Attorney and FSU graduate Kathryn McCain has always been a crafty person. While in law school, she took up crocheting and even made hats for children who were victims of domestic violence.
So, it was no surprise when she decided to give baking and decorating cookies a try, which was a failure at first, according to McCain. But it failed to induce McCain to throw in the towel. She found herself getting better after putting in the practice and, eventually, with the encouragement from friends and family, her interest transformed into a business that she owns and operates, Tallahassee-based Cottontail Cookies.
The company, name and logo were inspirations from her first bunny she got in law school named Milo.
“I made social media accounts and started posting everything I was making,” McCain said. “I just made what I wanted to. I’d see something that someone else had made or thought of a cute idea and would just be like,‘I want to do that, I want to try that,’and the more and more I put my work out there, the response was just great.”
McCain’s advertising was a success because Cottontail Cookies, launched in January 2019, began receiving orders from people who wanted decorated cookies that match the theme for their special occasion like a baby shower or birthday, which is the company’s purpose — to make any occasion special. And as time progressed, Cottontail Cookies started to grow as more people ordered cookies for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, Greek initiation celebrations, and many more.
“Watching the growth of Cottontail Cookies over the last two years has been incredible,” McCain’s husband, James McCain, said. “Kathryn has put a ton of hard work into it and turned a hobby into a successful business. I’m very proud of her. My waistline has a love/hate relationship to being married to the cookie lady.”
Cottontail Cookies also started selling DIY cookie kits in March, close to the beginning of the pandemic, for those who wanted to decorate the cookies themselves. The kits come with pastry piping bags with different colors of icing in them, sprinkles, and 12 vanilla sugar cookies in different shapes.
And unlike some businesses that were affected by the pandemic, McCain’s small business was still blooming during COVID, thanks to the kit idea from an out-of-state cousin.
“My cousin actually sent me a picture one day of someone that had done a cookie kit somewhere,” McCain said. “She texted me and was like, ‘Hey, this looks really cute, if there was someone near me that did this I would totally buy one of these.’”
McCain started the business without a plan but with the support from friends and family who continue to support her and are amazed at her accomplishments.
“It’s been fun watching her grow the business from orders for friends and family to a full-blown business,” Megan Root, McCain’s friend, said.