Love of candles ignites business

April 9, 2009 (McHENRY, Ill.) She invented a product, Sassy Primitives, that sets her candles apart from others on the market and is now producing them -- en masse.

"I wanted to create a pretty candle that I would actually burn and be able to keep and that's kind of how my candle inside candle concept came," said Patchett.

Ten years ago with no prior experience, the north suburban McHenry woman started the business after reading a book about candle making. Now she and her staff produce as many as 2,000 candles a week in her factory.

"To me the biggest thing was trying to make a candle that you could actually keep replacing the votive and always have the pretty candle," said Patchett. "I always create things that you get to keep ...that's my concept. "

Largely a wholesale business, she sells to stores throughout the Midwest, and out East, such as New York and New Jersey. She even has customers in Canada and New Zealand.

The mother of twins and former banker balances family with business as she travels on trade shows.

"I'm very proud of my daughter," said Sandra Nielsen, Wendy's mom. "She works very hard. She's a good mother. She's very creative and she's always coming up with something new."

"I enjoy it. I actually can say I love coming to work I love. I love working with the girls that work for me. It's nice when you make a candle and you pull it out of the candle mold what you actually with get. You never know...every time is different I enjoy that," said Patchett.

Check out Patchett's products at

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