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Style | The Aesthete

Angelika Taschen talks personal style: Part One

Angelika Taschen has been a doyenne of international book publishing for 25 years

November 22 2012
Christina Ohly Evans

My personal style signifiers are a pair of dark-blue Acne skinny jeans, usually worn with a white shirt, and a ring that was made for me by the jeweller Otto Jakob. It is a chunky piece with a hand-cut, antique diamond. Otto knows so much about stones, and I think this has great energy. Acne jeans, from about £160; shop.acnestudios.com. Otto Jakob, Weinbrennerstrasse 40, 76135 Karlsruhe, Germany (+49721-855 911; www.ottojakob.de).

The last thing I bought and loved was a grey cashmere boyfriend sweater by J Crew. I think its president and creative director, Jenna Lyons, has great style, so I tend to like its clothes. I bought this particular sweater online, but I also stock up on them when I am in New York. £208; www.jcrew.com.

And the thing I’m eyeing next is a pair of sunglasses by Berlin designer Mykita, called Maple, from its Decades Sun collection. They offer a contemporary take on the Wayfarer look, and the gold shimmer is lovely. £245; www.mykita.com.

An unforgettable place I’ve travelled to in the past year is Stromboli, the small island north of Sicily. I stayed at a friend’s house nestled amid black volcanic rocks with a terrace that winds down to the sea. They had sun loungers at the edge of the ocean, complete with dramatic views of Mount Stromboli erupting in the distance.

The best souvenir I’ve brought home is chocolate from Antica Dolceria Bonajuto in Sicily. It is unlike anything I’ve ever tasted, as it has a wonderful sandy consistency and is very natural. I think it’s the world’s best chocolate. Corso Umberto 159, 97015 Modica, Sicily (+3909-3294 1225; www.bonajuto.it).

The grooming staples I’m never without are Dr Hauschka’s Regenerating Serum, which smooths wrinkles and hydrates the skin, and Frédéric Malle’s En Passant perfume by Olivia Giacobetti. Dr Hauschka Regenerating Serum, £54.45 for 30ml; www.drhauschka.com. Frédéric Malle En Passant, £125 for 100ml; www.fredericmalle.com.

The last meal that truly impressed me was the vegetarian food at Ottolenghi in London. Yotam Ottolenghi cooks contemporary food with Arab, Mediterranean and Asian influences that is perfect for people who travel the world. It’s also ideal for those who don’t need too much protein or gluten – and, most importantly, it’s delicious. 63 Ledbury Road, London W11 (020-7727 1121; www.ottolenghi.co.uk) and branches.

The books on my bedside table include Stephen Greenblatt’s The Swerve: How the World Became Modern, and a German translation of Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert, which I have read over and over. In addition, I am working through the Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson. I think Jobs was the most influential person of the past 25 years.  

The best gift I’ve given recently was a small golden ring with a hanging heart by jeweller Sabrina Dehoff. I packaged it in a gold Jil Sander clutch and gave it to a girlfriend for a special birthday. www.jilsander.com. www.sabrinadehoff.com.

And the best one I’ve received was a series of beautiful bouquets of flowers by designer Mark Colle, who did these incredible arrangements in muted colours for my apartment. Augustijnenstraat 35, 2000 Antwerp (+323-232 2838; www.markcolle.com).

The last music I downloaded was Leonard Cohen’s Old Ideas. I have loved his music for 40 years; I think he gets better with age. And I also recently bought Dionne Warwick’s Greatest Hits 1979-1990, which I enjoy for its soulful vocals. www.dionnewarwick.info. www.leonardcohen.com.

My favourite websites are those of hotels and also fashion blogs. One of my latest finds is Boutique Homes, for house rentals and small hotels; Think Sicily and I Escape allow me to dream about where I would like to go next; and I also follow fashion site My Theresa and style blogger Garance Doré. www.boutique-homes.com. www.garancedore.fr. www.i-escape.com. www.mytheresa.com. www.thinksicily.com.