The Orgasm Gap: ‘We have this frustrating myth that sex is easy and innate’

Aoife Drury

Single parenting in a pandemic: ‘I cry alone in the car so the kids don’t...

Lia Hynes

Author Ruth Gilligan: ‘I have slowly colonised our flat’s small second bedroom into my writing...

Sophie Grenham

About 400,000 women in Ireland have this condition and don’t know


The Cabinet Sub-Committee on Covid-19 currently has no women sitting on it. Why?

Lynn Enright

GALLERY: Beautiful gowns from The Golden Globes through the years

Jennifer McShane

Practical and stylish: 12 baskets we absolutely love for every budget

Megan Burns

Tiger King season 2 is coming – and Carole Baskin has some thoughts

Jennifer McShane

Get out of your head: What to do when you mistrust your gut instinct

Niamh Ennis

Image / Agenda

Step inside the aromatic abode of the Clean Slate founder Nicola Connolly

by Nathalie Marquez Courtney
06th Aug 2020

Nicole Connolly couldn’t find a scented candle that she loved, so she started making her own. The Clean Slate founder takes us through her calm and collected Dublin 15 home…

Like most people who aren’t starting from scratch but adding to what they already have, my home style is a mix – Nordic influences sitting alongside modern country and industrial touches. I am drawn to palettes that are neutral, high contrast and very textural.

Sharing a space with a family, I think it’s only fair that they’re allowed a say in how their home looks and feels. It’s essential that everything has a place so that things aren’t left lying around baskets are my best friend.

I painted a couple of areas with chalkboard paint, which makes a great spot for them to doodle I still have my eldest daughter’s baby handprint on the wall, which I can’t paint over! Also, rather than trying to do lots of different schemes in different rooms, I find that sticking with a couple of colours throughout the house creates continuity and serenity.

Candle products already on the market here just didn’t tick all of the boxes for me, so I began experimenting at home in my kitchen. I decided to focus on turning a passionate hobby into a business, Clean Slate.

Using soy wax and high-quality ingredients were of utmost importance, and I wanted the packaging to have a luxe feel and yet be reusable – the jars can be reused to hold an assortment of things, from cosmetics to pencils to succulents.

For me, scents are created not necessarily intentionally but have come about through experiences, memories or inspirations. There is always something in everyday life to spark an idea. For example, the lavender and eucalyptus range was inspired by my children, who have always loved both oils on their pillows at night to aid sleep and clear their little noses.

My mum inspired the cardamom and spice candle, as it evokes homely memories of her baking in the kitchen. We also start each morning with a strong black coffee with a spoon of coconut oil. The smell is amazing, and I thought it would make a great candle too, so that’s where the espresso and coconut candle came from.

More than just creating an inviting ambience, candles have the power to transport you to a place, a time, a memory. Think about the time of year; do you want something warm and autumnal or fresh and summery? Is the candle for daytime or night-time use? If you’re still not sure, it’s always a good idea to buy a selection and stock up so you always have something to hand for every eventuality!

Photography by Nathalie Marquez Courtney

Read more: 6 of the best Irish public gardens as rated by Ireland’s top gardeners

Read more: Inside a tiny Limerick cottage transformed by its architect owner

Read more: Inside a colourful and unique Dublin home full of genius DIY ideas

Also Read

traditional cottages
3 traditional cottages around the country on sale for €200,000

If you’d love to live in a picture-perfect cottage, one...

By Megan Burns

freestanding kitchens
A fitted kitchen isn’t your only option: Here’s why freestanding units are a good idea

A freestanding kitchen gives you so much more flexibility than...

By Marlene Wessels

business woman getting the job of her dreams
‘Over-qualified’ for a job? What it means and how to manage it (and get the job you want)

Found your ideal job but now you are being told...

By Colette Sexton

5 best alternative Irish mini-break experiences to book right now

With sights set firmly on native soil, those looking for...

By Eoin Higgins

Kate Winslet’s Chelsea apartment is on sale for over €4.7 million

The four-bedroom apartment has a massive 1,700-square-foot roof garden and...

By Megan Burns

2020 will be the year of small festive gatherings: here’s how we’re embracing a new kind of Christmas

Your Christmas table might have fewer people around it this...

By Megan Burns

Chrissy Teigen’s appeal to critics who called her “tone deaf” for travelling to Biden inauguration

There was great cause for celebration on Wednesday as Joe...

By Amanda Cassidy

Scullion Architects’ unique approach to a Portobello Victorian villa

Scullion Architects reconfiguration and extension of this Portobello home created both extra space, and a real sense of drama.

By Megan Burns