She’s right here.

A lovely, new and refreshed web site for Love My Gown.

A labor of affection – within the making for over a yr now. Two years if I am trustworthy. Fraught with interruptions and setbacks, countless zooms, Whatsapps, spreadsheets and extra to do lists than I care to recollect.

However she’s right here.

And I like her.

Immediately is my thirteenth wedding ceremony anniversary. It is usually the primary day of Spring—a day we very deliberately selected to get married on, for its symbolism of newness. My wedding ceremony would go on to encourage the creation of this very web site. I named Love My Gown after a discussion board username I would given myself throughout my wedding ceremony planning (I’d simply paid a deposit for my wedding ceremony gown the day I signed as much as stated discussion board – and I completely did ‘love my gown’).

Loads occurs in 13 years. However the previous two years have impacted me on a deeply profound stage.

Forgive me for a second of vulnerability right here, however my relationship with my readers and followers is one primarily based on honesty. I’ve all the time worn my coronary heart on my sleeve. After wedding ceremony restrictions had been eliminated final yr and the trade may return to work, I felt completely washed up and battered emotionally after a yr of stable campaigning. I felt professionally misplaced and was beginning to ask myself, why am I right here? doing this?

We have all been by way of our personal distinctive, private experiences this previous two years, however this time, it felt totally different. As I used to be making an attempt to piece my enterprise again collectively and make it really feel and work the way in which it all the time had completed, I noticed how a lot this was jarring with me.

After which it dawned on me how, regardless of all of the chaos, disruption and challenges since March 2020, there have been some magical presents too, the most important of them being the chance to personally reconnect unconditionally and wholeheartedly to what actually issues – to evolve out of what we have been by way of on a soulful, extra intentional stage.

And that is when issues all started to make sense.

Love My Gown wanted to alter, with me. To be reborn, if you’ll, as a real and genuine expression of who and the place I’m at present, proper now, on this planet; a inventive particular person with a ardour for weddings, this trade, for sharing stunning tales and galvanizing others, for supporting expertise and showcasing craftsmanship and creativity. Not a ‘wedding ceremony weblog’ slowed down by a mess of social media apps all doing their finest to personal and revenue from what we have created right here, however an area devoted to magnificence, and heart-led content material, that unashamedly owns it is distinctive providing on this area.

Our web site rebuild represents a massively important chapter within the story of Love My Gown. It displays my deep and really private need to rise from the previous two years with redefined function and imaginative and prescient, to stage up and create an icon of an internet useful resource that expertise everywhere in the world seeks to be revealed on, and that brides and {couples} really feel drawn to for it is really heart-led and trustworthy strategy – a novel, slower, extra thought of useful resource, in a world of throwaway and disposable digital content material.

These modifications replicate my need to take again management of what we do.

We live by way of a interval when third occasion social media apps monopolise and dictate management of our content material and on-line conduct and this doesn’t sit nicely with me in any respect. I want to transfer Love My Gown in a course that sits unequivocally true to my values and imaginative and prescient of an genuine on-line area and neighborhood. For that reason, I will likely be deactivating our TikTok account quickly to focus our efforts elsewhere, however particularly on constructing our e-newsletter communication and directing visitors to the place it issues. I may wax lyrical about this resolution however finally, I do know intuitively and instinctively that that is the only option for Love My Gown.

We’re additionally dwelling by way of a interval of warfare and international unrest. I am aware of this and have questioned many instances the appropriateness of posting my very own content material headlines alongside these filled with such ache anguish. My job felt so superficial within the gentle of all of it. And but I imagine passionately that magnificence, artwork, creativity and certainly bridal style and actual wedding ceremony tales are deeply vital salves for the soul at instances like these. We’ve got to maintain going. We’ve got to maintain loving.

These photos had been taken final October, when my buddies Zach and Grace got here to remain. I hadn’t deliberate my wardrobe, or fastened my hair and make-up. And it was raining. However none of that mattered to me. All I new was that I wished to go all the way down to the river, only a half a mile down the street and stand within the water barefoot.

I wished to seize a way of washing away all that now not served me from the expertise of the previous two years, of entering into a brand new future. The stepping stones and river had been as symbolic to me on that day as the primary day of spring and all the novelty and sense of rebirth that it represents to me, is at present. The synchronicity with my wedding ceremony anniversary too.

We virtually did not make it – my web site developer and I’ve swerved a number of meltdowns this weekend, however that is the factor, is not it? While you love what you achieve this a lot, you go all out – you’re taking steps to cross the river regardless of the chance to get to the opposite facet. You face the problem, work by way of the trauma and grief and also you evolve right into a stronger, more true model of your self.

I’ve by no means felt so keen about Love My Gown and all it represents on a soulful stage. A reader referred to Love My Gown as an ‘establishment’ final month – and I am all good with that. We’re completely right here for the lengthy haul, however we’re reworking and doing issues our manner from right here on. Not the way in which a Meta owned app tells us we must be doing it.

I hope you may be part of us on this journey.

Love Annabel x


Annabel View all Annabel’s articles

Annabel is the founding father of Love My Gown. She lives in rural North Yorkshire along with her husband and enterprise companion Philip, two daughters Eska and Leanora and three canines. She is keen about images, supporting girls in enterprise and in life, and is in her aspect being surrounded by nature and the countryside.

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