Fig and burnt sugar, melon and rose, toasted marshmallow.  Sounds like a recipe in the making for a great dessert, but those are just some of the alluring candle scents from Bottles and Bonfires who make soy candles hand poured into recycled wine bottles.  We catch up with Sara Milner the owner to chat about her Cape Cod business.  You can view their entire line of products and


Interview by Catherine Bieri / Photos provided by Bottles and Bonfires.

Q.  Bottles and Bonfires - tell us about how you came up with that name and who are the people behind the brand name?

The company was started by a friend who left town and we have carried on her vision and products for the past year and a half. The idea behind the name is - What goes better than some friends sharing stories and good times with some good wine and drinks around a fire? Whether at the beach or on a crisp fall night, you are creating memories. We know that is how many people on the Cape like to do it and that was a big influence on the name.

Q.  Cape Cod is where it's all made - is there a Cape Cod influence to the product?

Besides the meaning behind the name, we represent the Cape in our packaging with an old Cape map on our dust covers. People really like them, especially when giving as gifts.  Our business started by selling to local Cape stores and we are very proud to be part of that.

Q.  Your candles are poured into recycled wine bottles - what a great idea, how did that come about?

The original owner was a wine sommelier and had been shown something similar. It is a great opportunity to join in the recycling efforts with the local restaurants. People love repurposed items.

Q.  You make your candles from soy wax - what lead you to that choice?

Soy wax is clean burning meaning, no toxins, carcinogens or pollutants which means it's less likely to trigger allergies. If you follow proper burning instructions and keep the wicks trimmed you get little to no petrol-carbon soot like you get from petroleum-based paraffin candles. Its burns slower so your candles last up to 35% longer. Soy wax is also biodegradable and water soluble, so you can clean out the container with soap and water and reuse it.

The brand that we use is 100% american grown and organic.

Q. Ten different fragrances are offered - how much time did it take to come up with just the right blend of aromas? Is there a science behind it or was there a lot of fun experimenting?

I am always experimenting! One of the perks of the job. You have to not only think of what smells you enjoy, but what other people will like. We try to have something that will appeal to everyone and I am never offended if someone doesn't like one. Scents, and how they make us feel can be a very personal experience. 

Q.  What is your favorite aroma?

It changes all the time. The time of year definitely affects what I am in the mood for and I would think many others are the same way. I really enjoy one of our newer fragrances, Cardamom + Cedar Blossom. It's not too much of a floral, with a little spice. It's light and pretty, but not very feminine. Right now, of course, I am enjoying Balsam Fir. We have a cult following of the Toasted Marshmallow. Some people can't get enough of it!

Q.  Are there new fragrances in the works?

We have been perfecting an orange spice scent since last year. Many of our locals get it in a mason jar online or at craft fairs. I would like to have it graduate to the wine bottle family. We are always looking for new scents and experimenting. In the past year and a half our scents have nearly doubled, so I don't know if one will come around soon. I would really like to add another masculine, earthy scent by next fall. Maybe a new spring scent since we only have one spring seasonal. It's always on my mind.