Here is a little piece of information about Apollonia & how it all began.
Arts & crafts have always had a role in my upbringing. It was the scents from my mothers' arts & crafts that introduced me to the passion. Whether it was her famous chocolate lollipops or her creative candle designs, it was apparent that my mother had found peace in her crafts. My mom would decorate her jars and stand over the stove making her candles and I would sit at the kitchen table enjoying the scents. As a child, I would often turn down opportunities to join her in making products so that I could fully enjoy eating them. However, as I got older and began accompanying her at various craft shows it became about something more than the crafts and candy; the interaction with customers became a rewarding part of that experience. Craft shows gave a reserved (and somewhat stand-offish) woman like myself a fun way to meet new people.
Even if we would make little to no cash we would walk out of there happy. We made new connections and learned new things. After the birth of my oldest son and starting my family my mom came to me and said "Apollonia how do you feel about running our own business?" Not wanting the responsibility at the time, I was far from interested. I kept thinking,
“What if we fail?
How will we get the startup money?
Who will promote for us?
What if no one believes in us?”
At first, I turned down her proposition. But after reconsidering, I licensed Apollonia's Candles & Things December 2015. Most people go into business only looking to get paid. Yes, it’s true you need money to survive in this world, but you also need friendship and joy to live a fulfilling life. If your only goal is to make a dollar, you won't last long in any business venture. You have to get out and promote, build your brand, and meet new people along the way. Sometimes a few kind words from a stranger can answer or solve an issue in your life/business. I truly believe you cannot put yourself in the customer’s shoes without walking with each individual customer. By inviting individuals to my table and speaking with them even if I didn’t make a sale was a joy. You get to learn about what people look for. Some offer different ways to better your brand, some people just come to meet and greet. It is in this field where I can open up.
It not only feels like I’m at home when I’m working but, when I'm working I'm in my zone! Pandora is playing, my children are normally on their best behavior, and I'm able to run my business and household. As the foundation of my life, my children influence a lot of the great products on my site.
Look at Chunky’s Mints, my son was standing over me eating a peppermint and he decided to drop one of the mints from the bag in the candle! Before I could get upset he said, “Mommy put one on the other side and see how it looks.” I was surprised... it was a really nice candle and after burning it for a few hours the aroma of the candle was mouth watering. That is how one of our best sellers got its name. Chunky's Mints is a perfect display of the love and creativity that goes into this business.
My crafting skills come straight from home. I built my own website by watching videos and reading books from the library. I had no prior knowledge of how to start, run, or manage a business but that hasn’t stopped me from bringing simple pleasures to people's lives at affordable prices. It’s funny, 15 years after being a part-time apprentice I am in the kitchen working just like my Mama used to; on building my brand, being a positive role model for my children, and letting arts & crafts be the bond to support it all.
It is my mission here at Apollonia's Candles & Things to offer my customers the finest products and services.