This is Magali, the founder of Wax/Wine. Magali is cool. Really cool. Like us, she’s into good tunes, circularity, moon phases, great design, eliminating unnecessary waste and making things better. She puts her heart and soul into Wax/Wine to create up-cycled homewares and beautiful hand poured natural candles, in small batches, from reclaimed wine bottles collected from bars & restaurants around Hackney and beyond!
We first noticed Wax/Wine at The White Building Market, right next to the amazing Silo restaurant. We got in touch to see if she’d be open to the idea of re-purposing a small bunch of mis-printed & out-of-date glass Fill bottles that we’d been saving up in the crates. She said yes. After a few tests, working out how & where to make the cut, Magali was happy and we sent down a bottle of bergamot essential oil from the lab and Magali went into the workshop to create a special limited edition run of re-purposed Fill glass bottle candles – keeping us updated the whole time. We loved how they turned out and gave them out as gifts for the whole Fill team last Christmas.
We get asked about these candles all the time. They can only be made from bottles that we wouldn’t ordinarily be able to use, so numbers are limited. We send down a bunch of out-dated or mis-printed bottles every now and then for Magali to do her magic. Check them out in the shop here then light the wick, settle back and tune into one of our Fill moon phase playlists on Spotify.
For regular Wax/Wine candles, here’s how it works. Each empty bottle is collected (by Magali) cleaned, cut & sanded by hand. That means no two candles are ever the same. The candles themselves are made from a blend of rapeseed & coconut wax. Magali makes sure to use a wood wick too & she makes her own essential oil blends. Refill kits are available from Wax/Wine shop or the bottles can be re-used again as natty looking tumblers, toothbrush holders or flower vases.
It’s been a real pleasure to work with Magali. So, we figured it would be nice to let folks know more about her and Wax/Wine, so we asked her a few questions…
WHO IS WAX/WINE
Hello. I am Magali and I’m a one woman band! I moved to London from Mexico 17 years ago to study Visual Communications and ended up working in the hospitality sector for the last 12 years.
HOW DID YOU WIND UP AT WAX/WINE
It was a lockdown 1.0 reinvention! I bought myself a bottle cutter for Christmas 2019, but when you work long hours in a busy restaurant you rarely find the energy to do much else. It was during lockdown that I had a go at it and after a few months of practicing and receiving positive feed-back from friends, so I knew I was up to something worth pursuing. It was the perfect solution to immortalise those beautiful natural wine labels and a great way to share a sustainable message by working with a circular business model.
WHAT MAKES WAX/WINE A COOL PLACE TO BE
It’s really gratifying knowing your are saving rubbish from landfill and giving durable materials a second life. Also working on custom orders for people who have a wine bottle they want to re-purpose because it reminds them of something special, that is also very cool!
IF YOU WEREN’T RUNNING WAX/WINE WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING
Probably still running a restaurant.
WHAT’S ON THE HORIZON
It has only been one year since Wax/Wine started, but what a journey it has been. Over lockdown I did a few online workshops on candle making and wine tasting, so I would like to do more of those hopefully in person soon. We have launched a new product last month that I am really excited about and I hope to do more collaborations, but definitely plenty of candles, workshops and a shop on the horizon!
WHAT STARTED YOU OUT IN LOW IMPACT LIVING
As a kid I grew up on hand-me-downs and I was raised by my very stylish grandmother who only shopped in second-hand shops. It was mainly out of necessity, but it made me more creative and appreciative of resources. I believe the time when my conscious and educated journey into sustainability started was when working in the food and beverage sector. I became concerned about the bigger environmental issues around the waste created there.
HOW DO YOU ESCAPE
Cycling. It’s amazing how much we don’t explore or know of our neighbourhoods! I put my headphones on, listen to a podcast or music and cycle away.
Last year when I got a scholarship to attend the Environment & Sustainability Program Fall 2020 at the MAD Academy Copenhagen started by René Redzepi from Noma.
A VALUABLE LESSON
Self-care isn’t selfish, it is sustainable.
Too Good To Go, an anti food waste app in London.
ONE PLACE WE SHOULD GO SEE
Answering this post lockdown just means one thing: go and see everything, anything, but go see stuff 🙂
WHO IS YOUR ZERO (LOW WASTE) HERO
Doug McMaster, so inspiring and genuine
THINGS YOU COULDN’T LIVE WITHOUT
Music, books and the arts
LAST SONG YOU CHOSE TO LISTEN TO
Watermelon Sugar by Harry Styles (current guilty pleasure)
WHAT SONG WOULD YOU LIKE TO ADD TO THE FILL CLEAN REPEAT PLAYLIST
This Must be the Place, Talking Heads
Toothpaste by BOCA
HARDEST THING TO FIND ZERO WASTE
Because of their awesome sleek design and approachable refill system