“Wine every time. Lockdown 1 was more of a crisp white whilst lying on my up-cycled top bunk-come-luxe garden day bed. Lockdown 2 is more of a rich red with the fire lit, feet-up and an obscene amount of fairy lights.” Shoe designer, Emmy Scarterfield of Emmy London on her quarantine tipple of choice.
Emmy London was one of the very first bridal accessory labels that I was introduced to when I started working in the bridal magazine industry. My editor at the time was a HUGE fan and, once I’d laid eyes on the designer’s elegant designs, it was easy to see why. In fact, I’ve been fawning over the likes of her signature Cinderella Block, Isadora Ivory shoe and Millie design ever since that very day. Emma Scarterfield, the woman behind the celebrated brand Emmy London, is quite the powerhouse. After graduating from Cordwainers College – followed by a five year stint in Milan designing shoes and bags for some of the biggest fashion houses in the world – Emmy returned back home to London, where she resides now with her husband Dickie, twin girls and luxury boutique in Chelsea. At the beating heart of the brand lies an ethos that pursues “the perfect balance of beauty, comfort and stability,” a mix infused with Emmy’s innate sense of style and elegance. The result? Beautiful bridal shoes you’ll want to take to the aisle – and elsewhere post-wedding – in. I caught up with the woman herself to talk all things lockdown (2.0)…
#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 as we look to go into another lockdown:
After: “Hugely responsible.”
Before: “Challenged re: stamina and resilience.”
#2 What time do you get up? Does this change in lockdown? Will life be a little slower for you? Talk to us about your usual daily routine and how this changes in lockdown…
“I still get up super early, my working days have become longer, faster and more intense, I have become more involved in day-to-day operations and, ultimately, I am driving sales myself. I feel way more accountable, but as a result have really enjoyed regaining control and being back engaged in the product and customer directly. I’ve found it to be super cleansing, rewarding and positive.”
#3 How does lockdown impact your business, and how can people (brides/the wedding industry) support you throughout?
“Lockdown has obliterated our business which is hit on every level, our market and demand is driven by weddings and formal events and with our sales channel being focussed on direct to consumer retail it’s been hugely challenging. However, we have embraced technology and found ways to connect with customers digitally to continue to generate revenue. This has allowed us to survive and given us the opportunity to develop a new sales channel which poses no geographical obstacle. The bridal industry can support us by suggesting brides to book a virtual appointment with me to experience creating their dream shoes from the comfort of their own home.”
Discover more about Emmy London’s virtual appointment here.
#4 Name three small businesses on Instagram you are supporting or would like to support more…
No.1 “@trackse7 – a small, very wholesome foodie joint set up by a friend who creates the yummiest food in East London. I love to see their passion, resourcefulness and determination to survive COVID.”
No.2 “@visualambassadors – I love an adventure. Last summer we hired an RV and travelled around Canada. This account gives my brain and heart a moment to day dream, I’ve missed that sense of adventure, space and adrenalin this year.”
No.3 “@theflomacy – a small independent flower remedy company set up and ran by a woman who truly cares and does so much good. Effectively she creates a unique flower remedy (drops a bit like Rescue Remedy) according to your needs. It really helps with those moments of panic!”
No.4 “@rushbynature – she is my sister so slightly biased, but I love her honesty and she is living proof that if you try hard enough you can literally do anything. Her account is my go-to if I’m feeling a bit low and lazy.”
#5 What is your favourite isolation snack?
“Cake. I’ve eaten a hell of a lot of cake since March! When I’m stressed I eat more which has been a bit of a disaster.”
#6 What’s your most recommended quarantine pick-me-up when you’re feeling down during lockdown?
“Thankfully (re: question 5) I started running over a year ago and now run nearly every day. This is my time – when I’m not mummy or boss – and I love the freedom and the headspace it gives me.”
#7 What’s the item you could NEVER find in the supermarket (and consequently dreamt continuously about) during lockdown previously?
“Almond croissants! I have a league table with my friend to discover the best one in North London, so far Ottolenghi is winning so I’ve missed these the most and the supermarket ones just don’t come close.”
#8 What’s the strangest thing that’s happened during your lockdowns?
“The strangest thing that happened through lockdown was that I didn’t feel lonely at all, I’ve learnt so much about myself and concluded that mentally I think I must be a weightlifter!”
#9 Favourite app for keeping in touch digitally with friends and family?
“WhatsApp, I hate Zoom – I feel like I’m in a bad dream!”
#10 Name your lockdown hate:
“My lockdown hate has been losing that sense of space and freedom, to see beyond my street became an obsession.”
#11 Name your lockdown love:
“My lockdown love has been discovering a simpler, less noisy life with no social pressure or FOMO.”
#12 The person(s) you will hug first when social distancing is no longer in place?
“The first person I will hug is my best friend Leanne, touch and feel can’t be replaced by words.”
#13 An act of kindness towards you that you’ve really appreciated during lockdown?
“A homeless guy was outside our house one evening during lockdown, he asked me if I had a spare pair of socks as all his things had been stolen whilst he’d been asleep. I made him a tea and a sandwich, chatted to him for a bit and of course gave him some socks and other basics. I really wanted to do more, but he kept saying it was plenty. He left and I wondered if I’d ever see him again, about two hours after he was back at my front door, he’d managed to find a pen and some old postcards and wrote a thank you note that was so articulate, honest and lovely – I was blown away and really touched that he’d gone to that effort and realised that, for the first time through lockdown, despite holding a business together, it was the first time I’d genuinely felt appreciated. A small act of kindness from him represented so much more to me. The note is now proudly on my magnet board in our kitchen. I do see him from time to time and always make the effort to stop and say Hi.”
#14 Talk to us about what’s new at your brand?
“We have newness in so many ways – new styles, new colours, new embellishments and new hair accessories – but I guess the biggest shift is our new normal. Engaging with women all over the world via a screen that share a love of shoes has been so amazing and I’ve been really pleasantly surprised how quickly you can build a rapport with a person remotely. I am loving our new normal, I think it’s definitely here to stay.”
#15 Name three things the lockdown has made you grateful for:
No.1 “My garden.”
No.2 “Having so much natural light in our house.”
No.3 “A spare room which has become my home studio, virtual showroom, packing station and general hub of Emmy London.”
#16 Which restaurant will you dine at first once restrictions are lifted again?
“I can’t wait to dine at La Poule Au Pot, a cozy, french restaurant which is our go to treat and where Dickie proposed 16 years ago.”
#17 What series have you now completed on Netflix? Any recommendations?
“My guilty pleasure on Netflix has been total escapism and 100% trash: Below Deck. I know shameful!”
#18 What book would be top of your quarantine book list?
“My fav lockdown read has been The Salt Path by Raynor Winn. A true tale that puts everything into perspective.”
#19 For a little Instagram-escapism, what three accounts would you recommend?
“@morelifeadventures. One day I hope to be the kind of woman that drops everything and explores, that prioritises shared experiences out of my comfort zone and basically be fit and brave enough to keep up! I am totally not there yet!”
#20 Name three things you bought online during lockdown last time and three things you’re thinking of buying this time around:
“Three things I bought…
No.1 “Frozen croissants.”
No.2 “Self-raising flour.”
No.3 “Self tanning drops from Balance Me.”
No.1 “Silk pjs.”
No.2 “Faux fur throws.”
#21 What’s your ‘lockdown’ outfit most days?
“Monday to Friday in Lockdown 1 I tried to wear a waist band to create more consciousness about trips to the fridge! This lockdown I’ve adopted a new uniform of tights and knitted dresses – cozy, comfy and effortlessly dressed up with heels.”
#22 What’s your advice to lockdown brides?
“My advice to brides is to keep planning, enjoy the experiences that are on offer – suppliers are really making so much effort to create wonderful, memorable experiences for you. Plus, think how organised you’ll be so you can enjoy the run up to the big day without the typical pre-covid bride last minute panic.”
#23 And, finally, your quarantine cocktail/tipple of choice?
“Wine every time. Lockdown 1 was more of a crisp white whilst lying on my up-cycled top bunk-come-luxe garden day bed. Lockdown 2 is more of a rich red with the fire lit, feet-up and an obscene amount of fairy lights.”
Want to discover the plethora of wonderful bridal shoes available from Emmy London? Simply click here.
To read more WFH Diary entries from your favourite bridal designers, brands and boutiques on Bridal Editor, click here.