We’re Northern Scents Candle Company, a small home-based business located in the city of Pittsburgh.
Northern Scents Candle Company was born from a hobby that quickly turned into a small business during a personal leave from work. Danya’le creates custom items and scents for her customer providing that personal touch. All items are made with natural ingredients, to provide a clean burn.
We’ve been in business for a little over 2 years and have been recognized in several local magazines and articles, such as the Soul Pitt and Forward Cities. Our long-lasting scents that are hand-poured in small batches and our catchphrase, “Who Scent Ya?” make us unforgettable. I’ve experienced several challenges during the course of my business, including keeping up with a steadily growing customer base while maintaining the quality of my candles, and keeping my prices affordable while the cost of supplies is rising due to inflation and pandemic-related supply chain issues. I’ve learned that sometimes I have to pivot in order to continue to grow my business, while always maintaining the quality of my products. One way that I’ve done this is by providing customers with the opportunity to order custom products, such as blended scents that they couldn’t find elsewhere. Now I am ready for my next big pivot. Based on the challenges that I have faced as a small candle maker, I would like to add a new line of business to Northern Scents Candle Company, while continuing my current offerings. I would like to sell candle supplies to other candle makers like myself. The cost of goods fluctuates and, if you’re not purchasing on a large scale, upward fluctuations can really hurt your business. However, many small makers do not need or have the space to store bulk quantities of their materials. I’d like to become a supplier for other local makers to reduce my own costs and help everyone’s business. I would also like to offer candle-making courses to help more people get into the business.
I started this business from a hobby I’ve had since I was a child. Crafting is something that I was taught as a little girl while bonding with my paternal grandmother and carried on with my own children. We started out making candles for ourselves due to several of us having allergies. We wanted something natural, clean-burning, and recyclable (we use glass jars and craft paper which could be recycled or refilled with wax).
Being a mom comes before all else for me. As a result, due to the medical needs of one of my children, at times I was forced to resign from positions to take care of her.
I needed to create a steady income for my household and allow me to be there for her at any given moment if needed, so I used a number of free grant and loan programs and turned our hobby into a business and Northern Scents Candle Company was born.
I used financial aid and my own personal savings to fund the business, including loans and grants. Read more on women and minority financing.
Who would have thought that something you learned as a child would carry your family through such rough times?