Why 'Selfmade' Candle?
Here’s the story behind our name and why I put the “Selfmade” in “Selfmade Candle”. Today, almost a year on, we’ve built a community of over 1000 customers and advocates. People, who just like you, care about social justice, racial equality and leaving our environment better off than we found it. I couldn’t imagine celebrating our first birthday with a group better than this one!
Grab a cuppa. It’s time to spill the tea on what got us to our fabulous name that we hold so dearly. Why the name ‘Selfmade’? What is unique about Selfmade Candle? What are our underlying values? I’m going to break it all down for you!
2020 started off as a difficult year for almost everyone. During the pandemic, whilst the world was locked in and re-discovering the magic of DIY and home baking (big up banana bread!), I found myself upcycling old candle jars. I’d re-fill them with soy wax to give them a new life.
We hit May 25th and the world watched as George Floyd was brutally murdered. As a black woman, I felt this viscerally. As the words “I can’t breathe” reverberated through the community and allies, I was pretty appalled by the lack of support some larger businesses were demonstrating. I’ve always believed that in life, we’re our own agencies of change. Whether it’s a small act or a large act, we’re able to create some form of impact.
Fun fact: I came up with Selfmade Candle and built the entirety of the first website over a weekend. No joke. With little experience in web development (I was a marketer before), I built the first iteration on wix.com
I’d been making my DIY candles as a relaxation outlet for friends and family up until that point and launched with a small set of scents including the CONSCIOUS Candle. Designed to support the community whilst bringing some form of peace and anxiety relief to the recipient with the aromatherapy properties of the geranium essential oil.
So why call the brand Selfmade Candle?
Well, the first reason is I made them myself. No joke. Sounds really simple, right? But it does go deeper. There is so much power in a name, whether it’s for a person, entity or business. For me, Selfmade encapsulated the idea that we are all makers. Everyone from those who tried their hand at Sourdough, Banana Bread, Candles, Jigsaw Puzzles, hosting pub quizzes, embroidery, knitting etc during the lockdown is a maker. Anyone that’s ever tried to create something from nothing, or upcycle old to new, is a maker. We’re all modern-day makers. Selfmade is about celebrating this drive in all of us and celebrate the beauty of creation.
For me, I was able to create a business that championed things I care about. Don’t forget, we are all our own change makers. We all have the power to make things happen in an attempt to improve situations based on our value sets. Whether this may be racial justice, social justice or sustainability and the environment. Bottom line is that whatever it is, big or small, we have the agency to create our own change. Selfmade Candle is a product of this very ideology.
What is unique about Selfmade Candle?
I strongly believe that we must become the change we want to see in the world.
Selfmade Candle is all about dual functionality. Designed to be kept and not thrown away. If you’re a customer of ours, you’d already know that our GLOW THEN GROWS candles are a unique differentiator for our products. This was inspired by a passion for sustainability and environmental consciousness - an ever-growing movement that is essential for our world.
My other fundamental passion is giving back to a community who helped grow me. Social and ethical consciousness is hella important to me as is mental health. In our first year of being in business, we’ve donated over £4500 to Stand Up To Racism, and Black Minds Matter UK Charity. Wild! When I started Selfmade, I didn’t think that’s something I’d have been able to say at the end of Year 1 but here we are. And that’s because of you. To everyone that’s supported, thank you!
What are the values of Selfmade Candle?
Powered by purpose - We believe in supporting our community and championing the importance of aromatherapy and self-care in wellness. We're proud supporters of Black Minds Matter UK - a charity focused on providing culturally knowledgeable therapists to Black people
Get Shit Done - We’ve learned that done is better than perfect. Perfection is a fallacy and there is no such thing as “the perfect time” for anything. At Selfmade Candle, we concentrate on using our power, to just get shit done now. Tweak later.
Every day is a school day - We’re learning every day. There is never a time when we step into work and exit without learning something new. This keeps the process interesting and helps the brand grow in sync with the people bringing their time to Selfmade Candle.
Create TA-DAH moments - Whether this is our customers receiving their Selfmade Candle box, burning the candle for the first time, or even watching the Selfmade Seedlings grow - we want to make sure at every point you’re pleasantly surprised.
We’re basically all about getting lit responsibly. This is why focus on good for you and good for the environment products. Soy wax, wood wicks, essential oils, recycled packaging and HUSTLE. That’s right.
The main thing I’d love for you to take away from this blog? Don’t wait for other people to create the change for you. If you’ve got the idea and the resources, get out there and create magic!