Louise Thompson, 22, is just as pretty in real life as she is on TV. And while Made In Chelsea, the hit e4 reality TV show about the lives and loves of SW3's affluent youth, is notorious for its awkward silences and meaningful looks, she is all smiles and has plenty to say as we sit in Opal Lounge's VIP area as boyfriend and MIC co-star Spencer Matthews looks lovingly on from across the room.
"He told me that he couldn't come tonight," she confides in me, grinning from ear to ear. "He said that he was too busy with meetings to come up to Edinburgh, so it was such a surprise to find him here!" Indeed, guests were thrilled to find not just one, but two of their favourite media personalities in their midst. And for those who have been keenly tracking the infamous relationship every week will be relieved to know that all is extremely well between the two.
But the night was not about Spencer, or unresolved issues with Jamie Lang, or even Andy "get off the terrace" Jordan. Last Monday, Opal Lounge hosted the Edinburgh launch of new jeans line Pocket, co-created by Louise and fellow Edinburgh student Ed Page, 22. The childhood friends came up with the concept in January after realising that there was a distinct lack of British fashion houses that focused on denim wear. For the next nine months they were occupied with coming up with the perfect brand - something bold and versatile - that would find its way onto everyone's Christmas list.
The final product - a stunning collection of vibrant jeans with the signature coloured pocket - was celebrated with elegant cocktails and cheesecake canapés that greeted guests upon their arrival in from the cold. As soon as the doors opened Edinburgh's bright young things came flowing in, eager to revel in an evening of glamour and sophistication.
There are certainly benefits to being in a popular TV show when it comes to promoting your company. "Made In Chelsea has the potential to be an advertising board," Louise says when I ask her about the marketing for Pocket. She doesn't deny the fact that it is useful to have members of the cast willing to support the venture and be associated with it, such as good friend Caggie Dunlop. And if Louise goes out wearing the jeans, then the Internet will almost surely be flooded the morning after with pictures of them. Publicity doesn't seem to be an issue.
But that's not to say that Louise waves a wand and makes things happen, or clicks her fingers and suddenly the jeans appear. She and Ed have been inundated with meetings with lawyers, designers, investors and constant trips to the factory to examine samples. Pocket is a proper business, an enterprise with all the associated risks and gambles that the co-creators must take on, having invested their own money as well as time and effort into the brand. On top of all of this they must also face the perils of their final year at university, such as the unwritten Dissertation. "My personal tutor was horrified when I told him that I was starting up my own company this year," Louise admitted. She has vowed to put further developments for Pocket on hold until after graduation; for now she and Ed are happy with its current success as an online store, but they have plans to expand to the high street in the near future.
In the bar area the drinks and the conversation are flowing; the men are unbuttoning their shirts even further and the girls are becoming increasingly giggly by the minute. Guests spill onto the dance floor where the DJ spins the tracks of Jay-Z and the like. What began as an evening of refinement descends into a wonderfully decadent event, perhaps slightly reminiscent of a Made In Chelsea party that we have always wanted to attend. It is all rather symbolic of the principle behind Pocket: the jeans are made as pieces of art, but they are also made for us to live life in. And they want us to have a totes good time whilst we're at it.
Pocket will give £1 from every pair of jeans sold to Jeans for Genes Day.
First published in the Student, the University of Edinburgh student newspaper.
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