Candles from the Hart: Alvin ISD student uses small business to save for college

Hart Wilson (right) launched Candles from the Hart with his father, Michael Wilson (left), and mother, Staci Wilson. He aims to earn $200,000 to pay for his college tuition and that of his younger sister, Paige Wilson (center). (Andy Yanez/Community Impact Newspaper)
Hart Wilson (right) launched Candles from the Hart with his father, Michael Wilson (left), and mother, Staci Wilson. He aims to earn $200,000 to pay for his college tuition and that of his younger sister, Paige Wilson (center). (Andy Yanez/Community Impact Newspaper)

Hart Wilson (right) launched Candles from the Hart with his father, Michael Wilson (left), and mother, Staci Wilson. He aims to earn $200,000 to pay for his college tuition and that of his younger sister, Paige Wilson (center). (Andy Yanez/Community Impact Newspaper)

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One of Candles from the Hart's offerings, wax melts, is $6. (Courtesy Michael Wilson)
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Hart Wilson works on making candles for his small business. (Courtesy Michael Wilson).
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Hart's desire to attend HU is what inspired his desire to start Candles from the Hart to save money for his tuition. (Courtesy Michael Wilson)
Eleven-year-old Hart Wilson’s small candle business, Candles from the Hart, has gotten off to a successful start. What started as a journey to save enough money for his college tuition has led the Alvin ISD student to national TV appearances and celebrity customers.

“The one thing that always sticks with me is that it’s not a sprint,” Hart said. “It is a marathon, so it is going to always keep going, and it’s not over until it’s over.”

The idea for Candles from the Hart started in 2016 when Hart was on a trip to Washington, D.C., with his family. During a tour of Howard University, parents Michael and Staci Wilson saw a change in their son.

“It hit us then,” Michael said. “He had never been this way about something like that.”

When the Wilsons returned home, Hart told his parents he wanted to go to Howard. Then after more time, he told them he also wanted to pay for his own tuition.


Hart started off with different ideas—a cookie business and a lemonade stand—and continued to rattle them off until he got to candles, which brought its own set of challenges, the main one being learning how to make them.

After countless YouTube videos, articles, experiments and over 50 attempts at making candles, Hart and his family perfected the craft of candle-making and launched the business in July 2020.

“I think he gets it from his mom because she is wired that way,” Michael said. “She has really done well for herself, and he is just following along.”

Once Candles from the Hart began to pick up steam, Hart’s business made national news and earned him appearances on ABC News and the “Kelly Clarkson Show” as well as celebrity customers, such as NBA guard Josh Hart; Keena Ferguson from Tyler Perry’s “Sistas”; and Inda Craig-Galvan, a writer from “How To Get Away With Murder.”

Now that Hart is over a year into his candle-making business, his goal has slightly changed. Instead of wanting to raise $100,000 to cover his own tuition, he now wants to raise double that—a total of $200,000—to cover the costs of college for his younger sister, Paige Wilson, as well.

“It’s way more successful than we ever thought it would be,” Michael said of Hart’s goal.

Michael has seen his son grow in many areas since the business began, time management being one of them, Michael said. Hart cares about when things get done, even regarding his homework.

When Hart gets to Howard, he said he plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in mathematics then attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to get his master’s in robotics.

“It’s time consuming,” Hart said of his business. “But it’s fun. I like it.”
By Andy Yanez

Reporter, Pearland/Friendswood

Andy joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in June 2021 after graduating with a degree in journalism from the University of Houston. He started off as the South Houston Metro Reporter where he helped each different edition in the South Houston market before transitioning to the Pearland/Friendswood market in August 2021. Andy covers education, local government, transportation, business, real estate development and nonprofits in these communities. Prior to CI, Andy served as the sports editor of The Cougar, UH's student newspaper, where he covered the university's athletics beat for two years and got to cover the 2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four in Indianapolis.



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