As a child, Putnam Valley native Margarethe “Maggie” Flor spent a lot of time with family in Westchester, with some of her favorite memories including trips to Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard in North Salem. Fast forward a couple of decades, the now 30-year-old is using Westchester County as the inspiration for specific scents in her seasonal soy candle company, Mom Made Candle Co.
The former Wall Street event sales exec created the company in 2018 after becoming pregnant with her first child. “I knew shortly after becoming pregnant that the city grind and new motherhood life was not going to work for me. One day when I was commuting from NYC to my home, I was on the phone with my mom asking her what I should do. [My mom knew] candles were always something I loved deeply. She said, ‘Start the candle company, Maggie,’ and that is exactly what I did. I’ve never looked back since.” Flor found in her new business venture a creative outlet that would allow her more time at home to raise her daughter and connect with her roots.
Mom Made Candle Co. sells eco-friendly hand-poured soy candles for $16-$25 apiece. The soy wax allows for a clean burn, and the candles be enjoyed for 50% longer than a traditional paraffin candle. Flor explains that soy candles produce 90% less soot than paraffin candles, which release harmful chemicals when lit. Additionally, purchasing local soy candles support local U.S. farmers, as US. farms are the top producer of soy globally. Custom orders (birthdays, weddings, baby showers, etc.) and bulk orders are also available.
While Mom Made Candle Co. offers soy candles in scents like Vanilla Bean and Milk and Cookies, many in the line pay homage to Flor’s memories of growing up in the Hudson Valley, with candles having cheeky names like “Rise & Grind,” inspired by the smells of Kurzhals Coffee in Peekskill, “Home Team,” a reference to the small hometown feeling Flor felt growing up in the burbs, and “Oh My Gourd,” an ode to fall in Westchester. Flor explains, “It’s always been my favorite [season], from the days of high school football to bonfires, apple picking, and pumpkin picking at Harvest Moon in North Salem…The names are my favorite piece of creating.”
Last year, Flor hosted a class at Peekskill Brewery to teach attendees how to make candles. Flor expects to offer more classes this year and will appear at Westchester farmers’ markets this summer.