In a small village near the Southern-most tip of Africa, one inspired woman, Ilse Appelgryn, started a home-based industry. The year was 1993. Using her grandmother’s recipe, she not only created candles but “art on candles”.
As the industry grew, local men and women trained as artists. Today, 17 years later, 85 well-trained and multi-skilled crafters transform the designs onto candles and individually create each item as a masterpiece of innovation and design. Fair trade principles are applied to create a working environment of positivism and participation by employees. The majority of these artists are single mothers who have mastered this remarkable skill with which they now support their families.
Only imported non-toxic pigments, fully refined wax, and additives of supreme quality are used which distinguish these products from mass produced wares. The spirit of South Africa - a beautiful country in the process of transition and rebirth is reflected in these authentic and original pieces of craftmanship.
The richness of colour, vivaciousness, variety and wide spectrum of abundance in the African landscape influenced Ilse’s profound love of design and colour, which expressed life onto the unique background of handcrafted candles. The character of the South African country has been the source of the multitude of designs that appeal to so many consumers worldwide.
In 2010, two women who used to live in this village in South Africa and knew the candlemakers, decided to link up with the factory to bring these amazing hand-painted candles to the UK. Firesticks Limited was thus born with Philippa and Tiana at the helm.
Firesticks supplies candles to the public via their e-commerce shop and also supplies directly to trade customers (shops and event organising companies).
About our candles:
· Each candle is hand-painted in hot wax, creating a masterpiece of art on candles
· All our candles are non-scented, so if you or your guests have allergies, you can still enjoy the beauty of burning a candle
· The candles burn down centrally, so the wax does not spill over the sides
· As the candle burns down, the colours and designs are illuminated from the inside, creating an effect similar to a stained-glass window
· All our candles have very long burn times
· Each candle is a unique art-work – no two candles are ever exactly the same
· All our candles are created on fair trade principals
May these works of art inspire the end user to contribute to the promise of a rising continent and spread the warmth of light into homes worldwide.