For candle maker Jessica Whitfield, the influences of her grandmother shaped her passion for crafting.
“My grandmother told me I needed to start doing something constructive because I had too much time on my hands," Whitfield said. "She was exactly right, so she took it upon herself to show me.
Whitfield, owner of Jessie’s Scented Candles and Gifts, marked her ninth year anniversary of her business this month. She has been making scented candles for events such as the Cooper-Young Festival and also began selling them on various online websites such as eBay and Etsy.
Whitfield began making candles at the age of 16 as a hobby. Her grandmother, who was taught by her mother, taught her how to make them.
After her grandmother’s death, Whitfield started making candles all the time just to keep busy.
“It was not until people started offering money did I begin to sell them,” she explained, adding that the candles cost $5 each.