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Community Highlights: Meet Ashley Brabham of MAKTUB Studio

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ashley Brabham.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I started MAKTUB Studio during a time when I was unemployed. Just a few months before the pandemic happened, I actually left my job in entertainment marketing to remove myself from a very toxic work environment. I was stressed trying to figure out what I was going to do next, between being a single parent and my unsuccessful job search each day. I realized in my evenings, spent alone, listening to music, lighting my favorite candles, sometimes with a glass of red wine and a good book, brought me so much joy + peace in those moments. That’s when the idea sparked. What if I merged my two self-care rituals – music and candles – creating a candle that embodied the vibe of our favorite songs that also came with a curated music playlist. There’s something about music + fragrance that instantly triggers memories of nostalgia + joy. This is an undeniable vibe we all experience and I wanted to share it with the world.

I had no idea how to make candles, but creating a great playlist, I could do that in my sleep, so I started with that. I asked myself, “What songs would be on my ultimate motivational playlist?” and this is how I landed on my five signature scents:

1. Juicy by The Notorious BIG
2. Dedication by Nipsey Hussle
3. Redbone (Stay Woke) by Childish Gambino
4. Focus by HER
5. Good As Hell by Lizzo

The name, MAKTUB, is an Arabic word I learned from one of my favorite books, The Alchemist. It means “it is written” or destined, and I chose to attribute this meaning to how songs are written in our hearts and become a part of our life journey. You know, kind of like when you hear your favorite song and instantly go “that’s my song!” As my son would say, “it’s not YOUR song,” but you’ve formed a connection with the music and it feels like that song was destined just for you!

MAKTUB candles ignite those feelings while creating new ones by pairing your favorite songs with fragrant scents, sparking a sensorial immersive vibe for you to experience.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
It has not been a smooth road by no means. Between balancing entrepreneurship and being a single parent, becoming a first-time business owner weeks before a pandemic, to opening a physical location during the pandemic – there a many struggles I face daily.

However, I try not to harbor on my struggles too long. I’m a problem-solver and a go-getter by nature, so I’m always figuring out how to make a way out of no way. Even when starting MAKTUB Studio, I knew nothing about the candle-making process, but I was determined to learn because I believed in my vision.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about MAKTUB Studio?
MAKTUB Studio is a music-centric lifestyle + wellness brand. Our luxury hand-poured scented candles are made with a blend of vegan-safe and toxin-free virgin coconut and natural soy wax, all-natural wood wicks, and luxurious fragrances all in a vinyl record replica reusable tin. Each candle is inspired by songs and lyrics and comes with a curated music playlist that you can stream on Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal and YouTube. Every purchase comes with a customary matchbox, so you can #SparkAVibe instantly.

We love surprises, fun facts and unexpected stories. Is there something you can share that might surprise us?
I had no knowledge or experience making candles before I had the idea to start MAKTUB Studio. I just had an idea I knew I wanted to bring to life. Initially, I thought of purchasing white-labeled candles and just focusing on my branding, but that felt so impersonal and inauthentic to the experience I wanted people to have.

So I decided to learn more about the candle-making process thanks to YouTube-University and a lot of self-taught practice, I perfected my chandler skills in a couple of months. Candle making ended up becoming so therapeutic for me. I think everyone should try it at least once in their lives.

Pricing:

  • Grind + Shine 14oz Candles – $40
  • Grind + Shine 60z Candles – $25
  • Holitday Vibes 14oz Candles – $34
  • Holitday Vibes 6oz Candles – $20
  • Take Care Candle Accessory Set – $15

Contact Info:


Image Credits
Charlee Black, Good Friends Studio

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