Vanilla, orange and cypress soap
The young Félix Lumignon grew up in Caucade, a little village perched between sea and mountain, where the juicy and fragrant Nice oranges are grown. He was an only child, and his favourite pastime was fishing off the village wharf. Under the hot Provence sun, time nearly stood still, so he always took along his colouring pencils. As time passed, what were at first spur of the moment sketches became increasingly polished drawings.
When he was 12, Félix’s grandfather, knowing the boy’s passion for drawing, decided to give him an easel. But his poor eyesight led him to build an easel that was too large and too bulky to carry down to the wharf. So Félix took to painting large-format canvasses in the yard of the pastry shop run by his mother Adrienne. In the shade of old cypress trees, he waited for the head confectioner to prepare a batch of unctuous vanilla cake, and as soon the sweet wonderful aroma wafted into the yard, he went to work, uplifted. Customers sometimes stopped for hours to watch the artist at work. Under their gazes, his personal style was born.
One day, one customer took particular notice. Monsieur Chanteduc owned an art gallery in Nice. He offered the budding artist a public exhibition. Much to Lumignon’s surprise, the gallery owner’s instinct was right – his paintings were hugely popular.
Years later, a Lumignon ended up in the possession of an art collector in the village of Eastman. When he saw it, the village soap maker Sébastien was struck by the composition of green and orange on a white background. He stared, absorbing its organic beauty.
Today, the design and smell of our orange, cypress and vanilla soap is yet more proof that inspiration is the stuff of great artists.