An interview with Michelle Howard, founder of Angel Floss
It’s ok, you don’t have to hide it. I smile too when I see fairy floss (or cotton candy to some). I remember well this magical ball of spun sugar from my childhood. Even to this day if I happen to buy some for my kids, I find myself sneakily tearing off a bit for myself. When I was just a little girl, I was so desperate to recreate this mystical ball of sweetness that I once took cotton wool, sprinkled sugar on and eagerly ate it. I was terribly disappointed that it just wasn’t the same.
Fairy floss is the stuff of dreams for kids (and people like me). Even in this day and age, the lure and joy that it brings to anyone is unmistakable. Though as perfect as it may seem just as it is, it has also transcended itself… Fairy floss, I am happy to tell you, has gone gourmet. Trust me, with flavours like Champagne, Pear, Green Tea, Gingerbread and more, this new range of fairy floss is something that even I can go crazy for and not feel the slightest bit like I’ve outgrown it.
I was at the Flower Girl shop one day, shooting pictures of Sofia for her story when Michelle Howard, founder and owner of Angel Floss walked in. Wanting to give them some space to talk colours and paint, I wandered away to look at other things until my ears overheard them talking about painting a cotton candy cart. Of course my curiosity got the better of me and I had to know more. Would it not be someone’s dream job to spin candied balls of happiness for people? When I found out that her cotton candy was different to the usual bright blue and pink ones you normally see (the type that you just know are probably full of chemical compounds that we can’t even pronounce), I knew that this was something that had to be shared.
Angel Floss is the only company in Singapore that spins organic, all natural fairy floss for parties, corporate events or any gathering you can think of. I am so happy to bring you our interview with Michelle and I am dying to try some of her great gourmet flavours.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and why you decided to start your own business.
I moved to Singapore in 2008 with my husband and like many expats, we had planned to be here for just a few years. Now nine years and two kids later, it’s become home. We love it here. I grew up in Asia – between Manila and Bangkok – then spent 13 years in London, so coming back to Asia had always been part of the plan. The prospect of starting my own business has always been attractive to me, mostly for the freedom and flexibility, but I was caught up in the corporate world, working in marketing for a financial tech company for most of my career and most recently for a tech startup. Unfortunately the startup I was working for had funding struggles and closed in July so I was left pondering what was next. It seemed like the perfect time to start something of my own and a great opportunity to do something completely different. Angel Floss was relatively quick to start up and something I knew I could have fun with.
Why fairy floss? What made you decide to bring organic and all natural fairy floss to Singapore?
I’ve always loved the magic of cotton candy; I remember marvelling at it as a child and I love watching my kids eyes light up now in that same way. It’s such whimsical, fun stuff that people just can’t help but smile about, and it feels good to serve up stuff that makes people smile. My interest in it as a business opportunity was sparked when I saw a similar concept for organic floss on my travels. I thought it would be a really unique addition to the Singapore party scene; nothing like it existed here. As a mum I’m very aware of the hype surrounding sugar consumption, particularly regarding children, but I also know it’s difficult to deny kids treats, especially on special occasions. So being able to offer a better alternative to the artificial options that are out there also really appealed to me. Angel Floss uses only organic cane sugar and all-natural flavourings; there are very few colourings used and any that are are plant-based. Sure, it’s still sugar, but the ingredients are pure and natural. There’s also less sugar than you’d expect in a floss cone – only about a tablespoon, which is equivalent to about half a cupcake.
Tell us more about your fairy floss and why it’s special.
Cotton candy has such nostalgia attached to it, so I think it’s always going to be something special. Angel Floss aims to bring back that nostalgia, but in a modern, updated way. Aside from being Singapore’s only organic, all-natural cotton candy, the cart service is bespoke. The cart is minimalistic and elegant, so fits easily into any event, but we can also tailor decor to fit any occasion and in addition to our unique flavour range, we can also customise flavours especially for you. So if there’s a flavour you love but don’t see in our range, we will do our best to create it for you. Angel Floss is something very different from the standard cotton candy offerings that you find in Singapore.
What fantastic flavours are there?
Angel Floss currently comes in 12 flavours. There are classic flavours like strawberry and vanilla but also less traditional flavours like mango and green tea, and seasonal flavours too, like candy cane and gingerbread. We’ll also be bringing out some new seasonal flavours soon… like watermelon and passionfruit. It’s also fun to mix the flavours, for example taking champagne and peach to create Bellini….
Do you have a favourite flavour?
Ooh, it’s hard to choose, but I’d have to say my favourite is caramel… sprinkling it with a little sea salt takes it to the next level. My son’s favourite flavour is green tea; he is obsessed with anything green tea. My daughter, predictably, loves strawberry.
Who loves it more, the kids or the adults?
Kids literally go wild for cotton candy. I’ve had kids come back four or five times during one event, they just can’t get enough of it. The adults are definitely more restrained but for most it takes them back to their childhood so they’re always keen to try the unique flavours. Funnily enough the “grown-up” flavours like champagne also get a lot of interest from the kids!!
How can I get my hands on your cotton candy?
Angel Floss is mainly focused on private events but we do also go along to select fairs. The next festive fair we will be at is the Loewen Christmas Fair on 9-11 December so come check us out!
Is there any advice you’d give to someone wanting to start their own business?
Just go for it. There is certainly a lot to think about, even with small ventures, and it might seem a little daunting at first but there’s such a great sense of achievement in pulling it off. You need to be open to learning, constantly. Even with a small-scale business like Angel Floss I’ve learned so much and feel I still have so much to learn.
For more information:
For bookings, either visit their website or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Images provided by Angel Floss. This interview was originally published on www.vanillabeige.com.