No one could have foreseen what happened in the UK back in March. For us, the pandemic was all foreign news and curious whispers one minute, and then utter medical, social and economic devastation the next.
So many industries have been affected, and mine – the wedding and beauty industry – have taken a serious knock.
March 2020 is a month we will all remember for years to come. It was the month when an unprecedented global pandemic hit the UK and caused us to be put on official lockdown. It was also the month which – just like that – I, like so many others, lost my entire income and saw my business disintegrate overnight.
My work almost entirely comes from weddings, and cancellations of them started to come thick and fast. I spoke to so many distressed brides who had been expecting to get married over the spring and summer. It was crushing – for them and for me.
I’ve always considered myself fortunate to have been able to make hair and make-up styling my full-time job, and earn a living doing something I loved. But now the entire industry had been put on hold ,and I’d lost 100% of my income. I spent the next couple of months in a state of absolute shock and worry.
I soon realised, though, that there was nothing to be done except to pick myself up and figure out a way I could keep my business going. To adapt to the situation, I was going to have to think outside the box and reimagine the concept of Hair and Make-up by Gabrielle.
So, I’ve been returning to my roots – excuse the pun! – by building up my cut and colour services again.
This is actually where I started before making a move into wedding styling. When I decided to take on bridal work, it was not without careful thought and consideration; I had wonderful regular clients who I knew would have to move on. Indeed, as my wedding bookings built up and my availability for salon-style services decreased, my diary quickly filled and waiting times became unsustainable.
Now though, having been able to return to my former services, many of those clients have returned – lots even bringing their mums, sisters and friends, too. I honestly can’t fully express my appreciation of the support and loyalty these women have shown.
I feel very fortunate to have had the option of returning to cut and colour services in the absence of weddings ,and have been so touched by my former clients who I’ve seen back in my home salon.
“In it together” is a phrase that’s been thrown around a lot over the past four months, as we try and make it through these strange and challenging times. Now, the sentiment really rings true for me, so I’d just like to say thank you. Thank you to everyone who has helped me build and grow my business, who has reached out to talk and who has shown their support by booking appointments with me.
You’ve given me reasons to feel positive about the future once again, and have faith that there are great times ahead for us all.
Here’s to you xx