My personal style signifier is the set of rings on my fingers, from Pippa Small and Johanna Dahm. Sadly, I do not have the long, elegant fingers that Pippa has, but I do wear these all the time. I’ll find myself looking at them in meetings with utter delight, even though I’ve had them for years. Johanna Dahm at Galerie Ra, Vijzelstraat 80, 1017 HL Amsterdam (+31-206 265 100; www.galerie-ra.nl). Pippa Small, 11 Colville Mews, London, W11 (020-7792 1292; www.pippasmall.com).
The best gift I’ve given recently was a pair of fleece-lined Converse boots (from £45) to my son for his 13th birthday, along with a mini-mini-mini snooker table. The latter was chosen by my 10-year-old son: I’d have dismissed it on grounds of being too tiny, but my 13-year-old loved it. www.converse.com.
And the best one I’ve received was a set of little individual salt cellars from Summerill & Bishop, from my mother. I hate having to ask someone to pass the salt, so now everyone has their own. 100 Portland Road, London W1 (020-7221 4566; www.summerillandbishop.com).
The books on my bedside table areThe Sorrows of an American by Siri Hustvedt and The Boy Who Was Raised As A Dog by Bruce D Perry and Maia Szalavitz. Queued up next is The Rest is Noise, by [The New Yorker music critic] Alex Ross.
In my fridge you’ll always find homemade pesto, homemade hummus and tahini, Comté cheese and a bottle of champagne. And this delicious Foie de Morue Fumé you get in tins in French supermarkets. My husband, who’s French and travels often to Paris, brings it home with him.
The last thing I bought and loved was a set of 12 Salon chairs from Christopher Howe. They’re upholstered in horsehair in six colours from my new plain collection. Christopher specially designed two carvers to go with them. A very big investment, but well worth it. 93 Pimlico Road, London SW1 (020-7730 7987; www.howelondon.com).
And the thing I’m eyeing next is a Paul Evans side table from Guinevere. Also, I saw some absolutely fantastic jewellery by Anish Kapoor at the Louisa Guinness Gallery: I wouldn’t mind the necklace (from £3,500). Guinevere Antiques, 574-580 King’s Road, London SW6 (020-7736 2917; www.guinevere.co.uk). Louisa Guinness Gallery at Ben Brown Fine Arts, 21 Cork Street, London W1 (020-7494 4664; www.louisaguinnessgallery.com).
An unforgettable place I’ve travelled to in the past year is the little group of islands north of Sardinia, including La Maddalena. I loved the granite rock formations – they were as good as a Henry Moore. And the sea: so blue, and clean, and quiet.
The grooming staples I’m never without are Calèche by Hermès, DR Harris Almond Oil soap, Dr Nick Lowe face creams and Dior Apricot cuticle cream, which is so old-fashioned, packaged in a pretty little white pot that hasn’t changed since my grandmother’s day. Hermès, 155 New Bond Street, London W1 (020-7499 8856; www.hermes.com) and branches/stockists. DR Harris, 29 St James’s Street, London SW1 (020-7930 3915; www.drharris.co.uk). Dr Nick Lowe (www.drnicklowe.com; 01635-565 033). Dior, www.beauty.dior.com.
If I didn’t live in London, the city I would live in is Paris. I love the way it has not changed too much – that the cafés still have their original tiles, brass curtain poles and copper- or brass-covered bars. Brasserie Lipp, for instance, but also countless little bistros all over the 5th and 6th arrondissements – really chic, precisely because they haven’t changed. 151 Boulevard St Germain, 7006 Paris (+331-4548 5391; www.brasserie-lipp.fr).
The last item I added to my wardrobe is a Givenchy coat from Feathers; I just think her [co-owner Suzanne Burstein’s] eye is amazing. 42 Hans Crescent, London SW1 (020-7589 5802; www.feathersfashion.com).
My favourite website is currently Woodcarvingmaster.com. And I love looking at what Guinevere.co.uk and Talismanlondon.com have on their sites as well. But I always check things out in person before buying.www.woodcarvingmaster.com. www.guinevere.co.uk. www.talismanlondon.com.