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'It's Not Normal For Anyone': Laura Byrne Fights Tears Over 'Business As Usual' Criticism

Laura Byrne is urging Aussies to think twice before criticising small business owners for carrying on with their work.

Long before the Sydney local won the heart of Bachelor Matty J, Laura was working tirelessly towards growing her jewellery brand, Toni May.

On Thursday, the successful brand launched it's latest collection. And on what she thought would be "an exciting day," a tearful Laura took to her Instagram story to explain why it came with a heavy heart.

"It feels really weird and strange to be excited about, or talking about, or even proud of anything at the moment considering what is happening in the world," said Laura. 

I know that there will be someone who will see the launch of the collection and think, 'now is not the right time to be doing that'.

She continued, "It doesn't feel like it's the right time, but it wasn't done to be insensitive at all."

The coronavirus pandemic has not only tarnished our health, it's also ravaging our economy. At this stage, workers in the events, entertainment and hospitality industries are being hit the hardest.

Australians are losing their livelihoods, and as such, many have turned to criticising those in the fashion and lifestyle industries for continuing to push their products in these troubling times.

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However, as Laura reiterates, their businesses are at stake as well. And she has an important message for the critics.

"This is really just on behalf of all small businesses," she said. "If a business is appearing like its business as normal. It's not. For anyone."

Laura continued, "We are so aware of what is happening in the world. We are not ignorant to it, we are not insensitive to it. Our eyes are wide open, and it is bloody scary.

I think in this time, we really need to support small business. And we need to build each other up, not tear each other down.

Fellow small business owners and creatives took to Laura's social media accounts in droves to thank her for articulating how so many of them are feeling right now.

"It's beautiful," wrote one of her followers under a post showcasing the new collection. "And we need lots of beauty in the world right now."

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Another wrote, "As a creative I understand totally the work that goes into a collection like this. Take care of yourselves and your loved ones."

While we don't quite know what the future holds, it's gestures of support, solidarity and kindness like this that make it a whole lot easier to stay strong.

Instagram pages, such as Buy Aussie Now, are coming in thick and fast to help connect Australians with local brands and companies who need their business now more than ever.

Everybody is doing it tough right now, and Laura Byrne wants to remind people to think before they criticise.

Featured Image: Instagram

Do you have a lifestyle story or personal experience to share with us? Reach out and tell us about it at alenton@networkten.com.au