Wild swimming is becoming increasingly popular, with more and more people plunging into lakes, ponds, and the ocean regardless of the temperature or time of year. With studies singing the praises of its mental and physical health benefits, it’s not hard to see why.
We’ll be chatting to people who live and breathe the spirit of each print our designers have created, starting with Megan – the name behind Girl in the Water. A self-proclaimed water baby, Megan can’t get enough of wild swimming, and is as inspired by it as our designers were. We asked her to tell us all about it.
Igrew up in Cornwall and spent a lot of time in the ocean as a child but my love of wild swimming was rekindled many years ago, on a freezing February day, during a visit to my Mum in Cornwall. It had been a grey, stormy week and my cabin fever was at its worst, she persuaded me to go sea swimming with her. The water was only 8 degrees and it felt so, so cold. Bone-chillingly cold. But it was a truly exhilarating experience and stuck a smile on my face for the rest of the day. Cabin fever gone. I’ve been addicted ever since, travelling around the UK and Europe swimming in all kinds of beautiful lakes, rivers and little sea coves. Luckily, not all of them are as cold as that February day.
For me, wild swimming is an ultimate connection with nature; grass, rock and sand underfoot, mud squelching between toes, then the cool silky feel of the water, there really isn’t anything else like it. When you swim outside, it’s like you leave the pressures of modern day life behind you on the shore, or the bank, and find a moment of much needed peace and joyousness. But, most importantly, wild swimming is also fun…to my mind, you’re never too old to skinny dip in a lake, dive into a river or jump into the cold Atlantic!
I’m looking forward to a wintery visit to swim some spots in the Lake District that I’ve had my eye on for a while: Tongue Pot in Eskdale where the river runs clear and you can jump off the high walls, as well as Black Moss Pot on the Langstrath Beck. These days I seem to spend every minute of my free time seeking out increasingly wild swim spots and I can’t walk past a body of water without feeling the need to strip off and jump in!
Before designing a new collection at Joules, our designers pack a bag, pull on their walking boots (or wellies!) and head out into the great outdoors to see what inspiration can be found. Our AW19 collection was inspired by a trip to the Lake District, with each place we visited inspiring a series of prints, which we’ll be releasing throughout AW19. You’ll be able to spot the prints appearing on our clothes, so you can cherish a little piece of the Lake District too.
During their time in the Lake District, in a bid to dive deep for inspiration (literally), our designers stripped off, donned their swimsuits and braved a swim across Ullswater. While the biting temperatures and fear of the unknown may have put some off, our designers emerged from the depths of the lake packed full with inspiration for a whole new collection, and just like that our Take the Plunge collection was born.