Felicha Brown worked at a major company in Peoria in her dream job, but after six months got fired. A week later she found out she was pregnant, and a week after that found out she was miscarrying. “I was bitter and angry. It was a bad time. I stopped trusting and believing in God. I stopped going to church. I was angry because I didn’t know what was going on. Why would God give me my dream job and take it away? Why would He give me a baby and take it away?” she said. The miscarriage process dragged on for months. In a state of depression, she decided to pray and asked God to give her something to do. “He gave me candles,” she said. Felicha admits she was not a candle person; around her house were the plug-ins. But, around October 2011, she asked her husband, Deaundre, to buy her a candle kit, and he did.
Felicha really liked the chemistry and candle-making process. One day, a couple of her husband’s friends forgot to get their wives Christmas gifts and wanted to know if she could make some candles for them. So she made some melts in cupcake tins, and they loved them. She continued to test different types of candles over the next several years along with the support of her husband. He started out wicking the jars, and now he makes candles.
Originally, the company was called, All About Me. “My husband and I did a “Daniel Fast” and prayed about the name. God told me it’s not about me!” she said. After deciding what they wanted their business to represent, the two did some research; the definitions of “true” and “royalty” led to the name True Royalty Scents, Inc.
One of the challenges they faced in building their business was people’s perception of homemade, which decreased rather than increased the value in some minds. They needed a storefront for credibility. The first storefront was a studio in the Cornerstone Building in downtown Peoria until it closed. The next storefront was in Junction City (2015), where they were the first black-owned business located there. “The year we spent there was an honor. We liked the boutique feel, but we weren’t reaching our target market,” she said. The business relocated to Northwoods Mall in December 2016 and opened in February 2017.
“In addition to recognizing the value customers placed on our products, we have to be open-minded. Literally, it’s not about the business owner and what they want/like. Our products are for hundreds of people. We have to be optimistic. Everybody won’t like your product, and that’s okay.”
The holiday season is coming. Now through December 31st candles may be purchased for 2/$25. Please visit their booth at the Women’s Lifestyle Show in October. The business is also looking to hire. If interested in employment, please call (309)992-0688 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.