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Posts Tagged ‘soy candles’

One of the most frustrating and time-consuming ventures for any club or organization is fundraising. How will you do it? What will you do? Will you sell something? Candy? Magazines? Cutlery? Or will you collect returnable bottles or have a carwash? Let us make this a breeze for you. If you want to earn some real cash for your club or organization, and do it easily, consider selling soy candles from Country Wickhouse Candles. They’re all-natural, hand-poured, and handmade in the USA. Go to our website, contact us, and let’s get started. How do we do it? Like this…

Country Wickhouse Candles, a fully licensed producer of natural soy candles, is now offering a line of 8 oz. soy candles in tins ideal for fundraising. The sale of these candles is not only simple, but also a lucrative venture for any club desiring to raise money. We offer seven of our most popular candle scents that sell for $10.00 each, sales tax included (for New York State customers only; tax does not apply to any other state).

This is half of what a person would pay in a retail establishment!

But more importantly, in an effort to help your club maximize its profit, we will give your organization 50% of all sales made. That’s $5.00 a candle! (Some shipping costs may apply depending on where in the world you are.) Few fundraisers offer a percentage as high as we do, which is a perfect reason to consider us, Country Wickhouse Candles, for your next fundraising activity.

Not only will you be offering your patrons a completely natural and attractive candle product, but also you will be giving back to your community and supporting the small business economy. And you’ll be that much closer to achieving your monetary goals!

So, drop us a line at countrywickhouse@gmail.com, visit our website, and let’s have a chat about how you can earn some real money quickly and easily by selling Country Wickhouse Candles’ signature candle tins. We can send you a sample order form and explain the whole process to you. C’mon, give us a try…you’ll be happy you did!

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What’s all of our holiday cheer worth, anyway?  How many dollar signs can we really hang on the season of gifts and giving? 

We were just chatting the other day at Country Wickhouse Candles about how commercial the holiday season has grown over the past decade.  Of course, this is an age-old dilemma and discussion; I remember my own parents complaining about how much things cost when I was a child.  But whether you embrace Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Ramadan, or some other special holiday, there’s no doubt that sometimes all of us get caught up in the material world.  So, we went looking for a holiday message that might bring us back to the true meaning of this time of year, no matter what our religious or secular beliefs may be.  We hope that you enjoy Robert Frost’s classic poem, “Christmas Trees,” included below, and that you can share this message of friendship and meaning with your loved ones.  We’ve lit a candle for you here at the Wickhouse, and we want you to do the same in honor of all the good things in your life.

Happy Holidays from all of us at Country Wickhouse Candles!

 

Christmas Trees

Robert Frost
(1920)

 

THE CITY had withdrawn into itself
And left at last the country to the country;
When between whirls of snow not come to lie
And whirls of foliage not yet laid, there drove
A stranger to our yard, who looked the city,
Yet did in country fashion in that there
He sat and waited till he drew us out
A-buttoning coats to ask him who he was.
He proved to be the city come again
To look for something it had left behind
And could not do without and keep its Christmas.
He asked if I would sell my Christmas trees;
My woods—the young fir balsams like a place
Where houses all are churches and have spires.
I hadn’t thought of them as Christmas Trees.
I doubt if I was tempted for a moment
To sell them off their feet to go in cars
And leave the slope behind the house all bare,
Where the sun shines now no warmer than the moon.
I’d hate to have them know it if I was.
Yet more I’d hate to hold my trees except
As others hold theirs or refuse for them,
Beyond the time of profitable growth,
The trial by market everything must come to.
I dallied so much with the thought of selling.
Then whether from mistaken courtesy
And fear of seeming short of speech, or whether
From hope of hearing good of what was mine,
I said, “There aren’t enough to be worth while.”
“I could soon tell how many they would cut,
You let me look them over.”

“You could look.
But don’t expect I’m going to let you have them.”
Pasture they spring in, some in clumps too close
That lop each other of boughs, but not a few
Quite solitary and having equal boughs
All round and round. The latter he nodded “Yes” to,
Or paused to say beneath some lovelier one,
With a buyer’s moderation, “That would do.”
I thought so too, but wasn’t there to say so.
We climbed the pasture on the south, crossed over,
And came down on the north.
He said, “A thousand.”

“A thousand Christmas trees!—at what apiece?”

He felt some need of softening that to me:
“A thousand trees would come to thirty dollars.”

Then I was certain I had never meant
To let him have them. Never show surprise!
But thirty dollars seemed so small beside
The extent of pasture I should strip, three cents
(For that was all they figured out apiece),
Three cents so small beside the dollar friends
I should be writing to within the hour
Would pay in cities for good trees like those,
Regular vestry-trees whole Sunday Schools
Could hang enough on to pick off enough.
A thousand Christmas trees I didn’t know I had!
Worth three cents more to give away than sell,
As may be shown by a simple calculation.
Too bad I couldn’t lay one in a letter.
I can’t help wishing I could send you one,
In wishing you herewith a Merry Christmas.

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Country Wickhouse Candles wishes you and yours the very best this holiday season!  We spend the year interacting with some of the most creative, interesting, and supportive customers there are, many of whom are just discovering the joys and advantages of soy candles.  So, in honor of our customers and people all around the world, we’d just like to take this chance to tell you how much we appreciate all of you, and to express glad tidings for the new year. 

We’d also like to pause a moment to remind you of the benefits of burning soy candles, just in case you’re thinking about taking advantage of the great gifts soy candle products make…

  • For starters, soy wax is safe and biodegradable.  It’s made from pure, 100% natural botanical oils with a soybean base.
  • Environmentally friendly, soy candles promote the growth and care of the environment by using plants, a renewable resource.  So remember, when you’re enjoying soy candles, you’re supporting America’s farmers!
  • Soy candles burn at least 50% longer than candles made from paraffin wax, and produce about 90% less soot than paraffin candles. Soy wax is a favorite of environmentally conscious people because it’s not made from petroleum, like paraffin candles, thus there is virtually no soot or smoke generated through the use of soy candles. The incorporation of soybean oil lowers the melting point of the candle, which translates into cooler burning candles and faster scent dispersion throughout an entire room or area.
  • Unlike paraffin wax, soy wax can be removed from furniture, carpets, clothing, and other surfaces simply by using hot soapy water.  
  • And don’t forget, soy wax is also a great natural skin moisturizer!  Rub what’s left of your soy candle wax into dry skin and cuticles. 

If you’re thinking about giving the gift of soy this holiday season, Country Wickhouse Candles has just posted their WINTER scents online.  Below are some quick descriptions of each scent to help you choose from all of our wonderful scents!

  • Bayberry – Bayberry is a signature favorite for the holidays.  Enjoy this woodsy scent infused with sweet berry notes.
  • Christmas Tree – Christmas morning comes to life all throughout the holidays and winter with this delightful pine aroma.  Spruce notes are combined with subtle wood tones to create this smooth yet strong scent.
  • Christmas Cookies – Made with sugar and vanilla, these tasty cookies are fresh from the oven.  You’ll want to enjoy warm, delicious sugar cookies after lighting this candle!
  • Cranberry Citrus – A blend of cranberries, red grapefruit, tangerine, orange, lemon, and lime, this delightfully classic mix is sure to wake up your senses this holiday season! 
  • Eggnog – Enjoy the classic aroma of this traditional rich and creamy holiday cup.  This fragrance is swirling with pleasant scents of sugar, milk, cream, and light rum. 
  • Gingerbread – Our gingerbread candles combine warm vanilla and spice notes to recreate the pleasant scent of homemade gingerbread cookies.
  • Sugar Plums & Berries – Lose yourself in this dreamy combination of plum, raspberry, pear, and clove scents!
  • Spiced Pear – Spice up your holidays or any day with the aroma of juicy pears, brown sugar, vanilla, nutmeg, and a touch of cinnamon.
  • Under the Mistletoe – Who’s that kissing underneath the mistletoe?  Sweet berries and green apples come together with the festive scent of Siberian pine needles.  Enjoy subtle notes of fir needle, cedarwood, fir balsam, and tree moss, too!
  • Winter Wonderland – Surround yourself with the peacefulness of fresh snow, festive lights, and cozy winter spices!  Indulge in warm notes of cinnamon, clove, vanilla musk, and mulberry with hints of fir balsam, pine, and cedar.

And don’t forget our entire line of AUTUMN scents, the list of which is still available on our website.  These scents include Candy Corn, Caramel Apple, Country Cider, Fireside, Football Field, Happy Harvest, Hot Cocoa, Nutty Banana Bread, Pumpkin Latte, and Pumpkin Pie.  For complete scent details, check out the website at Country Wickhouse Candles.  And, of course, all our COUNTRY scents are available throughout the year on the website as well, so take your pick!

Once again, Happy Holidays from Country Wickhouse Candles!  May all your days be filled with happiness and blessings!

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Every now and then, we get questions at Country Wickhouse Candles about our “production model,” or the process by which our candles are made.  I’d invite anyone interested in watching our manufacturing process to drop by our megalithic, six-story, 90,000-square-foot factory, but we don’t have one.  True, we are remodeling a studio apartment space above our garage so we can move our operation out of the kitchen and into its own space, but you won’t find a Country Wickhouse factory or plant anywhere in the world.

So what does this mean?  It means exactly what our website claims about Country Wickhouse Candles:  Handmade, hand-poured, all-natural soy candles.  Every candle you order from us has been handled multiple times by an actual human being.  And we can do even better than that—your candle order has been handled by only two people, me or my wife.  Wax is melted, scent is pitched, and dye is added all on the white Whirlpool electric range in our kitchen.  Tins and molds are filled and wicks are pinned on the counter next to the double-basin kitchen sink.  Wax is set and released with the aid of the freezer in our Kenmore side-by-side refrigerator.  All very technical and impersonal, right?  Unfortunately, machines and robots can’t make a handmade, hand-poured, all-natural soy candle intended to leave our country kitchen and live in the warmth of your home, no matter what the container looks like.  We don’t care what Yankee, Party Lite, or Scentsy want you to believe.  It’s impossible to mass produce personality.

In the end, one thing is resoundingly true:  Every Country Wickhouse candle, from the label, to the packaging, to the soy product, is carefully, thoughtfully, and personally created, not in a “production model,” but in our kitchen.

Keep smiling…We are! 

P.S.  We’ll post pictures of our new “factory” for our grand opening.  Our 90,000-square-foot plans had to be cut down to 680 square feet due to budget concerns!

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Interesting and fun facts about candles aren’t exactly the subject of Trivial Pursuit or the evening news, but there are some very intriguing pieces of knowledge associated with the commodity nonetheless.  Seriously.  Just the other day, I was browsing the National Candle Association (NCA) website (yes, there really is such a thing, and at Country Wickhouse Candles, it’s kind of our job to keep abreast of industry news) and I happened across a page full of facts and figures related to candles and the candle industry.  You wouldn’t believe, for instance, how much candles are intertwined with our very existence.  I know, that sounds extreme, but it’s true.  You can check it out for yourself on the very page I read, or you can read on.  For your convenience, which is most important to us, I’ve listed some of these facts below, taken directly from the NCA website (this statement and its corresponding link reflect my best attempt at a citation via a blog article).  Truly, you’ll be amazed.

Did you know…?

  • Candles are used in 7 out of 10 U.S. households.
  • Manufacturer surveys show that 90% of all candles are purchased by women.
  • Candle industry research indicates that the most important factors affecting candle sales are scent, color, cost, and shape.
  • Candles are principally sold in three types of retail outlets:  Specialty or gift shops; department and home décor stores; mass merchandisers (discount stores, drug store chains, grocery stores, etc.).
  • Approximately 35% of candle sales occur during the Christmas/Holiday season. Non-seasonal business accounts for approximately 65% of candle sales.
  • More than 1 billion pounds of wax are used in producing the candles sold each year in the U.S.
  • Consumers are increasingly purchasing candles as a focal point for their home décor, and for aromatherapy-like relaxation and stress reduction.
  • Fragrance is by far the most important characteristic impacting candle purchases today, with three-fourths of candle buyers saying it is “extremely important” or “very important” in their selection of a candle.
  • The majority of U.S. consumers use their candles within a week of purchase.
  • Nine out of ten candle users say they use candles to make a room feel comfortable or cozy.
  • Candle users say they most frequently burn candles in the living room (42%), followed by the kitchen (18%), and the bedroom (13%).
  • Approximately one in five women says they use candles to decorate the yard, patio, or other exterior areas, as well as the interior of their home.
  • Both men and women consider candles to be an always-acceptable and highly appreciated gift for a wide variety of occasions.
  • Candle purchasers say they view candles as an appropriate gift for the holidays (76%), as a house warming gift (74%), a hostess/dinner party gift (66%), a thank you (61%), and as adult birthday gifts (58%).

Interesting, huh?  Just when you thought you knew a lot about candles…If these facts and figures have piqued your interest or inspired your warmer side, stop by our candle shop and take a look around.  You can find us on the web here (click the link). 

Thanks for reading!  We hope to see you browsing our soy candle products!

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Soy is a bean.  And like any good bean, it must be grown.  Hello!  But how does this bean become soy wax, you ask?  Well, here’s a crash course in soy wax production and its ultimate dependence on America’s wonderful farmers.

Soybeans are either crushed mechanically or solvents are used to extract soybean oil.  After some color modification (bleaching) and refining, the oil is hydrogenated to make it more solid.  Hydrogenation is nothing more than the process by which poly- and monounsaturated oils are solidified, thus increasing viscosity.  All that’s needed to do this (just in case you have it laying around the house and want to try making soybean wax) is hydrogen, heat (somewhere in the vicinity of 280 – 500° F), and a nickel catalyst.  A nickel what?  I don’t know either.  At any rate, the whole experiment makes saturated fats that can be used as soy wax.  The drawback?  Soy wax is super soft with a low melting point, so any creative soy candle maker usually works with a soy blend that contains not only soy wax, but also other natural botanical oils.  Incidentally, what’s left of the bean after the beginning stages of the process is recycled as cattle feed.

So, what’s this got to do with farmers?  Let me remind you that soy is a bean that must be grown by the millions, and hence soy candle makers and enthusiasts must depend on the commitment, hard work, and responsibility of our nation’s farmers.  These men and women, after all, are not in the business of deciding whether we make a votive or a tealight, but rather they plant and produce a renewable resource that is all-natural and environmentally friendly.  America’s soy farmers may not be erecting solar panels or windmills (though thousands of them have and will!), but they are contributing to the ecological well-being of our planet.  And to me, that makes them heroes.  Their product is renewable, so they’re not involved in the depletion of our natural resources.  Soybean husks are recycled as cattle feed, thus nourishing livestock while offering the world a commodity that is both waste-free and biodegradable.  And like many vegetable farmers, stalks and other “plant parts” are composted, which dramatically decreases the need to use chemical fertilizers.

Ultimately, American soy farmers pose virtually no threat to our environment, and instead produce a useful vegetable from a renewable resource whose primary use is dietary and not wax.  At Country Wickhouse Candles, we may make what we believe are the best soy wax candles on the market, but we owe much of our success to the farmers who complete the dirty work none of us is willing to do.  And this isn’t just the case with soy farmers.  Each and every one of us should count ourselves grateful for the dairy, cattle, and vegetable farmers of America.  As candle makers and general consumers as well, we honor and thank our farmers.  We’d literally be nothing without them.

But perhaps Thomas Alan Orr, in the poem “Soybeans” from his work, Hammers in the Fog, captured the soybean farmer the best.  In his poem, he illustrates not only the plight of the farmer, but also how underappreciated many of them are.  Farming is not easy, and in hard times (like the ones we’re still having) it is often a battle simply to survive.  I’ve included the text of the poem below.  I hope you read it.  Its message is powerful and memorable.  Oh, and the next time you’re taking a quiet drive through the country and you see some guy or gal in a tractor in a field, pull over and thank them.  They’re most likely American farmers.

The October air was warm and musky, blowing
Over brown fields, heavy with the fragrance
Of freshly combined beans, the breath of harvest.

He was pulling a truckload onto the scales
At the elevator near the rail siding north of town
When a big Cadillac drove up. A man stepped out,
Wearing a three-piece suit and a gold pinky ring.
The man said he had just invested a hundred grand
In soybeans and wanted to see what they looked like.

The farmer stared at the man and was quiet, reaching
For the tobacco in the rear pocket of his jeans,
Where he wore his only ring, a threadbare circle rubbed
By working cans of dip and long hours on the backside
Of a hundred acre run. He scooped up a handful
Of small white beans, the pearls of the prairie, saying:

Soybeans look like a foot of water on the field in April
When you’re ready to plant and can’t get in;
Like three kids at the kitchen table
Eating macaroni and cheese five nights in a row,
Or like a broken part on the combine when
Your credit with the implement dealer is nearly tapped.

Soybeans look like prayers bouncing off the ceiling
When prices on the Chicago grain market start to drop;
Or like your old man’s tears when you tell him
How much the land might bring for subdivisions.
Soybeans look like the first good night of sleep in weeks
When you unload at the elevator and the kids get Christmas.

He spat a little juice on the tire of the Cadillac,
Laughing despite himself and saying to the man:
Now maybe you can tell me what a hundred grand looks like.

—Thomas Alan Orr, “Soybeans,” Hammers in the Fog 

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We often get questions at Country Wickhouse Candles about how properly to burn soy candles.  If a single, common issue exists, it’s with the challenge of getting an even burn with the soft wax.  This should never be a challenge, however, since any candle must be enjoyed under certain conditions.  Below you will find some helpful hints on how to burn soy candles more evenly, thus making your experience with them more enjoyable.

Soy Just Ain’t Paraffin:  I know, horrible grammar!  But you get the point.  One of the most important things to remember when dealing with soy candles is that they DO NOT burn the same way paraffin candles do.  Some (if not all) paraffin candles contain PETROLEUM, and I don’t know about you, but if I were made of petroleum, I’d burn hot and completely, too.  Unfortunately, so many people own petroleum-based candles that they have become the standard by which all candles are judged and used.  When considering the environmental impact of paraffin candle products (not to mention the smoke and soot their wicks produce), EVERYONE should be burning SOY candles instead.  With all this in mind, let’s talk about properly burning soy.

Wick Length:  NEVER follow the 1/8-inch wick rule with soy candles.  Instead, keep your wicks at 1/4 to 3/8 of an inch long for an even burn.  Most wicks in soy candles already come in these lengths.

An example of an even burn in a soy candle tin.

Tins (and Other Containers):  Again, mind your wick length and keep it at 1/4 to 3/8 of an inch long.  ALWAYS place any container on a LEVEL surface, and NEVER burn longer than 1.5 hours at a time.  And of course, never leave a candle unattended.  Another great idea for more evenly-burning candles is the use of a CANDLE TOPPER, which will more evenly distribute wick heat.

A votive holder.

Votives:  Follow the wick rule above and ALWAYS burn votives in VOTIVE HOLDERS.  These holders act like small containers, and as the container heats, it helps in the proper melting of the soy wax.

The metal wick tab at the bottom of a tealight cup.

Tealights:  This is a common concern among folks who’d like to see every ounce of soy wax melt and disappear.  The bad news is, this will never happen.  Use the same wick lengths as above, and as soon as the tealight extinguishes itself, the show’s over.  The metal wick tab at the bottom of the tealight container will never burn (unless you use a blowtorch), so for safety reasons, throw the tealight away when it burns down to this point and puts itself out.  It may be hard, but it’s time to say goodbye and move on when you can see the wick tab.

Unburned (Unused) Soy Wax:  But wait!  Just because ALL the soy wax in your container hasn’t melted doesn’t mean that it’s been wasted.  Remember that soy wax is all-natural and biodegradable.  It is also one of the best NATURAL SKIN MOISTURIZERS on the planet.  Claw it out of your containers and rub it into dry skin.  It even replenishes cuticles.  And it smells good, too!  Go ahead, it won’t hurt you…it will only help!

Hopefully these tips will aid you in burning soy candles more successfully.  The most important thing to remember is that soy is VERY SOFT, and hence we must take some unique (albeit subtle) approaches to using them.  Follow the tips above and you’ll have no problems with any soy candle product you ever own…and if you do, let us know.  We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Burn on, wise soy candle-burning person!  You care about yourself and your environment…Thank you!

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