“LITERALLY EVERY WEDDING RELATED BUSINESS IN THE UK RIGHT NOW.” Laura Devine of Devine Bride on three businesses she’s supporting on Instagram through lockdown
Laura of Devine Bride is celebrated throughout the industry for her super cool (not to mention, super valuable) Pick + Mix wedding planning for cool couples. Struggling to find that perfect wedding venue? She’ll sort it. Can’t decide on the table plan? She’s got it. Feeling overwhelmed by the planning? Book in a power hour with Devine Bride and the weight of that wedding stress will slip right off. She’ll organise any kind of wedding you want, from a goth wedding in an industrial metal works warehouse to an ex-Fashion Editor’s pretty Chiswick marquee, she’s done it. No wedding dream is too big for this gal. Plus, with 170+ weddings and events under her belt, you know you’re in good hands.
I caught up with Laura to get the lowdown on her lockdown 3.0…
#1 We’ve just gone into Lockdown 3. In three words, describe how you are currently feeling…
“Over-tired, drained, but hopeful.”
#2 Talk to us about your usual daily routine for your business and how this will change in lockdown…
“I used to work at The Wing three to four days a week, a gorgeous Insta-worthy women only co-working space at Oxford Circus, which allowed me a lovely space to meet clients and colleagues, somewhere creative to concentrate, and a central base to hop around venue meetings and viewings…but unfortunately due to lockdown they have had to permanently close. I also used to freelance two to three days a week at a wedding venue, but unfortunately that part of my business is on hold as they also struggle to survive the pandemic. It’s all so sad.
So, for the mean time I am working from home, at my kitchen table, trying to support my clients through postponements and insurance woes via Zoom. My husband has stolen my office space at home since I used to have The Wing and he’s been forced to work from home as well, so it’s all a bit topsy turvy at the moment!”
#3 How will/does lockdown impact your business, and how can people (brides/the wedding industry) support you throughout?
“All my weddings since March 2020 were and have been postponed. And I’m getting emails every other day at the moment from worried 2021 couples – which is not surprising and completely understandable. Wedding days have been paused but wedding planning continues. I continue to support my couples, no matter what service or planning package they originally booked.
I have been genuinely touched by some of the gestures of support I have received, from just small comments or messages on Instagram, to clients initiating or continuing with payment plans throughout these awful pandemic months.
I really appreciate every last bit of love and support in these difficult times. The easiest thing for people to do is to follow, like and share my work on social media. I continue to post when I can with help, advice, and beautiful weddings photos, so I only hope it is all helpful, or, at the very least, inspiring.”
#4 Name three small businesses on Instagram you are supporting or would like to support more…
No.1 “My sister’s business, Tìr-Dhàimh (@tir.dhaimh) – she designs modern prints and accessories inspired by the beauty of Scotland. (Tìr-Dhàimh means ‘homeland’ in Scottish Gaelic.)”
No.2 “My local coffee shop, Buntings (@buntings_e17) who have kept us going WFH in lockdown this past year! And, like everyone, have been hit hard by the pandemic.”
No.3 “LITERALLY EVERY WEDDING RELATED BUSINESS IN THE UK RIGHT NOW.”
#5 Favourite lockdown snack?
“I was three months pregnant when lockdown first came in last March…! So, I went from eating everything in the house all the time, to eating what I can when I can. However, I can now enjoy coffee and wine for lockdown 3.0 😊”
#6 What’s your most recommended lockdown pick-me-up when you’re feeling down during lockdown? What’s getting you through the days?
“Disney’s Fairytale Weddings on Disney +, never fails to uplift and put a smile on my face! Also… wine this time around (see above!).”
#7 What’s the item you can now NEVER find in the supermarket (and consequently dreamt continuously about) during lockdown?
“Biscoff spread! We go through those jars like they are going out of fashion…! On toast, bananas, bagels, on it’s own on a spoon… you name it!”
#8 Name a dinner/meal or beverage choice you feel might bring someone joy to their lockdown life…
“Sodo pizza and a homemade margarita!”
#9 Talk us through what’s new at your brand…
“Epic wedding and party planning continues, the new challenge is Covid…”
#10 What’s your lockdown outfit most days? Have you, say, developed an unhealthy attachment to the elasticated waists of your leggings like myself?
“Yes! Mine is slightly more unsightly since I started lockdown in maternity joggers and have just continued wearing them, even now, months on postpartum!”
#11 What series have you now completed on Netflix/Amazon Prime etc.? Any recommendations?
“Disney’s Fairytale Weddings on Disney +! Highly recommend for some escapism and easy watching. I also loved The Morning Show on Apple TV+. I’m also enjoying It’s a Sin.”
#12 The person(s) you will hug first when social distancing is no longer in place?
“My sister and three year old nephew <3”
#13 An act of kindness towards you that you’ve really appreciated during lockdown?
“My cousin asked our local coffee shop to hand deliver us coffees to our house the day after I got home from hospital after having my baby son in October, but while he was still in ICU. I cried. It was exactly what I needed.
My best wedding pals also threw me a socially distanced baby shower garden party last summer and I was so touched and had the best time after feeling so isolated for so long. (Shout out to @chloeleephoto @perfectlyplanned4you @confetti_and_silk_films and @lovehairbylou!)”
#14 For a little Instagram-escapism and positivity, what account would you recommend?
“Bridal Editor! Always!
#15 Name three things the lockdown has made you grateful for:
No.1 “Guilt free time with my new baby boy, Kelso (born in Oct).”
No.2 “Extra time at home with my husband.”
No.3 “My lovely house in Walthamstow which it’s taken us two years to renovate, but we are so thankful to have such a lovely and comfortable space to have spent our lockdown days.”
#16 Which restaurant will you dine at first once restrictions are lifted again?
“Morito in Hackney, my perfect date night. Amazing food. Great cocktails. Superb atmosphere.”
#17 What would be your five film recommendations to watch during lockdown…
“I’m actually not a massive film buff… I prefer binging dramas or documentaries, but I loved Disney’s new one, Soul.”
#18 What book would be top of your lockdown book list?
“Lady in Waiting by Anne Glenconner – a memoir by an actual lady in waiting to Princess Margaret. Oh the scandals! Such goss and a great read. I was inspired to read it after binging The Crown.”
#19 Name an odd purchase you’ve made during lockdown…
“Magnetic false eyelashes. Not really odd but not really a necessity in lockdown either…!”
#20 The best gift you received this festive period?
“A lie in!”
#21 Name a brand you would love to collaborate with…
“Rime Arodaky – dreamy French rebel goddess bridal fashion.”
#22 What’s your advice to lockdown brides?
“Hope for the best but plan for the worst, but don’t stop planning. Keep the excitement going and keep connecting with your suppliers. And know that your wedding and party will be worth the wait.”
#23 Your favourite beverage?
“A New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc for a weekday, an espresso martini for a Friday, a margarita for a Saturday…! Coffee every other hour of every day.”
#24 Name your favourite magazine to curl up with.
“Any wedding magazine would keep me happy! But unfortunately most have gone digital, at best, over the past few years culminating in the pandemic ☹ ELLE magazine, Living Etc, and Ideal Home would be up next.”