The popularity of specialty candles has really taken off in the past decade as more and more people are starting to enjoy the relaxing effect that burning scented candles can have. This popularity and consumer demand for specialty candles creates a tremendous business opportunity for the innovative entrepreneur to start a business that manufactures and sells candles.
A good starting point for learning how to make candles would be to visit the local library, as well as visiting the National Candle Association's website (www.candles.org).
A home based candle making business is best suited for the entrepreneur seeking additional income on a part-time basis with a long-term goal of establishing a full-time and profitable business concern. Selling the candles can be as easy as renting a table at a local craft show, placing the candles in retail locations on consignment basis, or even establishing wholesale accounts with national specialty retailers.
Furthermore, adding fragrance, coloring and creating artistic details on the candles will definitely increase consumer demand for the product and result in more profit for you.
At the end of the day we have come to realise that candle making is one those timeless traditions and crafts that have not faded in their popularity. In fact it has grown tremendously.
You only have to search online to see the number products being sold by hundreds of major web stores. You may also be taken aback at the prices that candles sell for. It is not uncommon for a special scented candle to me more then $100 a piece.
And the good news is that many of these products are made by crafters working and supplying to the company. Several of these are home based businesses.
If candle making is a craft that has always interested you, now is the time to start doing something with that interest. You may have already experimented with candle making and know something about it. Or you may want to start now. Either way, there are ways to go about it.
Read our craft business section and familiarise yourself with concepts like market research, business planning etc to see the more technical aspects of starting a candle making business from home.
After all you want to make a product that will be highly in demand. An added advantage of a candle making business from home is that you can easily sell to your local community from your home, local craft stores, mail order, website etc. The market for candles exists everywhere.
Why Start a Candle Making Business From Home
Candles making is a great business to start from home. There was a time when candles where an essential necessity. They were the only form of illumination for home. That is no longer true. Hardly anyone needs for illumination purposes.
While it may not seem like it, this is something that actually works in the favour of a candle making business. Candles have become items of pleasure, luxury and beauty. People have a myriad of uses for candles today such as decoration, therapy, styling, ambience and what not.
Of course, there are still a lot of sales of candles for purposes of illumination alone. However, the perceived value of this craft has gone up astronomically. And also its appreciation.
Between 70 and 80 percent of U.S. households use candles. Candles are consumable products that customers keep buying. According to the National Candle Association retail sales of candles in the U.S. is worth about $2 billion annually. There is a big move towards natural, handmade products as consumers become more discerning about how their products are made and look for something special and unique.
A candle is no longer the mundane object of utility but a beautiful piece of craft. Americans and people all over the world appreciate candles in a new way. Which is why so many variants of candles have sprung up and become popular.
Today you can find candles in all shapes and sizes, fragrances and made from different kinds of wax. Candle making has also become sophisticated. Bigger companies selling candles specially designed and flavoured, easily sell them for a price that is in 3 figures.
Here are a few reasons to start a candle making business
- The demand for candles is high. Since there are so many uses of a candle, with different people buying it for difference reason, you will be getting in to a business making a product that is highly in demand. A high demand for a product is something that helps any business flourish. The sale of candles thrive during festive seasons like Easter, valentine, Halloween, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas etc.
- The candle making business is not capital intensive. You can get started with almost no investment. The cost of making candles is low. The profit margin is healthy. All this works in the favour of starting a candle making business. You do not need capital or a lot of investment to start. You just need the will.
- The candle making business is not labor intensive. In order to start with candle making business you will not have to hire 10 people to work for you. It is possible to make hundreds of candles on your own everyday without needing any one else's help. This again makes it easy to start. Once you are making money from your business you can hire other people and expand.
- The candle making business is versatile. And that is what makes it so great to start from home. You can start with very little and almost no investment. You can make complicated and elaborate or simple candles and still find a great market for it. These are the few things that you should know about starting a candle making business from home and how to make a success of it.
How To Start A Candle Making Business
These are some basic steps you can follow to start a candle making business from home.
Learn More About Your Product
There are 2 thing that you need to know about the candles that you are going to make. First of all, what kind of candles are you interested in making. And secondly, what kind of candles do you think you will be able to sell well to your target customers.
Let us explain. Many candle makers enjoy working with this craft because they are passionate about it and love what they do. Therefore it may give you greater pleasure to work with a particular kind of wax, e.g., soy wax or paraffin, work with different colours, designs, moulds etc. You may also have a preference about the kind of candle you want to make such as therapy candles made from natural aroma oils, romantic candles with exotic and flavours and scents and so on.
So your preference matters a lot in this aspect. At the end of the day you should be enjoying making the candles for your business.
Now for the taste of your target market. You have to realise that different people in different segments will buy different candles. For example, church fund raisers are a great way to sell your home made candles. However, you will probably do best by selling simple candles rather than very expensive therapy candles.
Similarly, for targeting people around the festive time like thanksgiving, christmas and so on you will do great business by making decorative candles.
So a bit of market research is important when you start your own candle making business.
Know Your Craft
To have a successful candle making business you need to have a good product. You need to make candles that the customers are happy with no matter who they are. If you are making simple candles for everyday use, you need to ensure that the candles burn properly and well priced. For making decorative candles, you need to be well practised with making appealing designs. At the end of the day, the more you know about candle making, the better candles you will make. And the better your product, the more business you will do.
Knowing your candle making craft will enable you to experiment with different designs, fragrances, shapes and sizes providing your business with a larger range and variety of products.
Learning all you can can about candle making will also allow you to make them more efficiently with the least amount of wastage. This is important to the bottom line figures that will help keep the cost of your business low. Which means more profit margin for you on every candle that you sell.
So go ahead and learn more about candle making. Learn from books, online guides, from an experienced crafter. Practise your craft till you have the perfect candle that you feel confident about selling to others.
Making Your Business Official
There are many rules and legislations that one has to adhere to when starting a business. However, many states do not require small businesses and specially art and craft businesses to go through official registration. Find out about the rules that govern small business start ups in your area. And follow them. It is important to make your business legal and official.
The other things that are important when starting a candle making business are things like branding, packaging and a business plan. Doing all of this will help you succeed with your candle making business.
You do not have to do all of it in the beginning. But definitely do make a business plan. A business plan will help you chalk out the steps that you need to follow.
For example, if in the future you need to create a branding for your candles or launch an online store, your business plan will let you know when its time to do so.
A business plan for any small business is like a road map. It helps you stay inspired and also ensures that you are not missing out any important step. It also helps you avoid mistakes before they happen. A business plan for a candle making business does not have to be elaborate. A couple of pages can be sufficient as well.
Find Sources Of Sales
Before you start a candle making business, you have to know where and how you are going to sell. So figure out how you are going to do find your customers before you have a stock ready in hand. Remember, most of the small businesses start with sales to family and friends. While you are at it, also look in to your sources of supplies. This is something that has a direct impact on the cost of your candle and therefore on the bottom-line profit margin.
Learn Business Skills
It is common for a small business owner to act in a lot of capacities. Therefore it will be of great utility if you learn other business skills such as a little bit of accounting, budgeting, designing etc.
Candle Making Supplies You Will Need
These are some of the basic things that you will need in your candle making kit to start making candles at home. This list is not exhaustive and will depend on the kind of candle you are making.
Rubber plugs Stainless steel scoop Thermometer Votive candle wick pin Automated candle making machine Gel filling system Wax dispensing machine Gravity candle pouring system Wax transfer system Round glass tumblers Gum leaf aromatherapy essential oils Candle fragrance oil Dye/color for candle Palm wax patterned effect Soy container wax Soy pillar wax ‘Mini’ refill kit for rainbow candles
Learn How To Make Candles
If you are interested in candle making, we highly recommend this resource. You will learn to make some great candles and many other items. Not only that, you will learn how you can turn this into a home based business and make a wonderful income on the side.
These are some helpful links and resources online that will teach you how to make candles. Explore more, buy some good guides and bette still learn from an experienced crafter how to make good candles.
All the best with your candle making business. Do write in if you have any queries or comments.