Camille's Corner: What motivated you to started baking cookies?
Taree Avery: Baking is a pretty big tradition in my family, and my grandmother started teaching me when I was 8 years old.When my grandmother passed away, she left the traditional 'recipe tin" with all of her handwritten recipes inside. While I was working Full-Time at the University in Tennessee and doing music on the side, I started burning out. I had a bit of an identity and career crisis and I would come home every day and "stress bake" cookies to feel some relief.
Camille's Corner: When did you know that you were ready to follow your passion and sell cookies full time? How did you overcome challenges?
Taree Avery: I started getting a lot of attention for the cookies and requests for more. One of my friends encouraged me buy a vendor booth at a hair expo, I worked really hard for three months with no expectations for the event, and we SOLD OUT! At that point, I had to take it seriously.
Things started to become hectic when I really could not stay at my full-time job anymore. I thought that I really might want to give cookies a chance, but didn't have enough saved to leave my job and maintain my life in Tennessee. My Mom encouraged me to consider moving back to Northeast Ohio – home. After a short visit I decided moving home was the right thing to do, at least for the time being.
Camille's Corner: You still make your cookies yourself, why is this such an important aspect of your business?
Taree Avery: Baking the cookies myself ultimately sets my company apart from our competitors. Our customers know that they are getting high quality, handmade cookies baked from original recipes, using locally sourced, natural ingredients. It’s also what I love about cookies!
Camille's Corner: Just like your recipes, your hair is natural! What does being natural mean to you and what are your hair and skin care must-haves to keep your tresses and complexion healthy?
Taree Avery: When I went natural it was a glorious time for women to welcome the natural texture of their hair. I went natural for a number of reasons, including being bored with my typical wrap. After over a decade of being natural, my hair is my favorite accessory!As someone who doesn't really get into fashion or makeup, my hair is an easy way to dress up an outfit!
Camille's Corner: What does beauty mean to you and why?
Taree Avery: Beauty to me is a state of mind that trickles down to a feeling. When I'm not feeling my best, self-care always adds to my beauty bucket... A long bath or shower, purchasing some new skin or hair care products and really taking my routines to the next level. My must-haves are:
• Witch Hazel, Rose Petal & Aloe Vera (as a toner)
• Camille Rose Rice Bran Cleansing Bar (for gentle exfoliation)
My scalp is also sensitive, so I love to keep my hair hydrated with the Camille Rose Almond Jai Twisting Butter. I also love:
• Jojoba oil for moisturizing
• Camille Rose Honey Leave-in Collection