Lashonda Sanford may not have been born a baker but she was born a woman of the people and a provider. Getting her start making treats her kids love from some treasured recipes (with a twist), her enterprise grew with one vision in mind: what she calls “a neighborhood bakery.” Her inspiration? Lexington, Kentucky, where a young Lashonda remembers walking past the renowned Spaulding Bakery on her way to school. “It all stemmed from great friends, good food, and rich fellowship,” says Lashonda, when asked about the culture of food around her. She described the act of store brought pastries blasphemy, and says that “the love for homemade things just came from that.”
If you ask her where Scratch Bakery started, as usual, she’ll trace its roots back to the home. She looks back on her youngest daughter’s second birthday as the origin of the Scratch Bakery idea: when her usual birthday cake supplier was closed, she decided to cook up her own annual tradition- from scratch.
From there, her passion (and eye for profit) drove a homestyle hobby past the purpose of necessity, selling her tasty pastime at her local church, community parades, and neighborhood inflatable playground. After slow growth turned into a garage kitchen with a lost federal grant, her husband, Dedric, knew it was a critical time. “He looked right at me and said,” do you want this to be a hobby, or a career?” The next week, she’d found real estate.
Today, she’s has opened three locations over five years, and runs a mobile cupcake truck for lots Hampton Roads events. Scratch Bakery has won the Daily Press’s “Best Bakery of the 757” award, won the people’s choice award for pup-cakes at the World of Pets Expo, and been featured on their website. They also maintain a friendly presence at local bridal shows and food conventions. She’s planning on expanding soon, and after 10 years of cooking, she says the love hasn’t gone. For this bakery, it seems the neighborhood is still growing.