Podcast #10: Lucy White of Wiskow & White on Planning Luxury Italian Weddings, Trusting Her Intuition, Living With Colitis & Cardiomyopathy and Setting Boundaries Without Apology

Lucy White - Wiskow and White - Italian wedding planner

My guest in Episode #10 of The Love My Dress Podcast is Lucy White, who along with her business partner, Danielle, co-founded Wiskow & White, an Italian wedding planning company based in the UK and Italy.

Lucy and Danielle have recently also co-founded La Lista, a membership community catering to couples planning Italian weddings.  Lucy is a passionate, creative entrepreneur, obsessed with beautiful design and impeccable customer service. Lucy and her team have worked hard to transform and redefine the landscape of Italian wedding planning with a philosophy that seeks to truly understand couples and foster authentic relationships with both couples and suppliers. 

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Lucy’s dedication, expertise and love for Italy has led to the creation of literally hundreds of uniquely beautiful weddings that showcase their passion for people and creativity, respect for their breathtaking natural surroundings, and that are regularly documented by some of the world’s best wedding photographers. 

Lucy is wife to Ben and mum to her little boy Ziggy. She is also author of a deeply personal blog, where she candidly discusses her health and experiences living with colitis and cardiomyopathy, whilst encouraging others to connect and share their experiences too. 

Lucy’s openness and strength have created a safe space for others navigating similar health challenges, and she is keen to de-stigmatise conversations around these conditions. 

Lucy is also a vocal advocate for the significance of busy entrepreneurs prioritising their mental wellbeing by setting firm boundaries, embracing rest and learning when to step back, all without apology or explanation. She champions regular self-care practices and passionately promotes the value of counselling, recognising it as a powerful tool in fostering resilience and sustaining mental wellness. 

I am completely thrilled to welcome the high energy and wonderful warmth of Lucy into your world today.

Lucy White of Wiskow & White Italian wedding planners.

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Podcast Transcript


Welcome to the Love My Dress podcast. I’m your host and founder of Love My Dress, Annabel Beeforth, and I’m so thrilled that you’re here. 

This podcast is a tribute to the world of weddings and the people who make them happen. It has been created for anyone planning their wedding, for all wedding business owners and anyone interested in the world of creative business entrepreneurship. Whether you’re deeply involved in the wedding industry on its periphery, or just generally curious. 

In each episode, I’ll be engaging in conversation with inspiring business owners and exploring topics from weddings and business to personal life experiences that have shaped the careers and lives of my guests. 

I feel a very strong sense of purpose for humanising the wedding industry and revealing the incredible creative talent that thrives within it. In today’s fast-paced tech-dominated world that we are all navigating, I also feel a profound desire to encourage slower, more meaningful consumption of digital content. 

I’m passionate about storytelling and creating spaces where others can share their stories freely and authentically. Stories are the universal currency of our communication. They weave invisible threads that connect us all on a human level that help us to understand better, foster kindness, compassion and empathy. They spark ideas and inspire us to do new things. So storytelling is very much at the heart of this podcast. 

If you enjoy listening to this conversation, please take a moment to leave a friendly rating or review. Your support and feedback really means the world and makes such a difference. And now it’s time to introduce my latest guest.

My guest today is Lucy White, who along with her business partner, Danielle, co-founded Wiskow and White, an Italian wedding planning company based in the UK and Italy. Lucy and Danielle have recently also co-founded La Lista, a membership community catering to couples planning Italian weddings. 

Lucy is a passionate, creative entrepreneur, obsessed with beautiful design and impeccable customer service. Lucy and her team have worked hard to transform and redefine the landscape of Italian wedding planning with a philosophy that seeks to truly understand couples and foster authentic relationships with both couples and suppliers. 

Lucy’s dedication, expertise and love for Italy has led to the creation of literally hundreds of uniquely beautiful weddings that showcase their passion for people and creativity, respect for their breathtaking natural surroundings, and that are regularly documented by some of the world’s best wedding photographers. 

Lucy is wife to Ben and mum to her little boy Ziggy. She is also author of a deeply personal blog, where she candidly discusses her health and experiences living with colitis and cardiomyopathy, whilst encouraging others to connect and share their experiences too. 

Lucy’s openness and strength have created a safe space for others navigating similar health challenges, and she is keen to de-stigmatise conversations around these conditions. 

Lucy is also a vocal advocate for the significance of busy entrepreneurs prioritising their mental wellbeing by setting firm boundaries, embracing rest and learning when to step back, all without apology or explanation. She champions regular self-care practices and passionately promotes the value of counselling, recognising it as a powerful tool in fostering resilience and sustaining mental wellness. 

I am completely thrilled to welcome the high energy and wonderful warmth of Lucy into your world today. Lucy, welcome to the Love My Dress podcast. 


Thank you, Annabel. That was so incredible to hear. Thank you. 


You are so welcome. I always say to my guests, my favourite part of this podcast is doing the research like beforehand, because I just love diving into your world. 

I’m really keen to hear your story and how you ended up becoming one of the UK’s best Italian wedding planners and also, Lucy, why Italy? 

Can you share your story and how you met Danielle and founded Wiskow and White?


Of course. Thank you for asking. So I’m through and through English. So it is a bit odd that I ended up working in Italy. And I like to think that it was fate. 

So I got engaged in Italy in 2013 and very soon after that engagement, we decided to get married at the villa that we’d been on holiday to. And the man that owned the villa introduced me to a catering manager, who was Danielle. 

So it began in 2013 and very kind of jumping forward, we got married, we had our wedding in 2014. And the day after the wedding, Danielle came and asked me, well, we had a little debrief, and then she asked me if I wanted to work with her and plan Italian weddings. 

And I mean, I thought she was kind of, I don’t know, I loved the idea, but I didn’t think it would be something that would be possible for me in that moment in time. I had a very different career and a different kind of path that I saw myself going on. 

But she sowed that seed and about eight months later, she came and found me in London. We met in a cafe just off from my office on the Strand, and she tried to get me to work with her again. And I happened to be in a job that I hated, the only job I’ve ever had that I really didn’t like. And I just thought, do you know what? Let’s just do it. Let’s do it. 

So I actually went back to the office, made a plan of how I was going to exit that company. And I kind of the week later, I quit. And I went straight into another job that was full time in the career that I was in. And I built Wiskow and White on the side and that was about seven years ago now.


Wow. To have been sought out by somebody, you must have known, it must have felt like it was your destination for it to have come all the way over and chased you after originally asking you. What a story.


It’s really interesting because me and Danielle connected so well, so quickly. 

So I’m, how old am I? I’m 36 and Danielle is 66. So we’re quite different in age, but we have so many things in common and a kind of a general way of being that’s very similar and we just connected on that very quickly. 

So she was kind of a friend. She wasn’t a catering manager. She wasn’t a wedding planner. She was someone that I knew was going to be in my life for a long time. And she’s just a very clever person and she kind of, I feel like she can sort of predict the future. She doesn’t necessarily plan things or make plans to kind of get to a certain destination. She’s more of a sort of, if you believe in it, manifester of sorts, but she knows where she wants to get to and she makes little kind of marks in the road to get there and this was clearly one of those moments. 


So what did that leap of faith feel like for you then? Because I think every entrepreneur has that moment, don’t they, where they take that leap? 


It was unknown, but it felt safe because I had Danielle. Now, she has so much experience in Italian weddings that she was essentially my mentor. So I was coming on board to build this business with her. 

We started this new business together, which we called Wiskow and White. And I was a marketer, so I was straight on with building a brand, building a website, and kind of understanding who our audience might be and what our proposition was going to be. That was something that Danielle just had no real kind of experience in. She brought all the Italian knowledge. 

So initially, it was just very exciting, because I like to be busy, I love a project and this just felt like this very exciting opportunity to create events which I loved and travel to Italy and that’s kind of all it was for me at the start. 


So tell me then because I imagine things have changed significantly between then and now. Wiskow and White looks quite different. Can you take me on the journey from those early days to where you are today? 


I can. So back in the day in 2015, I think maybe we had one or two weddings that year, and they initially were from kind of friends of friends, which I think is how many of us start out in the wedding industry. A recommendation, a very low priced fee for your service because you acknowledge that you’re learning and the customer understands your level of experience and they’re kind of paying for that. So that’s where we started off and then we quite quickly grew in the next year, we had quite a few more weddings. And then it really took off the year I had my son. 

So I remember being in hospital, which is very unhealthy, and I’m sure we’ll talk about boundaries, but at the time, I did not have very good boundaries. And I was in hospital on bed rest, still taking enquiries for our summer and I had my son the summer that we had the most weddings, I think, we’ve ever had. And Danielle had to deal with that almost entirely on her own. 

So there have been many, many lessons along the way. Initially, it was obviously just me and Danielle. And over time, gosh, we’ve learned so much. 

Obviously, I’ve learned how Italian weddings really work and really developed my knowledge over this side in Italy from a customer perspective, just really honing in on the type of weddings that we want to do, the type of people that we want to work with, and what we’re really really about as a business, what aligns with our values, and how we can really enjoy fully being in the business that we’ve built.

I think at times, especially early on, it can feel like your business is kind of running you and pulling you along and now it feels like we’re making all the decisions and we’re in control, and we’re driving it, and it feels really good. 


So we are absolutely going to come back to the boundaries conversation by the way a little later on, but I’m keen to know that you talked about your values and what are your values? I want to understand a bit more about the characteristics of Wiskow and White, what makes your company so special?


It’s very, very important to us that we are helping people. So Danielle and I both have a really core value around that. We want to make sure that in whatever we’re doing in life, we’ve both had very different kind of jobs in the past, but we want to make sure that we are supporting people, we are helping people. And that is partly why we founded La Lista in the end, because with Wiskow and White, we could only do so many weddings a year, and we realised there was this bigger need to help more people. 

So helping people and creating community is one of our values and then genuinely, it sounds a bit corny, but love. And we don’t really mean love and we don;t really mean love in terms of weddings. Obviously, that is an extremely loving experience to be part of when you have all of your friends and family around you. But we want to treat people with love. It’s really important to us that people cared for and that everything is done with integrity and from the best place that you can. 

I think there are many things that happen in our industry and nothing on Italy, but the culture is a bit different. And not everything is from a place of love. It can often be from a place of fear or competition. And we just try and keep in our minds that we want to kind of rise above it. Sometimes you can get sucked into it, but we always come back to our value of love and treating each other and other people really well. 

It’s also just really important to us that we have adventures and our business is structured around that in a way that we like to work in new places. So we work across Italy, but we love to explore Italy, so not just the places that we’ve worked before or the places that we know. We love to have adventures and go and try new things and reach new places. And that’s something that we think about in the way that we acquire our couples and the types of weddings that they’re looking for. 

And finally, health. Health is really important to both of us because we both have some problems, some diseases that we carry along with us. So both physically and mentally, we are building a business that supports our well-being, but also the well-being of others. And again, that’s why we want to help people because planning can be so stressful and get messy. And we feel like with the right support, it doesn’t have to be that way. 


You seem to prioritise human factors and what really, really matters. I love that.

Can you tell me a little bit more about La Lista? What inspired you to create a really special focus membership community? And what kind of thing your members can expect?


Absolutely. So we started Lalester in 2020 in the context of a completely decimated wedding business. And to be honest, a very busy year, even though obviously nobody had weddings to go to and we were rescheduling a huge amount of weddings at the time and we were really struggling, it was a really, really hard period to go through and just not really understand when things were gonna be okay again, how the business was going to be financed. There were a lot of things at play, but I managed to make it to Italy that year after some very expensive COVID tests and a lot of logistics.

 We drove over like we usually do, and we were on the drive. And I literally remember the moment I was driving about to go through the Mont Blanc tunnel, and I just had this thought. I think I was sick of a lot of stuff that I’d seen happening that year in terms of how suppliers might be kind of behaving or venues behaving, and this was a minority, but it was really, really pissing me off. And I just thought, I’ve got to bring out that kind of authenticity, integrity, I’ve got to make this industry here in Italy, better. 

And you know, so much of it is so good. But a lot, there’s a lot of negativity. And there’s a lot of couples who are afraid of Italian weddings, because they hear of those kind of negative things that can happen. So I just wanted to unlock all of the secrecy, the kind of backhanders that can happen, and some of those more competitive nature things that are going on. And I realised I could kind of try and rise above it all. And I was afraid to do that. I was afraid to have a voice, especially as an English person in another country’s industry. and just, you know, that fear of being judged when you speak out and you have your opinion. But I cared about it more than my own fear. 

So we decided to set up La Lista, which initially was just a voice of, it was trying to be a voice of transparency, a voice that you could trust. So for example, at that moment, all of the regulations were constantly changing and there were couples who had no idea when they were going to have their wedding. They had no idea how to navigate rescheduling. They were being kind of messed around by different people, and we wanted to support them. 

So initially, it became that and then over time, it’s become a directory with suppliers and venues that we trust because we’ve worked with them or we’ve worked at those venues. So we 100% know that we’re giving away good recommendations. And then now there’s also the membership, which is called the club, and it is a way that I can share my knowledge with a group of people that want to have a really good planning experience. They might have a planner, they might not have a planner, but they come up against questions, big and small, and they can bring them to me every day in our membership and I can help support them. 

There’s also a vault of videos and tools that help guide them through Italian wedding planning, because like any wedding in any country, there’s so many things that you wouldn’t know unless you’re going through the process and you kind of know what to look for. So, again, it was our way of empowering people to lead their own weddings and have the right information to be able to make the right decisions for them. 


That content is so comprehensive because I dove into some of it when I was researching you and I think you’re fantastic. It’s like totally bold, straight up there, facing front of the camera and you’re sharing so much useful information that kind of, you know, demystify the whole process of getting married abroad. 

But you did mention just then that some couples can be afraid of Italian weddings. So with that in mind, with couples in mind, can you share some advice for those who are thinking of, you know, getting married in a beautiful country that is Italy? 

And like, where do you start? What’s the process when a couple approaches you who, I guess, a lot of them will have literally no clue where to start at all?


Yeah, I think it’s really hard at the beginning because it’s very hard to acquire information that again, that you trust. So coming back to La Lista, obviously, it’s really important to us to build a brand that feels trustworthy, because who do you turn to in this moment? 

When you’re initially scoping out an Italian wedding, I think, and this goes through the whole Italian wedding process, it does take quite a lot of work from the couple. Even if you’ve got a planner in the rest of your planning, it takes a lot of work to get the right information and make those right decisions. 

So the first step is usually I would recommend getting a budget together. Because until you have that budget, I don’t think you can really understand whether you can actually have the wedding that you want. And the things that make that hard are the fact that different planners will tell you you need different amounts of money. And that’s probably true in any country. Different planners are used to working with different suppliers, different scales of weddings, so they will give you kind of different recommendations of what your budget should and could go on. 

And then there’s thousands and thousands of venues, so trying to identify a venue that might work for you and what that is going to cost, especially when you’re dealing with speaking to venues that don’t speak great English. They send you really long communications back, and there’s lots and lots of information to navigate. I think it’s overload and it’s overwhelming. 

So that’s where we try and cut through all of that with our directory of venues to try and show couples, for each size and shape of wedding, these are some venues that definitely, these are the core info, you can trust them. And then you can just plug them into an example budget to try and work out what you’re able to do. 

But it is hard. It is a challenge And they’ve got to get the right idea of things before they take that first step, even in booking a planner, because that’s a big commitment in itself. And putting a deposit down on a planner when you don’t know if you can definitely have the wedding that you want can be a real challenge. 


Yeah, and I guess that that’s softened a lot by the concept that you can handhold these people through the process. So as I say, it must be, I wouldn’t know where to start at all. It must be pretty terrifying for some looking at the potential costs. 

And I love the idea of being able to plug in as well to that kind of format where you can work out what you can afford, what you might not be able to afford, and the guidance that you provide with the venues as well, because I imagine that’d be incredibly overwhelming trying to shortlist a venue out of thousands and thousands that are out there, so many beautiful venues across Italy. 

Can we talk a little bit about sustainability and what efforts with Wiskow and White are going to help to reduce the environmental impact of the weddings that you plan? 

Because I’ll be honest, my first thought was, well, flying out to Italy leaves quite a big kind of footprint, doesn’t it? Carbon footprint. That’s not a judgement by the way, at all. It’s just I’m looking at things from a sustainability perspective and trying to encourage my audience to consider marrying in a more, I guess, ethical, sustainable way, and the things that you can do to find the supplies that are leading the way there. 

What are your thoughts on how Wiskow and White can help in a more sustainable and ethical way? 


So I think there’s another issue at play where couples can feel guilt about their own travel and then kind of avoid doing anything about it. And also there’s a belief that having a sustainable wedding will somehow impact what you’re able to do with your wedding and you won’t be as free to kind of celebrate in the way that you would hope you would. 

But I think they can completely all work together. There’s ways that you can adapt your wedding that will not have an impact on what you experience on the day, but cause it to have a lot less impact on the planet. 

So some of the things in our sustainability pledge are, for example, reducing food waste. So as you can imagine at Italian weddings, there’s often a lot of food and we’ve worked with some of our key caterers to encourage them to reduce the amount of food that’s available, especially on the aperitif, which is a part of the day where it’s a buffet and it’s often quite early in the day where we’ve noticed actually people don’t eat that much and we were seeing so much go in the bin and it was heartbreaking. So much of it was meat as well. 

So we’ve worked with them to reduce what they put out there and we’ve been transparent with our couples about the fact that we do that as well. 

We’ve removed all single-use plastic about two years ago from any of the weddings that we do. Any of the caterers that work with us have to agree to that. 

We work with local suppliers, so there’s a lot less travel at play. They don’t have to come too far, even in a van, in a car, or fly and we make carbon offset donations for all of our weddings. So we encourage our couples to do it as well, but we don’t keep track of that. 

And we personally make a donation for each one of our weddings, just trying to calculate if 50 people fly over to Italy, what is the impact that that’s going to have and try and make a donation back. And there’s quite a few other factors that we do as well. 


That’s so encouraging and I think, and I really hope you didn’t feel pressured me asking that question, because I think suppliers can feel pressure. And I think there’s no such thing as a completely sustainable wedding. And I think as long as we’re making efforts to try our best to minimise the impact, then that’s the best we can do, right? 

There is no such thing as the perfect sustainable ethical wedding. But all of those things you’ve just explained to me fill my heart because I think as an environmentalist myself as well, I’m encouraged by the fact that you only work with suppliers who won’t use single-use plastics, and you’re looking to reduce food waste as well. 

I think that’s one of the very easy, readily available things that all suppliers, every couple can look at doing. I’ve seen a big wave of that working with local food suppliers and reducing the waste across the industry. It’s very encouraging. 


Absolutely. I’m so happy to talk about this subject because it is something that I really care about And it can be easy to kind of shy away from it, because I do feel some guilt about kind of encouraging people to travel and fly to Italy. But I think as a supplier or a couple, three key things you could easily do are limit your flights, obviously. But if you’re a supplier, you could have a goal to only do three or four destination weddings a year and just make them really, really good ones so that you’re not flying backwards and forwards all the time. Cluster them together so that you go once and you’re there for a long period of time, which is my personal tactic and way of dealing with it. 

Even in your office, you can have sustainable energy. So you could use certain energy companies in the UK that only get energy from wind farms or solar power. There’s so many little things that are possible, and they would all have quite a big difference if we all did them together. 


I think that’s the thing, isn’t it? It’s making the efforts, even if it’s on a tiny scale, if you’re a tiny business, if you’re making a bit of an effort, then if we’re all doing it together, then that has a greater impact, doesn’t it? 

Lucy, I have seen so much more of you in your business since COVID and I’m wondering if the whole experience, despite its utterly nightmarish start, ended up being quite transformational opportunity for Wiskow and White.

I know you’ve talked about the whole concept of La Lista coming up in 2020, but were there any other lessons that you learned about this time? 

And I’m sorry to have to take you back to that time, but I think incredible lessons have been learned by so many business owners that I’ve spoken to. 

So considering lessons and opportunities, were there anything else that came up that you’d like to share with our audience? 


Absolutely, it’s because as you’ve recognised, it was transformational for our business, but also personally, I think when faced with, in my case, I was almost locked in a shed where it was my office in the garden for a year, trying to navigate how to kind of solve the problem, the problems within the business. 

It was a really reflective time because you were stuck with yourself, weren’t you? I think everyone can probably relate to the reflection that we all had, the time that we all had on our own. 

So COVID gave us kind of huge confidence in our business in the end because we were able to deal with it. We were able to move a huge number of weddings. We had the years that were meant to happen, 2020 and 2021, were meant to be the makers of our business. I think a lot of people also kind of had that lined up. It was going to be, you know, they were going to be the best years. They were going to be full of these incredible weddings that we’ve been working towards and moving them was very challenging for a number of reasons. Just dealing with how to handle our clients, how to talk to them, how to support them in the right way, how to support the suppliers as well that were navigating exactly what we were. It was a really complex thing to try and get through. And by getting through it in the end, we’ve just came away with this confidence that our relationships with our couples were really strong. We’d booked great suppliers who were able to kind of move with us and were kind of very sensitive and helpful. And it just showed how strong our business actually was and how aligned it was with our values. I think it made us realise that, you know, anyone that’s got through that, our businesses can get through anything. That’s probably the worst thing that’s going to happen to any business, hopefully in a long time. 

So the confidence is there. And then for me, it made more sense to start showing up. Like we had no content, we had no weddings. And people were looking for someone to give them advice and trust. And I just kind of couldn’t help myself but take on this role of trying to be this voice, which was challenging because that’s not my nature. 

Here I am on a podcast, it is not easy for me. I’m not good at showing up on video. I don’t find it easy at all. I have to give myself pep talks every time, even years on. 

So initially at the beginning, it was quite scary, but the voice grew and the confidence grew. And that obviously became La Lista. 

I think the time on my own also allowed me to kind of really connect with my creative side, because until 2020, I’d kind of played it quite small creatively with our business in both marketing and in the weddings that we designed. I wasn’t taking risks. I wasn’t who I am now. I think COVID took away that safety net and I was just a bit of a fuck it, let’s just go all in. Like, let’s just be who we are. We’ve got this confidence now. Let’s just be us and make weddings that we really want to see and we really want people to experience. It was kind of a light came on. So it was very, very transformational. 


And I think it sounded awkward to me to use this expression for a little while, because I didn’t want it to sound crass or insensitive, but I think there were definitely silver linings that came as a result of COVID. 

And I think you strike me as being very similar to me in that when your back’s up against the wall, you produce the best work when you’re under pressure. And I think you start thinking laterally, like of different kinds of solutions and different things that you can do. 

So I get the impression that that was a process very much that you went through that’s ended up really strengthening your business as a result. 


Yeah, I think it’s absolutely strengthened. It’s strengthened our business. It’s solidified even further mine and Danielle’s relationship and where we wanted to take things in the future, you know, it really kind of, I think it really pushed us to think about, like, what are we doing here? Why are we doing this? And what do we really want to do with this?

 You know, you can plan weddings, but then you can plan weddings your way, and you can really, really lean into who you are and the values of your business And I think that’s where it all changed for us. 


Just to linger on that for a moment, then, because something that’s really coming through very strongly in this conversation for me is the whole authenticity, the need for you to be running a very authentic business and being very authentically yourself. 

Can you tell me a little bit about what makes your weddings so authentic? Because I think that’s a common theme that’s kind of come up through people who’ve been through the trauma of surviving, like as an entrepreneur, through COVID, they’ve arrived at that really weird situation scenario where they’ve got to kind of reflect on their self and their business and their role and where they want to be moving forward. And what, what am I here for, really? And every time they’ve come through that process thinking, I need to be authentic, I need to do this from the heart.

Like, I just want to dig a little bit deeper on what makes your weddings like that beautifully authentic? What does it mean that whole concept of being authentic to you?


I think there’s kind of two things at play. So the first is literally, it’s how me and Danielle live our lives. We can’t really lie, we can’t hide things. It’s in our personality. You can see everything on our faces. We kind of just have to be authentic. We have to be ourselves to fully kind of live and enjoy our lives and our business. So it’s really important to us that we’re able to be us at work each day. 

And obviously you have to put on certain, you know, you have to be professional and you have to do certain things, but we wanted to have a business where we can just fully be ourselves. And then how we kind of reflect that in our couples and the weddings that we build is obviously if we’re authentic, if we show up on those introductory calls and we’re ourselves, then we’re only going to acquire couples that accept us, trust us, and want to work with us. And those relationships allow for kind of an opening. That means that we build a really strong relationship with our couples. 

And it’s very hard to articulate. And I’ve tried in the past, not very well, very successfully. I’ll race exactly, but we just know what our couples want. I don’t know what it is, but from being, from being ourselves, maybe they can truly be themselves and only from them being authentic back to us, we can really understand how to make a wedding their wedding and that’s the thing we’re most passionate about. A couple should be at their own wedding and it should feel like them. There should be nothing there that makes them kind of feel uncomfortable or isn’t quite what they wanted. It should be a whole celebration that is everything to do with who they are and it should just feel like it’s their own unique wedding.


I love that and it also strikes me that what the process that’s happening there is very much about you attract the energy back that you put out there in the first place. So I think that from having set up your business in those early days, you’ve actually been allowing your intuition, your authenticity to evolve. You’ve arrived at a place where you are attracting exactly those clients who you have a very natural connection with, which is again, super, super lovely to hear. 

But I also noticed that your team’s expanded in the last couple of years, and it’s composed of women, which is also really encouraging. 

Can you share a bit more about the evolution of your team and the dynamic you’ve cultivated at Wiskow and White?



So it was in 2020 that we identified that we had too much work to be able to kind of keep going as the two of us in the way that we wanted to. So we’ve got quite high expectations and goals for our business and ourselves and to maintain the kind of the customer service that we wanted to deliver, we needed some support. 

So that was when we started to dabble in trying out some support in a few different roles and a few different ways and it was a risky time because we genuinely had no income coming into the business without any weddings really happening. we invested in making our product better at a time when we didn’t have full confidence that we would ever kind of get back to being able to delivering it and doing it. 

So it was really important to us at the time that we kind of hired people that were obviously like-minded and fit within the way that we do things. It’s coincidental in a way that women in our team at the moment. 

So we have a team of two that work on La Lista with me, and we have a wedding planner that supports Danielle and I, she’s called Martina, and we also have a PA in our team. So we’ve got about six roles and a couple of other support roles that kind of move in and out. 

And it was really important to me that the women that do come in the team, they’re mainly mums, and there’s a couple of reasons for this. Partly that I’ve seen that when women have children and they want to reenter the job scene, they can struggle to find a role that’s fulfilling, but that’s also flexible. And obviously, a lot of companies are quite flexible these days, but not to the point where a mum can almost feel no guilt for having to say, my kid needs me. I’ve got to go and look after them. So we wanted to create the type of roles where our team are fully trusted to deliver their role, but at a time and in a location that really works for them. 

So it’s taken a bit of learning for us, and we have to all kind of communicate really well and adapt. But in this way, it allows the team to feel kind of obviously empowered to do their job, but equally to be the mum, because I know as a mum that is your number one job and you can love your job, but you frankly are not going to care about anything as much as your child. So that was really important to me. 


I absolutely love that. Again, so encouraging. 

You know, Lucy, I want to talk a little bit more about the reality of being an entrepreneur and you’ve kind of skimmed on it there, you know, the challenges that mothers face. 

But I’d like to bring up, I think it was an Instagram stories you shared once, that told me immediately that you are a very big and open proponent for the need for wedding professionals and creative business owners to be very unapologetic and unafraid to step back from all the busy, to learn how to set their boundaries and know when it’s time to take a rest in an effort to avoid burnout. You are, as I’ve said, being very open about this. 

Can you talk about some of the benefits of perhaps counselling as well? Because I know you’ve spoken about counselling very publicly. And anything else that you might do or, you know, make the most of to help maintain your overall mental health and wellness? 


Oh gosh, there’s so much to this. I might talk for a while. 

So firstly, I recognise that I did speak out on this on Instagram, but it’s mainly because of the hard lesson that I’ve learned. And I kind of wanted to speak up for those that maybe haven’t learned it yet, that it’s more than okay to take rest and it’s more than okay to set boundaries. But I think it can be so hard when you’re in it to step back. And I’ve had times in my business where it feels quite literally impossible. There’s no way that I can possibly stop and rest and look after myself, keep going, keep going. In our roles, there’s like a never ending to do list. And I think I have personally at times catastrophized. And, you know, if I don’t, if I stop, you know, everything’s going to end, the world’s going to end. This is, you know, so important. 

The reality is, if you’ve got a list of 10 things, one of them is probably important and urgent, the rest could potentially kind of move. So the other kind of aspect of this is businesses is so confronting. If you look at why you’re not resting and why you’re not setting boundaries, it’s probably all to do with your own feelings and behaviours. And there’s so much to kind of learn when you observe why you’re kind of behaving the way that you are. 

There was a time where I felt quite trapped by my business and the work that I had to do. And I really couldn’t see kind of how I was ever going to stop this cycle. And the only way that I achieved that was by reflecting inwards through the help of a counsellor and a coach to really help me see outside of my own mind and the kind of stories I was telling myself. 

So I can’t express enough how much a counsellor has helped me generally and personally. I’ve had a counsellor for about 10 years, I think, with the same poor woman who has just helped me understand myself so, so much better. 

As I say, running a business, I think, is one of the most confronting things that you can do. It shows you all of the areas that you might have challenges personally, and someone like a counsellor and a coach, they can professionally help you work through that to the point where you can genuinely change, and if you want to change, and transform how you’re doing things. 

But I think this all comes from a place of, at the core of everything, if I’m not rested, healthy, I know I’ll not be doing my best work. And that’s what I really want for my customers. I want them to have an amazing experience. And so I need to look after myself. 

And this, I think this goes for being a mum as well. It’s the same mindset of, if I’m not in my best place, then whoever I’m serving, whether it’s my son, my customers, other suppliers, then I’m not going to be doing it the best that I can or the way that I want to. I get more overwhelmed. I could struggle to do certain tasks and things. But if I take a day away from work, I can come back energised and I have my best ideas when I’m not at work and not at my desk. That’s good for everyone. 


I love the idea of being able to learn how to change your mindset as well, because I think some of us can end up in such fixated mindsets like, oh my God, I’m not capable, I can’t do this, it’s too much. And how counselling has helped you understand that process of being able to change your mindset? 

Can you talk a little bit more about that?


Gosh, yeah. I mean, it’s not for the faint hearted, is it? And I think that’s why so many people don’t start counselling or get a coach, because frankly, and honestly, why would you not? It will make you the kind of best version of yourself that you can be, but you obviously have to face all of the things that you’re doing and that you’re causing. And some of your hardest times might have caused those behaviours that you’re portraying and that are affecting kind of potentially all areas of your business. I, for example, had a deep, deep, deep belief that nothing I ever did or do is good enough. And ultimately, I think most humans have some level of that belief or feeling. 

For me, it comes from a very specific part of my childhood, and I’ve completely internalised it. And only from talking to a counsellor can I work through that. I could have the understanding that nothing I do is good enough. And I could see that play out in perfectionism, in the quantity of work I’m trying to output, how I feel about the work that I’m doing. But ultimately, unless someone works through it with me and helps me understand where it came from, and helps me come up with maybe a slightly different story or a different way of behaving when those thoughts come up in the future. That’s only then that I can really start to change it. 

And I’ve been working, for example, on that belief for like, five years, it’s an ongoing process, but it’s enabled me to be able to, like we were talking about show up, if I believe that I wasn’t good enough, then I would never have got on Instagram, I would never be doing my own fully creative weddings, because it would be too risky, I’d be scared of the judgement, of the failure. And that’s to help me take all of those things away and be able to compartmentalise them and deal with them in a really different way. 

So I guess here I’m just explaining how one aspect of my counselling and one of my core beliefs has such an impact on my business and how it’s enabled me to literally transform my business. The business that you see today is hugely down to the fact that I’ve dealt with one of those beliefs. 


Oh my God, there’s so much to unpack there. It’s so utterly inspiring. 

In fact, my sister is a psychologist and she’s always saying to me, you need to book a session. It will be so beneficial. And I’m absolutely going to do it as soon as we finish recording this podcast. 

I think it was a really, it was a really important note that you made there about once you start doing the thing, once you start practising how to change your mindset, it gets so much easier. I think that’s it’s like muscle memory, isn’t it? Once you start doing it and you keep doing it, it will get better. You’ve just got to get to the point where you overcome that stone wall. You leap over it, you take that leap of faith. But once you practise, just baby steps at a time, things do get so much easier. 


I also can’t express how much that does happen. So obviously it takes practice and you kind of spot the way that you talk to yourself. So over time, the things that I’m saying to myself and once you’ve shone a light on some of those things and understand why they’re happening, but you can go back with a different way of thinking, a different way of reframing it, then your brain does just remember. 

At the beginning, it took a lot of energy to be able to kind of spot the things and answer them differently or think differently. I was training myself to think of things differently, but now it has changed on the most part. There’s things I don’t have to think about anymore. My behaviour has just changed. And there’s things that will always be there and that will always trip me up or in moments of, you know, when I’m really tired or, you know, overwhelmed and you’re a bit more easily triggered, then they’re going to still crop up and be harder. But on the most part, it doesn’t take that long to change your behaviour, but you do have to put the energy in. And when you’re putting that energy in, it is quite exhausting. So you’ve kind of got to pick a time in your life where you know you’re willing and able to dedicate some time to it. 


Yeah and another thing I wanted to just focus on briefly is the whole notion of being unapologetic. And, you know, learning to take that step back, but not feeling you’ve got to then show up on Instagram a week or two weeks later, or however long. And say, I’m really sorry, guys, I’ve had to take a break because XYZ. But here’s some beautiful images, just share the beautiful images. 

And I found that somebody said this to me years ago, actually, I can’t remember who, like, you don’t need to keep apologising. It wasn’t to me specific, it was a general thing. It’s like, don’t keep showing up on Instagram apologising. And that’s really stuck with me. That’s where I’ve been able to develop my own muscle memory. And it just feels better. Like now I can take the break and I can share the things. I don’t need to apologise because I don’t need to. And that’s that really, I don’t know if you’ve got any thoughts on that. 


I guess it’s almost like saying, I just don’t need to tell anyone anything. I don’t have to explain why my wedding looks like this. You just have to trust yourself and it comes back to complete self-assurance. And obviously, that’s very easy to say. Trusting yourself and in every decision you make, in everything you do, is quite a challenge in itself. But But if we did all just trust our own behaviours, our own decisions, so I’m going on holiday, I’ve decided to do that. I own that decision. I know that I will get all of my work done. No one else needs to know. I don’t need to defend that I’m having a holiday. I need a rest. I run my business. That’s good enough. 

As long as you’ve done the practical things, like maybe you’ve put your out of office on, you’ve told everyone a month in advance, so they’ve got a chance to ask you questions or talk to you. There’s literally practical things that you’d have to do alongside taking rest. But in the moment, it really just comes down to believing that you’re making the right decision for you and for your business. And that is also easier said than done. 


Yeah, but really good advice nonetheless. And I hope that entrepreneurs listening can take note from that. 

Has learning to change your mindset for the benefit of you and your business changed the way that you perceive and measure success? Like what does success mean to you? 


It absolutely has. In 2020, I vividly remember writing down my success measures. So what success is to me, because again, in that hole of being in my shed, it was very easy to look at kind of everyone else around me and you know it’s often competitors isn’t it? You look at and you think wow and that’s the kind of thing that they do and I should be doing this, I should be doing that and I just really, I think someone maybe said it to me, but I really really really realised I had to just find my lane and be okay with my lane. And that partly does come back to self-assurance, setting the strategy and the goals for my business and being okay with what they are and kind of sticking to that within reason. Obviously, if there’s opportunities out there, you can deviate, but ultimately. 

So I wrote this list and my success levels were actually the priority at the top was my health because as I mentioned, I’ve got some health difficulties. So if I’m not healthy, nothing else is going to work the best that it can. So there were specific health measures and kind of symptom measures that were in my success. 

How often I see my son was a measure of my success, knowing that fundamentally, that’s the most important thing to me and I do run a business. It is busy, and I want to keep on top of making sure that I see him a certain amount, otherwise I’m going to be unhappy. And again, my business is not going to work if I’m unhappy, if I’m resentful. So that was up there. 

And then specific things like literally the type of weddings that I wanted to do and the kind of the income that I personally wanted to have. I think a lot of people avoid talking about money as if it’s kind of a bad thing to want to make income, especially in this industry when potentially couples can perceive, you know, if a wedding supplier is making a lot of money, then they’re kind of overcharging or they’re ripping you off. 

I have a personal income goal, and I’m building a business that I want to see succeed. But fundamentally, I am doing that because I want certain things in my life. I want certain experiences. And I’m not shy to kind of to say that really. 


It’s so interesting to you. So what do you think is a woman thing or just a general wedding industry thing? 


Potentially it is. I’ve noticed with conversations with other suppliers, other friends, that people just don’t generally kind of open up about what they’d like to earn. And obviously, it’s a very personal thing, so they don’t have to. 

But potentially, a woman wanting more, a woman wanting “it all” is not a good thing, is not possible, but that just comes back to what is it? Or for me, ‘it all’ is some of those things that I’ve just listed. And actually, if I get everything kind of right, and if I have the right support, then I can have it all. And I’m literally proving that to myself now. 


That is fascinating. It kind of segues me nicely into my next question, because I want to ask you about your role as a parent and motherhood, and how you juggle everything alongside running your hugely successful business. 

Do you believe that you manage it all? How are you juggling? 


At different times of the month of the year, I can find that I can have it all. But I think it’s accepting that it’s always going to be different. And I have to define what what it is that I want. And I’m obviously a very planned person. This is not going to be for everyone to kind of have their world mapped and listed out like this. But I have to sometimes come back to my kind of what I’m striving for when things get really busy, or I am pulled in a different direction with work, and I don’t feel I am getting my Ziggy time or my health right, I have to come back to kind of that, those success measures and then find a balance between it. 

But I’ve accepted that there is not just a balance, and it will never stay the same. It could be different on any different day. I found my way of doing things, and I just lean into that. So I know, for example, that I work really, really well first thing before everyone is up. And it’s sickening to hear for a lot of people that I might get up at 5 a.m. and work. But if I work for three hours at 5 a.m., I’ve done my best work of the day, and that’s where my magic happens. It’s very freeing. And then I’m able to maintain my other priorities, like spending time with Ziggy and doing exercise, which is really important to me. And then I can come back and kind of work at a time that works for me. 

So my job, much like my team’s, is very fluid so that I can optimise when I’m feeling really good and retreat a little bit when maybe I’m not feeling so good. And that’s kind of how I strike my balance. 


It’s making me think of my own sleep patterns. So have you ever heard of the author Matthew Walker? He’s written a really amazing book called Why We Sleep. And I recommend everybody listening to this podcast reads it or I listen to it actually. I listen to most of my books on audiobook. But he talks about people are born very naturally as either a night owl or an early bird. And my husband and I are opposites. So I tend to like to stay up late and work. 

However, I, like you, have also realised just through trial and error really the huge benefits of getting up early and having that morning time just to myself to focus and make a real headway on work. It’s just a real challenge to me to get to bed early so that I can do the getting up early as well. But it has huge, enormous benefits. 


I think it’s really hard, isn’t it? Like any habit that you’re trying to change, you know, if you don’t want to kind of go to bed early. I absolutely love sleeping and I actually need sleep for my health. It’s literally like a medicine. Well, it is to everyone, but it’s a particularly strong medicine to me. And I still struggle to make myself go to bed early and get that sleep so that I’m able to get up and work. And don’t get me wrong, I don’t get up at five o’clock every day. There are certain days where I naturally wake up at that time, like I’ve never set an alarm. I will get up if I wake up at 5am and I feel good, I will, I will get up and work. If not, there will be another window in the day where I get it done. And again, that comes back to trusting myself, that’s been a hard journey because I used to struggle to kind of not have everything planned out. Like these are the hours I’m going to work. This is the work I’m going to do in that time. I’ve learned to kind of manage my to-do list in a very different way that allows me to have a kind of a list for the week and be able to pick what I feel like doing in those moments, but in a very disciplined way because that could lead to getting to Friday and just having all the hard stuff to do. 

Obviously, there’s some things that need to be done on certain days, but I found a way to manage my work and my time so that I’m able to really optimise what I’m in the right mood for, what I’m in the right energy for. And I think it’s delivering my best work at the moment. 

Being here in Italy is a real challenge. So I’m here at the moment, and I’ve been here for three months with my son and my husband. And my son’s of school age, but here he doesn’t go to school. So we have a lot less childcare, and it requires a huge amount of energy to be almost completely fluid, knowing that we have a very limited amount of childcare, and I have to work at certain times of the day to fit it all in and be very, very disciplined in that. But something I don’t have a problem with is consistency. And I imagine you’re the same. To make a business work, you have to be consistent. You have to get that stuff done most days and keep pushing things forward. 


Yeah, that’s when things start to unravel, isn’t it? When you start getting tired and you can’t be consistent. That consistency is like the foundation of everything, isn’t it? It has to be there. It has to be a thing you focus on delivering day to day to day. Otherwise, it just gets super messy. You need to know where you are. Routine, I think, is another way of putting it, isn’t it? You have to have good routine. 


I think that comes back to having such a clear vision and such clear goals and priorities that you know when you show up to your desk, these are the things that I’m focusing on and not getting distracted and kind of delivering on the things that are going to push your business forward. 


I was going to ask you actually, if you took your family out to Italy with you, and clearly, I’m assuming because it’s the summer, it’s easier to do that right now.

So how does it work for the rest of the year?


Luckily, the Italian wedding industry is very seasonal. So most of our weddings are in the peak summer months. And Ziggy’s of an age where we can take him out of school most of the summer. We have a really flexible school that he goes to in England who have just been very supportive of the lifestyle that we want to kind of have and give Ziggy and they recognize the opportunities that it gives him being here in Italy. 

So we came from the end of May this year and we’ll be here for about three months and then the rest of the I travel to weddings on my own sometimes, but the ones that are out of these peak summer months, my team, Danielle and Martina, tend to go to. 

So it is a bit of a juggle, and the imminent months or two ahead are very challenging because we move back to England in two or three weeks, and we start school again, and we have a very busy September of weddings. So there’s quite a lot that’s about to hit me. But that’s where this kind of very accepting and flexible approach to what life balance looks like. And also, I think, just really understanding myself, being quite intuitive with what I need, which comes from the counselling and the coaching. I can’t take any credit for that, means that I am able to be more adaptable and know what I need in these moments to kind of keep things going and not honestly buckle under the pressure, which I have felt in years gone by. 


We wouldn’t change it for the world, would we? Being an entrepreneur and working in the industry and all the busyness and the challenges. 

I think the alternative and not having that freedom as an entrepreneur isn’t something I would like to consider. And I think when it gets really busy and we’re in, because we’re recording like peak season right now in the middle of summer, there are those moments where you start to think, oh my God, literally I feel like I’m falling apart. But we wouldn’t have it any other way.

I wouldn’t anyway, I don’t know about you.


I know. I, there have been times I fantasised about coming back to a job. There’s moments of overwhelm, and that’s usually from my own ideas and my own brain. There’s just so much I want to do, and sometimes I overwhelm myself. If I looked at just the core stuff that has to happen, it’s totally manageable. 

When I get flooded with ideas and think about everything that we could do, I overwhelm myself and I have to go out for a walk and kind of calm my brain down. 

But no, I can’t, I just can’t imagine showing up to work. The old career that I used to do, I was extremely passionate about it, but the way that you work in that industry would just be something that I just don’t think I could fit into anymore.


Because it wasn’t allowing you to be your authentic self.


Yeah, and it had no creativity. 


Isn’t it interesting how so many people, like a huge portion of people who work in the industry, have come from other industries, or they’ve done a job that’s, like people even in the medical profession, scientists, I know like a former like forensic scientist who now makes cakes, because they’ve discovered the role and value of creativity in their lives. 

And I think so many people have that stifled when they’re growing up, and they don’t understand and then they’re exposed to this, whether it’s through, I don’t know, planning their own wedding or having an experience where they can provide their creative talents for a friend or family member, but they realise, oh my God, this is where it’s at. I want to do this.


I think so. I think through no fault of anyone, at a younger age, we’re rewarded for being academic, aren’t we, and not necessarily being creative. And so you go along those routes and the creative side could be a hobby, but we all know that hobbies fizzle out and you don’t have as much time for them. 

And so many of us in adulthood are finding our true creativity again and our kind of who we really wanted to be that was maybe pushed out of us a little bit when we were younger. And it’s just so nice. It’s so fulfilling to be able to do something that you fully, you’re expressing yourself, aren’t you? 


I think it’s part of what makes this whole wedding scene so inspiring to me, just feel surrounded by that every day. 

Lucy, I’d like to encourage you to share a little about your personal blog, through which you very candidly discuss your journey with two health conditions that I know have had a huge implication on your life. 

Can you kindly provide our listeners with an insight into these health difficulties and perhaps shed some light on what inspired you to share your story with others so openly? 


I can, thank you for asking. I started my blog in around 2009. My brother Jack was really, really ill and it was a time in my life where I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis and cardiomyopathy, partly from learning that Jack was sick. This blog kind of became a real channel for me to process the things that were happening to me, to us, and it became a way of connecting with people, but also a way of kind of informing people who cared about us in our lives what was happening without having to kind of see people and talk about it, which was, it was quite hard. 

And I know that this blog, I’m still extremely passionate about. I think this subject and the community around it is potentially like my truest calling in life, but I’m not yet in a place for it to be my every day that I talk about it every single day. And I’m not sure when it will be or if it ever will be, but it’s something I really, I do like to talk about. 

So let’s go through the diseases. Ulcerative colitis is IBD, which is irritable bowel disease. It’s like a sister of Crohn’s disease, and it is not to be confused with IBS. It’s a disease that’s in your colon and your intestine that causes the lining of those areas to become disrupted. And ultimately, what it looks like for a lot of people that suffer with it on a day-to-day basis is quite a lot of pain in your stomach, in your bowel, and it can cause fatigue, it can cause loss of blood, which means that you can have really low blood pressure, you can feel faint and dizzy all the time, and it means that those areas of your body just aren’t functioning normally, so you’re probably absorbing less nutrients in your food, and that can also contribute to how you feel, how you look, how much energy you can have. 

And I’ve been really lucky over the years to just have those symptoms, whereas you can get really, really sick with it. You can be hospitalised for really long periods of time. You can become extremely weak. You can have parts of your bowel or your intestine removed, and you can get so sick that you can die from it. 

So it’s pretty serious and it’s something to really manage and look after so that you don’t get as sick as I sort of just said. 

Then you’ve got cardiomyopathy, which is a heart disease. So I’ve got dilated cardiomyopathy, which means that my heart is a bit bigger than the normal heart. And I found out I had this because my brother had a heart problem. Well, he has the same heart problem as me, but he had a life-changing stroke and then he had a heart transplant. So his got really, really serious. And from him being so sick, my family were all tested for kind of the same problems. And we found out that I’ve got the same heart gene defect as my brother has. And at the time when I found that out, I was a marathon runner and quite a heavy drinker. I was at uni, so I immediately had to kind of change my lifestyle to adapt and start really looking after myself from quite a young age. I think I was 22. 


I can’t believe that you have been through all of that and you’re here today to share this story. That sounds like it must have been a very terrifying experience discovering, well, for a start, that your brother had that heart condition, but then that you had it too. 


Yeah, it’s been a lot, for sure. And it is with me all the time. So Jack was so ill and he literally died and he came back three or four times through all the different things that he’s been through. That was quite a long time ago now. So his stroke was in 2008 and his transplant was in 2010. They were very traumatic experiences. And seeing someone that you love that much go through, not only just the medical care and how intrusive and intensive it is, but obviously, kind of suffering. And he built his whole life back from being completely paralyzed. He couldn’t talk. He couldn’t do anything. And he’s like my biggest inspiration, my biggest hero. 

I do probably live in some fear of that happening to me. So I’m the only person in my family that has the same defects of the heart that he has. So it’s always there as a bit of a cloud that that could happen at some time. Now, the stats are, and I think this is the key to living with any sort of disease or anything that’s kind of health related, is understanding the statistics and the kind of scientific reality of it. This is how I’ve learned to deal with it, instead of being afraid, understanding what might happen to me in scientific terms. 

So it’s extremely unlikely, actually, that that would happen to me. It’s really usually triggered by an event like getting a certain type of virus or being pregnant actually. When I was pregnant that could have triggered the gene to kick off and cause my heart to have a problem. But that’s really helped me navigate all of this is just really understanding what’s kind of really likely to happen or not happen and how to best look after myself to try and, you know, limit things getting worse. 


I love how you have talked about integrating it and making it normal and talking about it, you know, normalising talking about it as well. It destigmatises the whole notion of it being something really big and scary that one might struggle to deal with on a day-to-day basis. And I think that must be so helpful. I can understand clearer now why you set out to create your blog. 

But how do you stay fit and healthy and focused then day to day, week to week? What are some of the things that you’re doing to look after yourself? 


So I’ve had to adapt how I stay fit because I’m allowed to do certain exercises. And I’m not allowed to push myself too hard, but I like to push myself and I’m a very competitive person. So I still go spinning. I love to spin when I’m in England and a bit of walking. I think you love to walk, don’t you? 


I love to walk. Try and at least get 30 minutes a day. I think that’s like, for me, a foundational thing that has to happen. Yeah.


And non-negotiable, right? So it has to fit. 


Absolutely. Yeah. 


It ticks so many boxes, like walking for long-term health, but just being out in nature, grounding yourself. It kind of gives you, it gives you everything. 

I do a little bit of weights to help my strength and my bone structure because with colitis you can get, your bones can weaken, so that’s an important aspect. And then I’ve got a gym class that I love called conga, which does not mean we walk around holding each other’s hips. 

It’s like a, it’s kind of like a dance class and hip mix together. And I find that movement in that way gets all my negative energy out and I just have so much fun in that class. So I feel like I’ve really got this mix of fitness that makes me happy, keeps me strong and healthy.

My health is dictated by how my brain is doing. This is my focus. So I’ve got quite a few practices I try and do, but I am not good at keeping up with any of them. And I’ve kind of accepted that. I used to try and make myself meditate. I used to try and journal and all the things you read, gratitude every day. I can’t keep that up. So I’ve accepted that I will just do the things that I need to do. And I will trust myself to know when I need to do them. And I think that does kind of naturally happen. 


Yeah, that’s really interesting as well. Because I think meditation, I try and meditate and it is it takes discipline to meditate properly and do it on a regular basis. But the journaling thing I really struggle with, because I know that some people are big into the idea of journaling when they first get up, or doing regular points throughout the day. To me, I haven’t got my mindset around that yet. I’m like, I’ll do that when I have time. And I never seem to have time. 

But um, yeah, so that is encouraging, because I feel like I’m not the only one who’s failing to journal or meditate all of the time. 


I mean, we’re going to end up beating ourselves up, you know, oh, I didn’t get up and journal again, oh, I didn’t get up and meditate again. 

Now, obviously, if we all know it’s really good for us, which we do, it’s like exercise, isn’t it? It’s the same principle of, I know I will feel fantastic when I’ve done that, but I find it hard to make myself do it. It’s just the more I guess you do it, the more you will reap the benefits and kind of want to do it more. 

But I’ve had an amazing coach in my life the last six months called Nikki, and she’s been just so good at helping me build some of these practices and kind of hold me accountable or remind me when I’m potentially having a moment that I’m struggling. If I just did the thing, then it would probably make me feel better. So it’s having that kind of toolbox of things that you can go to when you need them and knowing which one’s going to kind of help you through those moments. I think that’s been crucial for me.


Is that a business coach? 


Yes, a business coach. 


Is that something new for you? 

I’ve been there and I think it’s a fascinating process to go through. 


Over time, I’ve had a few different coaches. I’ve dabbled in the coaching and I think it took me quite a long time to find one that really fits me and my business. 

A lot of coaching I found, or I was looking kind of in the wrong places maybe, but was about how to build your business, how to make X amount of money. It was all around business structures and quite masculine. 

Whereas what I actually needed was a level of coaching that was more about me as a business person, and then that would transform my business. And I found Nikki last year. I was actually, my son was in hospital this time last summer in Italy, and he was very sick. And I found Nikki’s podcast. She’s called Nikki Cross. She has a podcast called the Inner Work Conversation. 

And she is just so good at recognizing and understanding you as an individual and kind of where you’re, let’s be honest, causing problems within your own business and in your own life where you’re blocking yourself. She’s just been incredible as a as a support throughout, probably I could say the last, maybe it’s a bit more seven or eight months, and helping me not just, you know, look at my business and see kind of on a strategic level what I need to do and teaching me, you know, elements of business. 

It’s all about you as a person and then how that impacts your business And I could not recommend her more. She’s still what I call my coach in my pocket. So she’s not so much doing active coaching with me anymore, but she’s always on WhatsApp. And I can contact her at any time. So I use her in a way where if I notice a behaviour I’m doing, or I spot myself, I’m tripping myself up in some way, or I’ve noticed an old story that has come up that I’m telling myself again, I just voice note her and she’s always there to help me kind of explore it further, probe into it or find another way of talking about it so that I can work through it and move on. And as I say, it’s just absolutely incredible. I don’t know how I’m going to let go of Nikki because she’s just incredible. 


It sounds amazing. I think one of the biggest, best things that can come out from investing in a business coach is helping you become more accountable. You mentioned that already. And I think that’s something I would always, I think if people are struggling with their routine, all this foundational things we’ve talked about, helping you become more accountable, honestly, find a business coach and find one, like you say, that resonates with you, that works for you and your business and in an authentic way, maybe that might, you know, take a little bit of research, but it’s so well worth the investment. 


Yeah, I think it can be really hard to know what you want and what kind of coach is going to be right for you. But that’s why in Nikki’s case, her podcast is really helpful because, you know, from listening and over time, if you listen to a few of them, you know, that person is going to understand me. I recognize I’m doing some of those things that she’s talking about. This was my journey anyway. And then I was able to see exactly how she would be able to support me. 

And a lot of coaches have resources like that. So maybe it’s having a chat with one or listening to some of their podcasts. You’ll soon see if they’re going to kind of fill that gap that you think that you have. But equally, let’s be honest, all of us have things that we’re doing in our business that we may not be aware of. So I just think investing in a coach is probably the primary thing that any business owner should do. And that sounds very privileged. I know it’s hard. We don’t all have loads of income, but a lot of coaches have very different price points as well. And I can almost, you can see it that if you invested in a coach, the amount you invest, you are definitely going to make back in a different way through the confidence in your business, through the pricing of your products, through the strategy that you’re going to go out and put out there in the world that you’ve been sitting on for two years. Yeah, it will pay itself back. 


Yeah, it’s like you reap what you sow, isn’t it? And a really important point about the cost of different coaches as well, because there’s a vast range out there. 

I think maybe if you are struggling, perhaps just find someone who fits your cost, your budget. And then, you know, obviously over the long term you can work up, but it’s all about the feelings for me. It’s about feeling that trust, that authenticity, that connection. 

I love that you shared that, Lucy. Thank you. 

Lucy, we are approaching the end of the conversation and I’m going to sort of ask a few more lighthearted questions as we do. But I wanted to ask you first about your work. What do you love most about what you do? 


There’s two things. One is, is genuinely the people. Now, I’m an introvert most of the time, but I’m an extrovert with the white people. So in a wedding environment, I will thrive because I have all those people around me giving all the energy and I just love watching people enjoy their wedding. That is the best part of my job. When I see someone enjoying the thing that they’ve worked so hard for, that they’ve co-created with us, they are in it, they are loving it, they are loving Italy, something that I’m so passionate about, that’s it for me. 

And then I do also love the achievement because our wedding project lasts for a very long time and seeing it come to life in that moment as well and all of that work work you’ve put in kind of work and make people that happy is just an incredible feeling. 


Is there anything new that’s coming up for Wiskow and White and La Lista that you’d like to share with the audience? 


For Wiskow and White, we’re just focused on the weddings that we’ve got ahead. In the next couple of years, we started taking some bookings for 2025. But no, we’re really just focused on the type of couples that we’re acquiring and building those relationships. 

As I said, we want to work at quite a lot of different venues. There’s incredible places to work all across Italy. And we’re really excited that we’ve booked some of the venues that we’ve dreamed of working at over the years. So that will all be kind of moving along as it has been. 

And then with L a Lista, there’s so many things, as I sort of alluded to, that we want to do. Eventually, we’re going to launch a coaching site called La Lista Collective, where I want to be sharing more nuggets of how to build a business that works for you. 

But ultimately, we’re going to be growing our directory and our membership, which is at the moment the only Italian bridal community as well. So we see so much scope for that and we are also going to be having a live event in London next year. It will be like our version of a wedding show, which is essentially a room full of incredible suppliers, Italian bridal couples, and lots of talks and inspiring conversations, lots of creatives doing their thing right in front of you, and lots of Aperol Spritz. So that will be in February next year. 


Makes a note. You’ll have to share the date and details with me. That sounds really exciting. 

It sounds like you have so much on the go, you’re so proactive. It’s absolutely wonderful. 

Lucy, the Love My Dress podcast aims to empower brides, couples, wedding business owners, anyone basically interested in running a creative business in the wedding industry. What advice would you give to any aspiring creative business owner? 


I think the biggest transformation that will occur in your business is when you’re willing to face yourself through coaching or therapy. That has been the biggest game changer in my business and that is the only way I’ve achieved the things on my success list that I wanted to achieve and obviously that’s a personal thing but I believe that it’s probably true for everyone. So without that you’ll never reach your full potential and the freedom that you long for. 


Such a powerful, powerful message and if you weren’t doing what you do now, would you be doing anything else? What would you be doing? 


I imagine in my parallel life, I would be the fundraising director of a charity in England. And that was the path I was on. So I probably work for a health charity or a development charity. 


The conversation so far has been incredible. I love how honest and authentic and insightful you’ve been, and how willing to share some of the struggles and adversities that you’ve been through to help others. I’m so grateful for that. I’d like to finish up with a few really fun, light-hearted questions, if you don’t mind. The first is, if you were to host a dinner party and could invite any three people, living or deceased, who would you invite and why? 


OK, because my life goal is to meet this person, and this may be the only way that I would achieve it. Firstly, it would be Beyonce. 

People say, you know, no one knows the real Beyonce, right, but she is an incredible performer, an incredible woman, and she says some very inspiring things. So I’d love to just sit with her and understand more about her. 

Then I think I’d have David Bowie there, because I get asked all the time if Ziggy is called Ziggy because I’m a fan of David Bowie. And he was not called Ziggy because of that. But because I have learned so much about David Bowie from calling my son Ziggy, I’d be very interested to meet him. Because he’s just, he is an incredible person, isn’t he? He’s such a creative, he was an innovator, he was essentially a really good businessman. 

And actually, interestingly, he’s also Danielle’s absolute crush in life. She, when she was 14, she actually ran away one night to go and see him in a gig. So it’s really funny that we ended up calling Ziggy, Ziggy, another little connection with Danielle. That kind of ruins my plan, because I’d probably have to invite Danielle then. 


Okay, I might let you invite four guests.

So who would the other one be then?


I think the other one would actually be, I know you said keep it light, but the other one would be my one of my best friends Jack who actually died in 2016 because he was a massive musical fan and he was an incredible musician. So I’d love to be around the table with him talking about all things music with David and Beyonce. That would just be incredible. 


That sounds like it would be your most beautiful dinner party indeed. 

All right then, taking it from dinner parties to deserted islands, if you find yourself stranded on one, what three items would you have for you?


I think I’d have to take a pad of paper and a pen, if that can be one thing. A journal that has a pen in it, because I write down everything. My way of thinking, processing things is to write things down. And I like a little sketch too. So I think that would be quite, quite handy to have, especially when you’re dealing with just your mind in that situation. 

I think I’d take, I’d need some music. I don’t know how I would, how I’d do that. If they’ve invented one, I’d take an iPod that also recharges itself. Am I allowed to?


You’re probably my second guest who said that. 

Yeah, I’d take a phone, right? Because I could be Wi-Fi wouldn’t there, and I’d be able to charge up.

Yeah, of course, deserted island, of course. 


Just for the music. I won’t take the phone. I don’t want the internet. But I’d take, yeah, I’d take some music. And then I’d probably take a towel, because I don’t really like sitting on sand. And it would, you know, it’d keep me clean. It could provide shelter. Yeah, a towel. 


I like those, I like those answers.

And if you could travel back in time and give one piece of advice to your younger self, what would that piece of advice be? 


It’s so easy to say and so hard to do, but I would just say, trust yourself. 

There’s so many, you know, I now know how good my intuition is, and there are times when I haven’t, you know, trusted it, and maybe I’ve learned lots of lessons through that. But if I could just have fully trusted myself and really get in tune with that intuition, I think that would have helped me a bit earlier on in life. 


I mean, that’s such an important life lesson. I was going to say business and a lesson, but it’s a life lesson, isn’t it? 

I rely on my intuition. And like you, it’s something that I’ve kind of picked up on a few years back now and have honed. It’s that muscle memory thing as well. If you practise tuning into those little nudges, those little whispers inside, you build up that ability to start trusting your intuition more. And it will serve you throughout everything in life. I don’t think there’s a single business decision I make unless it’s founded upon whether intuitively it feels right to me. 


Absolutely right. And it’s hard to hear sometimes at the beginning when there’s other noise and other things that have been layered on top. But if you can get in tune with that, then I think that’s just the key to, it’s the key to kind of living your life the way that you really want to and happiness, really. 


Yeah, it’s that key to authenticity, isn’t it? That’s the key. That’s the connection. Lucy, I would like to thank you so much for taking time out in what’s clearly an extremely busy season for you and sharing as you have done. It’s been a pleasure to have you on the podcast. Thank you so, so much.


Thank you so much for letting me talk about things that are so special and important to me. It’s been such a wonderful chat.


I hope very much that you enjoyed this conversation, but before we wrap this episode, I need to ask a favour. 

A huge amount of time, love, and effort is required to produce this podcast and in order to get it off to a flying start in season one, we need your support. 

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Love My Dress Recommended Vendors & Venues

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Annabel View all Annabel's articles

Founder of Love My Dress. Passionate Podcaster and Editor. Annabel lives in rural North Yorkshire with her husband and business partner Philip, their two daughters and menagerie of furry hounds. She loves photography, meditation, walking, being outdoors and star gazing. She is fierce when it comes to championing talent within the wedding industry and when she's not working on Love My Dress, she supports her husband Philip in the running of the family's sustainable flower farm and floral design business, Moonwind Flowers. In 2013, she became a published author.