You started your business Eden River Candles after you lost your beautiful little girl. What made you decide to do this?
I initially started out just wanting to have a special Christmas gift for all of my family that was not only a gift but a lasting memory of our daughter. I experimented with a few fragrances, came up with a handful of scents I liked and had some basic labels made – all of a sudden I had a lovely little gift. I posted a pic of it on social media and had so many people ask if I’d sell them that I decided I’d give it a go. I spent what little money I had and bought a stock of supplies and got to work. Within the first day of releasing them I had 120 orders! Everyone loved them!
Tell us how you make your beautiful candles. Do you design the packaging too?
At the moment I literally make them in my kitchen/dining area! I fix all my wicks, melt and add desired fragrance to the liquid wax and then hand-pour them. Once they’re set I heat gun the top to make sure it’s all smooth and then I trim the wicks to the right length. All the jars then need to be cleaned and then I add labels and warning labels.
I buy flat pack boxes and make them at night once my daughter is asleep, usually with my husband’s help! We insert the candle, add labels and we have our product!
What are your favourite things to do in the Hills?
My daughter and I regularly go to Rouse Hill Town Centre and sometimes play in the water spouts in summer. But our favourite date is to go to the playground near Oliver Brown, order churros to share (her favourite) and then sit down for coffee at Blends and Brothers – she plays and I relax!
If it’s something grown up or for a treat it would be Wild Pear Cafe in Dural for lunch with the girls or hubby. If I’m on my own I head to The Baron at Castle Towers for a coffee and bacon and egg roll. Ha, clearly coffee and food is my thing!
Any tips for mums looking to start out in business?
I’ve started around five businesses over the years – some have been good for a period and then the product or idea gets old and it fizzles out. The two I now currently run (I also run a laundry service) have been the most successful and smooth-flowing so I’ve held onto them. If you’ve got an idea, just try it – maybe limit the amount of money you invest initially, because sometimes things don’t work out unfortunately. Really shop around as prices vary incredibly.
Running your own business is extremely beneficial if you want to be at home with your kids. I’m lucky in that I have a supportive husband who has a good job. I wouldn’t make close to the amount of money that one would working in a regular job (although it definitely can be done) but I’m so grateful I get to stay home and be with my daughter, and it’s also been so beneficial given my grief journey over this last year.
Any words for mums experiencing grief?
Gosh, grief is such a crazy thing, something which everyone experiences so differently. I think the thing I’ve chosen to do is keep moving forward, even if it’s just a step a day. Also, try and find a way you can express your grief – whether it’s through a journal or art – anything that helps you work through the pain. I’m a songwriter so I’ve written a lot this year. I’ve also tried to be really open and vulnerable about how I’m feeling and have expressed this through a blog that I write.
Surround yourself with a handful of people you can trust – I’ve been super blessed with an amazing husband, friends, family, church and faith. When Eden died, people in our church put together a meal roster that lasted for six months! It was so good to have one less thing to worry about. All of this combined has been a huge help in getting me through the horror of losing a child.
There’s no right or wrong – sometimes making it through a day is a miracle. Us women are strong and brave – you can do this!
Jade’s a talented songwriter and singer. Watch her beautiful tribute to her daughter Eden. She’s expecting her third precious daughter in a few weeks.