times. During the holidays we have our part time employees working full time hours.