Niki Munro, House of Rothach
It was her thriftiness that started it all. Niki had always loved having candles around the house. Her mum also had a bit of a candle habit and was always giving Niki her half-burned candles. “I hate throwing things away, so I thought I’d see if I could make some candles out of them,” says Niki. She started melting down old candles and before she knew it, she’d got the bug, ordering wax, wicks and oil online, watching YouTube videos on the basics, experimenting on the kitchen hob. “It’s a bit of a black art”, she says.
Turns out she was pretty good at it and soon she was making them for friends and family. She saw there was a gap in the market. “I’m not a glitzy, sparkly person”, she says. “I wanted to create something a bit simpler, something clean, using better materials and as environmentally friendly as possible. Plus, something that could be recycled. So, in 2018 she made a batch of candles and booked her first event. “I said if I sold some candles there, I’d make a go of it and turn it into a business. And if people thought they were horrible and nobody bought any, I’d stop.” She went to the fair, they sold well, the feedback was great, and the die was cast. So, Niki went for it, buying better equipment and booking events. She recently started doing it full time – before that she was juggling candles with a part time job as a chiropodist and doing admin for an aerospace company. A real doer. She’s just launched her first soaps, an idea she had after creating her own unique fragrances, rural glens, urban parks and country gardens.