Confectioner molds sweet success

Published 12:14 am Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Lori Craig of Polly’s Perfections pauses to chat about her store’s confections Tuesday in Washington. (WDN Photo/Jonathan Clayborne)

Editor’s note: BizLine is a weekly feature highlighting local businesses serving Washington and Beaufort County. This week’s BizLine brings you Polly’s Perfections, a downtown-Washington sweet shop.

Sweet success sells itself.

Just ask Lori Craig of Polly’s Perfections, a confectioner’s shop at 106 N. Respess St., Washington.

With the encouragement of her husband Timmy, Craig and her business partners, John and Nancy O’Neil, opened the shop around six months ago.

“We really didn’t think that Washington would support a storefront (candy store),” Craig said, adding she thought about limiting the marketing of her candies to what she could produce in her home and sell over the Internet.

But friends loved her culinary creations so much that Craig, a former hairdresser, eventually saw the wisdom in renting shop space in the retail district.

A home cook for years, she took classes, watched videos and scoured the Internet for candy-making tips before offering her handiwork to the public.

“We have real good customers,” she said. “Washington was really craving for chocolate.”

Now, Craig lures visitors, tourists among them, and regulars drop by during downtown festivals like Music in the Streets.

She said “it is like pandemonium” during the music festival, which runs the third Friday of each month from April through October.

Specializing in truffles of various descriptions, Polly’s Perfections also traffics in cakes, cookies, cupcakes and other delights, all something of a family tradition.

“The business name — Polly’s Perfections — honors my mother who passed away when I was quite young,” reads a post on Craig’s website. “I always remember her cooking in her kitchen and the wonderful meals she prepared for our family.”

Craig uses Belgian chocolate and all-natural ingredients to mold everything from birthday cakes to holiday specialties such as pumpkin-cheesecake truffles and peppermint bark. She also caters to people with allergies with gluten-free, organic candies, and her store is kosher-certified by a rabbi.

“I think a great product really sells itself,” she said.

Polly’s Perfections is open from 10:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Wednesdays, from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays and from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Saturdays.

For more information, call Craig at 252-940-1155.

If you would like to nominate a local business for BizLine, call 252-946-2144, extension 230, or send emails to