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How Did I Get Into Candle Making?

I have always been drawn to art or crafting ever since I can remember. I guess I am someone you would call a "hobbyist". Aside from having a full time job, I would be creating something during my free time. I had several hobbies from sewing, quilting, crocheting, knitting, baking, painting and of course candle making. Before Christmas every October, I would already prepare to work on my personal gifts for my family and friends. It is always satisfying to know that my gifts are special and that I have made them with passion, time and love.

Around fifteen years ago while I was still in the Philippines working as a doctor in my own private practice, I was thinking of what to do as a new hobby. I have always loved candles and would admire the candles that my dear aunt would bring from the United States. I always want candles as decorations and wanted to customize them based on the decor of our house. I could not find what I wanted in the stores, so I thought of making my own candles! At that time resources were limited, so I bought a book on candle making, bought my materials and I got hooked! I made a "candle room" at the back of our house, however, the challenge was getting the materials. What was locally available was only the paraffin wax and cotton for the wicks. So I would go all the way to Manila to buy my materials needed for candle making. My pillar candle molds, I had them custom made from someone that

I filled my house with candles as part of my décor in almost all the corners and centerpieces in our living and dining rooms in whatever color I desire. I would make pillar candles in layers, chunks and anything that I set my heart into. I had so much fun! I have made countless pillar candles and gave them as gifts. I did not get interested in making it as a business since I did not think it will thrive knowing that it would be hard to market in a third world country where majority can hardly make ends meet. Some of my relatives from the United States got to bring them here from the Philippines and I had a chance to see my candles, unlit in their homes after many years when we migrated here.

Here are some of my works way back in 2006 while I was still in the Philippines

Then, it was time for us to migrate to the United States. I worked full-time in several healthcare institutions for the past 10 years and still is, but still managed to have a hobby on the side. Last year in October, I was thinking about what to give to my family and co-workers as Christmas gifts. I suddenly thought, "Why not candles since I already know how to make them?" So, I started making container candles and pillars and gave them out to co-workers and friends to test and see what fragrance they liked. I experimented on different waxes, wicks, fragrances and different suppliers too. Before I knew it, my friends, co-workers and family were ordering candles for the holidays . So that is how Zen Candles Design was born!

I hope I did not bore you with my story. Right now, I work as a director of nursing in a healthcare facility in Southern California. Candle making balances the craziness and the stresses of my demanding 24/7 job. I always look forward to making candles every little time I got. All my candles I consider as work of art and I hope you enjoy them!




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