“It’s our vision, that every life is fully lived. At Hohepa we are committed to supporting peoples dreams and aspirations. To develop identity, autonomy, and to uphold people’s rights.” – Santiago De Marco, General Manager of Hohepa
Hohepa, is one of the beloved New Zealand brands that we represent at Cranfields. They make delightful, natural, handmade beeswax candles, and woven pieces. The Hohepa workshop is a social workshop, “providing meaningful work opportunities for people with intellectual disability at Hohepa Hawkes Bay”. The workshop is centered around a holistic view of life and work, emphasizing meaningful work, and a balanced work-life. Established in the early 1980s, the workshop has now moved to Napier, and transforms around 1000kg of beeswax into candles yearly. To show our gratitude for their dedicated approach and partnership with us at Cranfields, we hosted a morning tea with some of the Hohepa workers, and thought it would be a great opportunity to spotlight their incredible work with a blog post! All the photos were taken by Nicola Cranfield on the visit:
Hohepa Candles destined for Cranfields, ready for pickup
The candles are created sustainably, and carefully. The candles are made from 100% locally sourced, and all-natural Beeswax, from Takapau Kintail Honey (a longstanding partner of Hohepa), and organic cotton for the wicks. Natural beeswax candles are not only ethical, and environmentally friendly, but also have the unique benefit of purifying and detoxifying the air when lit. The workshop maintains a zero (or as close to) waste-work policy; All of their wick cutoffs, and wax leftovers become fire starters, and, since 2019, they have encouraged the public to participate in their wax collection, as an alternative to adding to general landfill.
The Candle-Making Process: From Beeswax to Candles! Feat. Megan patiently dipping dinner candles and waiting for them to cool before re-dipping.
Their ‘Rose Weavery’ is equally as inspiring and sustainable in their practice, producing beautifully hand-woven pieces. All of their pieces are one-offs, and created using environmentally ecological, natural fibers such as wool, mohair, possum, cotton, silk, and linen. These pieces are designed to “highlight the exceptional talents, creativity, and adroit skills of the Rose weavers”. Their weavery creates scarves and shawls, jackets and coats, ponchos, bags, blankets, throws, and more.
On top of their commercial purpose, Hohepa - who’s moto is ‘Every life fully lived’ - runs a school intended for students with special requirements for their care and education. They also offer tailored residency, and engage their residents in meaningful work; not only in the candle making, and weaving business, but also farming, cheese making, and wood work. Hohepa centers itself around the wellbeing, and contentedness of those in Hohepa care, and at Cranfields we are proud to work with such an ethical, and sustainable organisation. We can comfortably back the quality of their products, in the knowledge that we are supporting local, natural, and hand-crafted work with meaning.
Nicola and co, with Hohepa Workers at the Morning tea we Hosted in Gratitude of Hohepa Work