The Aesthete: Amanda Wakeley talks more personal taste

The fashion designer continues her list of likes with Tracey Emin’s embroideries, a denim trouser suit and cruising in the Greek islands

Amanda Wakeley at home in London on one of her pair of lambskin chairs by Jindrich Halabala
Amanda Wakeley at home in London on one of her pair of lambskin chairs by Jindrich Halabala | Image: Sebastian Boettcher

My style icons are all sorts of women who are effortless in the way they put themselves together, and women who really own their look. But there’s no one that I would single out.

An unforgettable place I’ve travelled to in the past year is the Rosablanche in the Swiss Pennine Alps. Hugh, my partner, and I are keen ski tourers, and mountain glaciers are always awe-inspiring places to be, with the enormity of the crevices, the solitude, the quiet. One day, we summited and toured across the glacier and came across a herd of 20 bouquetin [wild goats]. It was absolutely extraordinary; even our mountain guide who is there every day in the winter couldn’t believe the sight.

Rosablanche in the Swiss Pennine Alps
Rosablanche in the Swiss Pennine Alps | Image: Alamy

And the best souvenir I’ve brought home is some beautiful shots of those animals. I am not a souvenir shopper but I will treasure the photographs that we took for the rest of my life.

The people I rely on for beauty and wellbeing are my trainer, Jason Progl – we do ballet, deep stretch and interval training and no two workouts are ever the same; I’ve broken my body so many times and he’s always put me back together – and Yusuf Gonen, who colours my hair. He comes to me, which suits me down to the ground. I don’t have time for regular facials and all of that. Jason Progl, 07973-717 059. Yusuf Gonen, 07445-141 417.

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The last meal that truly impressed me was a dinner at a friend’s house cooked by the culinary anthropologist, Anna Colquhoun. She cooked mostly vegetables but in the most mouth-watering combinations – a courgette, fennel and kohlrabi salad, for example.  Everything was utterly delicious. culinaryanthropologist.org.

In my fridge you’ll always find avocados, eggs and smoked salmon, which, combined, are an instant meal. And there’s always a bottle of Stolichnaya Elit vodka and a bar of 90 per cent chocolate from Lindt.

Poached egg with hollandaise sauce, avocado, rocket and smoked salmon on a muffin
Poached egg with hollandaise sauce, avocado, rocket and smoked salmon on a muffin | Image: Joanna Tkaczuk/Getty Images/iStockphoto

An indulgence I would never forgo is travelling, at least once a year, to an amazing, inspiring place. We are very opportunistic about where we go, so it can be anything from combining work with a trip somewhere I have always wanted to go – this year it’s Shanghai – to revisiting incredible places. I love cruising through the Greek islands and crossing through the Corinth canal is pretty magical.

The one artist whose work I would collect if I could is Tracey Emin – but there’s a specific piece I’d like: one of her large-scale embroideries. I went to see her at her studio when one of these was being worked on, and the combination of crafting and art is so powerful.

Livadi Beach on the Greek island of Patmos
Livadi Beach on the Greek island of Patmos | Image: Alamy

The last item of clothing I added to my wardrobe was a crinkle denim trouser suit from my summer collection. It’s a new and refreshing way to wear denim, and I love the fabric, which we have specially developed at one of the mills we work with in Italy. Denim Echo trousers, £795, and blazer, £895; 18 Albemarle Street, London W1 (020-3691 2982; amandawakeley.com).

The beauty staples I’m never without are Dr Sebagh Serum Repair, which is really light; Trish McEvoy Even Skin Water Foundation, a new discovery – it feels like you are wearing nothing on your skin, which I really like; YSL Opium – I love the spicy fragrance and I don’t feel dressed without a spritz of it; and Dior’s DiorShow Black Out mascara, which goes on really well. I’m pretty low-maintenance but a good mascara is a must. DiorShow Black Out mascara, £25.50; dior.com. Dr Sebagh Serum Repair, £69 for 20ml; drsebagh.com. Trish McEvoy Even Skin Water Foundation, £55; selfridges.com. YSL Opium, £44 for 30ml EDT; yslbeauty.co.uk.

From left: Dr Sebagh Serum Repair, £69 for 20ml. YSL Opium, £44 for 30ml EDT. DiorShow Black Out mascara, £25.50. Trish McEvoy Even Skin Water Foundation, £55
From left: Dr Sebagh Serum Repair, £69 for 20ml. YSL Opium, £44 for 30ml EDT. DiorShow Black Out mascara, £25.50. Trish McEvoy Even Skin Water Foundation, £55 | Image: Sebastian Boettcher

If I didn’t live in London, I really can’t imagine living anywhere else. It has such an inspiring mix of culture, restaurants, creativity. Perhaps at another point in life I can imagine living in a village somewhere, or spending a year in Venice, but London really is the global capital.

If I weren’t doing what I do, I would be a sculptor. I really like the idea of getting back to using my hands and working with beautiful raw materials.

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