We had the good fortune of connecting with Quiana and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Quiana, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Actually I started it as a way to save money! I’ve spent far too much money on purchasing candles, so I decided to make my own. The hobby quickly turned into a business.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Just Candles is my baby, literally. I’ve grown it from my kitchen to a nice size workshop. Blood, sweat and tears have been sown into the core of my business. I make all my candles myself from start to finish. In addition to my highly fragrant signature scents, I’m most proud of my custom pieces. Clients can come to me for last min gifts and party favors that adds a nice touch to their events. How did you get to where you are today professionally. I never imagined being a business owner. I received my Bachelors degree in Finance and my Master’s degree in Health Administration. I’ve been working my way thru the professional world just looking forward to retirement. I always knew that I wanted to be my own boss, I even studied to get my real estate license in hopes of cashing in on the real estate world. I realized early on that I didn’t want to be on the clock everyday. Once I realized that making candles could turn into my freedom ticket I dived head in. Was it easy? Of course not! Although, making the candles is the easy part. It’s more like a therapy to me. Turn on some music and get started. Outside of actually making a candle, the business aspect is challenging. Marketing, generating and maintaining clientele, being innovative, are all demands that I have to tackle. If not, how did you overcome the challenges? I overcome these challenges by networking, reaching out to those that are experts in the field. What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. I leaned that it’s okay to take a break. It’s okay to switch up the plan and try new things. Often times we live believing that you have to always be on go! This is not the case for me anymore. I’ve learned to set boundaries and attempt to separate personal time from business. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story? I am very personable and it’s always good vibes with me. Customer service is my strong suit and I believe in doing things with Love. Starting a business, building a brand is not for the weak at heart. Consistency is the key. I get the most thrill when someone comes back to say how much they enjoyed my products. How it made them feel. Candles do something to your soul. I’m a firm believer of changing your environment, one scent at at time
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
The best time ever would start at my home. I love being home. The warmth, the smell, the food! Yes, I’m a foodie! I make several candles dedicated to food groups. But yes, I’m from Philly, so there is always something to do in my city. We would visit the museums and the historic streets of old city. There’s tons of boutiques and small shops all over the place. Depending on where they want to eat, I could name a handful of spots that serve the best in that cuisine! This season calls for a quick trip to Linvilla Orchards. Oh Man the frozen apple cider!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Ashlee Green, Brand Designer. Ashlee has been in my corner me for years. Several times I wanted to throw in the towel and she was there for motivation and support.
Other: email: JustQcandles@gmail.com