Monday, December 10, 2018

Pacifica Grace Studio | Behind The Scenes #1

Since my business launched on November 14th, I’ve been working hard to make candles to order, packing, and shipping them.  The initial orders were from supportive friends and people I know.  Since then I’ve gotten a couple of orders from strangers, but the volume has died down.  It’s pretty difficult to market yourself in a flooded market, with a social media algorithm that doesn’t favor small-time business like mine.  But I press on.  Because it’s fun, for now.  And because I don’t know how to do “retirement” right, as many of my friends have told me, ha ha. 

Today I thought it would be fun to show you some behind the scenes at Pacifica Grace Studio headquarters! 

Part of my start-up cost was finding some appropriate shelving to store my supplies, equipment/tools, and some limited inventory.  Before I got my shelves, I literally had boxes and supplies just everywhere.  That was messy and I couldn’t take it anymore.

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So I ordered some IKEA IVAR shelves.  They are very tall and very sturdy and I absolutely love them.  I almost think they are the best part of running my small business, ha ha.

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I designed the configuration so that the middle part is my packing and shipping station.  It has all the boxes, bubble wrap, tape, labels, etc.  Everything I need to pack and ship.

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The left side contains all my raw meterials to make the candles.  Upper left is my wax melting pot.  All the different sized jars and tins are in the left middle shelves.  The left bottom cabinet with doors has all my wax supplies.  I needed doors on there because that side will get some sun and I didn’t want my soy wax to melt! 

The right side is inventory and staging area.  I have some very limited inventory on hand and they go inside the bottom cabinet with doors in the upper shelf.  Again, doors are needed so when the afternoon sun hits the shelves, my finished candles and wax melts don’t melt!

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Also inside this cabinet are all the fragrance oils and my own special mixes of scents.

I also stage my finished candles on the right side of my shelving.  These are some candles that I made the previous day, but are waiting to cure.  They don’t have labels yet and the wicks aren’t trimmed down yet.

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I also have photo props and staging on the right upper side of the shelving.  I had to buy a bunch of props for product photography and they sit on that shelf and in boxes on the shelves below.  I was even able to take some product photos for social media just right there on the shelf!

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I actually don’t have an area for pre-shipment staging, so I bought a white standing height utility table to use for that. 

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I have been testing new soy wax blends.  I use 100% soy wax but some have certain characteristics versus others.  To get the best of certain characteristics, I’m testing and blending my own mix of soy wax.  I’m also testing new scents to see if I should offer them in the near future.  This one is Cinnamon Bun and made my whole house smell like a Cinnabon!

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I’m also test making bath & body products to give away to friends as Christmas gifts.  So far I’ve made bath bombs…

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Salt scrubs…

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and body lotion.

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I’m giving away sets of these to some of my girlfriends from where I used to work.  I organized a Christmas luncheon next week and I’m doing the party favors!

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They are soooooo cute and I love them.  They smell so good.  But in order to sell them, I will need to figure out the FDA cosmetic labeling requirements first.  Since they are bath & body products they are considered cosmetics and the FDA regulates the labeling on them.  It’s not overly complicated, but of course I would need to comply in order to sell. 

I’m also researching scents and products for Valentine’s (or Galentine’s) Day.  And beyond that I’ve ordered some spring/summer (tropical, floral, ocean, etc.) scents to try out.  I may end up mixing my own too. 

So that’s pretty much behind the scenes at Pacifica Grace Studio right now!  I’m hoping to get some orders this week so they can be made and shipped in time for Christmas!  If you’re still reading and would like to buy some candles or wax melts as gifts, you can still use the code BLOG10 to receive 10% off your order!  Store is here.  I got a lot of orders for the 4 oz tins for teacher gifts!  Something to keep in mind…

And last but certainly not least… Noodle has been camping out under our tree, waiting for Santa Paws already!  So cute!

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