Fearne Cotton has shared the items and daily rituals that have been making her lockdown a little easier in the last two months – and they include devouring a stack of new books, discovering a 'dream' independent jewellery brand and taking her Happy Place festival online.
Speaking to Red, Fearne revealed she'd decided to make the festival a free, month-long virtual event, starting on 12th June. The line-up is filled with inspiring and interesting speakers and amazing performances, yoga classes and workshops promoting physical and mental wellbeing, along with a craft village and independent marketplace, because 'these kind of things are needed more than ever' right now.
'It was an out of the box idea we had at first because obviously we knew we couldn’t do the live event, and we had planned a lot of the festival already at this point,' she explained.
'We thought, it seems like these kind of things are needed more than ever because everyone has had such a bizarre year. And so we started looked into the possibilities of it and we’ve been able to make it happen. What we’ve been able to do is make it bigger and better than we actually would have if it was live, because we’ve been able to expand the content as much as we want without any ramifications within the site or time frame.
'It’s now inclusive of everybody, wherever you live, because you don’t have to live near one of our event sites to take part. We’re really happy with what we’ve created and we can’t wait for people to get stuck in and try out different classes, workshops and talks and hopefully find it helpful as well.'
Fearne says she's 'done some really wonderful interviews' for the festival that she's 'really excited to put out there'. They include 'a really lovely chat with Stephen (aka Professor Green), live from Morocco. He was stranded out there during lockdown and we talked a lot about resilience.
'One of the ones I’m most excited about is with [boxer] Laurence Okolie. He is one of the most inspirational and charismatic humans I’ve ever met. We had such a fun chat and I came away thinking "oh my god, there’s so many things I could do that I didn’t think I was capable of". He just instils a confidence in you.'
Away from planning the festival and homeschooling her two children, Fearne said lockdown has fuelled her love for reading: 'Lockdown for me in some ways has not been much of a change because I rarely go out in the evening. I go to bed at 9pm most evenings and read for hours.'
These are the books she's been enjoying.
FEARNE'S LOCKDOWN READING LIST
'I’ve read a lot of books in the last couple of months. Some of them aren’t actually out yet but they will be soon. So I read a copy of [Dutch extreme athlete] Wim Hof’s book, The Wim Hof Method, which will be out later in the summer. I absolutely loved every minute of it.
'Also I got an early copy of Matt Haig’s new novel, The Midnight Library, which is just beautiful. I just read Juno Dawson’s new book, Wonderland, which is so fun and the perfect escapism, I loved it.
'I’m just reading Mating in Captivity by Esther Perel at the moment. One brilliant book that helped me out during lockdown is Gabrielle Bernstein’s Super Attractor. Oh my god, that book is game changing! I also read Alicia Keys' book, More Myself: A Journey in about two days because I couldn’t put it down!'
She's also found this daily ritual useful:
FEARNE'S LOCKDOWN DAILY ESSENTIALS
'One of the main things has been getting all the family out for a walk because before we’d go out for a walk here and there, but we didn’t go into our local park and just walk. I was like, the kids are going to moan, we’re going to end up carrying both of them. But every day after lunch we’ve got our trainers on and we’ve gone for a walk. And the kids are so used to it now that they just do it and we’ll walk for ages...That’s been brilliant for our mental health but also amazing for the kids.
'Personally, I have been doing a lot more transformational breath stuff with my friend Rebecca Dennis which has been really powerful and quite full on, but in a good way. I’ve been doing them every week on Zoom – and that’s been a beautiful thing that’s come out of lockdown. A lot more guided meditation on my phone, too, just to help me rest at night when the kids are in bed and wind down from busy, busy non-stop days of no-break. I’ve been exercising most days, doing a lot of yoga, plus doing really simple things like going to bed super-early.'
FEARNE'S LOCKDOWN WATCH LIST
'Obviously I watched Normal People like every other person in the world and reminisced and felt deeply nostalgic about my own past. Then cried and felt really old. The Last Dance on Netflix which is phenomenal TV. They’re both beautiful.'
FEARNE'S LOCKDOWN INDEPENDENT BRAND DISCOVERIES
'There’s been some nice ones. There’s a really good sustainable women’s brand that I love called Gaia Gaia. There’s also Lots of Lovely Art (aka LOLA). They’re monthly subscription art boxes for kids and my kids love it, perfect for lockdown. Rhimani is my favourite find; beautiful jewellery made by Masai women in Nairobi. It’s just my dream jewellery, I literally wear their earrings everyday and their necklaces are just a dream. They’re super amazing.'
THE ONE THING FEARNE WANTS TO KEEP DOING AFTER LOCKDOWN
'Not feeling bad about not going out, because I sometimes really guilt myself out. I think, "oh I’m such a loser, I never go anywhere". I really like being at home and I think that’s OK. I don’t want to feel like I’ve got FOMO, I’ve never had FOMO in my life, I don’t believe in FOMO. I’m quite happy just to stick to that mentality.'
Find out more about Fearne's virtual Happy Place Festival here.
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