So, about 9 months ago, 3 months into starting Four Sisters, I had a goal of bringing out our first own branded product by our 1st Birthday which would be October 2022. My initial idea was pyjamas, I even had designs drawn up and samples made but they just didn’t feel right. I suppose I felt they were an isolated product that would only be suitable for certain customers, and I wanted to bring out something that was more generic and easier for you, the customer to purchase.
I’ve always used Pinterest and have umpteen boards of ideas for both my business and home, so in true Barbara style, I started “pinning” ideas of what our candles would look like, scents, labels, packaging etc.
The thought did cross my mind about learning how to make these candles, but to honest, I couldn’t find the time, what with 4 kids, a part-time job, running Four Sisters, a million of after- school activities and general day to day madness of life, that I know everyone is experiencing since we’ve returned to non-Covid times. So, I reached out to the professionals, candle manufacturers, lots of them, all based in these wee Island of ours. I had good responses from the vast majority, but I never found the “right fit” I had almost all but given up on the idea, when one random Monday, at 1:51pm, an email landed into my Four Sister’s inbox from a candle manufacturer all the way down in West Cork, and the rest is history.
Next, was the hardest part?? What scents would I go for? I had some very interesting scents in mind at the beginning that the candle manufacturer was good enough to make into samples for me, but to be honest, they just weren’t right, and it was back to the drawing board. I decided to just keep it simple. Fireside was one that I had already tested, and I knew that it was so lovely and unique, that it was worth taking the risk on. Fireside is an intensely rich and full aroma candle leading with crisp top notes of bergamot, lemon leaf and warming spices, enhanced by fresh eucalyptus and lavender. The perfect candle to enjoy of crisp evenings when the fire is lit and the wind is howling. Lemongrass and Ginger is one of my all-time favourite scents, it has top notes of tangy lemongrass, Sicilian lemons and leads into spicy ginger root and grated nutmeg. Lime, Basil & Mandarin was chosen after my favourite perfume and it is our take on this famous scent. It has a refreshing citrus scent, uplifted by basil and thyme with a hint of lemongrass and spearmint. And, lastly our final scent chosen was Cotton, a lovely light and fresh scent with a hint of melon and background of white flowers. It just reminds me of those Saturday’s spent attempting to get the house in order and having a lovely fresh scent burning in the background.
Finally, the scents were developed and tested, and good to go.
Next, came the box and labels, and much more pinning on Pinterest. Again, I went a bit mad with the designs and making it “stand out” but to be honest, I kept coming back to the colours in my brand, again and again and settled on something elegant and not too harsh on the eye.
And finally, before I knew it, it was photo-shoot day. Massive thanks to Neil McLaughlin Photography, who is based locally, and who also took my very first pictures for Four Sisters. I didn’t want to overthink it or use a “staged” location, so all candles were photographed in my home, in the only tidy places available, in places where I personally like to light candles.
So that’s just a little bit of background to how our candles came about. The support to date has been phenomenon and I hope you love them as much as we do.
I also thought I would mention a few things that you can do to maximise the burn time you get from your candle-
- On the first burn, allow the wax to melt the full way out to the jar. If you don’t allow it to melt the full way, this can cause tunnelling, which means most of your candle will end up getting wasted.
- Only burn the candle for the time suggested, I recommend 2-4 hours as burning for longer has no additional benefit.
- Trim your wick to 4mm before lighting, wicks which are too long create a bigger flame which in turn will melt through the wax faster.
- Keep your candle on a flat fire-resistant surface, once lit it is best not to move your candle as you could create a spillage of fire hazard. Don’t leave your candle on top of stoves or other hot surfaces and don’t burn your candle in drafty areas. Keep out of direct sunlight also as they can be sensitive to heat and light.
- Remember to keep your candles out of reach of children and pets.
- Once finished, you can wash out the candle jar with warm soapy water, and ta da, you have a lovely container for make-up brushes, pens, markers etc.
I hope you enjoyed this blog, stay tuned for my ultimate Christmas Gift Guide which will be posted in the coming weeks.
Much love, Barbara xx