Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Sara Miller, Owner of Stuff by SJ, located in Montclair, NJ, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We have a custom cake & treat shop in downtown Montclair on Bloomfield Ave. We have many amazing customers from here in Montclair and all of the surrounding North Jersey towns. We serve families and individuals that are seeking custom, handmade cakes, cupcakes & treats, as well as those out walking around town that are looking for a treat or coffee after having a meal at one of the great local restaurants here in Montclair.

Tell us about yourself

I grew up in Latrobe, PA, just outside of Pittsburgh. I moved to NJ in 2014 and began baking & creating confection art for our family and friends in 2018 or so. During the pandemic, my Hot Cocoa bombs became a huge hit on Facebook and Instagram, and I was delivering them to all of the towns in the area. Those customers began inquiring about my cakes and cupcakes as well, and as they grew in popularity, I began looking to open a brick-and-mortar shop of my own which I was able to do officially on April 1st of this year!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Well, I feel a great sense of accomplishment every time I complete an order and get positive feedback from the customer. I truly love nailing someone's vision and pleasing our customers. I put so much into each order and treat each one with a personal touch and care, so I get great satisfaction from hearing positive feedback. But outside of that, getting the store open and being able to bring my product to the public in this way was a huge accomplishment for me.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

It's a grind. It's a lot of work, and because my name is on everything, it's very personal to me. There's no safety net.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Be prepared and educate yourself.
  2. There's never a perfect time to take the leap. You just have to do it!
  3. Go all in. There's no way to half-step it and be successful.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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