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Archive for Monday, January 22, 2007

Hunk of burning love for Valentine’s Day

January 22, 2007

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Bob "Waxman" Werts

The Journal-World's Richard Gwin and Dave Toplikar recently visited Waxman Candles to get a look behind the scenes. Enlarge video

A longtime downtown Lawrence business owner has been romancing the wax.

Bob Werts, owner of Waxman Candles, 609 Mass., above, has been molding a variety of whimsical candles in preparation for Valentine's Day on Feb. 14.

"I don't know if these are what they're going to look like," he said, looking over some of his prototypes.

He was experimenting with waxy representations of the letters L O V E, dual hearts, stacked hearts, a heart with an arrow and Xs and Os (kisses and hugs).

And he was even trying his hand at arranging wax into the shape of roses.

Werts has been making candles in downtown Lawrence for 36 years, using, on average, about 120 pounds of wax a day for his handmade creations.

For much more about Werts' thoughts on those 36 years, click on the audio slideshow at left.

Comments

Nikki May 7 years, 2 months ago

As for making your own candles: I take my class there every year on spring break! They give us a tour and let us dip our own. I actually remember when Bob's boys went to the preschool I work at AGES ago. But, they always welcome us in and other groups too. LOVE the locally owned businesses. (of course, all us teachers do, so we all make sure we have $$ when we get there!)

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marxisnotdead 7 years, 2 months ago

I spent some time in Lawrence as a KU student as well as a brief stint as an employee of KU. I have since moved on, however, my conversations with Mr. Werts has stuck with me for nearly 20 years. I was inspired to open my own soywax candle shop in Colorado. Thanks Mr. Werts and I still visit your store on every trip to Lawrence.

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StirrrThePot 7 years, 2 months ago

The best candles ever! And they are local to Lawrence, we are so lucky! Every penny I spend on candles there is a penny that doesn't get spent on those expensive Yankee candles (which do not "hold a candle" to Waxman, IMO--yes, pun intended).

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bearded_gnome 7 years, 2 months ago

I fondly recall the shop near 14th. oh, the scents sometimes.

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LHS1980 7 years, 2 months ago

I remember when they were right across from Central JH. I was just a kid (early 70's) and bought my mom a candle for her birthday. I still remember that candle, it was something she had till she died.

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Confrontation 7 years, 2 months ago

If a candle store can survive a smoking ban, then who can't?

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BorderRat 7 years, 2 months ago

I remember his shop just up from 14th and Mass. When class got out at Central Jr. High, we would stop by and pester Waxman to no end. He always suffered our visits well and many times let us make our own candles. I have seen many of his products at the ski resorts here in Colorado. Glad to see he's still doing well. Topside I agree, he does have the Best Candles Ever.

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mom_of_three 7 years, 2 months ago

I don't get Waxman Candles as often as I would like, but it's a great place. It's about time for another trip

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salad 7 years, 2 months ago

Bob's a great guy, and I love his store. One of the best things about downtown lawrence.

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Eric Neuteboom 7 years, 2 months ago

Am I missing something...shouldn't the "Feature" article be a bit longer at least? I'm curious to know more about this business and the article is disappointingly short.

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TheEleventhStephanie 7 years, 2 months ago

I'm glad Waxman's is still downtown. Viva Waxman's!

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small_fish_in_small_pond 7 years, 2 months ago

It has been common knowledge that he made his fortune on selling illegal drugs...

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oldexbeat 7 years, 2 months ago

Darn, Bob,
I was so wrong -- when you spent your KU tuition money on wax and I told you it was a mistake (1969-70; the Tenn street apt.) Congrats and, yes -- you were right ! Great work! Best, G.

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