Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Jessica Falkenstrom, Owner of Guinevere's Candles, located in McKinleyville, CA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
At Guinevere's Candles, our motto is "Where Every Candle is as Unique as the Flowers that Adorn it." Our Handmade, All Natural Flower Candles were born in the mountains of Humboldt County, California, over 25 years ago. Originally designed to light the homes of our friends and neighbors, it was essential that the candles burned clean & bright. They needed to burn for many, many hours as this was an essential source of light on those dark mountain nights in the many off-grid homes that are scattered about our area.
It only seemed natural to decorate our candles with the beautiful flora that grows abundantly in our temperate climate. Each and every candle is still hand poured and artistically decorated with flowers and foliage that we either grow in the gardens surrounding our home or that we gather from the nearby hillsides. Our candles are as unique as the flowers that adorn them. Each and everyone is an original piece of art.
Tell us about yourself
As an artist through and through, I wanted to start a business where I could transform my love and passion for design into a useful, beautiful product. My background in graphic design and photography and my love of gardening are both fused into this business. I love the whole process from start to finish.
From the selection of the plants to grow in my garden to the hand pouring of the candles, the harvesting, and pressing of the flowers...I get to design each and every step. Then once all the preparation is done, I select the pressed flowers and foliage for each individual candle. That is where the magic begins. I am able to recreate a slice of my garden for my customers to enjoy in their own homes and lives.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is seeing the eyes of people light up when they see my candles. At every festival that I set up my craft booth at, my first sale is ALWAYS to a child. Children love candles. I can't explain why. But they do. Their eyes get wide, and they point and drag their parents into my booth. It is that awe and joy at seeing flowers on a candle that is shaped like a mushroom or a frog that truly inspires me!
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The hardest thing about being a business owner for me is the business side of the business. Sales, marketing, socials, etc. With no formal training in any of these, they are my biggest challenge.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Find something you love to do and then develop a business around it.
- Share your passion for your business with others through your socials, fairs, your website, etc. Make the public care about your business because you do.
- Produce the highest quality of products or provide the highest quality of services that you possibly can each and every time. Perfection should be the standard of your business. Anything less is unacceptable.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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