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A project born from a passion for scents and an obsession with vintage cut glass has evolved into a sublime range of candles, home fragrances and essential oil skincare, all hand made in the heart of Chelmsford.

Olivetreehome wasn’t always a candle house, oh no. Back in 2017, founder Helen Mitchel initially set up as a furniture redesign business, having always had a passion for interiors. Whilst waiting for furniture to dry, she started experimenting with candle making purely to fulfil her obsession with candles and scent. They were nice. Very nice. And so she started gifting her candles to family and friends, pouring the fragranced soy wax into vintage cut glass (another of Helen’s great loves), and pretty soon, people were asking her to create candles especially for them. That’s when she realised these must actually be rather good.

Gradually, Olivetreehome has evolved into the candle and essential oil house it is today. Helen no longer paints furniture but is loving working with scents every day and creating new products, most recently skincare. The range is the result of months of blending and testing before she was completely happy with three 100% pure essentials oils, which she uses in her Hand & Body Wash and Hand & Body Lotion collection, as well as her candles and diffusers.

Housed in gorgeous amber apothecary-style bottles, Helen says the icing on the cake when creating the skincare collection was the beautiful illustrations designed for her by Danbury-based Lydia Packham. She perfectly captured the ingredients within each blend and they adorn the labelling on the Hand & Body products and candles included in the collection.

Helen loves collaborating with other indie artists and will shortly be launching a shiny-new Olivebranch collection created for her by the lovely Katie from KP Studio across the border in Brighton. Helen’s excited about the range, as they’ll offer something truly unique for candle lovers to enjoy, as well as a beautiful piece of pottery.

When Helen’s not busy in her ‘lab’ with her team (aka her home-based studio and her two kids – apparently, they’re not the most reliable of staff], you’ll find her pottering about her beloved Chelmsford, which has been home now for the last nine years. Helen grew up in the Lake District but after her husband was offered a promotion 300 miles away in London, they made the huge decision to up sticks, choosing Chelmsford as their new home – and they’ve never looked back. A few of her favourite things to do include walking along the river on her way to enjoy a cream tea at Paper Mill Lock tearoom, mooching around the artist studios at Hylands House, and checking out the indie shops in nearby Leigh on Sea before a bracing walk along the sea front.

Fancy learning the ropes of fragrance making yourself? Well, you’re in luck, as Helen creates limited-edition candle-making kits and also teaches candle-making classes. If you’re after the sweet smell of success, give her a bell!

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