Le Labo Figue 15 Classic Candle (Thanks Again To Camelia)

If you've been following this blog, you'll have noticed the epiphany that went down when I discovered Le Labo's candles. Having long been a fan of A.P.C candles and sometimes Diptyque candles and even the occasional experiment due to a tempting department store offer leading me to try for instance a Laura Mercier candle, the lightning bolt that struck the day I walked headlong into the Le Labo underworld and discovered what they do and how carefully they do what they do, was a line in the sand moment. After that, well, there's been no turning back on the candle frontier. It's Le Labo or no candle at all. 

Part of that Le Labo epiphany was about going into their petite, angular London boutique just off Marylebone High Street and having the lovely experience of meeting Camelia, who is very much an embodiment of Le Labo the brand and also a fabulously warm and inviting ambassador for Le Labo as a luxurious, life enhancing experience. Instead of being harassed and rushed through a purchase, which is the norm in most stores these days, Camelia took her time initiating me as a consumer/ customer/ guest/ pleasure seeker, into Le Labo's mysterious, heady wonderland vibe and sent me home with a Pin 12 vintage candle. The cumulative experience that afternoon was not just of buying a candle or discovering what Le Labo is about, it was also somehow about beginning a friendship with Le Labo, Camelia and the London boutique, which in this hurry-convenience-download-hustle bustle era, seems entirely unique. 

As I've already blogged about, the Pin 12 candle called back childhood memories of Mallorca for me and I was frankly surprised that a candle could work up such powerful images, emotions and memories. Camelia had explained that Le Labo candles go way beyond what you usually get from any other candle and she wasn't kidding: you don't light a Le Labo candle and have it politely tiptoe about your home - when you light a Le Labo candle, you're inviting both a dominant luxury to sprawl out across your home and also for your senses to be dialled up the way the very best films, books, photographs, paintings, songs, albums, dial up your senses. 

By the time the Pin 12 vintage candle flickered for a final time, I was completely hooked and a return trip to the Le Labo store resulted in moving on from the Pin 12 vintage candle to trying the Santal 26 classic candle  which was deeply heady - think Leonard Cohen's voice pumped through a Moroccan riad - and caused everyone who dropped by to say, Wow, what's that amazing smell? Every time I lit that candle, I have to say the experience felt special, always like a treat. And the scent lingered at all times, like it was a bank of perfumed fog that had rolled in and then been held on pause. I blogged about the delights of that candle too, the post's here if you didn't catch it. 

Deepening the Le Labo loving, I also read a bunch of interviews online with Le Labo's founders, Fabrice Penot and Eddie Roschi and found myself really admiring the company they've built, their focus, their attention to detail, their dedication in the way they started Le Labo, their commitment to animal cruelty free production/ products, their A.P.C-esque disinterest in conventional marketing/ advertising formulas, their business savvy (all that consultancy work helping Le Labo grow) and above all, their pure vision which permeates and characterises every corner of what they're doing and making. 

While buying the Santal 26 candle, Camelia had mentioned that she also highly rated the Figue 15 candle - which worked like a cunning subliminal plant over the next month. I was often thinking that since Camelia's recommendations so far had been so perfect, there was no rational reason not to take her lead again and move next time to trying the Figue 15 candle. Adding to that, I adore figs anyway - with crumbled cheese, with goat's cheese, drizzled with honey, with a good yogurt, tossed with toasted nuts - which meant I was basically sold long in anticipation of the Santal 26 candle coming to an end. 

Then it happened, the Santal 26 candle did come to an end and a few days later, as a birthday treat, I dropped by the boutique and Camelia once more hosted me and my daughter (who's now a dedicated Le Labo fan at the age of eight) and it felt ever-more like we'd dropped by to say hello to a new friend we're incrementally getting to know and as had been set in motion by Camelia the time before, we of course left carrying a bag and inside the bag, was a beautifully wrapped and packaged Figue 15 classic candle

My thoughts on the Figue 15 candle so far? Well, where the Pin 12 and Santal 26 transported me away into a travel realm - to Mallorca, to Morocco - the Figue 15 is fresh and beautiful and sweet and breezy and grounding and comforting and transports you deep inside yourself. It's somehow a kind of spiritual experience; an internal pleasure. Every time I've lit this Figue 15 candle, I feel refreshed, yet also inwards looking. It's like meditation, like yoga, like the point in a Pilates mat class when you zone fully into that profound sense of inner intuition. And whichever room you light it in, it makes you smile, really profoundly smile. 

Cate Shortland's LORE

Cate Shortland's Lore = Brilliant Movie