H&B creates handmade candles and natural self-care products in Cincinnati, Ohio! We interviewed owner, Gabrielle, about her local business. Meet H&B at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!
Tell us about your business.
When I started H&B back in January when I was at a very vulnerable place in my life. Before starting this business I worked in a hospital as an RN working 12 hour shifts, and it was hard. Being a floor RN is not only physically draining, it is also emotionally draining. After working on a high paced oncology unit I started to realize that I was not enjoying life any more, I had lost weight, was experiencing chronic pain, and over all exhaustion. I went on medical leave and started the healing process.
Once my medical leave was over I had this overwhelming anxiety surrounding returning to work, at that point I felt it was best for my health and well-being to leave that job and pursue a different path. I turned to Pinterest for ideas. I stumbled upon a DIY for candle making and it peaked my interest. I quickly ordered all of the supplies I would need and there in my studio apartment I made my first candles. I loved the process! So I made a bunch of candles and took them to my family to see if they thought they were any good. They loved them! So right then and there I decided to start my own business.
I soon discovered I didn’t want to just sell candles; I wanted to have a larger purpose so once again I turned to Pinterest and once again Pinterest delivered. I found the DIY beauty category. So in January 2017, I launched H&B as a business that makes self care products. My first priority is to deliver quality natural self care products! There is so much thought that goes into each and every product to ensure its safety and quality. My goal is to create products that allow people to practice self-care from the comfort of their homes, and feel a little more restored after each use.
What drew you to your craft?
As a young child I loved making “concoctions” (as my parents called them). I would turn my bathroom sink into a bowl and fill it with mixtures of whatever body products I happened to have underneath my sink at the time. So when I decided to start this business I thought it was very fitting
What is your favorite thing you have ever made?
My favorite thing that I have ever made is my candle. I was the person who would never leave target without a candle in hand. So now that I get to scent my own candles I burn them all over the house! Every room has a candle!
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a chef. And this dream of mine has not died! I still want to go to culinary school even if it is just to improve my cooking skills at home.
What is your creative process?
There is a lot of trial and error. I usually try and hone in on what kind of scent/product I want to make and then make 2-3 variations of the scent/product. After testers are made I have people test them and give me feedback ( I also partake in the testing) Then I fine tune the recipes. After the product is finalized I design the labels and make sure that all of the details are near perfect!
What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?
Never settle for less than what makes you happy.
Why is it important to support local artists & makers?
I think it is so very important to support local artists and makers because they are the people who care. Makers care about their community. There is a passion that drives makers that larger corporations don’t have. It is a passion to better their community through what they do, as only local makers can.
Why do you love doing what you do?
I love H&B because it gives my life purpose. A purpose that can help any one of any age to achieve peace and comfort in their lives.
What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?
You can do this! I don’t know how many times I say this simple phrase.
Meet H&B at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!