by-SYLVE-COLLESS Romance is so much about appealing to all of the senses and none are more powerful than the sense of smell. We are firm believers that scent can create a mood, evoke a feeling and conjure a memory. One of our favourite stockists is the divine Maison Balzac, run by the effortlessly chic Elise Pioch who is without a doubt one of the most interesting and beautiful people we’ve ever met. We sat down with her to discuss her beautiful brand and her special relationship with scent…   Maison Balzac is a business close to your heart, can you tell us how the business began and why you started? I was born and raised in the South of France, surrounded by the love of my family and by the beauty of the nature. After moving to Australia I started to miss the smell, light and taste o my homeland and decided to bring it to Sydney through the medium of candle making. Maison Balzac is born out of nostalgia for my beloved France. You have such a clean aesthetic and very distinctive scents for your products, where do you draw your inspiration for the collections from? Every scent explores my childhood memories. The design of the packaging is as simple, raw, naive and pure as childhood itself. As an adult I met up with incredible artists who helped me create new scents (1642, Obscurite, Sainte T, Etrangete), the design of these boxes is more complex and narrative, a bit like us, adults.  
You travel a lot for work and pleasure, do you have a favourite place to visit? Or a favourite story from your travels? I spend nearly 3 months a year in France with my family, searching new products and fragrances for Maison Balzac and we also explore Australia and its beauty as much as we can but one of my favourite place one earth is Cadaques, North of Spain, by the mediterranean sea. It is where Dali spent his holidays and thanks to him it has remained a fishing village full of charm and style. This is where we spent our honey moon with ours six best friends, it is so magical to me.  
Where do you see the collection going or expanding? What’s next? I am one of these prolific thinker who doesn’t stop to have idea. One pops up every minute in my head. It is really hard not to want to bring them all to life but I had to force myself to focus on one at a time recently. Early 2016 you will see the result of this, I can’t say exactly what it is going to be but it involves perfumes and oils… Some words to live by? Everything always works out for the best; everyday the sun rises on a new world; we never regret a swim (including 16 degree swim in Bronte pool in winter).