The Alfred Collective | Scent + Sprout
Meet our newest addition to the Alfred Collective: Scent + Sprout.
At The Alfred Collective, we’re proud to showcase local small businesses, female founders, and young entrepreneurs. Breathe in the bliss as we talk with the founder of Scent + Sprout, Jennifer Azzopardi. Learn more about how she started her candle-making career, and her vision for a more sustainable future, starting inside the home, including the creation of our very own Alfred scent “Come Home Happy” for our HomeQuarters in NYC.
With many options to choose from, plus 15% off exclusively for Alfred residents with code ALFRED15, you can find everything you need on scentandsprout.com Some of our favorite scents include “Be Energized” with notes of Peppermint + Eucalyptus and “Gardenia” available in a limited-edition Terrazzo jar.
Tell us about the inspiration behind the brand.
When we moved to New York from Australia a few years ago, it took some time for my American work authorization to be approved. While I waited, I taught myself how to make candles and I opened my Etsy shop once my work authorization came through. I quickly realized that most candles are made with toxic materials, from the choice of wax to the wick. I wanted to change that, and at the same time make something I could feel confident about selling on my own. For the health of myself, my husband, and my dog, I said, “You know what? I’ll just make my own candles.” I got into a candle making class right before the pandemic hit, but our class was canceled due to COVID. I ended up teaching myself how to make everything you see in the store today.
How has your perspective on home and wellness shifted since the pandemic?
With more people spending time alone and at home, wellness and self care are more important than ever. Something that I love about Alfred is their commitment to helping residents achieve personal wellness in all forms. This last year my social media presence has really increased, and I’ve had a lot of eyes on my products thanks to partnerships like Alfred.
How do you practice sustainability in your brand?
Could you tell us about the sourcing and production of your products? There are various types of waxes. Paraffin is made from petroleum, but soy, made from soybeans, burns cleaner and slower than other types of wax, which is why I chose to use it. I also use lead-free wicks made out of cotton and phthalate-free fragrances. All my ingredients are sourced from within the U.S. to cut down on negative carbon emissions from overseas shipping. I pour my candles in glass jars that can be reused as household containers or even plant pots, and I plant a tree with every purchase. All the materials I use are recyclable or biodegradable, like packing peanuts which break down in water, clam shells, and crinkle paper.
Why is sustainability so important to the brand?
One of the first things I noticed in NYC was that the U.S. still uses plastic bags, unlike at home in Australia. This encouraged me to be as sustainable as possible in my own brand, to help local sustainability practices while I’m here. In Australia, when we do have single-use products, many of them are made from plant-based materials.
Have you faced any challenges as a female founder?
I think I am very fortunate to be a young founder when there’s been such a big push to support women-owned small businesses in recent years. I think being a female founder has actually been a positive, and I’ve surrounded myself with other women who are on my same path.
Do you have any women who you look up to?
I don’t think I would be where I am today without my small business friends. We all inspire each other and have become a community. I recently started a new collaboration with Footnotes Paper based in Williamsburg, Brooklyn so clients can include handwritten cards with their Scent+Sprout gifts. I’m fortunate to have clients and partner brands that believe in my mission.
What excited you most about partnering with Alfred and creating the Alfred scent “Come Home Happy”?
Alfred’s mission, that time is the most precious thing, really resonated with me. It makes a big difference when you have time in your life to do the things you want. Personally, because I spend my evenings dedicating my time to my business, there isn’t always time for me to get other tasks done, much less enjoy time with my friends and family. We all deserve to do what makes us happy.
What are your brand’s plans for the future?
I really want to expand globally, and break into the Australian market, which is ironic being from there. I’ve thought about expanding the product line to include natural home-care products. Recently I’ve had great success with my cocktail scent line, including mint-mojito and mimosa. It is so interesting speaking to clients and hearing what they would like to see from the brand.
Where can we find Scent + Sprout products?
All products are in-person at The Little Market NYC through the end of April located at 637 Broadway, in Manhattan, New York – weekdays from 12-8pm and weekends from 11-8pm. I ship nationally and you can browse my full product line anytime at scentandsprout.com and follow me on Instagram @ScentAndSprout where I often post seasonal promotions.