You all know about our Vase Tête pieces or “face vases” but do you know about the faces behind the brand of La Soufflerie? This is a series called La Famille at La Soufflerie to introduce you to the people that make it all happen at our atelier in Paris.
First we would like to introduce you to the founders of La Soufflerie… Valentina and Sebastien. They are the husband and wife team that run the show. Sebastien has a background in plaster mold making and has his own company called Moulage et Patine where he creates beautiful pieces for museums, boutiques, hotels and private clients. He also teaches at Les Beaux Arts de Paris! Valentina, an Italian American, grew up in Paris and went to NYU art school in New York City. She then travelled around Europe perfecting her skills as an artist and working in the advertising business.
Sebastien had been dabbling in the art of glassblowing when he realised that 100% mouth blown glass (no machines!) was a dying art. At the time there were fewer than five professional glassblowers in the Paris region. Upon learning this, Valentina and Sebastien decided to start La Soufflerie, a non-profit organisation that gives all its proceeds back to the glassblowers to keep the art alive. They started in 2007 by creating 20 pieces from recycled glass, loading them on the back of their bikes and riding around Paris to sell their pieces to flower shops. They sold out in a day and received lots of feedback as to what kind of vases customers needed. And this is how the story began….
Sebastien and Valentina find inspiration from classic designs and also from people in their lives. Many of the pieces are named after family members, friends, clients and co-workers. Thibaut and Chiara are named after their children. Djamal and Anjeanette are named after the studio manager and Community Manager. Les Bougies de Melanie are named after a close friend.
We like to keep it all in the family because family is what means the most to us!