Chad and Kayla Roslan just may have found their niche. The United States Navy veterans turned entrepreneurs are both the brains and the humor behind Sparks Fly Candle Co.
It’s a company they began shortly following Kayla’s separation from service and a few months following the birth of their son.
“So when my son was born, the world shut down and we had nothing to do and really no ways to make an income,” Kayla Roslan said, noting that while her husband remained enlisted through July of 2021, she remained in their Washington home with their new baby and no outlet, be it employment or education.
“We wanted something we could do as a hobby for the two of us, so we started making candles,” Roslan continued. “We were really, really good at it and our family loved it. My husband is really good at graphic design, so we wanted to figure out how to bring a little bit of joy to the world because we were so shut down and everything seemed so gloomy.”
Fast forward to August 2021 and the Roslans found themselves relocated to Oakdale, as Chad accepted a job with Ball Metal, and Kayla, an Enochs High 2012 alum, desired returning to the Valley and being close to family.
“We chose to come home, all of our family’s here, I’m from here and my son (two-year-old James) was very alone out there,” Roslan said of the move from Washington.
Now calling Oakdale home, the family has set up their ‘sassy’ candle making production in the tandem third car garage of their new home.
“Our logo is sassy candles, for sassy people, that’s kind of our motto,” Roslan said of Sparks Fly Candle Co.
The “sassy” she speaks of are the candle names and descriptions which are accompanied by specific scents, which might prompt one to make the connection. Examples of their creativity with candles like: Coffee; “Because hating your job should come with enthusiasm,” or Outdoorsy; “Smells like drinking wine out on the porch.”
While the wood wick, soy candles with essential oil fragrances are pleasant to the scent, it was their essence of fun and creativity which caught the attention of Oakdale Mayor Cherilyn Bairos.
Mayor Bairos crossed paths with the Roslan family and their Sassy Candles, serving in her role as Chamber Ambassador. Drawn to the candles and their originality, the Mayor shared she began thinking.
“I started thinking, hey, what about if they could make a candle for Oakdale? What would that smell like?” the Mayor explained of their initial introduction. “Leather, dust, cowboy, almonds, dairy … Everything together and how would that look?”
The Mayor quickly began brainstorming with the couple about hosting a contest for the scent, as well as the label and the name. They loved the idea and its originality.
“They’re inspired after our real life circumstances,” Roslan said of their current inventory of candle names and scents.
“This DD 214; that’s the paper you get when you’re released from the military,” Bairos said of the candle which first caught her attention. “I got my nephew that one.”
“When I looked at all these titles, and we were at the Chamber, I’m like, I kind of feel like we need to have a candle for Oakdale. Her husband said, what were you thinking?” she continued, of the brainstorming for the Oakdale Candle Contest, “and I said, I don’t know. It’s not like it would be something just for me. It would be something that you could sell in stores.”
The mayor shared with the couple the community’s love for branded items, from apparel, for license frames, key chains, hats and pillows; so why not a candle special for the 95361?
“It’s kind of fun to get the town involved, because we can all think of something different,” the mayor stated. “So I’m a dairy girl, so I think of cow manure, I think of chocolate. I think of almonds. I think of dust. I think of sweat, like hard work.”
The Sparks Fly Candle Co. Candle Contest will include: a name, motto and scents for candle submission. The contest is open now and forms can be picked up at the Oakdale Leader office, Oakdale Library, Oakdale Chamber as well as on their social media pages. Questions and requests may also be sent to: email@example.com. Submissions will be accepted through February, with the goal being to have the candles ready for sale by the Oakdale Rodeo.
According to Roslan, a candle takes two to three weeks to develop and perfect the scent. Then each candle must cure for two weeks before it can be sold.
“Business has been very good since we’ve moved here,” the working mom said, noting candles are currently available at PakMail on the east end of town, as well as on their on-line site. “This town has been so incredibly welcoming. Like it’s such a stark difference from Washington.”
Roslan added they also tend to work events and shows as in person sales are better so people can see the candles and smell them.
“That’s what the contest is for; we’re hoping that the people of Oakdale can help give us ideas. Since we’re still pretty new,” she stated, “we thought that would be a great way for them to submit ideas about what this whole town is about.”
“I think this is going to be very well received within the community. People like to get involved and you know, who knows, maybe it’s a high school kid or a young adult that’s like, that’s me,” Bairos said of developing an Oakdale exclusive candle.
“We can turn anything into a label so somebody wants to draw like an Oakdale Mustang or anything, we can convert it into a label itself,” Roslan noted of the personalization for the Oakdale exclusive. “We love this idea.”
Roslan said the one-time hobby is really becoming a booming business.
“I love bringing people happiness. It is like the best thing to me,” she said. “Seeing them read the labels and they actually laugh. That’s amazing to me. At that point I don’t even care if people are buying my candle. They’re just coming and they’re laughing and having a good time. I just love that. This is exceeding expectations already.”