Nicole Meitz, from the town of Jennersdorf in eastern Austria's Burgenland region, is owner and manager of the Grenzgebiet store. Located on the Austrian border with Slovenia and Hungary, it sells hand-made works and local foodstuffs from the region.
She also offers among the selection of products a knitted goods range, and came up with the idea of turning children's fantasy creatures into toys after a customer asked if she could knit a version of one of their pictures.
After working on the design together with her mother, they managed to produce an almost perfect copy, and since then through word-of-mouth they have been flooded with requests from parents for the service.
She said: "It is enormously rewarding when you see a child getting a toy version of something they drew previously. On every single occasion it's a delight."
She said prices can range from as little as €30 for a basic copy of a drawing or painting.
And Nicola, 32, who studied tourism management before opening her own business has now been nominated for the Burgenland innovations prize for the idea, where every toy is made from wool.
Story courtesy of Central European News
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