Michelle Keegan will be Mrs Mark Wright by the end of this weekend. We caught up with her before their big day to get the goss at her Lipsy launch
There’s an inaudible buzz in the foyer of London’s ME Hotel, for one reason only. Michelle Keegan, all oversized sunglasses and pearly white smile, has entered the building. You hear her before you see her -‘Hiya! Y’alright?’
We’ve been given exclusive behind-the- scenes access as Michelle, 27, launches her autumn/winter fashion collection for Lipsy London. It’s also days before the showbiz wedding of the year, when she marries her gorgeous fiancé Mark Wright, 28.
It’s a big time for Michelle right now. On top of her fashion line and wedding, she’s just completed her first film role in Brit flick Strangeways Here We Come and is planning a top-secret TV project later this year – so it’s no surprise she’s feeling the pressure.
‘It’s not a bad stress – it’s an excited stress. It’s a nice butterflies stress,’ she explains, her hair in neat rollers as she devours her breakfast – an egg white omelette and buttered brown toast. ‘Before my hen do, I was working 13-14 hours a day, six days a week, and getting emails about the wedding and trying to plan.
‘I want it to be the most amazing day. I’ve been thinking about my wedding since I was young so I want it to be the best it can be. I’m trying to finalise the little bits now, the quirks that everyone remembers. And you worry – is the food going to be good? Is the entertainment going to be good?’
Wedding worries aside, there’s no disputing that Michelle’s in a good place right now. Just a year ago she was waving goodbye to her Coronation Street alter ego Tina McIntyre after six years on the soap. She’s since appeared in BBC1’s drama Ordinary Lies.
‘I feel the happiest I’ve ever felt in my life,’ says Michelle. ‘This time last year everything was up in the air because I was leaving Corrie and moving down to Essex. I didn’t know what I was going to do for work or how well the Lipsy collection was going to go. Now I feel everything’s going really well. I’m so happy with the Lipsy line – I feel really proud. I’ve got a nice, settled feeling.’
Ahead of their wedding at a Suffolk mansion, the bride and groom have embarked on strict pre-wedding regimes. Mark recently revealed he’s lost 2st by cutting out carbs and today Michelle tells Now she’s dropped a dress size (‘I’m a 6-8 now’) by sticking to a healthy diet and every-other-day gym sessions.
Michelle looks in the best shape of her life. Her waist is wasp-like and we clock that her bottom’s looking über-pert. ‘Thanks! I’ve been squatting for Britain!’ she laughs.
Back at the hotel, she grabs a 30-minute breather with her cousin Katie Fernihough before slipping into her black Lipsy party frock for the day’s finale – the official launch party for her collection. There are wall-to-wall celebrities including MIC’s Rosie Fortescue, Louise Thompson and Stephanie Pratt plus Vogue Williams.
Although Mark can’t be there, Michelle’s got the next best thing: his sister Jess and mum Carol. ‘My family can’t be there all the time because they’re in Manchester so Jess and Carol’s support is really important,’ says Michelle as the night draws to a close. ‘It’s a homely feeling when I see them. They’re my second family.’