Life is a WISH: Brenda Turner

By Leslie Moore

For some people, the tragedies of life are something to be pushed through or endured, but others use them to fuel creativity and make the world a better place. Brenda Turner is one of the latter.

In 1992, Brenda’s friend, Cookie, was taking care of her invalid mother and searching for work she could do at home. Cookie and Brenda decided to start a candle business, but things didn’t work out as planned. Cookie lost her mother, and Brenda’s husband was diagnosed with cancer. “We packed up the candle making equipment, she moved, and I was my husband’s caregiver for three years,” remembered Brenda.

In traversing the landscape of grief for a beloved spouse, and trying to find something positive in the experience, Brenda had the idea to start making candles again. “Candle making is very calming and soothing, especially with beeswax,” Brenda began, excited to share her creative journey. “I was making candles one night and starting thinking about putting a message in a candle – a way to send a message to someone special – and an idea sparked.” This is when the idea for WISH candles was first conceived.

WISH candles are 100% beeswax and have a tube inside that contains a message from a loved one. As the candle burns, the tube containing the message is revealed. “The message can be written by terminally ill patients, for milestone occasions like graduations and weddings, or anytime we are miles apart from the special people in our life.”

The name WISH also has special meaning – Words Inspired Secrets Held. “Making a wish is one of the most important things you can do for yourself.  Your WISH holds the story of your life.”

It wasn’t easy to get the candles exactly the way Brenda wanted them. She knew she needed a tube inside the candle, but it took many tries to bring her vision to life. “I remember standing in Home Depot, looking around and trying to decide what I could use for the tube,” Brenda laughed. “A man, not an employee, came up to me and asked if I needed help. I must’ve looked totally confused!” The tubes ended up being copper with pull off lids on either end for ease of opening.  With a lot of help, Brenda was also able to customize the perfect candle mold that leaves a cylindrical opening on the bottom of the candle that perfectly matches the tube containing the message.

Every detail of the WISH candle has been carefully thought out and made by small creative entrepreneurs – the unique logo, the beautiful wooden boxes that contain the candle, the aforementioned tubes, the paper to write the message and even the beeswax plugs to seal the opening once the tube is placed inside. “The WISH candle can turn a sad day into one filled with memories and love.”

As we finished our chat, Brenda shared another special WISH story. “Last year, my friend Cookie called me with the news that she has cancer and is dying. I send her two WISH candles for her grandchildren, and she wrote personal messages to each and arranged for them to be delivered after her passing.”

Brenda left me with this final, beautiful thought. “I pray that everyone reading this is inspired to make their own heartfelt wishes – and take action to make them come true. Dream the life you WISH to live, and one day you will look back on life and know you dreamed it first, and then lived it.”

Meet Brenda at WISH Candle in Pawleys Island. Handmade, comfortable stools line a custom bar, perfect for sitting and chatting. With the help of her WISH girls, Melanie, Joy, Nicole and Wendy, Brenda will host an open house the week of October 16-21. WISH is located in the Shops of Sweetgrass.

Call 843-314-3215 or visit for more information.

About this writer

  • Leslie Moore

    Leslie Moore

    Leslie Moore is the editor for Strand Media Group. A 25 year resident of Pawleys Island, she is blessed with a life filled with the love of family and friends and satisfying work to do every day.

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One Response to “Life is a WISH: Brenda Turner”

  1. Rose Ann says:

    What a wonderful idea and an inspiring story. I will be sure to visit this shop.

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