Happy new year guys, wow 2020 how did that happen!!!
I don't make resolutions as such but I am planning to let you all have a little more insight behind the scenes of Olivetreehome in 2020..
So to kick off the start of a brand spanking new decade, here's a little background story as to how Olivetreehome began..
If you asked me 10 years ago, I would never have expected this is the direction my life would have taken. Funny how things work out isn't it! A decade ago I was living in Cumbria, on maternity leave, heavily pregnant with my youngest and taking time out from my finance based local government admin role. This was a job I enjoyed, but never really loved!! So to fulfil my creative urges I studied interior design through the KLC school of design. Through this I volunteered at a beautiful interiors shop in my old home town of Penrith. I really struck lucky when I found the most amazing mentor in Lyn, who owned the shop. She taught me so much about the world of interior styling, soft furnishings and furniture design and little did I know how valuable these lessons would become along the path which led me to where I am today.
The big change came when my husband was offered a relocation package for a company promotion to London. After hours of research into house prices, schools, commuting options etc.. we chose Chelmsford as our new family home and its hard to believe this was over 8 years ago now!! The move was huge and challenging. Having grown up in the Lake District and being surrounded by family and friends, moving 300 miles away to a city where we were strangers to every one surrounding us was initially difficult. The timing was perfect though due to the fact my eldest was due to start primary school and could therefore start her school life in Essex, not knowing any different.Weekly meet ups with my good friend from school, Claire, who herself had relocated from Cumbria to Kent many years earlier, made my weeks easier and gave me something to look forward to. Daily trips to the park and playgroups, along with the all important school run meant that I was able to develop what is now my very valuable network of friends who have been a lifeline to me whilst raising a family in a city I knew nothing about!!
One particular and looking back now, super important weekend, whilst visiting Claire and her family in Kent, Claire and I decided to book ourselves onto a furniture painting class. It's fair to say I loved it and proceeded to buy second hand pieces for our home to redesign. I think I became slightly addicted!!! Fast forward a few months and a pivotal moment occurred whilst I was out shopping in my local Homesense. Browsing the shelves, I overheard a lady chatting to her mum about trying to find someone to paint her living room furniture. Now this is so out of character for me, but something took over and forced me to approach this lady. Apologising for earwigging I went onto to explain to her that I could offer a furniture painting service, we swapped numbers and I arranged to visit her so we could chat about prices ideas etc.. I could not believe it when she agreed with my suggestions, and this lady became Olivetreehome's first ever client!!
From that day on, word of mouth became my advertising, I do feel very lucky that I never really had to go out looking for any of my painting projects. My diary very quickly became continuously booked up and I finally had my own little business! From that day in Homesense, Olivetreehome has continued to evolve..
Ok, so you may be wondering, how did I move onto making candles!!! Well, painting furniture what was I did for a good couple of years but after receiving regular invites to exhibit Olivetreehome at fairs, I struggled with the fact that the pieces I worked on and sold were generally pretty large so this just didn't prove practical. I followed, and still do, some gorgeous accounts on Instagram in America who were also furniture painters but branched out into candle making. This helped their businesses become more accessible opening themselves up to a whole new audience. A lightbulb moment occurred!!! so after many months experimenting and trialling on family and friends, I launched Olivetreehome's very own scented soy wax candle range. Offering high quality vegan friendly ingredients, including pure soy wax flakes, I wanted to produce a candle which not only smelt amazing but looked gorgeous too, including luxurious packaging which makes buying them feel like a little treat all the while being eco friendly, recyclable and refillable. My candles have since become more popular than I ever imagined!! and my little brand is now known more for its candle house than anything else.
I am super excited to be able to say that I have stockists selling my scented candles and reed diffusers in 3 different areas of the UK and feel so proud of my third baby and the journey it's taking me on. Perks of the job are that my home always smells amazing whilst trialling lots of exciting fragrances and products for you all to try. Honestly, I pinch myself as to how much I love what I do, but without the support of my hubby and to all you guys for your continuous orders, support and kindness none of this would be possible!!
If someone had told me all this 10 years ago I would never have believed them. It has definitely made me realise that had I not followed my instinct, approached people and put myself out there I certainly would not be where I am today. You really never know what's around the corner... dreams can come true!
Now if you're still with me, well done and thanks so much for following me on this very loooong life story!! I seriously didn't intend to type so much!!!
The next time you receive one of my candles, I really hope you feel the same joy I feel when creating for you. There really is a special little story behind every small brand, and shopping small helps each and every one grow and evolve making you the all important part of their journey.