Sweet, edgy treats in Hallowell

As the latest addition to a nearby Maine town already peppered with charming shops and restaurants, Scrummy Afters provides Hallowell with a diverse array of candy and a pleasing aesthetic. The candy store opened on Nov. 19 and is already becoming an integral part of downtown Hallowell.

“Everyone [in town] has been really supportive and seemingly very excited,” co-owner Hilary Davis said. “It’s been better than I anticipated.”

Davis and her mother, Kim Davis, opened the store as business partners. Davis, a recent art school graduate, said her grandmother had encouraged her to put her talent to use in candy retail.

After moving back to Augusta from a brief stint in New York City, Davis decided to fulfill the candy store dream with her mother. “I was living in New York not really doing anything with my art degree,” Davis explained, but she was eager to utilize her artistic skill through a productive venue.

The candy store quickly became a family endeavor. Davis emphasized the help she received from her father and brother in designing the shop lighting and generating necessary funding. James Hackett, a friend of Davis’, is a self-employed carpenter who was involved in creating the eclectic furniture dispersed throughout the store. “Really we had a shell of a building and made everything….I was fortunate enough to have a lot of resources,” Davis said.

Inspired by a “quirky whimsy” aesthetic that Davis connects to Tim Burton and Dr. Seuss influences, Scrummy Afters strives for an enticing but edgy atmosphere. The theme has fascinated Davis since college, and she “pulled from anything that was fanciful.”

The candy store’s unusual title is British slang for yummy desserts, and Davis said she was searching for “some sort of nonsensical British term.”

The mother-daughter duo from Augusta decided to open in Hallowell because they “felt it would be the most fitting and most charming,” Davis said. “Mom did some more researching, and we found Hallowell to be a more bustling community than Augusta,” she added.

So far, they are pleased with the decision to sell candy in Hallowell, and Davis is excited to see the more unusual, specialty candies gaining popularity. “People don’t really come in here to buy a Twix bar,” she said. “And I’m happy about that.” Nevertheless, traditional convenience store candy is available along with their more original assortments.

Scrummy Afters’ highest sales have come from Pop Rocks, Necco wafers, Ring Pops and wax lips, but Hallowell’s newest candy connoisseur swears that she “always goes for chocolate.”