When Colleen Armitage first moved to Charlotte from a town called Milan, just south of Ann Arbor, she felt a little lost after leaving her job, family, and friends. However, she decided to follow her dreams of opening a bakery and did so, right here in Charlotte.
In October 2018, Red Rosie Bakery was officially opened, with influences from Armitage’s red hair, and her icon, Rosie the Riveter.
“Whenever I doubted myself, I could always remember her motto ‘we can do it’, so expect to see some WWII inspired themes,” she said.
She even got to meet some of the original Rosies when she participated in breaking the World Record for the most Rosies gathered in one place.
“If you’re a Rosie reading this, thank you for being my inspiration,” She said.
As a young adult, she started making cakes for her coworkers at a horse farm and for her husband’s coworkers. She loves to be creative and experiment with baking and the joy it brings other people.
“Nothing beats the look on someone’s face when they find the exact sweet they’ve been craving,” Armitage said. “I just fell in love with it and felt like this was what I was supposed to do. I am a home baker that has learned a lot by trial, error, and YouTube. I have an amazing support system of family and friends.”
She also is appreciative of how supportive Charlotte’s community has been to her and her family. Her husband, Michael, has worked as director of Eaton County Central Dispatch for two years, but made the commute until they moved. She says first responders have a special place in her heart.
“My family and I are very new to Charlotte but everyone has been so warm and welcoming. I’m so amazed that this community has welcomed me with open arms,” she said.
Armitage is also a member of the Frontier Days board and volunteered at the Nordic Fire Festival this year.
“I am blown away by the Charlotte community and every day I feel more and more at home here,” she said.
Armitage and her husband have two children, Landon and Reagan. As for her products, she says she will stay a completely nut-free home and bakery.
“My husband and son are very allergic and there are many places they can’t eat at, so I can guarantee that my baked goods are not only delicious, but safe for anyone with a nut allergy or sensitivity,” she said.
Red Rosie Bakery has a wide variety of baked goods that Armitage plans on rolling out, including cakes, cupcakes, scones, muffins, cookies, quick breads and more. There are also vegan and gluten free recipes in the works, but Armitage says she wants to perfect them before launching.
The bakery will open on Thursday, May 9 (Mother’s Day weekend) from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., but her hours are going to vary as she finds a schedule that works for her and works through this new venture.
“I’m a one woman show, so I do ask for everyone’s patience as I learn to work my business on a bigger scale,” she said. “I’ll be right next to Charlotte Plaza Floral and I couldn’t be more excited! They are wonderful people, and although many of us will miss Crusty’s Bagels, I’m so thankful for this opportunity and for all their help. I hope they aren’t gone for long.”
For more information, Armitage invites people to visit her Facebook page, under Red Rosie Bakery, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call/text her at (734) 476-3750.