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Wonder Woman Wednesday: Jami Curl, Saint Cupcake

Another year, another line-up of more AMAZING Wonder Women to inspire and motivate you!
Today I am delighted to introduce our first Wonder Woman Wednesday feature of 2013: Jami Curl. Jami and I first met in person a few months ago at her delightful shop full of delicious sweets: Saint Cupcake. The downtown shop reminds me a lot of her: sweet, stylish, fun, honest, full of energy. I admire Jami’s business savvy — in a competitive and challenging industry, she is constantly reinventing, pushing the abilities of Saint Cupcake and creating new products to satisfy her customers hungry for more of her creative confections and savory sweets. She, like all Wonder Women, juggles a lot: two stores, an online shop, managing staff, writing, helping head up a healthy school lunch program, chasing after an active 5-year-old son.
Learn more about what motivates Jami below. I am very inspired by her story, and think you will be too. Be sure to visit Saint Cupcake’s two locations in Portland, Oregon, plus shop Saint Cupcake online.
Thanks for being such a Wonder Woman, Jami!
Jami Curl Saint Cupcake Wonder Woman Wednesday

Wonder Woman Wednesday: Jami Curl, Owner and Chief Baking Officer or Saint Cupcake
Mom to Theo, age 5

About the biz:
Saint Cupcake is a bakery and all around treat shop. Of course we make a variety of cupcakes, but we also create ice cream treats, cookies, breakfast goodies, candies and more. We seek out local artisans who make small batch ingredients and incorporate them into our creations – local sea salt, teas and chocolate are all making their way into our delights!

What inspired you to start your biz?

I have always been food obsessed. All of my favorite childhood memories are rooted in food. For a long while I fought to urge to work in food – sticking instead to office jobs in the world of marketing. Then, as I was approaching my 30th birthday, I thought long and hard about what I wanted to be doing – and food was it. Luckily I had been plugging along making desserts and wedding cakes on the side of my full time job. So, when the time came to open the bakery, I was ready with tried and true recipes. I made the decision to give a bakery a go in August then we opened in November…super fast!

What’s the biggest moment of business bliss that you’ve experienced so far?

Still, even 7 (approaching 8) years later my biggest moment of business bliss was the day I hired my first employee. We started out really bare bones – I baked everything and my husband worked the counter – and we operated like this for months before bringing on an employee. The day she started…I can’t even explain the relief I felt! Of course I was tired and was thankful to have someone to help with the work, but hiring someone also meant that we were busy enough to make a hire! And that really meant something to me – all of our hard work was paying off. And now we have 22 employees – hard to believe. I’m certainly pinching myself, still.

What motivates you to keep going, to succeed in your business?

The love of food and the love of creating recipes. When I spend too many days out of the kitchen I get out of balance – my mood isn’t right and I feel unfocused. But getting in to the kitchen always sets things right.
In addition to that, I feel like my story – Saint Cupcake’s story – hasn’t been completely told yet. I work every day to tell our story through our goodies and top notch customer service.

What’s your current favorite product/service that your biz offers & why?

This past Fall we (finally!) introduced our line of candies – caramels, lollipops and more – and I love them! Our lollipops are made with Oregon fruit purees (we got the fruit at the peak of summer ripeness then roasted it, pureed it and froze it). Our caramels are not your usual stick-to-your-teeth confections but are instead little gems of flavor – Earl Grey, Smoked Chai, Oregon Sea Salt – this candy making has been some of the most inspiring work I’ve done in the kitchen!

What’s one thing that has helped you maintain some sanity in the quest for work/life balance?

I see a fabulous therapist once a week. Believe me, there is NO shame in seeking out therapy! This one hour a week is the greatest gift I have given myself – mostly because I don’t limit my topics of discussion. I seriously let it all out for that hour and it has brought me peace, sanity, understanding, the ability to better communicate (I could go on and on!) No question, therapy is key to my work/life balance!

What is one piece of advice that you have for other women pursuing their passions?

If you want to do something (REALLY want to do something,) do it. Big or small, earth shattering or not – find a way to do it and do it.
I really love Hugh MacLeod’s Ignore Everybody. There’s a great quote from that book that goes like this:
“Your idea doesn’t have to be big. It just has to be yours alone. The more the idea is yours alone, the more freedom you have to do something really amazing. The more amazing, the more people will click with your idea. The more people click with your idea, the more it will change the world.”

Connect with Jami:

Saint Cupcake Galore – 1138 SW Morrison St, Portland, 97205
Saint Cupcake Delxue – 3300 SE Belmont St, Portland, 97214

Food + Drink + Travel writer. Adventurer, mom, biz owner ( In constant pursuit of all that is creative & fun. Email: info (at) urbanblisslife (dot) com.

  • Isabella Hale Aug 15, 2014 Reply

    Good luck with moving to the Candy Business~~ I just saw your interview on CNMC! the only I have to say is you are not VERY young. You are a young woman, but not a child! anyway..
    I look forward to trying some of your candy. Cupcakes were getting way overdone around here anyway.

  • Isabella Hale Aug 15, 2014 Reply

    Good luck with moving to the Candy Business~~ I just saw your interview on CNBC! the only I have to say is you are not VERY young. You are a young woman, but not a child! anyway..
    I look forward to trying some of your candy. Cupcakes were getting way overdone around here anyway.
    I have never posted on this website before or heard of Ms Curl~

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