Monday, October 12, 2009

Hall of Fame {Hot Toffee}

Welcome! I'm back from this year's Craft Attack outdoor marketplace (pictures coming soon), and my shop will be re-opened later today or tomorrow morning. Thanks for all the well wishes and support for a successful show.

Some amazing artists are lined up for the coming weeks that you're sure to enjoy reading about.
Today, meet Nicole, the talented Australian behind Etsy shop Hot Toffee.

Nicole's work is "Inspired by all things sweet, Japanese art & design and strongly influenced by the beautiful beaches of Australia." Each piece she creates is a unique piece of art - art you can wear!

Read on to learn more about her, why the area she lives in is called 'the salad bowl', and just where the name hot toffee came from.

What inspires you?

Nature, the beach in the afternoon, colours, Japanese design, light…

Where do you call home? Are you from there originally?
We have lived in a small country town called Laidley since we bought a house 2 years ago. I was born in Sydney but grew up on the north east coast of New South Wales near gorgeous Byron Bay.

Name something unique to where you live.
This area has many names; one of them is ‘the salad bowl’ as there are so many farms. We are lucky to buy the freshest veggies straight from our local farmers.

Share an interesting fact about yourself.
My left eye is 2 colours; it’s green with a brown section that covers about 1/3 of it.

If you had to describe yourself in a word, what would that word be?
indecisive
What made you decide to open up shop?
At the time I had a stall at the local market each Saturday and thought an online presence would compliment that nicely and keep me busy during the week.

How did you come up with your shop name? Any special significance?
A lot of the first fused glass pieces I made looked a lot like toffee and because I fire my glass up to 800 degrees (Celsius) ‘hot toffee’ seemed perfect.

Name your favorite thing about selling handmade.
To be honest, it’s the people I’ve met. The customers who have embraced me and the other creative souls I’ve met along the way both online and offline. I’m lucky to be part of the brisStyle etsy street team which is an amazing group of people. Also, being surrounded by the handmade community has made birthday and Christmas shopping a lot more fun!

Do you have a day job or sell on Etsy full-time?
For 3 years hot toffee was my full-time job. That included etsy, wholesale and selling at local design focused markets. Early this year I decided I needed to work out of my home based studio and feel like I was connected to the off-line world and I was lucky enough to pick up 2 days teaching English to International students in order to prepare them to join mainstream high schools. I now juggle hot toffee and teaching which is challenging but so rewarding on many different levels.
Give us a little glimpse into what a typical day in your life looks like.
Wake up between 6am – 7am to the barking of our dog Pochi.
Enjoy a fresh coffee & (gluten free) toast
Check my email and read my favourite blogs.
Make a ‘to do’ list so that I can get through the day without too much procrastination.
Cut & fire glass.
Pack orders & take them to the post office. Our town is very small so it doesn’t take long to finish my chores which means there is always time to have a peek in the opp shops*.
Then it’s back home for lunch and an afternoon of firing glass, printing and cutting swing tags and replying to emails. If new items need to be photographed for my etsy shop I do that around 3 pm. I try to switch the computer off and finish ticking things off my ‘to do’ list by 6 pm.
The evening is spent cooking, talking, eating, watching TV or listening to music, flicking through my favourite magazines and books for inspiration.

*opp shops = opportunity shops or thrift stores

Share with us a favorite Etsy purchase or shop.
I’m wearing my favourite etsy purchase in the photo. I bought them from windowsill.

List a few of your most favorite pastimes.
Drinking & eating with my partner; Ryo, going to the movies by myself, opp shopping with my Mum, visiting garage sales and markets on the weekend, walking on the beach with my Dad and I LOVE painting (it's so therapeutic!)
Read any good books lately?
I always seem to have a few books on my bedside table, at present they are:
Lessons of a Lipstick Queen by Poppy King, Richard Branson – the autobiography, Geisha by Liza Dalby

What is your most prized possession?
A collection of paper boats made with my grandfather from all his old (losing) horse betting tickets. I have a basket of these in my wooden chest which holds all my sentimental belongings.

What are three of your favorite foods?
I was diagnosed with Coeliac Disease 2 years ago which means I can’t eat anything containing Gluten which is quite a lot! With the support of Ryo and a lot of experimenting we have discovered some new favourites:
Thai style chicken balls, gourmet crepes & Chicken & pumpkin curry (with pappadams of course!)
What would you like to learn to do?
I have always wanted to learn graphic design

What are you listening to right now?
my local radio station

Name one place you must visit in your lifetime and why.
Hamilton in Scotland as this is where my grandfather was born. He migrated to Australia when he was 7 years old. There is a big part of me that really needs to see where he came from.


Nicole, thanks for stopping by and sharing with us!

To keep up with Nicole and see more of her creations, visit her website and blog.


Time for a Give-
away!


One lucky winner will get to choose any pair of studs from Nicole's shop!

To enter, leave a comment on this post with your contact info - name and email address or Etsy username.

Good luck!

For extra entries you can:
Tweet this giveaway: 2 additional entries
Follow my blog and/or Nicole's blog: 5 additional entries
Blog about this interview/contest: 7 additional entries
Purchase from Hot Toffee: 10 additional entries

(Please include this info, if applicable, with your comment for additional entries. You do not need to leave separate comments for additional entries. Important: Don't forget to include your name and contact info!)

Contest ends Sunday, October 18th at 11:59 pm EST. Winner will be chosen by traditional drawing and will be announced Monday, October 19th.

143 comments:

Jacky said...

Hi, I'm Jacky and I'd love to win! =)
thesweetestpetunia AT gmail DOT com

+2 I tweeted! http://twitter.com/petuniasays/status/4809941112

+5 I'm a blog follower!

SewSweetStitches said...

I'm a blog follower, and I love these little studs!
Melissa
sewsweetstitches_on_etsyATyahoo.com

Betsabè said...

Woooow...thanks for a chance,
hugs
Alessandra

ale84.vercelli@hotmail.it

Betsabè said...

I forgot to say I am a follower. +5

myspiral said...

Hi! I'm Karen and I love hand made jewelery!
myspiral@aol.com

Anonymous said...

Pretty giveaway my fingers are crossed. I love the drop flower earrings they are gorgeous.Thanks for the giveaway.Marian

mtzeenla@yahoo.com

LoveCharlesVintage said...

What a cute giveaway!

My etsy username is lovecharles.
and my e-mail is lilygreig at gmail dot com
Thanks!
-Lily

Anonymous said...

my fingers are crossed (can i participate even if i'm italian?)

ps. just in case.. + 5 because i'm a blog follower :D

my email is fedechica85@hotmail.com

Michelle Underwood said...

Great giveaway! Michelle Underwood
mailme@michelleunderwood.com

Michelle Underwood said...

follow your blog-1

Michelle Underwood said...

follow your blog-2

Michelle Underwood said...

follow your blog-3

Michelle Underwood said...

follow your blog-4

Michelle Underwood said...

follow your blog-5

Tj and Amy said...

adorable. amy pugmire: amypugmire@live.com

Tj and Amy said...

follow your blog. amypugmire@live.com
#1

Tj and Amy said...

follow your blog. amypugmire@live.com
#2

Tj and Amy said...

follow your blog. amypugmire@live.com
#3

Tj and Amy said...

follow your blog. amypugmire@live.com
#4

Tj and Amy said...

follow your blog. amypugmire@live.com
#5

Tj and Amy said...

tweet 1. amypugmire@live.com
http://twitter.com/1amypugmire/status/4829967049

Tj and Amy said...

tweet 2. amypugmire@live.com
http://twitter.com/1amypugmire/status/4829967049

Qxela said...

wow..thanks for this chance to win a lovely giveaway.have my fingers crossed. :)

alexandra
kazeqor@yahoo.com

Qxela said...

p.s i also follow your blog so +5 more entries for me please

alexandra
kazeqor@yahoo.com
this is my first entry for +5 entry for the blog:)

Qxela said...

alexandra
kazeqor@yahoo.com
second entry for +5 entry for the blog:)

Qxela said...

alexandra
kazeqor@yahoo.com
third entry for +5 entry for following the blog:)

Qxela said...

alexandra
kazeqor@yahoo.com
fourth entry for +5 entry for following the blog:)

Qxela said...

alexandra
kazeqor@yahoo.com
fifth entry for +5 entry for following the blog:)

Stephanie Nelson Castaneda-Clark said...

I am now following Nicole's blog!
I am also sharing this interview on my facebook page!!!
I loved reading about her and her life in Australia!!! I really enjoyed Nicole's blog, as well. I wanted to hold the Koalas!!! She has a picture of one!!!!
I would love to win a pair of studs!!!
Thank you!!!

Egater said...

Such a lovely jewelry
egateris at gmail dot com

Egater said...

I follow her blog
#1
egateris at gmail dot com

Egater said...

I follow her blog
#2
egateris at gmail dot com

Egater said...

I follow her blog
#3
egateris at gmail dot com

Egater said...

I follow her blog
#4
egateris at gmail dot com

Egater said...

I follow her blog
#5
egateris at gmail dot com

Stephanie Nelson Castaneda-Clark said...

Oh yeah, my contact info!!!!!

stephclark.etsy.com

sncclark@gmail.com!!!!!

clenna said...

I love those studs. Thanks for the chance to win.

clenna at aol dot com

clenna said...

I folliow

clenna at aol dot com

TopHat said...

Wow! I totally need new studs. How timely!

Heather

hrfarley at gmail dot com

AStarrA said...

Amanda Starr
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow your blog 1
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow your blog 2
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow your blog 3
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow your blog 4
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow your blog 5
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow Nicole's blog 1
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow Nicole's blog 2
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow Nicole's blog 3
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow Nicole's blog 4
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

AStarrA said...

Follow Nicole's blog 5
disintegratingstarr@hotmail.com

pippirose said...

Gorgeous earrings!
I am now a follower.
:o)
pippirose59 at gmail dot com

Chelsea P said...

Chelsea P
cac331 at yahoo dot com

Ashley said...

Gorgeous earrings, absolutely perfect for mommies like me with babies that loooove to grab anything that dangles!

I'm following both of your blogs, now.

-Ashley Stephens
ashleyslye at gmail dot com

free indeed said...

Interesting interview...I like to read these and see how similar all creative people are, and just what inspires each one. THanks for hte chance for a pair of studs....I'm gonna love 'em!

Thea said...

Great interview. I love Nicole's work and it looks even better when you see it in person! I am now following your blog and I already follow Hot Toffee's blog.
thea[at]thea-sami.com.au

janil said...

Thanks for the chance!I'm your follower!!!

cal_rubies at yahoo dot es

bison61 said...

thanks-I do love jewelery

tiramisu392 (at) yahoo.com

bubbachenille said...

Hi I am a follower of Nicoles and now your blog and I would love to be entered. Thanks

bubbachenille said...

Sorry, Miriam
bubbachenille@bigpond.com

Ave said...

Ave Taar

avetaar(at)gmail(dot)com

Ave said...

I follow your blog.

avetaar(at)gmail(dot)com

Ave said...

My tweet:
http://twitter.com/MadeInCanarias/status/4870854658

avetaar(at)gmail(dot)com

Andrea said...

I like the pretty blue bouquet - fused glass earrings.

bmolavi said...

Thanks for the giveaway!
-Olga Avila

+5 cuz i follow your blog

Linda K said...

I really like the double rounds white on turquoise fused glass earrings

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Lisa B. said...

Beautiful earrings!! Thanks for the great giveaway!

Lisa Bradford
lisabradford101@gmail.com

I'm a follower of your blog!!

Megan said...

Oh my goodness, I LOVE these earrings. I'd love to win. :)

I'm also following your blog!

the.modern.milkmaid@gmail.com

Bombtastic Belle said...

The earrings are beautiful, thanks for the chance to win! :)
eod_army_wife04(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

These are SO pretty! I'd love to be entered in your giveaway.
Jen

Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

I'm a follower
Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

I'm a follower2
Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

I'm a follower2
Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

I'm a follower3
Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

I'm a follower4
Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Ladytink_534 said...

I'm a follower5
Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Hi, I'm Lyndsay said...

Oh, I love all of them! Such nice colors!

Lyndsay @ LouLouBell

Nova said...

I like the apple studs.

Aik said...

I love the blue lavender rounds - fused glass earrings!

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Aik said...

I tweeted.
http://twitter.com/aikchien/status/4907218250

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Aik said...

I follow your blog.

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Kat C. said...

I love earrings, and i love studs so yey!

katch05 at gmail dot com

Aik said...

I blogged.

http://aik-friendsnfamily.blogspot.com/2009/08/list-of-worldwide-giveaways.html

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Craft Tea Lady said...

CraftTeaLady AT yahoo DOT com

Thanks so much for the chance! They look lovely!

www.xanga.com/crafttealady

Anonymous said...

Love your work, very gorgeous.Couldnt pass up such a great giveaway. My etsy username is SanchiaParaiso

+2 tweeted http://twitter.com/sanchiamarshall/statuses/4909641530

+5 following your blog now

xx thanks

Diana said...

Hi and thank you for the giveaway!

dikatzen at yahoo dot fr

Anne said...

Love the studs!!
Anne Molino
anne molino at hotmail dot com

Anne said...

blog follower! # 1

Anne said...

blog follower! # 2

Anne said...

blog follower! # 3

Anne said...

blog follower! # 4

Anne said...

blog follower! # 5

Anne said...

following Nicole's blog # 1

Anne said...

following Nicole's blog # 2

Anne said...

following Nicole's blog # 3

Anne said...

following Nicole's blog # 4

Anne said...

following Nicole's blog # 5

Anne said...

blogged! # 1
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

blogged! # 2
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

blogged! # 3
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

blogged! # 4
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

blogged! # 5
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

blogged! # 6
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

blogged! # 7
http://iheartgiveaways.blogspot.com/2009/10/studs.html

Anne said...

tweet
#1
http://twitter.com/amolino/status/4916194077

Anne said...

tweet
#2
http://twitter.com/amolino/status/4916194077

kei'sblog said...

Just wanted to let you know that I added your contest to doubleprizes.com and hopefully more people find your blog.

http://doubleprizes.com/contests/718

dpc0ntest at yahoo.com +7

Sydney said...

I'm officially in love with the yellow and turquoise earrings! Beautiful shop.

**I follow the Sunshine blog**

scoobidoo540(at)aol(dot)com

daer0n said...

Sweet giveaway, the earrings are lovely, i would love to win! :)

Thanks for the chance!
Nury77 at live dot ca

Katie H said...

I'm in love with the cool water rounds - so pretty!

katieharrison13 at gmail dot com

DonidoDesigns said...

These earrings are lovely! I'd be thrilled to win any of them!

donidodesigns@gmail.com

http://donidodesigns.etsy.com

Rianne said...

Love the simple and romantic look of the studs!
Thanks,
Rianne85ATgmailDOTcom

Peg and Kate said...

Im a huge fan of Nicole and her beautiful designs. Lovely to find out a little more about the lovely Nicole. I really enjoyed the read. Love the sound track also, beautiful!

Peg and Kate said...

info@pegandkate.com.au, posted a blog at pegandkate.blogspot.com and following the blog.

Cute as Buttons said...

Nicole is a gem. I follow Nicole's blog, have signed up to yours. I already have a nice little collection of Hot Toffee and have another custom order in the pipeline. Thanks for sharing the story. Lisa.

Anne J said...

Great giveaway, I love jewelry.

Anne
ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Anne J said...

I follow your blog #1

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Anne J said...

I follow your blog #2

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Anne J said...

I follow your blog #3

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Anne J said...

I follow your blog #4

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Anne J said...

I follow your blog #5

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

malibu.bunny.xo said...

blog follower #1
malibu.bunny.xo@live.ca

malibu.bunny.xo said...

blog follower #2
malibu.bunny.xo@live.ca

malibu.bunny.xo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
malibu.bunny.xo said...

blog follower #3
malibu.bunny.xo@live.ca

malibu.bunny.xo said...

blog follower #4
malibu.bunny.xo@live.ca

malibu.bunny.xo said...

blog follower #5
malibu.bunny.xo@live.ca

Ľubaša said...

Hi, my name is Lubica. I would like to enter this giveaway too.
I tweeted about (2 entries)
http://twitter.com/Lubaska/status/4945432141
I follow your blog (5 entries)

lubaska dot k at gmail dot com

Roxy said...

fabulous earrings!

hockiemack at hotmail.com

Roxy said...

follower

hockiemack at hotmail.com

Roxy said...

follower 2

hockiemack at hotmail.com

Roxy said...

follower 3

hockiemack at hotmail.com

Roxy said...

follower 4

hockiemack at hotmail.com

Roxy said...

follower 5

hockiemack at hotmail.com

Nina said...

Nina
irina.sagarbarria at gmail dot com

+5 for being a follower!

trisha too said...

following you already (5)

lovely earrings!!!

:)
sandtneal at mfire dot com

Joanne J said...

Thank you! The earrings are pretty!

joanne.j@hotmail.com

Joanne J said...

I follow your blog #1

joanne.j@hotmail.com

Joanne J said...

I follow your blog #2

joanne.j@hotmail.com

Joanne J said...

I follow your blog #3

joanne.j@hotmail.com

Joanne J said...

I follow your blog #4

joanne.j@hotmail.com

Joanne J said...

I follow your blog #5

joanne.j@hotmail.com

Joanne J said...

Oops I'm so sorry. i din;t notice the closing date.. really sorry for posting here.

PretaPawte said...

great photograph