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Soaps, Ceramics & The Château By Peaceful Haven Farms

Written By Château de Gudanes France

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Posted on July 01 2021

 It was at the beginning of 2019 that our now dear friend, Debby from Peaceful Haven Farms, sent us a hopeful email asking about staying at the Château later that same year on one of our summer retreats. And over the months of correspondence before her arrival, we could feel her excitement and positivity from afar...

During her stay with us Debby embraced with love and enthusiasm everything about experiencing the Château and was determined to help contribute in a lasting positive way to the project. And so, she spent much of her time, along with other guests, helping to restore the 18th Century frescoes in the Château's original dining room...

Debby approaches all aspects of life in this same beautiful way. And another example would be how she infuses all her love into her soap-making, ceramics and needlework. 

We very much admire Debby's outlook on life and are so grateful to her for her support of the Château. 

We hope that you enjoy reading more about Debby's story, shared in her own lovely words, below...

 

With love,

Karina and the Château Team x

 

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"It was in the magical summer of 2019 that I visited Château de Gudanes. I wish I could put into words the magic of the Château and it’s history, and the amazing experience I had during my stay. But that is something you will hopefully be able to discover for yourselves when you too are able to visit!

I instantly knew Karina and I, as well as the Château team and my fellow guests would become lifetime friends and indeed we have. The connections made there are strong and everlasting, such a bond is created. Much like the strong sense of history that draws us closer and closer to follow the journey of this historic place.

I discovered Château de Gudanes on social media like so many others and as soon at the Château’s incredible book was published I ordered it. After pouring over every page, each one filled with more beauty than the last, I knew I had to stay there. And so in 2019, just prior to my retirement, I booked my reservation and my dream came true! 

During my stay I recall sharing some of my many creative pursuits with Karina and my fellow visitors. I have always loved making things, primarily needlework - sewing, embroidery, needlepoint and rug hooking. But in 2004 I also began making small batch soaps. I found the process of making soap helped to relieve stress from my demanding career and the soaps I created had beautiful, herb and floral scents encouraging me to relax after a long day. When one is being creative, not only working on soaps but also while making other things, you become so focused and tensions tend to fall away as you concentrate on your art.

I also loved that my family could use the soaps I made knowing they were all natural and each ingredient was carefully considered. And of course, I found they were perfect gifts to share with dearest friends! 

I often thought, since that time, how wonderful it would be just to make soap! And this became a dream of mine...

Some years later, upon moving to Colorado I named my new home Peaceful Haven Farms as it was my peaceful haven for myself, my sons and my dogs, cats and horses and honeybees. And at this time I also discovered the world of ceramics. I took several classes and was hooked! As with most things, practice, practice, practice made it happen.

Soaps and ceramics are my creative passions now, with a bit of needlework too. And I am happy that within these two worlds of soap and ceramics, as well as fibre arts, everything I create is a natural product.  

When I eventually decided to close my marketing company and retire from the big business world in 2019, I started doing a few craft fairs and selling my soaps, and I was thrilled that people loved them! I make shaped soaps, which are very uncommon (as why not be different?!) with all natural ingredients and organic essences and herbs I grow in my garden. I am also still always working on new ideas and creations for my ceramics. There are so many things I want to create, new ideas are coming all the time! So be sure to keep an eye out.  Each soap, each piece of pottery, is original, made just for you with care and love...

As you will know, when covid arrived, and with lockdown, the Château was unable to invite visitors. The summer workshops and experiences are the primary funding for the vast restoration of this Class 1 historical monument with the same classification at the Eiffel Tower and Versailles. What an amazing, endeavor of love, but also overwhelming task the Waters’ family has taken on! So, Shop The Château was created!

I was so excited and beyond thrilled to become a part of this wonderful online shop with my artisan made creations as well as to be contributing to the restoration, as a percentage of each sales goes toward this. I have shipped my soaps and ceramics across the United States and to Canada, England, France and as far as Norway! I am so honored that people choose and love my creations.

I hope that you will visit my shop on ShoptheChateau.com and find something you will love, and I sincerely hope that you will make your dream come true and visit the magical Château de Gudanes in the south of France. I promise you will never forget it and perhaps you may decide to make your home close by as well! 

In fact (though more like a fairy-tale!), I am making my own plans to retire in France next year to a little maison just down the road from the Château. And of course I will continue with my soaps and ceramics in my new home - for what would we be if we can’t be creative whatever our passion is and wherever we may be? 

Thank you for your support of Peaceful Haven Farms and the Château."

Merci beaucoup! 

Debby x