Jess Snively is the owner of Milton and Margie’s Soy Wax Candles. When she’s at craft shows, people who don’t know her generally think her name is Margie, but Milton and Margie are her cats.

Milton and Margie’s Soy Wax Candles was born in a small apartment in Minneapolis in the mid-2000s. Jess set out to make soy candles in a few containers she had lying around her place, and candle-making soon turned into an obsession. She continued making them in a collection of assorted recycled and repurposed containers, which further fueled her passion for thrifting. Jess has long been a consumer and admirer of the handmade movement and is glad that she can be part of and further the growing community that values shopping locally.

What’s your favorite book?

Cruddy, by Lynda Barry

Favorite movie?

The House of the Devil

Favorite TV show?

Twin Peaks

When did you realize you wanted to share your passion/skill?

After making soy candles for about 8 years, I felt I was ready to share my knowledge. I love seeing the scent combinations that other people dream up, and I’m still constantly learning about scent theory and blending fragrances.

Did you go to school for your craft or teach yourself?

I’m self-taught.

If you could choose a spirit animal what would it be?


I’m drawn to the panther.

What makes you laugh until you cry?

My goofy boyfriend and friends!

How do you like to spend your weekend?

When I’m not selling soy candles at craft shows or teaching classes, I love spending time at Lake Michigan—whether I’m running, walking my dog, or hanging at the beach.

What’s your favorite city and why?


I love Chicago because each neighborhood is so distinct. I love exploring and being in the hustle and bustle, but then being able to come back to my serene neighborhood in Rogers Park.

Where do you find inspiration?

Most of my scents are inspired by nature, specifically in the Midwest. I especially love woodsy scents like my Cedar Campfire and Up North.

Are you in Chicago and want to check out one of Jess’ warm and toasty workshops?! Or do you know someone who might? Sign-up or share her event here.