At home with Mireia Llusia-Lindh, founder of DeMellier
As most of us have had to adapt to a new at-home routine, Mireia, Founder of DeMellier, candidly shares how she is managing her time under London’s lockdown: from much-loved interruptions from her daughters (who turn out to be excellent in-house photographers), to ways of staying calm on difficult days.
With three children at home all day, even if we have some help, I feel busier than ever. We have breakfast, lunch and dinner all together every day, one of the small things we treasure. We also feel very lucky that everyone in the family is well and are offering help to those neighbours who are not. I connect with everyone in the DeMellier team via video call at 9am, it is really uplifting to see them all during these difficult times, we are trying to support each other and make the most of the situation. During the day there are lots of calls with many much-loved interruptions from my daughters. In the evening it’s very much as always, bathing the girls, reading with them one at a time as they are interested in different books, sharing night stories and being with them until they fall asleep. At 9.30-10pm I check any urgent emails, watch the news – I try not to check it during the day as it becomes all consuming otherwise – and then my husband and I have started a tradition of watching a TV series during weekdays, something we used to do only on the weekends, to make every confinement day feel a bit special. My favourites are Chernobyl and The Crown which we enjoy very much as there are many nuances of the history of the UK, which not having grown up here, I did not know about.
During the weekends we create together with the girls a long list of things we want to do, from cooking, painting, dancing, playing board games and football in the garden, I have never been more grateful of having a garden, really. The £20 indoor swing we got from Amazon has also become a favourite particularly when it’s rainy. We appreciate as well connecting regularly with our families in Sweden and Spain.
Juggling the confinement at home with managing a business means I very rarely find pockets of time for myself. When I do, I am really enjoying taking the time to go through some of the amazing architecture and design books I have bought over the past couple of years and hadn’t had the time to read. Some of my favourites right now are ‘Studio Ko’ by Rizzo, ‘Mies Van der Rohe - The Built Work’ – my favourite architect – and a great one about Aesop’s history and branding also by Rizzo. I have also subscribed to Rum, my favourite Danish décor magazine.
I love painting, I find the touch of the paint, brush and canvas incredibly soothing and so I am painting a new piece while in isolation.
I am also taking the chance to redecorate a bit the house, we are spending so much time indoors that I really feel like making the most of it. I am moving some things around and have finally received a shelving unit I designed and which had been in the making for 6 months, so I have been tidying up all our books.
I am not a very sporty person, I love skiing but there’s no chance for that right now as our Easter holiday got cancelled as for most people. I also enjoyed doing sports together as a family at our local club during the weekends, but we have now replaced that with going biking by the river, wearing masks and keeping the 2 metres distance as in the UK we are still allowed to exercise once a day, and doing dances in the garden choreographed by my daughters, I can’t complain!
I get dressed every day, somehow now I feel very unprepared for the day if I spend the whole day in my pyjamas, something I didn’t mind before. Most days I wear comfy trousers with my favourite knits. On the first day of confinement I thought "is it a shame to wear my nicest jumpers while staying in?" However I feel getting dressed in clothes I love, such as good quality cashmere jumpers, lifts my mood. I am also using this time to think about our new collections, handbag shapes and colours that will be most relevant in the months to come.
I don’t have the energy to do my hair as often as I did, so I usually wear my hair back or a cap to hide all the mess under, even if we are indoors. The photo of me reading a book was taken by my 8 year-old daughter this weekend, a very handy in-house photographer!
There is no question that it’s a very hard time for everyone, both individuals and businesses, so my way of coping is to appreciate the small things, take a day at a time and do the best I can to help those around me. And to stay positive: there is definitely a light at the end of the tunnel.