Today’s Small Business Saturday is a local, candle biz that I crossed paths with when I was looking to support a local business while teacher gift hunting. The cutest reed diffusers that said Best Teacher Ever popped up on my social media with a Montgomery, TX location, and I was sold! Kelly is the mama owner of twig Handmade who really started pursuing her candle making as a businesses last year during the pandemic. Her candles are 100% all natural soy wax and have a wooden wick (hence her biz name: twig handmade). And, I love seeing how Kelly gets creative with her containers and creates beautiful vintage candles! She also releases seasonal themes such as ‘beach bum’ and ‘tan line’.
Check out Kelly’s interview below to hear about her true love for fragrance and candles, how that grew into a business, and how she balances making candles out of her own and being a mama and wife!
Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in the North Houston area?
I was born in Northern California but came to Texas ASAP (I spent the majority of my youth living in Austin). I’ve lived in the North Houston area for 3 years.
Are you a parent, too? How old are your kid(s)?
Yes, I have a 12 year old son and 5 year old daughter, a husband and two dogs.
What did you do before becoming a business owner?
Before I became a business owner, I worked in healthcare as an RN, primarily in the post anesthesia care unit.
When did you did you begin twig Handmade and what was the inspiration behind starting your own business?
Twig Handmade was officially launched one year ago, in June 2020. I was inspired to start a candle and home fragrance business because of my love of fragrance and candles, in particular. The memories and vibes that surround certain scents has always intrigued me.
In addition, a business that allows for creativity feeds my soul. Throughout my life I have explored all sorts of art forms, for example; watercolor, glass blowing and jewelry making, just to name a few.
When did the love for making candles begin and how did that change from a hobby to a business?
I have always been a person who lights a candle everyday. When I say I love candles and good smelling things it’s an understatement. I see fragrance as a form of self expression.
When the pandemic hit, I dove in head first into educating myself on all things surrounding candle making. There are so many variables and a real chemistry involved in the making of beautifully scented clean burning candles. I spent countless hours testing all the possible combinations of wax, wicks, fragrances and temperatures. I studied the ingredients and where/how my chosen wax and wicks were sourced. I have made a conscious effort to make an eco friendly product made from sustainable components.
What different candles and other products for you offer?
I offer a year round collection along with limited run, seasonal or themed candles and reed diffusers.
I also hand pour small collections of candles in upcycled vessels, many of which are vintage. I love repurposing and hunting for eclectic containers that are cheerful, lively and sometimes cheeky.
I also hand pour custom candles and reed diffusers for several local businesses. I love working together with local business owners to find a fragrance that really speaks to the tone of their space.
What makes your candles unique compared to others out there?
I think my signature stand out component is my wooden wicks, which were the inspiration behind my business name. The wooden wicks bring another sensory element to my candles. They emit a beautiful soft crackling sound that sets a warm inviting mood. In addition, the 100% all natural soy wax burns slower and cleaner allowing you to enjoy your candle for longer.
Best advice for someone wanting to take the leap of faith into entrepreneurship or wanting to open their own business?
Here’s my advice… just go for it! There is never a “right” time, there will always be lots of unanswered questions in the beginning. You will learn so much along the way. I have grown and stretched myself an incredible amount in the last year. There have been uncomfortable moments that have produced unexpected positive outcomes. You’ll never know your potential until you try.
How do you balance being a business owner (working out of your home) and a wife and mama?
Balance is tricky. Majority of my “work” happens after bedtime. I do feel most creative after the sun goes down although I’m not a night owl by any means. Getting my hands dirty really energizes me.
If it’s during daylight hours I work sporadically when circumstances allow it.
Any Deals, Specials, or Products North Houston Moms can be on the lookout for?
I just released two fabulous summer themed candles, ‘beach bum’ and ‘tan lines. There is also a citronella candle for the mosquito ridden summer evenings. Something fun coming is a candle inspired by a popular TV show in which the next season is starting back up soon. Stay posted for that one!
I offer giveaways at times and love collaborating with other local small businesses.
Future plans for your business?
There are lots of fresh ideas and plans. First and foremost is to grow my business and continue to pour candles with lots of love.
To learn more about twig Handmade: