MAY FEATURE: FLOWERS AND LEAVES
Flowers and Leaves, formerly known as The Lavender Co., sells high quality, naturally derived botanical bath and body collections and has had a shop in our centre for the past 5 years. We had a chat with founder and owner Lynnette Van Der Merwe to find out more about her successful business and the amazing, top-quality products they produce.
Lynnette had struggled to find affordable products that were gentle enough, for her very sensitive skin, for years. Having her own lavender oil, and later, tea tree oil to experiment with, she soon realised that her skin was no longer showing any allergic reactions. And so, a plant-based range of beautiful bath and body products was born, using all-natural ingredients, scented with essential oils sourced from growers in South Africa and Africa; all of which are reputable and ethical suppliers.
The business started as a leap of faith when Lynnette and her husband went meandering one day in 2002 and came across a small lavender farm for sale in the Midlands. Intrigued, and despite the fields of lavender being small and with little infrastructure, they recognised the huge potential for growth. And as they say, the rest is history, Lynnette and husband decided to buy the farm and start The Lavender Co.
Fast-forward to 2018, the business was restructured and renamed “Flowers and Leaves”, in line with their philosophy – a passion for an ethically-sourced, quality, affordable skincare range made of many different plants oils.
Flowers and Leaves manufactures their products in micro-batches in order to ensure quality and freshness is controlled. Now known throughout SA, with customers travelling especially to the Midlands to buy their products, Flowers and Leaves offers more than 80 different aromatherapy products designed to nurture and nourish all skin types.
Their best-selling products include their locally grown and sourced Essential Oils, their rich and deeply moisturising Butters, Linen & Room Sprays that are made with essential oils and not fragrances; and of course, their iconic palm oil soaps. It is important to know that only RSPO Certified palm oil is used, meaning it is grown in a sustainable manner. Flowers and Leaves have a strict policy that no products are tested on animals. While on the farm, their tea tree and lavender oils are grown according to organic principles while always striving to support their community in every practical way possible.
For Lynnette, her favourite part of the manufacturing process, is steam distillation – the process by which the oil is extracted from the harvested plant material.
“Imagine a cool autumn morning, tea tree fields covered in dew drops and you walk into the distillery as the lid is lifted of a steaming pot of tea tree! Billowing clouds of pungently scented steam envelopes you as the last few drops of oil drips out of the condenser. There is nothing more satisfying that to watch this process unfold,”
And when asked what her favourite essential oil ingredient is, it was clear that lavender is her first love! But says she cannot imagine life without the versatile Tea Tree Oil. Lynnette is currently also testing a new product made with Labdanum (Rockrose) Oil, which is a soothing, deep fragrance useful in treating people after shock or trauma. Watch this space!
If you are in the market for bath and body products, ensure that you add Flowers and Leaves to your list of shops to visit while at Piggly Wiggly! We can’t express our support enough for this incredible business!