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Starting a Home Candle Business

It is good for beginners because it melts quickly, is cheap and is easily colored or scented. Did this video help you? Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue! Still and all, I think you'll admit that young Dennis Murphy is doing very well. Now I'm not competing with anyone. National Candle Association http:

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Before throwing them out and buying new ones, consider using them to make candles. This can be a great way to turn them into something new and bright again. Most children will love the idea of creating candles with you and enjoy knowing their old crayons helped create them. Making candles out of crayons can also be a great gift giving idea. Before you get started, discuss safety with your children.

Since the crayons will have to be melted at a very high heat, they will not be able to participate in that portion of the candle making process.

Assure them that there are many other aspects of the candle making that they can be a part of. To start, gather your supplies. In addition to the crayons, you will need a wax cartoon. This can be from milk, fabric softener, or orange juice. You will also need paraffin wax, two full ice cube trays, a double boiler, and white packing string.

Trim the top off of the wax carton, leaving it approximately six inches high. You will want to cut the string at least 8 inches long. You will later cut the wick to fit the holder. To ensure a wick that burns easier take three pieces and bread them together. Use smaller pieces of string to tie the ends together. The holders for your candles can be anything you desire as long as they are non-flammable.

Pretty vases, glasses, and jars work nicely. Melt about three pounds of paraffin wax in the double boiler or coffee can. To help it melt faster, cut it into small chunks. The melting process with take about fifteen to twenty minutes. While the wax is melting, peel the papers off of the old crayons.

You and your children can choose to separate the colors by lights and darks to have a mix that melds well or you can mix it all together and see what the color ends up being. For best results, only add the crayons to the wax after it has completely melted. After the crayons and wax have both melted together, immediately remove the mixture from the stove and pour into your candle holders. If you would like to make scented candles try adding a splash of cinnamon or vanilla to your hot wax mixture.

It is important that the candles by left alone to completely harden. Make sure you have an area this can be done without disruption. The wax will stay hot for several hours and can scold the skin. Making candles out of old crayons is a great way to spend the afternoon creating a neat project with your children.

This process can also be done at schools and childcare centers with old crayons as presents for parents. Simply allow each child to decorate the outside of their candle holder while adults complete the rest of the process. Making candles is fun and relaxing.

The rules of the game can definitely be learned. Prior to the spring of , the only thing Dennis knew about candles was that burning them at both ends is expensive. As a college junior, he had too much time in school to quit and not enough money to continue. Denny finally made the supreme sacrifice and went out into the "real" world in serious search of employment.

The foray was fruitless and, discouraged, Dennis and an equally-destitute friend sought solace in each other's misery. The friend — who was into making plastic flowers — suggested that if Dennis found a craft they might be able to make some money hawking their wares together at flea markets. Thus began Dennis Murphy's candle making business career. The early flea markets had a real carnival atmosphere and were fun to work.

Denny's candle business, however, was no instant success. He remembers that summer as being, ". I was able to make enough money to just barely live on. But it was a lot of fun. When the flea markets closed in the fall, Dennis resigned himself to the necessary he thought winter's seasonal unemployment of the candle business. The next spring, however, he and his friend—brimming with confidence—formed a partnership and started making candles for the summer's coming markets.

Before long we were buying wax, coloring. For instance, we graduated from purchasing scents by the ounce to buying them by the pound that summer. Although the new candle business was slowly growing at that point, the growth was not always easy. No sooner had Denny discovered the lower-cost sources of supply. It meant that I had to buy my own stove and refrigerator and I wasn't sure I could stand the expense.

Luckily, old beat-up—but workable—stoves and refrigerators come very cheap and, in the long run, Denny's move from the kitchen to the basement worked out for the best. With no meal preparation or groceries sharing his facilities, he could—for the first time—work without interruption.

Not everything turned out so well that summer. It was a sad and ugly season for sales. The flea markets were a lot of work and little money and we worked two of them a week. It's fun dealing with people but when you're constantly tired, it gets tough. What with putting in 24 hours of selling a week, plus all the labor in making the candles for those sales, it got to be too much.

Throughout the last part of that summer Dennis had been toying with the idea of wholesaling candles. He decided to take the chance and, armed with a dozen samples packed neatly in the family suitcase, headed for Detroit and that city's large department stores. Once there, he didn't know who to contact. When I got to a store I asked for the person who dealt with gifts and candles.

I then told that sales representative or merchandiser that we were a new candle business in the area and that I would like to show a particular line of candles.

Only I knew that we was me and that the 'entirely new line' was the only candles I was making. All seemed to be going well for Dennis on his first call. The name isn't registered but he accepted it and it's just sort of stuck. His exuberance over making the big time was not to last, however, because Denny soon discovered that the big stores simply wouldn't reorder his product on their own.

Even when their test gross of candles sold out quickly, he had to follow up, constantly remind the merchandiser about his product and—in effect—sell the candles over and over again. I was looking for a way to get out of the business grind and, like retailing, wholesaling to big stores just wasn't it. At the same time Dennis began selling wholesale he happened—by chance—to meet a young married couple who both owned a small gift shop and sold merchandise at special craft markets.

When they offered to take candles on trial basis Denny was not too hopeful but he did put in a good two days of labor and delivered the candles.

He soon got another order from the couple. They, in turn, retailed the candles for one dollar over their cost both in their shop and at craft markets. Selling them cheap like that really moved the candles. In fact, that couple consistently sold or more candles at every outdoor market they attended.

When I knew a market was coming, I could plan my time accordingly. If I happened to be busy I'd make the candles two or three days ahead of time, and if I had nothing better to do I'd extend my production over an entire week or more. Also, I knew exactly how much money I was going to be paid. It was no more 'make the candles and hope they sell. Once Dennis had found the combination he'd been looking for, he went searching for other potential small markets.

I've found them to be the best and most constant market for my candles and universities are a close second. Fortunately, I live close to three universities and their attendant organizations—both on and off campus—are always looking for ways to make money. Those organizations are very eager to purchase good candles that they can retail at low cost while still making an attractive profit.

Once you've contacted the church groups, university organizations and small gift shops—and if you want more customers—just look through your local newspaper for organizations planning fund-raising drives.

All of these organizations are potential customers. And that—small market wholesaling—is where Denny finally found an outlet for all the candles he wants to make.

And that "small" market really isn't so little. It's not uncommon to see Dennis working feverishly to complete to 1, candles in a week for one or more of his "small" customers. And what about his large customers? There was too much pressure. Now I'm not competing with anyone. I don't have to do anything but produce good candles to keep my sales coming.

Denny likes people and he now enjoys selling his candles at the same kind of open air markets that the young couple had found so profitable. He has, however, added a new dimension to this selling. I make the candles in wholesale time and wholesale numbers. I sell them only where I'm not competing with any of my quantity customers. Well, any good businessman could tell Dennis—and some have—that the people should pay more because, obviously, it costs Denny something to set up and run his retail display for a day.

Dennis admits the expense but he's unmoved by the argument. To do the job right, I need three or four people to, help me. I could put that money right back in my pocket by raising my prices a mere ten cents per candle.

But why should I? What's fair for the dealers is fair for the people. As long as I can live and I'm not competing with the others who sell my line, I see no reason for raising those prices. Their attitude seems to be that, because of the popularity, people expect the prices to go up. And you know what? Now a twelve-inch candle like I make takes two pounds of wax and I certainly don't mind absorbing the extra two cents per candle.

Some, with no more overhead than I have, boosted prices any where from fifty cents to a dollar and wanted me to do the same. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't believe in that sort of thing. But I'll tell you. I make a lot of candles and I sell them cheap. Indeed he does sell a lot of candles. Denny has just moved into a new home with a big basement in which he figures he'll have no difficulty making a thousand candles a week, by himself.

The candles come in varying shapes, sixteen different decorator color combinations and a multitude of scents. At that price he has no difficulty selling a thousand candles a day.

Actually, Denny doesn't need all the help he hires for one of these days but, as he puts it, "When you're trying to live your life the way you want to, it can sometimes get difficult financially.

Three Important Steps to Selling Candles

By Isabel M. Isidro. If you are interested in the creative craft of candle making, you can have a lucrative home business. According to the National Candle Association, candle consumer retail sales in the United States alone is projected at over $ billion, not including candle accessories. Most waxes you buy for candle-making will come in pellet form, making it much easier to work with, and much quicker to melt. If it does come in a block (my paraffin did), use . Learn how Dennis Murphy built his successful home candle making business with a small budget, hard work and knowing where to sell his wares. Dennis Murphy — a young man in Rochester, Michigan.