Log Date

Official Blog of the Tophatter Auction House

  1. Meet Celeste: Artiste Extraordinaire!

    Yay for female staffers! This week, our featured profile is Celeste. She’s been helping us create the magical and exciting environments that you experience every day in the auction rooms. Not only that, but she brought Wendell’s female auctioneers alive & into existance!

    • Name: Celeste 
    • What do you do? I’m an illustrator and user interface artist. I do graphic design, help with typography decisions, and create art assets. For instance, I had a lot of fun creating some of the recent new auction backgrounds, such as the car collection garage and the billiards room.
    • Do you have any pets? I currently do not own any pets, but I love animals of all kinds. I hope to get a cat someday.
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer & why? I’m a fan of the monocle, so I think that’s a good place to start. Any auctioneer with a monocle is ok in my book. However, since I helped design the new female auctioneers, I’m kind of partial to Penelope.
    • If I were a superhero, I’d like to phase shift through walls. For some reason, that super power has always intrigued me.
    • Top 3 fave non-Tophatter blogs/sites/apps: I’m addicted to TedTalks. I love learning about the latest discoveries in science and sustainability. However, beyond that, I’m not particularly devoted to a website or blog. I’m a social network nut, so I follow the discoveries of my friends and fans.
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? As an artist, I always have personal projects I’m trying to complete. I also love figuring things out, like new technical gadgets. I also like to go outside and explore. I think it is fortunate the Bay Area has so many parks.
    • What is your dream vacation? Someday, I’d like to visit the architecture of Gaudi in Spain. His architecture is so imaginative and beautiful, and has long been an inspiration to me.
    • Favorite guilty pleasure musician/band? I don’t know if you can call Pink Floyd a “guilty” pleasure…
    • Could you go an entire week without phones, TV & computers? I would like to think if I was outdoors, or in the wilderness, the wonder and beauty and danger of nature would sufficiently distract me. I love going for walks. However, I depend on my computer for so many things. It would be challenging to go for a week without it.

    So, you’ve met Celeste, our amazing artist extraordinaire behind Wendell’s estate, the female auctioneers and a lot of the things you see on Tophatter that make us…well, Tophatter. :) If you want to check out more of her projects, here’s her website & fantastic portfolio

    If you have any questions for Celeste, feel free to leave a comment below or tweet us at @tophatter.
  2. The Hair: Meet Ryan!

    Alright, this is the moment you’ve all been waiting for…we’re doing a staff profile on Ryan’s hair! Joking, kind of. (Queue fan club members & swooning…we even included a picture of the guy!)


    • Name: Ryan
    • Title: Lord Ryan of the House of Hair Products
    • Do you have any pets? Yes, well kind of. I had a cat, but she ran away about 8 months ago. I’ve been leaving food outside every night just incase she comes back and is hungry. That free food has resulted in about 4 stray cats that swing by and meow at me every night until I come out.
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer & why? Harriet. She’s humble, professional and has an understated elegance that I really respect. Another thing about Harriet, and you’d never expect this but once she’s out from the podium and those glasses come off she’s super cray. I’ve seen it. Totally nuts and fun. I could tell you some stories…whew!
    • If I were a superhero my superpower I would be the amazing Baby Sleep Man, with the power to put my kids to bed at a reasonable hour and keep them in bed until 8AM. 
    • Top 3 fave non-Tophatter blogs/sites/apps: a quick look at my interweb history reveals that I’m almost always on Netflix for movies, Chase.com checking to see if I can afford that, and imgur.com for the lolz. Favorite site right now is Calm.com for daily 5 minute meditations, check it out. (Megan: he does know that’s 4, right?)
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? I have two sons, 4yrs and 10 months. I have no spare time.
    • What is your dream vacation? At my house, alone and sleeping in. I believe they call these staycations. 
    • Favorite guilty pleasure? I’ve read 50 Shades of Grey and liked it. If anyone brings it up in chat I will vehemently deny it though.
    • Could you go an entire week without phones, TV & computers? Sure I could go a week without all the different glowing rectangles I stare at all day, but I’d be a shell of a man, a crinkled xerox of the guy they used to call Ryan. If I made it through, I’d probably say I missed my phone the most. Wouldn’t everyone say that?
    He’s your go-to guy for everything Antique & Vintage, Collectibles, Bath & Beauty, Art, etc. If you have any questions about Ryan, feel free to comment below or tweet us at @tophatter.
    Until next time, happy bidding!
  3. Meet Nick: He…Does Stuff

    Yes, according to Nick’s picture, he’s a 12 year old. (Pssst! He’s not actually 12 years old, FYI). Nick helps us make the site look pretty & helps build lots of neat features!

    Man…could a kid look any cooler holding a baseball bat? What do you think?


    • Name: Nick Bergseng
    • Title: Nick’s response, “Sir Les of Salamander”. Megan says, “Nick thinks he’s funny.” (Remember Les?)
    • Do you have any pets? Nope. Though Wendell needs to stop making posts with puppies in them or that will have to change.
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer & why? Wendell all the way. No one rocks the mustache like Big-W.
    • If I were a superhero my superpower would be auto mushroom removal (referring to any type of lunch that Nick has that unfortunately includes mushrooms in it. Megan says, “Weirdoooo”.)
    • Top 3 fave non-Tophatter blogs/sites/apps are TED, Reddit & Stumble.
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? Relaxing. Complaining about the Olympics being tape delayed or reading or playing Super Smash Bros (N64).
    • What is your dream vacation? Europe? Caribbean? Euribbean.
    • Favorite guilty pleasure musician/band? Chumbawamba…but that probably doesn’t count as a guilty pleasure.
    • Could you go an entire week without phones, TV & computers? Sure. I’d miss computers after a while.
    Alright folks, hope you found out (at least a little) more about Nick. If you want to see what he looks like in real life, click here. And, if you have any other questions about him, comment below or you can tweet us at @tophatter. :)
  4. The Lone Canadienne: Marie!

    In the name of all things Canadian! Hehe. This week’s featured staff member is Marie; she’s often found in the little blue Chat with Staff box during the evenings. It’s likely that you’ve had a conversation with her once or twice, so it’s only proper to get to know her a little bit more, eh?


    • Name: Marie Larock
    • Title: I’m the lone Canadian worker bee at a kickin’ new auction website called Tophatter!
    • Do you have any pets? I have two dogs: Storm - a 165lb Mastiff X; Summer - a 20lb American Eskimo X, and a herd of cat ;)
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer & why? My favorite auctioneer is Elwood, cuz I like the strong, silent type.
    • If I were a superhero my superpower would be mind control - muwaahahahahahahaha.
    • Top 3 fave non-Tophatter blogs/sites/apps are Etsy.com, Kobobooks.com and Twitter.com.
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? Spare time?!?  Well, I love to hike with the hounds and volunteer when I can, and I collect movies and retro TV series (Sci Fi is a favorite genre - Geek alert!).  I have over 1200 at last count!
    • What is your dream vacation? I’ve already done it but I’d love to do it again - travel around Canada, the US and Mexico in a camper van (RV this time) for a year and visit all the places I missed the first time.
    • Favorite guilty pleasure musician/band? That would be any Glee music, but I would never admit this in public… oops.
    • Could you go an entire week without phones, TV & computers? How long until withdrawals set in? Which would you miss the most? Answer: I could Not with a capital Not live without my technology - nuh uh!  A week? Are you crazed?  About 8 hrs is my limit.  Even If I was a hermit in Northern Canada I would be in a little cabin with solar panels, an inverter, a converter, my laptop, my flat panel and my phone - and my movie and music collection! And I would miss my HDMI cable the most, because then I’d have to watch movies on a smaller screen. ;)
    To meet this gem of a lady in real-life, join her Greater Vancouver, Canada area Meetup here. She’s got mustaches on sticks, cookies with tophats & will even be giving away some sweet Tophatter tees!

    If you have any questions for Marie, comment here or tweet us at @tophatter
  5. Miss Auction Ops: Meet Jacq!

    Okay, okay, we’re taking a break from all of the Y chromosomes. (Visit: Les, the Code Monkey & Dan the Man.) What about the women who frequent the Tophatter office? Fear not…Jacq, the Scheduling Queen is here!

    Psst…when thanked for filling out this survey, she so kindly responded: “No, thank YOU, Megan”. :)


    • Name: Jacqueline or ‘Jacq’ around the office.
    • Title: Wannabe Programmer / Auction Ops / Scheduling Queen
    • Do you have any pets? I have a fluffy “Cavachon” (part King Charles Cavalier & part Bichon Frise) mutt named Riley. She’s a scruffy little rascal, so everyone assumes she’s a boy. The unisex name probably isn’t helping either…  
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer & why? My heart belongs to Bartholomew. I love dashing old men with gray hair. 
    • If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?  I wish I could pause time since there’s never enough time in a day! 
    • What are your top 3 favorite non-Tophatter blogs/sites/apps? Oh, toughie. I regularly visit: Design Sponge, Refinery 29 & Apartment Therapy
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? I enjoy spending time with my family, particularly my niece and 2 nephews. Aside from that, I attend a fair amount of concerts.
    • What is your dream vacation? I have a soft spot for lazy, beach vacations and backpacking in exotic, international destinations.
    • Who is your favorite guilty pleasure musician/band?  Man… I feel like I’m copying Dan, but I’d love a chance to see Garth Brooks live. 
    • Could you go an entire week without phones, TV and computers? If not, how long until withdrawals set in? Which would you miss the most? Answer: I think I could manage a week without electronics, but it would have to be at a fun-filled location filled with non-technology distractions. If I was stranded alone without any type of entertainment, I’d probably last a few hours — max. I would miss absurd group text messages from my family most of all. 
    Okie dokes, folks. There you are…the talented & amazing woman behind your auctions. If you have any questions about Jacq, comment here or tweet us at @tophattr

    Happy bidding!
  6. Meet Dan: a member of our Biz Dev team!

    So, how do YOU get to know us - the staff at Tophatter?

    Through our biweekly staff profiles, of course! Last week we featured Les, the Code Monkey. This week…and we already know that many of you love this particular staff member…Dan is in the spotlight!

    We asked Dan ten questions to find out just a little bit more about him…

    • Name: Daniel Burch
    • Title: Dan the Man
    • Do you have any pets? A beagle named Bama.
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer & why? The secret unnamed female auctioneer because she rarely shows up. Best kept secret at Tophatter. ;)
    • If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be? Ability to freeze time!
    • What are your top 3 favorite non-Tophatter blogs/sites/apps? Instagram, Facebook & Twitter.
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? Fishing!
    • What is your dream vacation? Salmon fishing in Alaska.
    • Who is your favorite guilty pleasure musician/band? Garth Brooks.
    • Could you go an entire week without phones, TV and computers? If not, how long until withdrawals set in? Which would you miss the most? Answer: yes, I’m thinking of starting tomorrow. I’d miss my TV the most.

    Well, there ya have it! Just a tid bit about Dan the Man. The brains (& brawn) behind some of your favorite auctions like Craft Supplies, Collectibles and Fabric & Textiles.

    If you have any questions about Dan, comment here or tweet us at @tophattr.

    Happy bidding!

  7. Meet Les: one of our Tophatter Engineers!

    We get to know you in the auction rooms, during the Town Halls, on the forums and through our social channels. But how do YOU get to know us - the staff at Tophatter?

    Through these staff profiles that we’re starting, of course! This way, you can have a sneak peek behind the scenes. Expect lots of silly & super smart people doing awesome things!

    First up - Les, one of the engineers here! We asked Les ten questions, to which he so kindly responded in his oh-so-Leslie-way. (Psssst, yes his full name is Leslie!)

    • Name? Les Fletcher
    • Position? Code Monkey
    • Do you have any pets? No pets. :( I have a small apartment and am in the office more than at home.
    • Who is your favorite Tophatter auctioneer? Wendell, no doubt.
    • If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be? The ability to find anything, ala, John Taylor from the Nightside Series (http://top.ht/b1).
    • Top 3 favorite non-Tophatter websites/blogs? 
    1. XKCD (xkcd.com) - for the funnies
    2. Hacker News (news.ycombinator.com) - for the news
    3. Kickstarter (www.kickstarter.com) - for the cool things, (I give them waaaaay too much money, seriously, I have a problem).
    • When you do have spare time, what are your hobbies? Swing dancing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and soccer.
    • What’s your dream vacation? Hoping to head to Moscow and Oktoberfest at the end of the summer!
    • Who is your favorite guilty pleasure musician/band? Don’t be shy! Les responded, “Chumbawamba, that’s right you heard me”.
    • Question: Could you go an entire week without phones, TV, and computers? If not, how long until withdrawal symptoms would set in? Which would you miss the most? Answer: Yup. Easy. Withdrawal wouldn’t set in until I had an emergency and need to call someone or I finished my stack of unread books. I’d probably miss my iPhone the most.

    We know Les is a real winner, so we understand if you’re already attached. Remember, there’s a bunch more people that will certainly knock your socks off too!

    There ya have it folks! If you have any more questions about Les, comment here or tweet us at @tophatter. 

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