Candles And A Serendipitous Visit To The Château...•
Posted on January 24 2021
Put simply, candles are a practical necessity at the Château. Without them, we would be lost!
There is currently only minimal electricity installed in just a few rooms. And so, every evening we carefully light candles to see amongst the darkness as we make our way through the Château’s grand halls and salons to our bedrooms...
Each evening there is also a designated candle overseer to ensure that all are blown out at the end of the night before everyone falls asleep. With 94 rooms to keep and eye over this is quite the job!
And so, today we are very excited to share with you the words and story of a candlemaker and friend warm and dear to our hearts.
We first met Marisa of Covet Alchemy Apotheca & Candle Co. in the summer of 2016 when she came with her family to stay at the Château for a night. At the time, we had only temporary bathroom facilities and electricity and so we weren't offering stays or tours. But when Marisa's mother messaged to say this was not at all a problem we thought to ourselves why not!
Together we shared a beautiful evening together and it was a joy to meet Marisa and her family. And when we opened Shop The Château last year we were delighted that Marisa was able to be part of it with us.
Marisa infuses everything she makes with love. Love not only for your home but for the world too, carefully making sure to consider our planet in every choice of ingredient, packaging and wrapping. Reflecting the heart and soul of what we are trying to achieve with Shop The Château.
We hope you enjoy reading her story!
The Château Team x
"In the summer of 2016 my mother took her three daughters on a holiday to Provence. Together we stayed in picturesque little apartment in Saint-Rémy and took our time touring all of the beautiful nearby villages and historical sites.
Until one day during our travels my mother informed us that she had a surprise! We would be traveling to the Pyrenees Mountains and staying overnight in an eighteenth century château.
During our four hour trip West, my mother told my sisters and I all about the Waters family, that just three years prior began the grand undertaking of restoring Château de Gudanes. After four hours of travelling the château was finally visible in the distance...
Meeting Karina and Jasmine, standing together on the Château's front steps awaiting our arrival, solidified our appreciation and adoration for this labor of love.
Our stay at the Chateau was in the very beginning stages of restoration. I would classify our stay as the most glamorous of glamping. We ate the most delicious meal of our entire stay in the South of France, prepared in what has to be my favorite kitchen of all time. I think half of my camera roll was trying to capture the light in this magical place.
After dinner we played Carcassonne by candlelight and spent the evening stargazing and sharing stories like long lost friends. In the morning, we said our goodbyes and promised to return one day.
That day was to be summer of 2020. Unfortunately, amongst the difficulties that we all faced together last year this wasn't able to happen. But, I await in anticipation to return and in the meantime have connected with the Château and our dear friends in a different way...
Another labor of love was the beginning of my small batch candle business. It began during "the lock down" in April. I found myself baking constantly and doing everything I could think of to make my home as cosy as possible.
We were going through so many candles. Candles going in every room. One day I thought to myself," this is quite a lot of fragrance that we are breathing in all hours of the day." My son has allergies and ashma, so I made it my mission to research and find the cleanest burning candle. It was during my research that I learned about sourcing materials and companies with ethical and sustainable practices. Finding that perfect candle that checked off all of my wants was a bit more difficult than I originally thought.
Like the old saying goes, "If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself."
This was my check list must haves and since I couldn't find this without compromising it is what now makes the candles I create unique:
- must be ethically sourced
- use sustainable materials and ingredients
- be free of phthalates, including but not limited to BBP, DEHP, DBP, and DEP
- have wooden wicks
- be free of chemicals
- be packaged recycled glass vessels
- must be a company that donates to other important organizations and charities
As a massage therapist, reiki master and yoga instructor, I am proud to write that was able to call on all of my knowledge and experience to cultivate something truly unique, and have now expanded the line to include not just candles but other pure and natural items as well...
Many years of working with essential oils has developed my love for plant medicine. Reiki has always been infused in all aspects of my life, so of course it would be one of the main ingredients in my candles as well. And so, every small batch of candles is timed with lunar cycles and charged with reiki. I also donate 10% of profits to organisation or charities including One Tree Planted, The Bee Conservancy, Adopt An Elder and Save The Manatees.
The very moment I saw that the Château was creating a market for hand-made goods and artisans, I knew I wanted to be apart of it. What a beautiful way to share my candles and contribute to the ongoing restoration of such a magical place.
I also wanted to create a collection of candles that was reminiscent of my experience during the Summer holiday at the Château. Every candle in this collection is named after a heart felt memory - Laissez Faire, Bric-a-Brac, Antoinette and Chartreuse Velvet.
This collection is made with luxury virgin coconut & soy blended wax. All of our fragrances are clean, natural and phalate free. The stoneware vessel is high quality, minimalistic and sure to elevate any home.
If you are curious about my candle making process, I have a few videos on my YouTube channel - Covet Alchemy Candles, showing a start to finish tutorial. I also include a clip on the Reiki/sound bath before they go out into the world."
Thank you dearly for reading and with love and light,
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