PLAYGROUND MEETS the gorgeous Melissa Bell

A model for over a decade, Melissa Bell was scouted, aged 14 years, at The Birmingham Clothes Show, by none other than Playground's, Co-founder, Jess Knowles. Born and bred Geordie, Mel soon moved from Newcastle down to London, after being signed by Select Model Agency. 
Sixteen years later she has now settled in Tottenham, North London, with partner 'Chesty' and wild & beautiful dog, Lily. Only five months ago, Mel gave birth to their first child, delicious little boy, Jasper. The four of them are one happy family. We hear more how they are getting on with their lockdown. 
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How is Coronavirus affecting you right now?

I don’t feel so affected by this virus, as ever since Jasper was born 5 months ago I haven’t really been going out. I prefer to stay inside with him, be safe and have everything I need around me. Friends used to come and visit lots, but now, obviously no one can come till the virus goes.  
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How are you coping with the changes?

I’m coping extremely well, as I can still walk Lily once a day and give her a good run around. However, I do struggle with waiting in a huge queue to buy baby milk and bits for the house.   

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Any tips to survive the next few months?

My tips would be eat more and spend more time cooking, trying new things out. I made a cake last week, which went terribly wrong, but with practice, I’m sure I will smash it one day!

Remember the virus isn’t forever, so appreciate all the small things like having family time, movie time and baths, which I seem to be in 3 times a day.  

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Also, we pulled out all the classic board games and have been smashing Monopoly, Scrabble and cards. 

Clean and chuck out as much as possible ready for new things, when we can finally go shopping again, nothing beats a decent clean around the house. 

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What have you learnt from your experience, so far?

I’ve learnt to wash my hands more and I’ve realised the world is a scary place. 

What do you miss?

All I miss is coffee, cappuccinos. I would do anything for one right now. 

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Top three things you do to lift the spirits?

We have been spending most our time in the garden, as soon as the sun comes out we play the “Covid-19” album from Spotify. It’s worth a listen, with some outrageous classics, such as Britney “Toxic” ha. 

Secondly, I think my energy passes onto Chesty, who is still working from home, so I try and keep him happy by spreading my positive vibes onto him. Anything from a dance, or sing-a-long to a high kick competition. I’m always down for something fun or silly to raise spirits. 

Thirdly, we have been eating non-stop together, which is really nice, as he usually comes home from work pretty late and I’ve already eaten. So, sitting down and having meals and snacks together is probably my new favourite thing to do. 

Mother and baby in Playground sweatshirt and babysuit

What’s the best thing that’s happened since you've been in lockdown?

The best thing for me, is having a huge clean every couple of days in the house and sorting out Jasper's nursery together. We've painted the room, finally hung his new pictures and transformed the spare room to feel like a baby room. I have totally loved doing it. 

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First thing you will do when out of isolation?

Only one thing for me ...  a cold bubbly pint at the local pub, with friends and a bbq round our house. 

What are wearing in these times?

I’m wearing my maternity leggings still, as they are huge and comfy, with all my oversized, massive jumpers and funky socks. Always time for a sock in my life.  

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