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Soy Candle Project Launched A Family Business
Soy Wicked Candles is a Kentucky business run by the Deweese/Williford family. The candlemakers got their professional start when family matriarch Lynne Deweese’s granddaughter Dallas Williford needed a project for her FFA SAE (Supervised Agriculture Experience). She decided to make soy-based candles. The extended family jumped in to help, and things started snowballing.
Their big breakthrough came from the local soybean refinery. A member of the soybean association connected with Lynne Deweese and put in an order for 1,000 candles made from their beans and scented Kentucky bourbon. “It’s our most popular scent. That made us scale up quickly,” says granddaughter Kimberly Schwartz. “It took a lot of research to get this business off the ground and fulfill that order.”
All the candles are poured on the family property, within “the old house,” an empty farmhouse where multiple family members have lived in past decades. Today, it serves as an intergenerational gathering space. “It can be a little chaotic,” says Schwartz. “On candle-pouring days, one moment it’s sandwiches on the table; the next we’re clearing everything off to get to work.”
Every part of the candles comes from Kentucky except for the fragrances, which come from neighboring North Carolina. Using soy as the base compound was an intentional choice. “Soy wax is cleaner burning, comes from all-natural ingredients, and tends to last longer,” says Schwartz. “Plus, it supports our local farmers and businesses.”
Today, Soy Wicked Candles are sold at two local businesses. The family has also been to area farmers markets. They don’t currently ship, as soy wax can melt en route. “That’s our next big challenge,” says Schwartz. “Temperature-stable soy wax.”
Though they’ve been in business for less than a year, the business continues to grow. “We’re doing at least one pouring, sometimes two, each week,” says Schwartz. “We’ve snowballed into a real business. We never thought we could launch this way, but it’s been great.”
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Soy Wicked Candles (Facebook: Soy Wicked KY).

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2023 - Volume #47, Issue #6