Best Homemade Candles in Houston
We are honored to feature this mama/daughter run business today! These are our favorite candles. Our Kindred Candles was founded in 2020 by Mother & Daughter Ada & Sloane Ivy Hughlett.
Ada & Husband, Mel Hughlett filled their home and lives around Black Culture including the art, literature, film of Black life. As Sloane grew older, Black authors & Black films that told the stories of Black life became something she loved and grew very passionate about.
Sloane says they wanted to pay tribute and honor to the beautiful works of many of their favorite classic Black storytellers and stories while incorporating some unique things that define what “home” means to them.
Our Kindred Candles are themed after all things that incorporate Black Culture… Black films, literature, authors and more.
We invite you to learn more about this amazing company and check out our full interview with Ada and Sloane below!
Where are you both from and how long have you lived in Houston?
Ada & Sloane- I, Ada, am from Camden, Arkansas, small town in Southeastern Arkansas. I moved here to Houston in 1980 and where I met my husband Mel. We left Houston and moved around the country for work and then just shy of 15 years later we moved back to Houston and raised Sloane here. Sloane Ivy was born in Austin, Tx but raised the majority of my life in Houston!
Tell us the inspiration behind starting your business.
Sloane- Well, we are lovers of Stories and Storytellers. Watching movies with my mom and reading books with my dad are countless memories that make up much of my childhood. So my love for these two things have been super important to me. My mom has always been the best homemaker, her house always smells divine and is decorated perfectly and feels super warm and cozy. So when we talked about doing something together as a business, something to do with our homes was on our mind. Then one day I saw candles that had the author Jane Austen on it and loved it!
I am a Pride and Prejudice fanatic lol! I thought how great it would be for a Maya Angelou candle because I love for things on my own to represent me as a Black woman. I couldn’t find any Black author candles and boom! Idea born. I told my mom, I had an idea of having candles in our homes that represented the things that we as a family love the most, movies, authors and the city my parents’ met in and the place they raised me in. I’m a huge big idea person but slack on the follow through. Next thing I know my mom has bought a candle making kit and has youtubed how we make them. Her follow through and my ideas make the best team.
You’re a mama/daughter duo! What’s the best thing about working together?
Ada/Sloane- The best thing about working together is seeing each other so much! Even though we live in the same city, we live in different areas and Houston is huge. So that plus, busy work schedules and life in general I could go weeks without seeing my mom and dad but now this is something that centers us weekly and where we know we’ll spend time together.
What does it mean to you both to be a Black owned business in the city you love?
Ada- We love our city so much especially because it is such a diverse melting pot of so many cultures and people. We are huge supporters of Black owned Businesses and it has always been something we have been intentional about since I moved here in 1980. We are so excited and grateful to be a Black owned business in Houston which is a super supportive city that is home to so many successful and historical Black owned businesses.
How did you learn to make candles?
Sloane -That was all my mom!
Ada- It was all by trial and error and lots of Youtube videos. Lol I searched for some Youtube videos on how to make them and ordered a candle making kit and we started testing them just for ourselves. Soon we started formulating the scents we wanted to go with each candle and now we have it down to a science.
Can you talk to us about the inspiration behind your business name and how you name your candles?
Ada- We were looking for a name that represented us and could speak to our candles. These candles are important to us as a family, the characters, actors in these movies as well as the authors have felt like family to us over the years and as mother and daughter we wanted that represented. Kindred means family and care and that’s what we like people to think about when they think of our candles.
We theme all of our candles off Black movies, Black authors that we love and have meant something to us over the years. Then we tie the candle descriptions to incorporate what the movie/authors makes us feel like.
How often do you launch new scents and what have been some of your favorites?
Ada- At the moment we are launching new ones every quarter.We actually started with 10 candles when we first launched our business and have added 7 since then. Wow, 17 I think we just realized we have that many now! We recently have launched some seasonal candles that are timely with holidays and moments happening Nationally.
Ada & Sloane, what do you beautiful ladies do outside of your business?
Sloane- My mother has been a Nurse and Healthcare Professional for over 25 years. So when she is not making candles she’s a Director of Healthcare at an assisted living facility helping keep our most vulnerable population safe.
I work in Marketing and Advertising full time as a Digital & Social Media Manager, managing brands Digital and Social presence and I also have a Body Positive podcast I co-host with a friend.
What are some of your big dreams and goals for Kindred Candles?
Sloane- We would love to become a household name and keep everyone’s homes smelling lovely and warm. Also, a huge dream of ours would be to be featured in Oprah’s favorite things one year. We want this business that brings us so much joy to blossom into an empire that we can focus on full time to help bring joy to others.
What’s been the most exciting and the hardest parts of being entrepreneurs?
Sloane & Ada- Hardest parts have been Balance! Balancing our full time jobs and other things in life to make time for it all and figuring out our system of ordering supplies and shipping things. As well as the learning curve of learning how to make candles and get the perfect blend of Soy wax and fragrance oil.
Most Exciting part is coming up with a new scent and smelling it for the first time after we make it then the satisfaction moment of “Oh,yes this is a good one!!” The best part above it all is seeing and hearing everyone’s feedback that loves our candles. We love reading comments and messages from excited customers who believe in us. Means so much!
Besides Etsy, do you have plans to set up at local vendor and farmers markets in the future?
Sloane- Yes! We have started doing local markets on the weekends and we are going to increase how many we do around the city in the future. These are a lot of fun to do together and we love meeting our customers in person and getting to talk and walk through all of our different scents.
Best advice for someone wanting to take the leap of faith into entrepreneurship or wanting to open their own business?
Sloane- Just Do it! Do it scared, do it unsure, just do it! If you truly love and are passionate about it, everything will work out because you want it to! There is a target market out there that needs what God has placed on your heart. That first step is the hardest always but it’s so worth it. You’re doing the world a disservice by not stepping into your purpose. Do it!!
Who inspires you most in business?
Sloane- Oprah. Always!! This woman never ceases to amaze me in how she reinvents herself and goes after everything she wants no matter what’s stacked against her, no matter if it seems she’s too old to start over. Even after her network failed the first year she didn’t take that as defeat she revamped and came back harder.
Also, Rhianna! Rhianna is a testimony to how it doesn’t matter how saturated a market may seem or how many other businesses with the same niche as you. They aren’t you and there is always enough room for everyone! These are just a couple of the Black women entrepreneurs we are highly inspired and motivated by.
Ada, what are you most proud of in raising your kids?
Ada- Sloane is my one and only and I am most proud of the fact that she’s a good person. Period. She’s a kind, intelligent and a generous person who is very career driven and ambitious. Sloane has given me so many reasons throughout her life to be proud of her and she motivates me more and more the older she gets. But above it all I am most proud that I raised a good person with a good soul that wants to help add to & bring out the best in this world.
Sloane, what are some lessons you took from your mother and apply to your every day life?
Sloane- The lessons I took most from my mom is to always give it your all, everyday. My mother is a hard worker in everything she does. She’s a “do it right the first time or don’t bother doing it at all.” A lot of my work ethic comes from seeing her juggle many things in life without complaining or asking for recognition. Starting and running this business with her makes me see another side of her and how she is always growing. Inspires me to keep pushing myself and growing!
When things get hard, what’s one thing you tell yourself to keep going when running this business?
Ada- Shake it off, tomorrow is a new day and we are going to push through. It’s a grind and we have to keep going and keep grinding. Grinding is something we say to each other often. “I’m just over here grinding girl. lol” Enjoying the grind makes these hard moments easier to push through and so thankful we are doing this together and have each other in the hard moments.
For more information on Kindred Candles and how to order, visit www.ourkindredcandles.com