The Mewstone Candle Company joined Kingsbridge High Street on Monday, October 23, with the opening of their brand new shop. 

Carys Wheatland-Jukes and her wife and business partner Debs started their home fragrance company six years ago. 

Carys said: “We’d been working, supplying forty or forty-five shops across the UK with our products and we finally decided it was about time we started our own shop.

“We knew the guys that previously had this shop, The General Store, and they offered us a really lovely opportunity. So we got the keys this Saturday and opened this Monday.”

Carys and Debs, who are based in Modbury, had a workshop and studio in Ermington, with a small shop within, but  industrial estate location meant footfall was low. They have had an overwhelmingly positive response from the local community and fellow business owners since setting up in Kingsbridge. 

“The reason we like Kingsbrigde is there’s a real buzz and the people are really friendly. Most of the traders have been in to see us, the town council has been really supportive. Everyone’s just really rooting for us, and I think because its quite an independent high street its a lovely location. 

“Traders from top to bottom have been in to say hi. We’ve had coffees bought for us. Everyone’s been so welcoming.

“I wasn’t massively familiar with Kingsbridge, but I always kind of knew if we were going to do something it would be here, and the first week’s been awesome.”

They started the company after Cary’s mother passed away: “I lost my mum seven years ago and she was always massively creative, always into crafts and making, and always encouraging me to kind of do something (similar). I went down the corporate route and was just miserable, and then one day we were clearing out the loft and found this candle making kit that she’d bought me for Christmas a few years before.”

Carys was going to give the kit away, but her friend encouraged her to do something with it, and make the candles.

She said: “We made some candles and they were rubbish, they just didn’t work at all. (But) because it was a challenge, we thought we’d keep playing, keep trying, and it took us about a year to get to a point where we were confident with our product.”

The branding is also based around Cary’s mother, using inspiration from the colourful stripes she would wear, the views from Noss mayo where Carys grew up, and her mother’s favourite book, Jonathan Livingston’s Seagull:

“Mum’s encapsulated in everything we do, even though she wasn’t here when we started it. And I think from day one we thought we’re just going to enjoy it. I gave up my sensible job four years ago, and kind of thought just be happy and hopefully make products that make a smile.

“We’ve continued to evolve. We keep adding new products. We make a range of home fragrance products, a range of candles. We have all-year-round candles and a Christmas range; we make those using plant-only waxes. All of the fragrances we use are paraffin and phallic free, vegan friendly and cruelty free, which is really important to us. We make room mists, which are great to spritz around the house, we’ve just relaunched our reed diffusers, and we’ve got a wide range of wax melts as  well. We’ve (also) got more candle ranges to come next year.”

The Mewstone Candle Company are located at 20 Fore Street if you’d like to pop in and take a look.