GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WOOD) — A pour-your-own candle shop in Holland is expanding to Grand Haven.
“We expect a lot of foot traffic outside,” Sabastian Garsnett, a co-founder of Garsnett Beacon Candle Co., said. “We’re excited to meet a lot of the community and have them come in and just see the space and book something for in the future. … We’re definitely excited and ready to get open here.”
The shop will be doing giveaways throughout the weekend to celebrate.
Customers who stop in to pour their own candle can chose from around 100 scents. People typically pick two to three scents for their blend and then pick from several different containers to put the candle in, co-founder Chad Garsnett explained.
The process typically takes around 30 to 45 minutes.
Once the candle is done, it needs to set for about an hour and a half to two hours. The Garsnetts encourage people to take that time to check out other local businesses.
“It’s a good time to go shopping, check out some other shops here in Grand Haven. … It’s a good time to do dinner if you want to do that or drinks, and you can come back and pick it up,” Chad Garsnett said.
The shop is always changing out its scents and adding vessels, so customers can make a different candle each time.
Reservations are available every hour on the hour, and they also accept walk-ins if there’s room.
The couple said people love the experience.
“They get really excited about the scent options,” Chad Garsnett said. “Scent is so tied to memory that sometimes someone will just have a memory come up that was a great time in their life. And so then they’re drawn to making that as a focus of their candle. Or when you come in with friends and family, it’s a great time to create a new memory with the scent that you pick.”
The shop also has a couple of collections of already-made candles, including seasonal collections, and candles based on cities and states. It also has a LGBTQ collection called ‘Out Loud Candles,’ which donates $1 from each candle sold to either the Trevor Project or a local organization.
“We are really big on giving back to the community, so we host fundraisers all the time. Almost monthly, we have another big group in here for a fundraising event. In the past year, we were able to support over 35 organizations through donations and sponsorships,” Sabastian Garsnett said.
The business has also partnered with West Michigan corporations to make private candle collections, and the Garsnett Beacon Candle Co. storefront in Grand Haven offers items from other local businesses.
Sabastian and Chad Garsnett met when they were living in Indianapolis. They moved to Michigan about two and a half years ago and were both working from home. Sabastian worked in podcast management, while Chad worked in real estate.
“I loved my job. He hated his job,” Sabastian Garsnett said. “He’s a creative person, so he wanted to do something creative. And then I’ve always had the entrepreneurial spirit, so taking his creative side and opening our own business was really the goal for us.”
Chad Garsnett said he’s always liked candles and creating his own scent combinations. He worked on testing and scent combinations for about 18 months, and then they opened up an online shop.
They got good feedback from that and soon started selling their candles at markets throughout West Michigan.
“We started to get a little bit of a following,” Sabastian Garsnett explained. “So when there was a place open in Holland that we thought would be a good size and a good fit for us, we took that leap.”
As they started looking to expand, they had their eye on Grand Haven: They loved the community feel of the city and enjoy spending time there.
When the storefront on Washington Avenue opened up — in a spot with lots of foot traffic — they jumped on it. The store has been completely remodeled, with plenty of space for people to stop by to pour their own candles with friends, for a date night or with a group.
Like Holland, Grand Haven is a beach town, so they said people have been excited to have another fun option for something to do during the colder months — their busiest months are November and December.
Helping customers through the experience is what Chad Garsnett loves about the business.
“The experience of the pour your own is really where I just thrive,” Chad Garsnett said. “Helping people really decide on scents and really come up with a combination that’s something that they love is really the biggest motivation for me. I just love interacting with people and being involved in the communities that we’re in now. So we’re excited to expand that to Grand Haven.”