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Waxing Lyrical

02.06.21

Du Pré and Moore have bought the main component of a scented candle into the heart of their products; They believe the art of candle marking comes in the development of the scent. L-J Andrew caught up with Autumn Du Pré to talk to her about the hands-on approach that the brand takes.

 As a brand you have a strong ethos and core values. How have these evolved?

I believe the core values of Du Pré and Moore have stayed consistent through the years, without much evolution. What has evolved through the years, however, is how we operate our business with those values as our foundation. For instance, we have always done what we could to ensure we are as eco-conscious a business as we can be, but when we started, all of our products came in retail boxes. After several years we decided to forgo the use of boxes, instead packaging our products in calico drawstring bags. What is more eco-friendly than retail packaging that not only reduces waste but can be reused for years to come? Our packaging is a prime example of how we make decisions that accurately reflect our core values.

That has remained at the forefront of our business model since the beginning. Of course the business itself has evolved, the products, the collections and the branding have also evolved, but the core values of Du Pré and Moore have remained the same. We are always striving to improve our business practices, improve our ingredients and/or our packaging and stationery to ensure we are as aligned as possible with our core values.

 How has the “artisan spirit” affected the production process of your products?

From day 1, I made the decision to keep Du Pré and Moore small in order to ensure every product is carefully crafted by hand. I believe for a product to be classified as “artisan”, it must meet the highest standard of quality because that product is a direct reflection of the artists craftsmanship and knowledge of their craft. When each of our candles is crafted from beginning to end with two hands, it becomes so much more than just a candle. It becomes the physical representation of a dream, of a passion for art and design and a love for creating something beautiful.

All of our products are crafted in micro-batches to order. We don’t keep any product on the shelves so when you place your order you can be assured that your products will come to you made for you, as fresh as possible. We’ve all heard of slow living, well our production process is slow-made, and that’s just how we like it to be. When we make slow, it means we are taking our time and making with intention, in true artisan spirit.

Each candle that comes out of our studio has a piece of my heart and that is something so personal and it simply can not be duplicated when it’s a mass produced item that’s lived its life on a conveyor belt. And that is the essence of a business that operates with an “artisan spirit”.

 What do you think is at the heart of creating the optimum luxury candle? Is it one element or a combination of a number of factors and processes?

There are absolutely a combination of factors and specifically three processes that go into creating a luxury candle: Having knowledge of the individual elements of the candle and how they work together, the chemical structure of the wax and how it changes during the melting and curing processes, and finally the development of the fragrance.

The individual components of the candle, the wax; the wick; the scent blend, and the vessel, how to choose each element for the type of candle, and how they work together, is a fundamental process and as such, extremely important. If one element of this process is wrong, the candle won’t perform at its optimal level.

Along with the physical elements, a chandler should also have at least a working knowledge of the chemical changes that take place in the wax. We use sustainably sourced soy wax that undergoes chemical changes to its structure both during the melting process and once the wax has solidified, due to UV exposure; temperature and time.

The final process is the creation of the fragrance. We do not use any pre-blended formulas and no factory created blends. Each and every scent blend has been developed by me, in our studio, using the same techniques found in the art of traditional perfumery. This is a time consuming process, sometimes taking up to 6-8 months for one blend, but I firmly believe it is one of the most important elements of the candle. Having a proprietary fragrance catalogue allows our customers to enjoy a unique fragrance experience unlike any they can find elsewhere.

When you take the knowledge, the craftsmanship, the individual elements and each of their processes, and then put them all together, you have a luxury candle, the perfect sensory addition to your space.

 Du Pré and Moore not only create luscious and luxurious candles, but you also have a face and body collection. What inspired you to venture into skin care?

I would love to say that it was a natural progression from pouring candles to developing our skin and body collection, and in some way I suppose it was, but it was born more from a need that I had. Roger von Oech said it best when he said, “Necessity may be the mother of invention...”

Having a need for something that I couldn’t find is really the basis for every product that I have developed and created and our skin + body care collection certainly isn’t an exception to that rule.

I had spent years spending so much money on luxury skin care products. I believed there was a direct correlation between high product cost and skin health. In my experience, I could not have been more wrong. I made the decision to conduct (countless hours of) research and educate myself on natural ingredients, their benefits, how they work independently and together to feed skin and enhance skin health. The more I learned, the more I realised that I didn’t need 6 different products to do 6 different things. The beauty in botanical skin care is that the ingredients can do more than one job allowing one product to do the work of 3 or 4. I believe there is something to be said for an easy no-fuss skin care routine and if the products work as, they say they do, there is no need to use a litany of products and spend a ton of time on a skin care routine.

For me, the ultimate indulgence is lighting one (or four) Du Pré and Moore candles, and treating myself to an at-home spa experience with a few of our skin and body products that promote self-care and self-love, all the while feeding my skin with vitamin and mineral rich ingredients that are beautifully natural. It’s so relieving to use a product knowing it has caused no harm to the environment, to an animal or to its habitat, and yet is so good for you too.

The products may be different, but the commitment to excellence remains the same.

www.dupreandmoore.com/

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