Celebrating everything from the sublime to the obscure, Mulberry’s Brilliant Britain guide book, a ‘love letter’ to the nation launched in Mulberry stores today along with a new website (http://www.brilliantbritainguide.com).
‘Mulberry is a brand rooted it British heritage,’ says Mulberry’s Chairman Godfrey Davis. ‘With our factory in Somerset [and] our apprenticeship schemes, our commitment is to the preservation of luxury craft and innovation.’
Which is why they kicked off the launch with the most British of meals – a hearty breakfast. As bacon rolls, pancakes and smoked salmon were passed around the handbag department of Harrods (an iconic British store), a crew of 70 year old Scottish, knitting grannies were hard at work producing the AW12 tassel scarves in the heart of the store.
Celebrating everything from Whitby fish & chips and Shakespeare’s Globe to window displays and Vivienne Westwood, the constantly-evolving website is the perfect ending to a Jubilee and Olympic filled year.
‘This is so much more than the Mulberry brand,’ says Brilliant Britain’s editor, Henrietta Thompson. ‘We’ve got everything from Harrods to a tiny florist included. What’s really interesting is it can’t be controlled. The idea from the start was to give it to the nation to keep it going.’
With 16,000 visitors in its first two days, the nation has clearly taken note.
While the public can get involved and ‘award a rosette to anyone anywhere that you think is brilliant’, Mulberry has also got a few of its famous friends involved.
Yasmin Sewell’s nomination? Great British design (of course), British humility, and surprisingly, the British tabloids.
And Tim Walker’s? Northumberland- for its landscape and history.
But we think they’ve missed a few things.
Here’s what the ELLE team thinks makes Britain brilliant:
Sara D’Souza, ELLEuk.com Travel Assistant:
‘Despite being an absolute London lover, I’m going to plump for the country’s wild and woolly coastlines. From the white sands of Luskentyre Bay on the Isle of Harris (which wouldn’t look out of place in the Caribbean), along the rugged Northumberland Coast right down to the idyllic beaches in Cornwall. Not forgetting a hearty bag of steaming fish and chips along the way.’
Hannah Swerling, ELLE Commissioning Editor:
One of my favourite British eccentricities is social awkwardness. We are just the best at it. In any other country in the world, if you got in a lift with a stranger, you'd share a 'hello, how are you?' but not in Brilliant Britain. Our default setting is to walk in, perhaps nod in vague acknowledgement and then endure 3 floors of awkward silence. You've got to admire that kind of resolute obstinacy!’
Amy Lawrenson, ELLE Beauty Writer:
‘A Stroll Across Waterloo Bridge - my dad introduced me to those views. They are best taken in at night where you can see almost all of London’s major landmarks from the London Eye and Westminster to the Gherkin and Canary Wharf twinkling against the midnight blue sky and eerily sleepy river. It is the perfect antidote to a stressful day at work or a great way to round off your trip to the capital.’
Alannah Sparks, ELLE Acting Fashion Editor:
'For me, I love Britian for it's festivals. As well as the liberalism in London and,. of course, Pimm's'
Alice Watt, ELLE Fashion Assistant:
‘It’s bit obscure, but I love the way the British queue, and genuinely miss it when on the continent.’