I started a business during a pandemic. Who does that? Well,
Normally I take risks to confirm I can actually pull a risk,
but this is one of the businesses that just excited me. At first, it was an
experiment and I fell in love with it.
During the lock down, I decided to foster kittens from KSPCA
before they get a permanent home. Fostering is about 6 weeks, until the kittens
are strong enough, dewormed and vaccinated to move to a permanent house.
One thing I was worried about is how my house would smell. I already had two cats which were well trained and I kept thinking how an additional one would destabilize my home. I went to buy air fresheners from the supermarket, then I remembered I needed something more long lasting and subtle, that will not hurt my animals in the process. So I went researching on making a line of beautifully crafted Home Fragrance products.
I basically wanted to know what other people are doing out there. I watched at least 50 Youtube videos and settled on making my own scented candles as well as Room and Linen sprays.
As the research went on, I saw a lot of people who make
scented candles also make a variety of products to scent up a home. I was
pretty excited and I decided to not only do scented candle, but to also add car
fresheners, room and linen sprays as well as reed diffusers.
I joined at least five FB forums for beginners in candle
making. I also joined others for DIY and Crafters in Kenya, just so I could ask
a few questions about raw materials
These groups are so so important, as members share their experiences and hacks. These hacks help your process so you don’t have to go through the hurdles like the rest. I really felt supported by strangers in my journey in getting this business off the ground.
I think i have watched almost 100 hours of Youtube chandlers showing us how to make candles with different waxes, different designs as well as mixing fragrances.
Everything you need to learn, youcan get from Youtube. I wouls highly recommend investing your time into watching as many videos as you can, as this also improves your craft, you learn alot of hacks and gets you off the ground faster.
Getting a mentor in the industry
Getting mentors has never been easy, and especially in your industry. When i started, i talked to a few people but one person i landed on was a CEO of a company that makes hair and beauty products. You will be surprised by how much they know, even though these are two differet industries.
He lef me to places i would get chemicals for youse in my craft which really saved me time. he also taught me where to get alternatives, or what measuremnts i can play with.
So I started by listing all ingredients that were needed to make all these products. This required an extensive search on the internet, as well as doing rounds in River Road as well as Industrial area.
What I noted is that a lot of big industries do not list
their products online, and you physically have to wander around Industrial area
to ask about certain products.
I decided to share my journey from procuring products,
making the products to finally launching the products. It has been such a
tedious journey, which I have really enjoyed.
Tune in as I share the process of procuring materials in Kenya.