About our Nominees
Michelle and Holly are two very wonderful and fun women. They have been best friends for 20-25 years, and that friendship shows while talking to them. They are the perfect business partners and compliment each other’s strengths and weaknesses perfectly. Together, they took over a business that was failing and turned it into a successful, fun, and wonderful business. SeaGlass Beach Cottage is a fantastic art consignment shop here in Gulf Breeze, Florida. They have over 30 artists that consign with them.
They also have another employee, she just happens to be on 4 legs and furry! When you walk inside, Sam is waiting to say hi as well. She’s almost 5 years old and is quite the therapy dog. She loves to get pets and treats, so make sure to give her some attention when you stop in.
Q & A
Q: What inspired you or led you to your current career/owning your business?
Holly: Michelle made me do it. Just kidding.
Michelle: We were artists at a similar business. We did art shows individually and sold our artworks at various different stores and places. Basically, where we were selling it together went out of business. So, we took over it instead of closing it down and liquidating. Our thoughts were that there aren’t enough places where you can shop for local art. That’s how we started. We’re kind of opposites. She’s great at business and behind the scenes and I’m more of a people person and so I felt confident teaming up with her. We compliment each other well. Where I fail at things, she succeeds, and vice versa.
Q: How long have you lived or worked in Gulf Breeze/Navarre?
Holly: I have lived here since 1991.
Michelle: I’ve called this place home since 1989.
Q: Who is the most interesting person/business owner you’ve met here in Gulf Breeze/Navarre? Who would you like to see nominated as a Face of Gulf Breeze/Navarre?
Holly: I love Deborah at Aloha Grill.
Michelle: I met a lady once who come in named Lyissa O’Connor. She owns Maitri Counseling in Gulf Breeze and it turns out that she’s an amazing counselor! I also like Carrie Sullivan. She owns Uru Yoga in Harbour Town. She’s awesome. She runs an amazing yoga studio and it’s always an amazing time.
Q: What advice would you give a crowd of people starting their own business?
Holly: Get a plan, but not so concrete that you can’t adjust it. Things happen when you don’t think they will.
Michelle: Don’t grow too fast. There have been times where we wanted to risk a lot, but I’m so thankful that we didn’t.
Holly: That’s why we make such a good team. I’m sometimes all for going all in and taking a risk, and she brings me back in. However, I’ve also influenced her to take a chance here and there. You talk to a lot of people and they say that you shouldn’t go into business with your friends. We decided that we had to treat it like a marraige. We have to be completely honest with each other and speak up when we feel a certain way. We can just get mad and blame my husband.
Q: What current/former local business makes you the most nostalgic about (or what is most iconic in) Gulf Breeze/Navarre?
Holly: Innerlight; It’s been a staple since I vacationed here. I’d also say the Native Cafe. They do good business. I wish Allan Davis was still here. It’s a real shame that it’s gone. Also, Shoreline Park.
Michelle: I would say those too. Allan Davis was great.
Q: Where do you see yourself (and your career/business) in 5 or 10 years?
Michelle: I think hopefully around the same. I like it simple, the old style. We could use some more money.
Holly: I want to be a staple here. I want us to have a bigger showroom. We have lots of plans that have been halted by Covid. We do art classes. We clear this all out and can hold 22 people at a time.
Michelle: I want people to know us. Relationships with the community are very important to us, and we want to be one of those businesses that everyone knows. Our locals are amazing.
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Gulf Breeze/Navarre, and what do you love there? (What is your favorite dish, and where do you get it?)
Holly: Aloha Grill, my favorite is the teryaki chicken. We started going there when they first opened. My son, Cooper was just a baby. They used to have the American flag, and my son was only 1. He was obsessed with flags. Deborah would have to go outside and take the flag down. Cooper was freaking out because he wanted it.
Michelle: I like Taste of Thai. I get the pad see ew.
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? (without Covid)
Holly: Honestly, I would like to have a week over on Navarre Beach. I love it there. I don’t like to drive or fly, so I really just want to stay here. It’s fun to play tourist sometimes.
Michelle: I’ve traveled so much in my life that I don’t really like traveling anymore. I guess if I could go anywhere in the world, I think it would be New Zealand. All the nature and the environment would be great and I could be myself there.
Q: What is your favorite movie OR what is the first movie you remember seeing in a theater?
Holly: Top Gun was the movie I saw in theaters that made an impact.
Michelle: E.T. is the one I remember the most. My great aunt took us to see it and I think if you bought so many bags of Reeses Pieces candy, you got a poster. So, she spoiled us with that.
Q: What is something on your bucket list?
Holly: I would like to get in an RV and go across the country. I would hit a bunch of junk and antique stores along the way too. Another thing I would love to do is go to Alaska and pan for gold. I would love that.
Michelle: I would love to backpack Europe and go across all the national parks too.
Q: What is your favorite thing or something unique about Gulf Breeze/Navarre?
Holly: The small town feel for sure.
Michelle: The parks and gathering spaces. I wish that we had more. It would be so much nicer with more to do with the community.
Q: Choosing anyone: with whom would you love to have lunch? Why?
Holly: I would love to have another conversation with my dad.
Michelle: I would say Jesus. From reading the Bible and stuff, I’m fascinated by Him. He’s a much cooler guy than people have made him out to be and I would like to meet him.
Q: What is your favorite music or 3 bands that you would love to see live?
Holly: 80’s music definitely. I would say Fleetwood Mac for sure. Lynyrd Skynyrd and Boston were amazing to see live.
Michelle: I like Coldplay. I also like this new group, Hillsong United. They have a song called So Will I, and it’s so powerful.
Q: (Even for friends or family), what is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
Holly: I love to go play in the dirt. I love things like hunting for rocks. That’s why I would enjoy panning for gold. I’m also a very loyal person. I would do anything for Michelle or my loved ones.
Michelle: She is definitely really loyal. I know she’s who I would call if I needed something. As for me, I’m a nature enthusiast. I like to get dirty to see the things I love. I have no problem hiking through nature to see it all. If I didn’t do what I do, I would have pursued being a park ranger.
Q: What 3 words or phrases come to mind when you think of the word HOME?
Holly: Love, security, and peace
Michelle: My tribe, respect, and kindness.
Q: If you were cast into a major motion picture and had your choice of anyone to be your co-star, who would you choose?
Holly: Michelle and I would make an awesome movie together. But, the guy from the notebook, Ryan Gosling. I LOVE the Notebook. That or Clint Eastwood.
Michelle: Morgan Freeman would be amazing. He seems really wise. There’s something about his voice, it’s comforting. Either him or Chris Pratt.
Q: If you had a full-time staff member that was fully paid for, who would you choose? Chef, Housekeeper, Driver, Coach, Physical Fitness Trainer, or Nanny?
Holly: Housekeeper definitely. If I had someone to clean up every day it would be amazing.
Michelle: I would say housekeeper as well. Mentors are great too!
A Little of What They Do:
Prior to the virus, they hosted a painting class about once a month. They provided food and beverages, along with their fun personalities. There is an option for wine as well. Guests could bring their own drinks. They teach, but say it becomes more of a comedy show. They make sure to have fun with their guests and joke around to create a wonderful environment. At every class, the guests take come their masterpieces. They provide all the materials for the project. They put a lot of time and energy into hosting the classes. Once the virus is under control, they will resume large classes. For now though, they are keeping groups to a minimum for guest safety.
During the day, they still allow individuals or small groups of people to come in, pick a project, and use their supplies to create a masterpiece. If you do this, it’s more of a self-guided thing, but it’s still a fun pass-time and learning experience! Stop by and check out the beautiful beach themed art, pick a project to do, or stop in to say hi to Michelle, Holly, and of course, Sam!
Go check out the wonderful atmosphere and create some art!
Website: Click Here!
Address: 4100 Gulf Breeze Pkwy. Gulf Breeze, Fl. 32563
Be sure to check out what our other nominees had to say!