Extraordinary Lives - Alia Shah


I am Alia Shah and I was born in London, U.K. I currently live between Hertfordshire and Central London and come from an airline background and was also studying for a Law degree at the same time. Balancing work and education can be challenging but a rewarding experience which required careful planning, discipline and persistence.

The end result was worth every step of the way.

I am now the founder and creative designer for Candalia London. A home fragrance brand, launched in 2020 that includes handmade scented candles, reed diffusers and room sprays which are made in the U.K. I got inspired by my love for travel, fragrance and interior design and wanted to create a home fragrance range to make wellness accessible. Self-care and well-being are very important to me, part of my self-care routine is a perfectly made delicious matcha. That’s how I met OMGTea.

I am also a mum and a wife. My family has played a critical role in the encouragement of my entrepreneurial journey by providing support during the running of the Candalia business. They have been a sounding board for ideas and an honest source of feedback which I truly appreciate from them.

The OMGTea 60 Second Interview

1. If you could choose to do anything for a day, what would it be?

Travelling to a new place, visiting an art gallery, and enjoying local food. Then, you can find me in a spa doing all things wellness related.

2. Who’s the person you’d most like to share a cup of matcha with and why?

Emmeline Pankhurst. She is a British political activist who organised the U.K. suffragette movement and helped women. Having a cup of tea with Emmeline would be an opportunity to learn more about her life, her motivations, and her experiences as a suffragette. It would also be a chance to ask Emmeline questions about her strategies and tactics, and to gain insights into the challenges she faced in her fight for women’s rights.

3. How has a failure or apparent failure set you up for later success?

Failure is a valuable learning experience. I always look to how I can make it better and to identify weaknesses and in return to strengthen those failures. I try to focus on what I have learnt from past failures and and turn that into a positive goal. It helps to keep an open mind.

4. In the last five years, what new belief, behaviour, or habit has most improved your life?

Meditation and gratitude.

5. What is the best piece of advice you could give someone?

Stay true to your values and beliefs and do not compromise them for anyone. Embracing your true self can bring out the best in you and others. Not only dream big but plan big too, you got this.

6. What would you sing at Karaoke night?

“ I say a little prayer “ by Aretha Franklin