Today we press pause with founder and creative director of Deliciously Ella. Ella Mills is a household name in the wellness world. Her self built empire includes 5 x best-selling recipe books, the Deliciously Ella deli in London, a range of successful plant-based food products sold in over 6,000 stores across the UK and her latest adventure – the Deliciously Ella app.
Ella is as lovely in person as she comes across on social media. Actually, she has quite a sense of humour! Ella’s commitment to turn her passion and lifestyle into a business is truly inspiring and we are so pleased to call her a #WOMENOFSILOU.
Describe your ideal morning? Breakfast, location, people, anything!
A sunny beach, because you can’t beat blue skies and seeing the sunshine when you wake up. Early morning yoga, a stack of vegan maple and blueberry pancakes with my husband, a matcha and fresh fruit and then a good book, a swim and a sleep. Can’t think of anything better, but the same routine at home is equally heavenly.
What’s been your career highlight to date so far running Deliciously Ella?
We had a team dinner a couple of weeks ago, there are now 21 people in our office and I looked down the table at everyone and just wow. They’re the most talented, brilliant, passionate, supportive people and we are so lucky to work with them.The fact that they chose to leave brilliant jobs to be part of Deliciously Ella makes me so proud and it’s definitely the biggest highlight alongside hearing from our readers and knowing that we’re having a positive impact on their lives.
Celery Juice or matcha latte?
Matcha with a splash of maple, pinch of vanilla and super frothy almond milk. I do like celery juice but it’s definitely not as delicious!
What’s your favourite part about working for yourself?
Flexibility, freedom and an ability to constantly learn and pursue a passion. Running your own business can be challenging, it definitely doesn’t come without a sense of pressure and worry, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’ve challenged myself and come further than I would have ever imagined and just love that we get to share something that means so much to us on a personal level.
What tactics do you employ to overcome difficult days running Deliciously Ella?
Trying to be consistent with some semblance of self-care because being in a good place mentally and physically makes the world of difference. There have been times where I’ve let it fall by the wayside and it’s amazing how not looking after yourself impacts negatively on everything around you. Yoga is my day to day go-to. I practice every day at 7am before work and I just love it. An hour of breathing, moving, stretching and opening up does wonders for my physical and mental health. Other than that it’s trying to fit things in where I can, making something delicious to eat, having a bath before bed, walking our dog between meetings or listening to a great podcast on the tube.
You have become a public figure in the world of health. When you first set up Deliciously Ella, did you ever anticipate the huge success that you have now?
Not in a million years!! It’s a constant surprise, I’m still a bit blown away by it all to be totally honest. It’s been the most surreal, unexpected journey.
We know you have now become a qualified yoga teacher, what type of benefits have you personally experienced from practicing yoga?
The list never ends! It’s been the most phenomenal addition to my life and I am so, so grateful to all the teachers that inspired me to make it such a big part of my life. The mental space and clarity it creates is so special. It really does quieten the mind and allows me to check in with how I’m feeling. It also allows me to process difficult emotions and it empowers me to feel strong in my body and my mind. I love that it can be equal parts: soft and strong, gentle yet powerful.
What was one of the most powerful takeaways from your yoga training?
How much I wanted to share the practice with everyone. I’m a big believer in sharing practices that help us live a healthier, happier life and I realised just how much we can all take from it.
What advice would you give to those starting yoga?
There is no such thing as good or bad. We all start a practice somewhere and we’re all always learning and growing. Sometimes people feel they’re not strong enough or flexible enough. But there’s no such thing as “enough.” It’s just about starting and embracing your body where it is.
Where can we attend an Ella Mills yoga class in London?
At the moment just online. I’ve taken a pause on physical classes while I’m pregnant (trying to slow down a little!) but we can practice together through our app, which is 0.99p per month.
What other ways do you like to exercise your Silou-ette?
Walking! I love walking. I walk to work a few days a week with my husband, Matt and our dog, Austin.
What is your favourite piece from Silou?
You’re about to launch the Deliciously Ella app. What can we expect to find inside?
It will launch with 400 plant-based recipes, lots of really easy to follow recipe videos, a meal planner and shopping list section. Along with helpful articles, a detailed search function and favourite feature, as well as 40 yoga videos led by me and some of my favourite yoga teachers. The app has yoga for every level, including beginners introductory sessions, meditation classes, fast-paced energizing morning flows and unwinding evening sessions. Pregnancy yoga videos will be added very soon too. It will be 0.99p a month and will be updated several times each week with new exclusive recipes, recipe videos, yoga videos, podcasts and more, so there will always be something new for the user.
From writing cookbooks, launching and managing new Deliciously Ella products to starting a very successful podcast? What do you feel is the key to staying on top of everything?
A great team, that’s the only way we could do what we do.
How do you separate your work life and home life with working with your partner?
We try and be really fluid, not creating enforced and unrealistic barriers. Running the business together means we both appreciate when something unexpected might crop up or when work needs to take priority. We’ve canceled five trips in three years and who knows how many date nights turned into evenings on our laptops. But we’ve also traveled the world together with work, seen each other grow and achieve and created a deeper bond than I thought possible. It’s tough but it’s special and I’ve never been closer to anyone.
What’s on your bedside table:
So many books, Therapie sleep spray, water and an alarm clock (I don’t sleep with my phone in the room).
My favourite quote is:
My mum always said “You get back what you put in” and I do really believe in that. The more time, love, energy and passion you put into each moment of the day, the richer and fuller it’s going to be.
Finally, what can we expect from Deliciously Ella this year?
More nut butter balls, some really exciting new products, more podcasts, and a baby!