Fort Wayne candle company receives national attention over Ohio ‘burn’

Local News

A Fort Wayne candle company “burned” its neighboring state with one of their candles. Owner of Simple Nature, Derek Taylor, created the Ohio candle back in December of 2018.

The Ohio is an unscented candle, described as “Not much to see. Not much to do. Welcome to Ohio, the unscented candle.”

“Honestly, I thought it was funny a Hoosier would be making fun of Ohio with those kind of statements, because we’re fairly similar,” says Derek Taylor.

Taylor says he created the candle after receiving a few requests from visitors at his booth at the Fort Wayne Farmers Market for an unscented candle. He says folks wanted the ambiance of a candle, but many were sensitive to scents because of breathing condition.

“Well, what do we call this? It has nothing in it. And I thought it was just a friendly little jab to our neighbors over there, Ohio. And I don’t think they took as much of a joke.”

The candle became a viral joke after a friend of his snapped a picture and tweeted it out on Twitter. He says a few days later, he had some very upset Ohioans.

“She saw the Ohio one, not the biggest Ohio State fan, so she thought it was funny. And she posted it on her personal Twitter, and it racked up a couple likes.”

By a couple likes, Derek means nearly 200,000, and over 30,000 retweets. Not everyone took the joke candle well.

“I’ve been getting a lot of fun e-mails. A lot of people are going to boycott Indiana, and they have creative places where the candles should go.”

Others telling Taylor what Ohio should smell like. To be fair, he does have a Cincinnati candle has a nice description. The Cincinnati candle is described as, “With both an urban energy and southern charm, Cincinnati has a vibrant and unique culture that flows proudly from the Ohio River.” The scent of that candle is oakmoss and amber.

“I still don’t take it all that seriously. It’s really hard for me to comprehend that you could be that offended by a candle, but gosh darn it we are.”

Derek says with all the recent publicity; he’s seen an overwhelming amount of online sales. He says he’s a “small home based business unprepared for feud with Ohio.”

He says his business has quadrupled since its start in May of 2018.


Simple Nature candles are described as “candles that take you places.” They’re all made right here in Fort Wayne with 100% natural soy wax. Some of the other location based candles Derek has made include California, Chicago, and Georgia.

One is even a Fort Wayne candle, described as “The heart of the Midwest, where souls collide like rivers from afar. Welcome Home.” The scent for the Fort Wayne candle is apples, maple, and bourbon.

Even with that friendly jab, Taylor decided to pay it forward to the Buckeye State. He made an $1,803 donation to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital; 1803 being the year Ohio became a state.

Click here to learn more about Simple Nature.

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