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LMM Magazine

Artist Spotlight: Southern Lights Candles Handcrafting Radiant Home Decor

by Carolyn Heneghan 01 Feb 2023

southern lights candles

“Here in New Orleans, I think our community kind of drives me and gives me my fuel to create new and fun things,” said Alicia Windstein, founder of Southern Lights Candles based in Destrehan, Louisiana. “I want to be different all the time. I don't want the same old candle that you can see on the store shelf in every store you go into. I want it to be different, artistic-looking.”

From the 504 Neighborhood Candles collection to Krewe Candles in time for the Carnival season, Southern Lights’ candles bring together subtle, classic home décor design and fragrances with distinctive elements of New Orleans and Louisiana culture.

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After working in various jobs and industries, including education and a family-owned jewelry business, founder Alicia Windstein began to feel her inner artist beckoning to her for a steady outlet.

“I was looking for something to express my creative flair and I’ve always loved candles," said Alicia. "I started making candles as a hobby and quickly realized this was my passion." 

“I've always believed that you have to have passion for what you do or it's not going to be good,” she continued. “So that's kind of my philosophy.”

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With passion and a “true family business” ethos, Alicia has infused candle-making with her love of family, home, and community. The products found in Southern Lights’ repertoire of candles reflect that distinct blend of creative inspiration and being handcrafted with love.

“My parents have both helped me grow this business from day one – they work with me, they pour candles with me, they package candles with me, they deliver candles for me,” said Alicia. “So they've been doing this journey with me from the beginning. It's a true family business, and we still do everything by hand.”

That handcrafted and heartfelt approach to her artistic creations also reflects on Alicia's own heart-centered approach to life. Southern Lights' candles embody the inner light that radiates out through its founder's handmade creations, her relationships, and her devotion to the local community.

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Southern Lights Candles continues to expand its array of candles, from new colors and fragrance themes to more artistic vessels that hold the candles themselves. Beyond traditional glass cylinders, the candleholders from Southern Lights can become unique home décor pieces even after the candle has burned through to the end of its cotton wick.

“Most of my vessels can be repurposed for putting in little plants, or some of the smaller ones can hold succulents in them,” said Alicia. “Why throw away 6 million candle jars a year? When it's just a glass jar that nobody wants to reuse, they just throw it away. Or, these can be repurposed and reused. We already have enough waste in our world.”

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And it was that New Orleans community feel and Alicia's thoughtful designs that drew the attention of Little Miss Muffin, which began carrying Southern Lights’ products in store and online. Alicia credits this relationship with the expansion of the Southern Lights line of products and reach for the brand.

The two local businesses continue to collaborate on home décor and holiday candle options, bringing the light and handcrafted loved of New Orleans to homes locally and beyond.

View more from Southern Lights Candles



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