Today’s featured artist is someone whose specialty lies in exclusive carbon fiber gifts. His name is Nicholas Manderfield and his Etsy shop is Hexcarbon, based in Appleton, Wisconsin. The business itself, CarbonCoaster, officially launched, selling exclusive carbon fiber coasters in June of 2016, but the idea, development, and hard work started in 2015.
Appleton, WI, referred to as ‘just south of Lambeau Field’ by most, is where founder Nicholas Manderfield has been working for several years as an eCommerce marketer and developer. Being an automotive and motorsports enthusiast for years, most of Nicholas’ work is done in that market and he says that he loves that his passions merged from hobby to profession in ways he never knew possible.
While living in San Diego, CA, for a few years in 2010, Nicholas was surrounded by the aftermarket scene; attending SEMA in Vegas, MFEST in LA and Vegas, and the countless car meets in the SoCal area. He knew he found my niche and did everything he could to make a living out of that passion.
After a few years of costly living and busy cities, Nicholas moved back to Appleton, WI and began developing eCommerce websites for people all over the country; from BMW aftermarket; to LED lighting for European cars; to carbon fiber phone cases. Being in this industry as many years as he has been, Nicholas has an eye for what people like. Likewise, his business knowledge (from Director of eCommerce positions and his family’s history of owning businesses for generations), Nicholas wanted to start developing his own products.
The CarbonCoaster products and website was an idea Nicholas had years ago, but it sat idle due to other projects. He received a set of beautiful vintage BMW coasters from a Secret Santa Gift Exchange on a local BMW forum (WiBimmers.com) and he knew he had to bring the idea back into full swing. With years of experience in selling, manufacturing, and installing carbon fiber, Nicholas knew the coasters had to be made from carbon fiber.
Starting with the shape and size, Nicholas gathered all the coasters he owned and found a perfect measurement. Knowing the etchings had to be unique and exciting, he went back to what originally peaked his interest in cars: Motorsports. The first batch of coasters were inspired by world famous race tracks. Next, he made a slightly more ‘generic’ design: the proper gearbox pattern, which an automotive enthusiast can truly appreciate it.
Nicholas says that the coasters were a little plain on their own and that with nowhere to put them – the holder/display was next. Initially to be made from more carbon fiber, he decided on brushed aluminum since it’s heavy, clean, and minimal. A few prototypes later, he had the perfect design, which they still sell today.
Hexcarbon’s fiber, fiberglass, aluminum, machining, boxes, paper, shipping packaging, is all sourced from or made in the USA. Their photography, offices, packaging and customer service all takes place in Appleton, WI.
Nicholas says that he loves supporting local businesses whenever possible, both personally and in the business sense.
So stop by Hexcarbon on Etsy and be sure to follow Hexcarbon on Facebook and visit the CarbonCoaster Website at carboncoaster.com. You will also find CarbonCoaster on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.