I’m so excited to announce the official launch of the Avilésor candle!
This collaboration with Harmony Todd, the founder and candlesmith behind Old Soul Artisan, has been several months in the works. A little about the company:
We read books with all of our senses and feel their imprint upon our soul. Book lovers can frequently recall when they first read their favorite novel and what was happening in their life that made them resonate so much with it. Most of us have nostalgic memories of what music we listened to or candle fragrance we burned as we got carried away in the books we love.
I established Old Soul Artisan in 2014 and have slowly evolved it into what it is today by taking inspiration from my past . . . I’ve read countless books accompanied by the flame and fragrances that I’ve created. It is an enchanting experience I want to share with you. Each scent that I develop is inspired by a literary character or theme that resonates on a deep, and sometimes dark and visceral, level. It is within this dark sphere that my that creativity thrives . . . Old Soul Artisan is more than a candle company. These products, quite literally, have stories behind them. They are meant to be reading companions and conversation starters.
~ Harmony Todd
I first encountered Old Soul Artisan last year with a birthday gift. Who would have guessed that single candle would lead to this? I immediately fell in love with the aesthetic, and after Book I in the Chronicles of Avilesor: War of the Realms series was published, the candle frequently found its way into the book photography I featured on Instagram. I inadvertently became known as the “author with the black feathers” and quickly embraced the title, so the raven wax seal on the lid of my Book of Spells candle fit perfectly.
Before long, Harmony and I were regularly interacting with each other on social media as I tagged her in my photos and she reshared on her own pages. When my publicist and copy editor, Kayla M. Ware, came up with the idea to approach a candle company for a collaboration, Old Soul Artisan was the first (and to be honest, only) one on my list.
This was a company I already knew produced a great product and had strong interaction on social media. I loved the care and attention to detail that went into the candles. When Kayla contacted the company on my behalf, Harmony responded with interest in the project, and I sent her the full bookstagram package of A Fallen Hero, including an autographed paperback, a bookmark, the complete set of collectible Book I pins, a handwritten letter with burned edges, a black feather, and an envelope wax-sealed with my logo and instructions not to open until after she’d finished reading the book.
To my joy and relief, Harmony loved the book, and the collaboration was set in motion!
I had no interest in dictating the nuances of the fragrance itself, giving Harmony free creative control with the only request that the scent be “earthy like a forest, but clean and crisp, not musty.” I desired a Lothlórienesque feel, but scent-blending is not my strong suit, and I wanted this to be a true collaboration with Harmony’s own talents shining through as opposed to this simply being a commission project. It was important to me that this candle, although inspired by my book series, still be an Old Soul Artisan original and be at home in Harmony’s Dark Lit Collection.
Harmony’s solution to achieve this unique fragrance was a careful blend of cedar, green leaf, and apple with a hint of chrysanthemum to add light floral tones. She sent me a sample to test, and I gave her the green light to move forward with production.
While I yielded her the reins on the scent itself, she handed control over the candle name and website copy to me, and we finalized the graphic design of the jar label and shipping insert that discussed our partnership. Unfortunately, just as the project was being set into motion, COVID-19 started to spread across the US, and the outsourced label production ground to a temporary halt, forcing us to pause.
When I finally received the first batch of candles, I immediately set to work on product photography for the Old Soul Artisan website. See my unboxing video for the first look at the product:
With Harmony’s candle now ready for production and my written description and product photography featured on her website, we’re finally ready to share the product of our collaboration—Avilesor (Mystical Forest)!
Why did I choose Old Soul Artisan to bring Avilésor to life? What makes this candle unique from others on the market?
► Harmony’s products are 100% vegan and perfectly scented with essential oil and perfume oil blends. They don’t contain dyes, parabens, phthalates, or other toxins. It’s a clean, long-lasting burn without any harmful additives.
► The candles are hand-blended in small batches with simple ingredients of natural soy wax, cotton wick, premium fragrances, and a touch of magic. There’s care, quality, and pride in every element of every candle.
► The 4oz and 9oz candles are packaged in a cute gift box, whether you’re treating yourself or passing along as a present! The level of care in these products is evident in everything from the candle itself, to the wax seal on the lid, to the packaging it’s presented in.
This collaboration has been so much fun, and I hope you love what Harmony and I have created together! Purchasing the Avilésor (Mystical Forest) candle supports:
► A small business. This is so important, especially with all the turmoil going on in the world right now. From the company’s website:
Old Soul Artisan began as a one-woman show. From scent development and acquiring raw materials, to hand pouring each candle and packing orders, to customer service and beyond I did it all myself in a small studio in Trenton, New Jersey. In 2019 Old Soul Artisan expanded to a small team of three with two part-time employees helping with labeling, packing orders, and administrative work.
► Wolf conservation. For every website order, Old Soul Artisan donates a dollar to wolf conservation efforts. (Wesly Cooper approves! One more reason why I love this company and felt it tied in so well with the book series. Ravens and wolves . . . a perfect representation of the Chronicles of Avilésor!) You can learn more about the donations here.
► An indie author. I’ve already had fans reach out to inquire if they’re supporting me by ordering online as opposed to purchasing the candles directly from me. The answer is yes! I appreciate the concern and can assure you that buying directly from Old Soul Artisan still supports me, as I do earn commission on those sales. I have a small supply of candles available for select book signings, but I’m not currently able to schedule any events due to COVID-19 at this time. Please reach out to me if you’re local and prefer to purchase directly from me so we can coordinate a delivery or pick-up. If your order needs to be shipped, please place it through Old Soul Artisan’s website, and Harmony will ensure it’s packaged with care and sent to you!
WOTR fans are in for a special treat! You can use the promo code PHANTOM to take 15% off an Avilésor candle, just in time for the release of Book II: Phantom’s Mask (coming very soon)!
The candle description from the website:
“Don’t think of the barrier between Realms as a wall; it’s more of a curtain. And curtains wear thin in places. Tears come and go because the curtain seems to be able to mend itself. Moonlight has an adverse effect on the curtain; it’s thinner when the moon is full. It also seems to consistently demonstrate an annual cycle, thickest in the spring and almost veil-like come fall. Combine that with a full October moon? There’s a reason that’s such a spooky month. Lots of Tears, and lots of weirdness in this Realm.”
– Wesly Cooper, Chronicles of Avilésor: War of the Realms Book I: A Fallen Hero
Wander the ancient and mysterious forests of the Ghost Realm.
The Chronicles of Avilésor series by author Sara A. Noë presents the Realms of existence as layers. Avilésor, the Ghost Realm, is the layer between our world and the afterlife where mortals, spirits, supernatural beings, and creatures we believed to be extinct can coexist. The barrier between our worlds occasionally tears, and we can see glimpses into Avilésor—a mirage on a road, a shadow that seems out of place, a trick of the eyes under a full moon.
Much like the Realms, the fragrance is layered to provide a full-bodied and sophisticated aroma that will take you on a journey. A woody base of cedar will have you walking through sacred forests older than humankind while crisp notes of apple and green leaf in the canopy lighten the earthy undertones. A subtle hint of chrysanthemum adds a faint floral aroma to the breeze stirring between the trees. The mystical Realm of Avilésor is sure to come alive in your home and bring a little magic into your life. A supernatural world of folklore and fantasy is waiting for you to light the candle . . . at your own risk.
A huge thanks to Kayla, who gifted me my first Old Soul Artisan candle, and to Harmony! One more landmark on the journey, and what a thrilling step forward it is!