Wax + Wick Workshop: Circular Economy Pioneers

by Hanna Pumfrey

As a new home owner and budding minimalist, furnishing my new home has felt like a conflict of interests at times. I want it to be homely, I know there are certain items that are a necessity but my minimalist mind says stop, keep this free space here and there. Do not clutter!

So, when I came across Wax + Wick I was immediately in love. Wax + Wick workshop was created from the love of simple design and natural living. Their products have sustainability at heart and contribute to the circular economy; raising awareness of the importance of reusing, reducing waste and recycling where possible. They are also impossibly simple in design; the perfect addition to any sustainable and minimalist home.

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I’ve been trying out their Green Tea + Almond candle for the last few weeks and I can honestly say, a candle does make a home. These vegan- friendly candles are hand poured locally using only two ingredients: natural oils and soy wax (hello no hidden parabens, artificial scents and other nasties). The candles begin their journey in the pubs of North London where the Wax + Wick team source empty wine bottles and re purpose as candle jars, making the production of these candles zero waste.

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to catch up with Nicole, founder of Wax + Wick Workshop to find out more about the brand’s ethos, as well as what’s next for them.

Tell me a bit about you

I'm originally from Copenhagen, lived in the US growing up and have lived in London for the past 6 years with my partner and two little dogs (Alfie & Mimi - who you may have seen on our Instagram stories always causing chaos!). When I'm not making candles, I run a sustainability consultancy that works with organisations to achieve a more sustainable and ethical supply chain, as well as advising on how to incorporate a circular economy into business strategy. In my free time (which rarely happens!) I love to escape to the countryside with my little dogs and boyfriend. My ideal Sunday would have to be a leisurely brunch followed by a long afternoon walk in the countryside and cozying up with a good movie and of course a lit candle. 


What was the inspiration for Wax + Wick?

After finishing my environmental science degree, I was determined to use everything I learned and put it into practice with my own business - the sustainability consultancy. Earlier this year, I decided to put my creative skills to use and start W + W. The more research I did into waste management I got more and more overwhelmed by the scale of it all and how distant a realistic solution would be. I decided to take matters into my own hands and make some sort of difference in my local community by taking all the glass bottles in my area and producing something from them. 

What does the future look like for Wax + Wick?

The amount of positive feedback and support we’ve had over the last 4 months since we started has been unreal. We now have over 10 stockists all over the UK and EU. It’s been many sleepless nights and manic post office runs to get to this point, so I am only super excited to see where we will all be after a year of operating. We have added amazing individuals to come and be a part of W + W. The thought of expanding our team even more is super exciting. We are working on hosting candle workshops in the coming months and we're hoping to make them a bit more regular next year. Hopefully, we will eventually have a store of our own for us to interact with our customers, host workshops and most importantly get more people excited about the circular economy movement! 

What is your take on the disposable nature of our consumption today?

When I first told my friends and family I was going to make candles from old bottles - their face was priceless. This is exactly what drives me to push W + W to its fullest potential, so that eventually, having reused and re purposed products on retailer's shelves becomes the norm and there won't be a need to pull any faces! I understand that in the larger scale a few glass bottles won't make much of a difference. However, I am all about creating a conversation and when you start seeing more and more reused, recycled and re purposed products on the market it will create a conversation and hopefully will inspire other companies and industries to do the same. 

If you could say one thing to the CEO's of retailers on the British High Street what would it be?

It would have to be - what will it take for retailers to abandon the dated way of thinking (linear economy) and adopt the modern way of thinking that incorporates environmental, social and economic aspects into a circular economy? 

Thank you so much for talking to us Nicole. couldn’t agree more that it is all about creating conversations and making the concept of a circular economy the norm rather than the exception!

Today Wax + Wick are launching their new line of sustainably produced espresso cups, shop them and their full product range here. Get 30% off all purchases at Wax + Wick until the end of July using the code FLORANDCESTA30 at check out!

*Please note the product reviewed in this article was kindly sent to me free of cost by Wax + Wick Workshop.