Finding Passion in Hand Poured Candles

Shayna Woodwyk, owner of The Waxy Dachshund, has been at the reins since winter 2017, after purchasing the business from a family friend. She dabbled in the business sporadically while working full-time, participating in her first event in 2018, Christmas Through Lowell. Since then Woodwyk has looked toward growing the business, including stepping away from her full-time job to concentrate on her family, candles, and small hobby farm. 

Efforts have been paying off in the candle department as she recently delivered the largest number of local purchases and had numerous orders to drop off at the post office. The Waxy Dachshund specializes in hand poured candles and wax melts made in small batches. Products are made from a blend of soy and vegetable oils along with the maximum amount of fragrance oil possible to ensure the scent is distinguishable when burned. 

A Lowell community resident for the past nine years and mom of three, she and her husband also have two dogs, two cats, and 23 chickens. Butterscotch Farm often has items available roadside, including eggs, vegetables, maple syrup, and even flowers during appropriate times of the year. Being home full-time has also allowed Woodwyk to concentrate on where she’d like to take the candle business in the future.

She anticipates having a core set of scents available all of the time and include seasonal offerings throughout the year. “I try to offer a variety of sweet/woodsy/clean/masculine/etc. so there is something for everyone.” says Woodwyk. Current scents found in The Waxy Dachshund’s Etsy page include Cranberry Woods, Roasted Coffee Bean, and Country Cabin. Inventory can sell out quickly if a scent is popular, however scents items are monitored and replenished frequently to keep up with demand. Popular fall scents were Pumpkin Chai and Maple Bourbon & Apple while Sugar Cookie and Balsam and Berry look to take over heading into the winter months. 

Candles and melts are made with care by Woodwyk. Initially using a double boiler method, wax is melted and poured into glass containers, or dachshund shaped molds for melts. A recent upgrade to a nine gallon melting tank has allowed for a speedier and more efficient method. While it may sound simple, Woodwyk says this of the process, “It sounds easy, but it is actually quite a challenge to find the right wick, wax, and fragrance oil combination that works. Each oil/wax combo binds differently so they may require different sized wicks to avoid tunneling or giant flames. It truly is a science.”

In addition to melting wax and adding fragrance, the presentation of products is just as important. Glass containers for the candles must be cleaned and labeled, wicks need to be centered when pouring the wax, and finally, candles are placed in individual boxes with paw print paper around them. Woodwyk prides herself in the attention to detail given to each item she makes.

While not the owner of a dachshund, Woodwyk decided to keep the name of the business when she took it over, saying she’s a dog lover and liked the name. She also likes the reminder that dachshunds are smart and even though they are small their look and size does not determine how great they can be.

The Waxy Dachshund can be found on Facebook where business updates are shareed and Etsy where candles and wax melts can be purchased. Use the code “LOCAL” to remove shipping charges and your purchase will be dropped on your doorstep if you’re in the Lowell community. Woodwyk is looking into wholesale options for 2021 so her products can also be displayed and offered in local businesses. She will also be participating in Ada’s Women’s Night Out on December 17th. She will be setting up her pop up shop at Brody’s Be Cafe. The location currently has a selection of candles available for purchase and will remain through the holidays.

Woodwyk loves to connect with the people who purchase her candles (or veggies, eggs, maple syrup, or flowers). She enjoys chatting and hearing other peoples’ stories. “It has been a bummer this year not being able to interact with people as much, but has definitely put that part into perspective for me. I will look forward to doing more events in the future when it is safe to do so.” she reflects. Until then she’s more than happy to chat through online communication to answer questions and get to know her customers. 

Photos courtesty of The Waxy Dachshund and used with permission.

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