The wedding industry like many industries, has faced unimaginable challenges and now more than ever, it’s important that we all come together to support one another. Lauren Crispin, Owner of The Mews Bridal on how people can support the wedding industry
Driven by Mother and Daughter team Gail and Lauren, The Mews Bridal (with stores in Clifton, Notting Hill and NYC) is quite the bridal force to be reckoned with. With three achingly stylish boutiques, not to mention a hugely inspiring brand direction and haul of timelessly cool French bridal designers in stock, The Mews Bridal should be – as I’ve said before – lingering high – and glittering – on many a bride’s boutique to-visit list. Stocking the likes of Rime Arodaky, Caroline Takvorian, Laure de Sagazan and Margaux Tardits (to name a few) The Mews is where fashion fuses effortlessly with bridal and becomes one, offering a hybrid form of gown that many a contemporary bride covets for the aisle. I caught up with Lauren to get the lowdown on her 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:
Before: “Apprehensive, intense, ready for a challenge.”
During: “Busy, positive, challenged.”
After: “Grateful, inspired, connected.”
#2 What time do you get up? Did this change in lockdown? Was life a little slower for you? Talk to us about your usual daily routine and how this changes in lockdown…
“My usual morning routine consists of my alarm going off at 7am and if I have the energy (it is getting harder now the mornings are darker!) I get up and do some form of exercise before getting ready for work. I then make myself a coffee before getting in the car along with Alfie, my cavapoo and we drive to Notting Hill. Our studio opens at 10am and from then I am busy non-stop, working through my to-do list, with appointments, meetings, new projects, marketing, social media etc. My days are so different and this is what I love about my job!
During Lockdown my mornings are definitely slower. I don’t have to rush around, I can take my time in the morning. I have more time to exercise and enjoy a coffee before settling down at my desk and writing a to-do list. At the moment most of my daily work is admin related and I am really missing the creative side to my job, that’s why I look forward to our virtual appointments which we launched during the last lockdown! It’s a great opportunity for our brides to get a head start on their wedding dress journey and we can help curate a selection of dresses together that we can then have ready when they come in and see us once we open our doors again. I try to go into the studio one to two times a week for these appointments as it gives me a sense of normality and I can then show the brides through our edit of dresses.
I am also incredibly grateful for my dog Alfie as having to walk him has been wonderful to break up my day and get some fresh air. I live on the outskirts of London so I am lucky to have beautiful countryside on my doorstep which is a real lifesaver when you are feeling cooped up. Alfie, like many dogs around the world, is loving his lockdown life!”
#3 How does lockdown impact your business, and how can people (brides/the wedding industry) support you throughout?
“Sadly, we had to close our beautiful studios for a second time in lockdown 2.0 and it’s been heartbreaking both times! It’s definitely an emotional rollercoaster. The second time round it was a little easier knowing there was an end date! Although our studios were closed we were very much still working behind the scenes; answering enquiries, booking future appointments and organising deliveries along with hosting virtual appointments which have been incredibly popular!
The wedding industry like many industries, has faced unimaginable challenges and now more than ever, it’s important that we all come together to support one another.”
#4 Name three small businesses on Instagram you are supporting or would like to support more…
#1 “@zoeandmorgan – have the most beautiful jewellery, there are some pieces that are on my Christmas list!”
#2 “@wildwoodlondon – one of The Mews’ fave florists in London.”
#5 What is your favourite isolation snack?
“Hummus and crisps.”
#6 What’s your most recommended quarantine pick-me-up when you’re feeling down during lockdown?
“A daily walk. So simple but so good for the soul!”
#7 What’s the item you could NEVER find in the supermarket (and consequently dreamt continuously about) during lockdown previously?
“A cappuccino with oat milk – the first one I had after the first lockdown was heaven in a coffee cup.”
#8 What’s the strangest thing that’s happened during your lockdowns?
“The whole concept of lockdown is strange and something which I never thought would ever happen, it still feels so surreal to me.”
#9 Favourite app for keeping in touch digitally with friends and family?
“Zoom was definitely the go-to app during lockdown 1.0. This time round probably good old WhatsApp.”
#10 Name your lockdown hate:
“People not wearing masks or not wearing them in the correct way.”
#11 Name your lockdown love:
“My boyfriend – he’s been a great support throughout this unusual year and it’s been so lovely to have been able to spend more time together. I normally travel once a month to our New York studio (which I am hugely missing!) but it has been a nice change to be in one place. Having this time together made us really appreciate how lucky we are to have each other. And my second love Alfie our dog, he keeps us sane!”
#12 The person(s) you will hug first when social distancing is no longer in place?
“My Parents! I can’t wait to give them a squeeze at Christmas (if Boris allows)!”
#13 An act of kindness towards you that you’ve really appreciated during lockdown?
“Our brides have been amazing! The crisis is so devastating for everyone but especially for our lovely brides that have had their wedding plans disappear before them. They have been incredibly patient, appreciative and hugely supportive and we will be forever grateful.”
#14 Talk to us about what’s new at your brand?
“The new 2021 collections! They landed at The Mews in September and our brides who were lucky enough to come in and see us pre-lockdown 2.0 are completely in love with them all! We can’t wait to re-open to style more brides in these beauties.
We are also moving into a new space in Clifton, Bristol! We got the keys last week and we can’t wait to show you our new home from January 2021, it’s going to be so beautiful.”
#15 Name three things the lockdown has made you grateful for:
#1 “My garden, we moved to Hertfordshire last Summer and having a garden and more space in general during lockdown has been a true gift!”
#2 “Family, I have always been grateful for how close we are but appreciate them even more so now.”
#16 Which restaurant will you dine at first once restrictions are lifted again?
“E&O in Notting Hill! The best neighbour a girl who loves sushi could wish for!
#17 What series have you now completed on Netflix? Any recommendations?
“During Lockdown 2.0, The Crown. I inhaled the whole series over a cold, rainy weekend! Emma Corrin was just incredible in her portrayal as Princess Diana.”
#18 What book would be top of your quarantine book list?
#19 For a little Instagram-escapism, what three accounts would you recommend?
#20 Name three things you bought online during lockdown last time and three things you’re thinking of buying this time around:
#1 “Paint – we did a lot of work to our house during the first lockdown.”
#2 “Loungewear, cliché I know, but had to be done.”
#3 “Jasmine for our garden.”
#1 “Christmas presents.”
#2 “Diptyque candles.”
#3 “Red wine.”
#21 What’s your ‘lockdown’ outfit most days?
“Comfy trousers, a nice top (to make me feel more put together!) and not forgetting the most important part of my outfit, slippers!”
#22 What’s your advice to lockdown brides?
“One of our beautiful Mews brides decided to go for it and get married this summer. Despite all the ever changing restrictions that were in their way they had the most beautiful day and when she was asked to share some words of wedded wisdom she said this:
“Leading up to and on the actual wedding day (and heck, in life in general), there is only so much we can control. However, we can control how we ride the wave and react. Try to channel that, keeping in mind that the wedding itself is truly, simply about the two of you and your love of each other. “
I thought this was so beautifully put and I am sure it will resonate with many couples who have had their wedding plans thrown up in the air.
It will happen and when it does it will be worth the wait because you have each other.”
#23 And, finally, your quarantine cocktail/tipple of choice?
“If I’m feeling fancy, a Picante – my favourite cocktail from Soho House but on these cold, dark evenings a glass of red in front of the fire is my perfect go-to.”
Want to discover more about The Mews Bridal? Click here.