Now Available, Pollen Arts Candles! These beautiful handcrafted, organic candles, are locally crafted in Flagstaff, AZ by good friends of ChocolaTree.
"We weren't planning on making candles, but sometimes life's adventures find you. One day, while we were exploring a new town we'd just moved to, we came upon a little beach cove that would change our lives."
Pollen Arts Bio:
Aloha! We’re Peter and Juwels — husband and wife, creative partners, and above all, best friends. When we met, Juwels was a competitive skateboarder. She was sponsored by some pretty huge companies, appeared in magazines and flew overseas for photo shoots. In 2006, Juwels and I published a novel to great reviews. It briefly became required reading and then a banned book at a Los Angeles public school. We’ve had many creative projects over the years, but our most recent offering is a line of antique bottle-shaped beeswax candles. Now we make candles on our tiny stove in our big red honey pot.
About three years ago, Juwels and I left our fancy top-story loft and moved into a 1975 Winnebago Chieftain. We bought “Miss Winnie” and immediately received a lot of dubious looks from family and friends when we announced our plan to simplify our lives and expand our horizons. There was a lot to be sacrificed, no doubt, but I was taken by the idea, and continued to nibble away at her conventions. The idea of being able to travel easily finally won over Juwels, and we first exercised that freedom when we flew across the Pacific to enjoy our four-month honeymoon in Southeast Asia.
We’ve recently discovered an abandoned horse ranch near our studio. It’s a wonderland of wild edible plants, tree frogs, butterflies, raccoons, flamboyant skunks, and about a million feral cats and song birds. The footpaths of this forgotten ranch have become our local escape these days, but other pleasures include going to the hot springs to give the old birthday suits a soak, having friends over and spending the night making food, telling stories, creating new recipes, thrift store hopping, people watching, bargaining massages out of each other, researching child prodigies, sliding across our bamboo floors in our warmest pair of socks, being nostalgic about whatever season we just left, and all sorts of other things which keep us young and deepen the smile lines below our eyes. It’s a lot of work, but we’re like two friends in the same class, sneaking our little moments and passing notes all day long.
Our inspiration comes from the great delight that we get from sharing. Whether it’s a new type of food, a piece of music, or a special tint in the sky, the instinct is always to nudge the person next to you and say, “Check it out!”. Creating things is just a wider reaching nudge.
Also, we’re always inspired by a good cause, and with this project in particular, there’s such a great opportunity for environmental and health progress. Most candles are made from chemical paraffin, a byproduct of petroleum. But honey bees produce an organic, smokeless, ionizing, sweet smelling fuel. It burns longer and brighter than any other wax, and these days with millions of bees falling victim to Colony Collapse Disorder, it’s very important to employ as many bees as possible. They say that we vote with our dollar, so vote for our buzzing bee boys!
Handmade is the cliff swallow, building a mud nest on a wall where vertical meets upside down. It’s about finding the patience to slow down and accept the pace at which one person can progress through many detailed steps. It’s the power that we all have to bring something into existence that just moments before was a fleeting thought or curiosity.
Today, with the success of Etsy, and the buzz of our new business steadily growing, we moved out of Los Angeles and up into the mountains of Arizona where we work & play full time w/ Pollen Arts. We now have a candle studio on land where we are able to adopt furry and feathered friends : ) We have a flock of beautiful chickens running around our yard, and we hike and camp with our two sweet nubian goats, chia & ezzie. Last year, our dream of becoming beekeepers came true and we now have about twenty hives : ) And the best news yet is that we just had our first baby girl !!! Life is grand !!