Local shop known for its unusual scents

Becky Hesson of Simths Grove is one of two employees who work at Candle Makers located on the square. Hesson, who was a diesel automotive technology major in college, says she enjoys working in the candle business because she “smells a lot better when I come home and my hands are clean and not greasy and grimy. I don’t even have to wear perfume anymore.”

Cristen Friddell

This year’s midterm election might be over, but Candle Makers on the Square is still taking votes – for a new candle scent.

Customers are encouraged to vote for the new candle fragrance they want the store to keep as a regular item on the shelf.

Chocolate-covered cherry, chocolate-covered orange and chocolate-covered strawberry are the choices.

All candles sold in the store are hand- made, said manager Sara Fort.

The store also sells lotions and soaps that are made to match the scents of the candles, said Becky Hesson, an employee at the store.

“We make it all here,” she said, gesturing around the store.

The main focus for Candle Makers is the scent, said owner Michael Barron.

“We couldn’t put any more fragrance in these candles,” he said.

Fort said the store uses 10 percent fragrance in their candles, which is about six times more than their competition, The Yankee Candle Company.

“You have to smell the lids to get the true scent,” Hesson said as she sniffed the lid of a vanilla cinnamon candle. “That’s what it’s going to smell like when you burn it.”

She said the shop also offers refills for 60 cents an ounce, but they don’t just refill jars.

“We will fill anything that will hold a candle,” Hesson said.

She said the store has filled mugs, flour containers and even coffee pots before.

Hesson said it takes two days to complete a candle.

She said Candle Makers makes its candles special so that the scent is enhanced, and the burn time is longer.

One of the keys to making a longer-lasting candle is hard wax, Fort said.

Another key is having a proper temperature burning wick according to the size of the candle, Hesson said.

Some of the candles in the shop will burn for up to 180 hours, she said.

Barron said he was surprised, in the beginning, at the amount of research and experimentation that goes into candle making.

“We have to test burn everything,” he said.

Barron bought the shop in January from the original owner, Judy Stephens.

About five months ago, he relocated from 433 Park Row to a larger shop at 417 Park Row.

Hesson said local businesses have taken notice of the shop’s unique candles.

Restaurants and shops such as Mariah’s, Garden Patch in Smiths Grove and Gigi’s Apparel in Owensboro have bought candles to burn at their locations, she said.

Hesson said the National Corvette Museum has also used the store’s filling service to fill mugs, wineglasses and shot glasses to sell at their gift store.

Prices for jar candles at the shop range from about $7.50 to $22. Business hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.