This collection is named after the founder's daughter, which we think is both inspiring for her, and lovely and different. The packaging of the candle quartet--called Petit Excursion Candle Quartet is beautiful. There is gold lettering against a black shiny box. There is also a trim design on the box that is reminiscent of Egypt, and, in fact, the scents are based on Yvette Davis Gayle, the founder's, travels. She worked in the music business, traveling widely, and put her experience into scents.
In this box we received are four soy-based candles (retail price $65, although I believe there is an introductory price, a wholesale pricing, and an auto delivery--you will need to clarify details with them). Anyway, the scents are named: Aigyptos and inspired by Africa the scent notes are: amber, sandalwood, musk, vanilla, jasmine, lavender and orange. It also has essential oils...
The others are Blue Nile, Coco Noir and Havana. Havanna, which the founder says is based on fond memoirs of her grandma Etta Francis' pipe, is masculine and reminds me of leather, tobacco, amber, pepper, teak wood and more. In other words, the scents are complicated and intoxicating. If you are always on the lookout for sensuous smells, this is your vendor.
I'm going to follow with some tips I've learned about on her website: First, some information about soy wax and end, with details about smart burning:
Soy wax is vegetable wax made from the oil of soybeans. Soy’s greatest advantage is that it is a renewable resource. The soy used in our candles was likely growing in the ground less than a year ago. Using premium candles made with soy supports US agriculture and farmers. Soy candles burn cleaner and slower, providing anywhere from 30-50% more “burn time” than paraffin candles of the same size. Soy candles also hold their
scent and color better, which means that the fragrance you enjoy from the moment you light your candle will be present throughout its life. Soy wax is water soluble and can be removed with warm water and soap
There are several keys to making sure you get the most out of your favorite candle burn. The first time you burn your candle make sure you have enough time to get a full melt pool (wax melts to the far corners of the jar). It takes about 1 hour per inch in diameter for a container candle. Candle wax has memory. If you end your burning prior to reaching a full melt pool your candle will tunnel the next time it is lit.
Reserve blowing out candles for your birthday cake. Blowing a container candle can push your wick down into the wax. The best way to extinguish your flame is to use a wick dipper. Use the tip to dip the wick into the wax and then pull it out gently and straighten your wick. This accomplishes 2 things. It prevents smoking or sooting and it coats your wick with melted wax to help it stay upright. Coating the wick this way helps the candle re-light easier.
Remember to trim your wick to ¼ inch before your next lighting and burn your candle in a draft free area. Use these tips and I promise you will get the most out of your candle.
And finally, we asked Yvette Gayle how she chose her fragrances and this is her response:
"I knew that I wanted to launch the line with fragrances that represented some of my favorite memories. I created a line of 8 fragrances that were inspired by my family's travels to Ethiopia, Jamaica, Thailand, Egypt, Japan, Italy, Cote D' Ivoire and Houston Texas. I looked for fragrance notes that reminded me of great memories.
Since Sitota was born in Ethiopia I wanted to represent her well and the pure scents of bamboo and wild grasses reminded me of the once luscious Blue Nile Water Falls that give life to the Nile River.
One of my most favorite places on earth is Thailand. I simply love coconut so the marriage of coconut and cassis was perfect. Havana contains notes that is sparked by my husband's Jamaican Heritage. His great grandmother smoked a pipe while his mother picked pimento berries in the field. When I found notes that carried tobacco, pimento berry essential oil, and black tea it was inspiring. My husband used to tell me tales of his grandmother telling stories to all his cousins at her country home in Norway, Jamaica. At night the the kids would look out across the sky and see the lights of Havana, Cuba. This happens to be my husband's favorite.
It was important for me to start the line small, but I loved everything so much that it was hard to choose. It's like asking a mother to choose which child is her favorite. So I developed focus groups and tested the fragrances and launched with the top four choices from all my polling. I continue to try and come up with new ideas. I've been fortunate enough to have traveled to amazing destinations. Right now I'm working on something to commemorate my trip to Mexico and my discovery of great tequila. Agave Nectar only seems fitting."