Visit my new working studio and retail space - 291 front street, unit 212, key west, fl

"The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams." - Oprah Winfrey

About Emily Shipman, Owner of Bella Laine Art

I am basically an artist and candle maker turned accidental entrepreneur.

I used to live in Ocean Beach (“OB”), a wonderful laid back hippie beach community in San Diego, CA. I worked in a little boutique that sold handmade jewelry and candles; my absolute favorite candle scent was Nag Champa. This quaint little OB shop opened my eyes to how many chemicals were in conventional store bought candles, I was appalled!

Eventually, my little family and I moved back to Key West and oh how I missed so many things about San Diego, including working in that little shop and buying the Nag Champa candles whenever I wanted them!

Then it hit me. Why don’t I just learn to make my own Nag Champa candles?

I bought all of the supplies and hit the ground running. I soon found myself experimenting with all sorts of different scents including coconut, bourbon, mint, bamboo, eucalyptus, tea and cinnamon. The first candle scent I ever made was “1502”.

Without knowing what I wanted my labels to look like, and knowing the expense it would be to hire a graphic designer, I decided to hand paint them. To my surprise, it worked! I love how every candle is unique and if I’m feeling extra creative one day, painting gives me the freedom to express that!

Where did the name “Bella Laine” come from…

Both my daughter Isabella and I share the same middle name “Elaine”, after my grandmother. Grandma Elaine is also an artist and I can remember spending hours and hours in her art room as a child – she deserves all the credit for my lifetime love of the arts. So one morning, when my daughter was still a baby, I was making a macrame plant holder as she sat in my lap, and it just came to me: Bella Laine. A combination of Isa“bella” and E“laine”, two very important women in my life. And it has stuck with me ever since.

Each one of my candles and art pieces is made from memories, inspiration, and sentimental moments, and you can read all about them in the product descriptions. There isn’t a blueprint for what I do, except creative freedom to just do it!

I have learned that when you allow yourself to let your guard down and to not be afraid of how others will view your ideas, there’s a whole new world that will appreciate your work and see it more beautifully than you do. 

I hope you love my candles as much as I love making them.

-With love, Emily Shipman

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