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WDC | SAMANTHA THOMPSON

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Samantha Thompson, owner & candle maker of stellar candle company, Standard Wax, is all about bringing art into your everyday. Inspired by the erratic landscape of the desert and the beautiful treks through the forests of Arizona (yes, they have some), this little powerhouse & her wonderful business partner Andrew, are forces to be reckoned with. The savvy business gal behind the brand, Samantha has unstoppable wit, crazy fun charm, and killer personal style. Get to what it means to run a creative company well, plus what personal style means to this bombshell!

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Full  name: Samantha Thompson

Age: 28

Location: Tempe, AZ

Current title/company: Owner + Candle Maker, Standard Wax

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How long have you been a full-time Creative?

Standard Wax started about three years ago, but I went truly full-time (as in quit my day job) eight months ago. Up until then, I was a double-time creative! It’s been so liberating, since I can focus all of my time on one thing that I love, instead of basically working two (more than) full-time jobs.

What is your day-to-day work routine like?

Haha! It doesn’t exist. I’m not a very routine-driven person. I know a lot of people with non-traditional jobs find it important to have a routine, a schedule and create a normal day-to-day, but not me! I know what needs to get done, when it needs to be done by, and love that I can work at my own pace. Sometimes I’ll be up at 5 a.m. working on emails or budgets or accounting in my pajamas, and realize at 5 p.m. that I’m still in PJs and forgot to take breaks to eat. Other days call for inspiration and spontaneous afternoon adventures. And sometimes I simply make candles from 9-5. I think it’s important to be flexible and do what makes you most productive, even if what’s going to make you productive that day isn’t what some think of as “real work”.

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Best part about being a business owner?

The community. There are a lot things that are awesome about owning a business, but you’ve probably heard them all. What I had no idea about are the amazing opportunities to meet other people in different fields, who all want to collaborate. I’ve met some of the greatest people at events, workshops and even on the Internet, all because of Standard Wax.

What is some advice you wish you would have had before you got started?

To be patient. Things are going to happen that you don’t understand, or don’t like, but having the patience to wait out those hard/weird/confusing/stressful times is so important. Instead of getting frustrated, just know that the clarity will always come. And when it does, you suddenly see why these things that weren’t so great had to happen.

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What is the key to making a foolproof, creative, yet professional outfit?

For me, it’s all about comfort. You have to be comfortable to be confident, and if you’re confident you can almost wear whatever you want. I love outfits that are super versatile. Some days I will make candles, go to a meeting, and then go on a spontaneous adventure into the desert – and I love that I can wear the same outfit to all three! I live in leggings, for this reason. My key to creating the perfect outfit is accessories. Hats, jackets, jewelry. You can dress up leggings, pull together skinny jeans and a t-shirt, or give the same outfit you wore three days ago (it happens, no shame) a new life.

Any tips for having a well-balanced closet?

Solids and accessories. Call me boring (I like to call it classic) but I wear skinny pants of some sort and a plain shirt almost every day. Sometimes maybe it’s a simple dress. These things almost never go out of style, so you can spend money on quality items and keep them around! As trends change, I just re-evaluate my accessory situation. Shoes, bags, jackets, hats (hats are the best), jewelry… These are the things that make the outfit for me.

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A TASTING WITH #GIRLBOSS NORA OF GREAT BEAN CHOCOLATE

IMG_1433Candice here, and for the past few months, I’ve spilled business secrets and landed interviews with one stellar #GIRLBOSS after another.  But next week, I’m launching a column about an interest I’ve been growing and cultivating over the past 3 years: INTERIORS!! Starting next Monday I’ll head up the interiors column at Laurenkelp.com.  You can expect house tours, DIYs, and interviews specific to making spaces.

Until then, let me share with you my very last business post – and it’s a sweet one!  As you know, I could talk all day about women in charge but today I am so excited to introduce Nora, founder of Great Bean Chocolate.  She invited some friends and me over for a tasting of her delicious concoctions and taught us about the insane amount of age-battling antioxidants, brain-boosting chemicals, and body-loving minerals found naturally in chocolate.  Scroll through for the secrets of each bar as well as the details that made the morning special.

IMG_1279The girls arrived to a gorgeous table set with each of Great Bean’s flavors and settled into meet each other before the tasting began. Each place was set with festive linens, sparkling water for a palate cleanser, and a little pad to record flavor notes.

First table settingsOpening Journals

As Nora passed around the first chocolate bar flavor, we opened our note books and recorded what we observed in the chocolate – taste, texture, and smell.  The first taste had a more granular texture, which comes from organic coconut palm sugar.

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Nora self describes as a life long ‘chocoholic’ and not too long ago, she began uncovering the health benefits of cacao.  From there, she paired the beans with herbs and minerals that highlighted the beans’ natural health benefits.

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Kat’s favorite was the LOVE bar!  Did you know that the same chemicals in our bodies that spur feelings of enthusiasm and attraction are also found in chocolate?  Nora said they added two aphrodisiacs – figs and cinnamon – with some hormone balancing herbs and voila!  The LOVE bar was born.

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IMG_1505Nora moved on to teach us about the ENERGY bar, which is bursting with coffee beans as well as herbs that will pep you up without the crash later.

last shotsThank you again, Nora, for introducing us to the most healthy, delicious chocolate we’ve ever tasted.  Want to try this at home?  Find Great Bean here!


 Lovely photos by Kim Jones

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