“We also set up online Zoom appointments with our stores and brides…and it was so special for me to get to meet my brides and talk to them about their dreams and aspirations for their special day.” Designer, Savannah Miller on how lockdown has impacted her business
“Free your spirit, embrace the ethereal, and be true to the cool girl in you” are some of the first words you’ll read on Savannah Miller’s website. And, BOY will you want to be a Savannah Miller bride after laying eyes on the unique sartorial notes she effortlessly threads through her designs. Having launched her own first eponymous bridal collection in 2016 – after working with the likes of Alexander McQueen and Matthew Williamson – Savannah’s aisle-worthy creations instantly enticed brides with their – in her own words – “part rock-and-roll, part 1930s glamour”. Made and crafted for the modern woman, every thoughtful design created is achingly unqiue and effortlessly timesless, flaunting her signature elegance with an edge. I caught up with Savannah to get the low-down on her lockdown…
#1 Provide us with three words that sum-up how you were feeling about lockdown when it first started, and then three words about how you feel now:
Before: “Apprehensive, anxious, intrigued.”
After: “Rejuvenated, inspired, connected.”
#2 What time do you get up? Has this changed? Is life a little slower? Talk to us about your new daily routine…
“I usually have to get three children out of the door to school by 8am so not having to rush in the mornings has made our family life a lot less stressful. That said, we are all up and at our desks by 9am most mornings so that we can try and keep some regular structure to the day. Often the little one will be rolling around the kitchen floor refusing to get dressed when school is supposed to have started but we give it our best shot!”
#3 How is lockdown impacting your business, and how can people support you?
“It has been really challenging because we missed our three major trade fairs of the year where we do all of our whole selling. We have effectively lost a season in sales but we hope the love for our brand will continue to grow once life resumes some kind of normality. We have had to think outside of the box as to how best we can meet our stores and brides needs and find innovative ways of connecting. We made a digital movie of all of our gowns so that our stores would be able to see the gowns on a model, in motion, and get a real sense of how they move and flow. We also set up online Zoom appointments with our stores and brides where I would help my brides to choose their gown from the comfort of their own home. The stores then sent them the store samples to try at home. We had quite a lot of success with this and it was so special for me to get to meet my brides and talk to them about their dreams and aspirations for their special day.”
#4 Name two local businesses you are supporting or would like to support more…
No.1 “Bread and Brot, my friend Julia who makes incredible sourdough bread from home. Discover @breadandbrot.”
No.2 “Its not local but it is very cool, community clothing which is owned and run by my friend Patrick Grant and supports community regeneration in the north of England making wardrobe essentials that are cool and affordable.”
#5 What’s your favourite isolation snack?
“Anything.. literally… it’s a little out of control. I have spent quite a bit of time in cookery books which I don’t normally have time to do and have really enjoyed trying new recipies. I’ve managed to hone a Lebanese tahini and yoghurt dressing that makes any vegetable taste like manna from heaven.”
#6 What’s your most recommended quarantine pick-me-up when you’re feeling down?
“Running. I have never been a fan but it’s the only exercise for me that really gets the endorphins pumping and helps me to get everything in to perspective.”
#7 What’s the item you can now NEVER find in the supermarket (and consequently dream continuously about)…
“Flour! Its mental. You still can’t buy it. I did the clichéd thing of buying a sourdough starter thinking I would finally learn how to make sourdough and it died because I just couldn’t get the flour!”
#8 What’s the strangest thing that’s happened during your lockdown period…
“I’ve reconnected with friends I haven’t seen for 20 years and we are having weekly Zoom calls. I feel more connected to my friends old and new than I have for years!”
#9 Favourite app for keeping in touch digitally with friends and family?
#10 Name your lockdown hate:
“Zoom! I feel like the scheduled weekly calls were a bit much and we are all a bit Zoomed out now.”
#11 Name your lockdown love:
“My partner… its been really amazing for us to get to spend so much quality time together. We both have pretty intense jobs at different ends of the country so our time together is usually limited. Having months on end together has made us really appreciate how lucky we are to have each other.”
#12 The person(s) you will hug first when social distancing is no longer in place?
#13 An act of kindness towards you that you’ve really appreciated?
“My neighbour brought me a big bag of rocket that she had grown in her garden. It’s a little thing but I am aware much more keenly, how special my neighbours are and how lucky I am to live in the funny corner of England that I occupy.”
#14 Talk to us about what’s new at your brand?
“We are developing some beautiful masks that can be worn for your wedding day. I have really enjoyed getting back to the making side of my job. I very rarely make things any more and the making is what I love best. I want my brides to still feel sensual and beautiful on their wedding days despite the possibility of having to wear a face covering so I hope these masks will be welcomed.”
#15 Name three things the lockdown has made you grateful for:
No.1 “My home. I live in Gloucestershire in the English countryside and spending so much time in nature in the incredible spring sunshine has felt like a real gift.”
No.2 “The food we eat. We take for granted how accessible the world is and probably over consume that that has had to come from miles away. I have started growing my own food and its really hard!”
No.3 “My friends and family. Ultimately the love of the people close to me is the most important thing to me in the world. I hope to be able to readdress my work/life balance a little more and give my loved ones the attention they deserve when we are all back out in the world.”
#16 Which restaurant will you dine at first once restrictions are lifted?
“Bar Pitti with my sister on 6th avenue in New York. Its our favourite place to go together and not seeing her for months on end has felt like I am missing a limb.”
#17 What series have you now completed on Netflix? Any recommendations?
“I loved The Last Dance and Unorthadox. Also, I was obsessed with Normal People on BBC.”
#18 What would be your quarantine book list?
#19 And, finally, your quarantine cocktail/tipple of choice?
“Rosé, all day!”
Want to discover more from Savannah Miller? Click here.