The Aesthete: Whitney Bromberg Hawkings talks more personal taste

The Flowerbx founder and fashion-industry maven concludes her list of likes with the timeless art of Robert Motherwell, Rose Uniacke’s Pimlico Road shop and weekends in the Cotswolds

Whitney Bromberg Hawkings at home in London
Whitney Bromberg Hawkings at home in London | Image: Rick Pushinsky

My style icon is the stylist Elizabeth Saltzman; she nails it every time. She has this American classicism but with a European influence, because she has lived here for 20 years. She pushes things just far enough.

The best book I’ve read in the past year is A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. It’s about the lives of four friends in New York – it was disturbing and harrowing but also compelling and beautifully written. Because my reality is so intense, anything that takes me to another place is wonderful.

Untitled, 2015, by Rudolf Stingel
Untitled, 2015, by Rudolf Stingel | Image: Phillips

A recent “find” is Rose Uniacke’s Pimlico Road shop, the chicest place on the planet. She’s someone whose personal style and interiors I have admired for a long time: her vision is so singular and consistent. The last thing we bought from her was a pair of mother-of-pearl pendant lights for our living room. 76-84 Pimlico Road, London SW1 (020-7730 7050; roseuniacke.com).

The people I rely on for personal grooming and wellbeing are Joel Hamilton, an amazing, handsome osteopath who comes to your house and can release even the stiffest neck or back; Rasa Lileikyte for manicures, pedicures, eyebrows and waxing at home – she’s a genius and always leaves me feeling brand new. For in-salon blowdries, I see Monika at Blo on Cale Street: she’s so quick. Blo by Realhair, Cale Street, London SW3 (020-3021 9050). Joel Hamilton, 07974-831 703; joelhamiltonosteo.com. Rasa Lileikyte, 07830-348 617. 

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If I had to limit my shopping to one neighbourhood in one city, I’d choose Pimlico, because time seems to have stopped still there. I love browsing the treasures at Gordon Watson: he has impeccable taste in furniture, lighting and objects, and there is not one thing in his store I don’t want to buy – plus, he’s a great gossip. I also love Hemisphere gallery, which specialises in 20th-century design from 1940-1980, including pieces by Jouve, Royère and Matégot. And on Saturday mornings I pop into Daylesford for a matcha latte before shopping at Pimlico farmers’ market, which feels a bit like Paris in London – the lack of plastic and packaging is refreshing. Daylesford, 44B Pimlico Road, SW1 (020-7881 8060; daylesford.com). Gordon Watson, 28 Pimlico Road, SW1 (020-7259 0555; gordonwatson.co.uk). Hemisphere Gallery, 97 Lower Sloane Street, SW1 (020-7730 9810; hemispheregallery.com). Pimlico Road Farmers’ Market, Pimlico Road, SW1. 

An object I would never part with is a gold heart-shaped ring that my husband had cast for me to celebrate the birth of our third child. It was designed by him based on a plastic ring my son Snowdon gave to me, and it is signed by him and all three children. It represents all that is most dear to me in the world. 

London facialist Sarah Chapman
London facialist Sarah Chapman

The one artist whose work I would collect if I could is Robert Motherwell. His work is so bold, timeless, powerful and chic. It elevates any environment and always looks contemporary even though his works are decades old. I also recently discovered Rudolf Stingel at the Phillips contemporary sale. His work also has a modernity and timelessness that blows me away. 30 Berkeley Square, London W1 (020-7318 4010; phillips.com).

The last music I downloaded was Dua Lipa’s Be the One. It’s very cool and for me it  represents a modern love song. I’m also hooked on her recent single with Calvin Harris, One Kiss

Brownrigg antiques shop in Tetbury in the Cotswolds
Brownrigg antiques shop in Tetbury in the Cotswolds

In my fridge you’ll always find berries, almond milk and lots of vegetables, often from Andreas on Cale Street, which has the most amazing produce. And I always have vitamin D drops and flax oil. 4 Cale Street, London SW3 (020-7589 5775; andreasveg.co.uk).

My favourite room in my house is my living room in our Georgian home in South Kensington. It has a lot of beautiful things that my husband and I have bought together, loved and collected over the years – things we’ve had since before we had kids, like a stool we bought from the estate of the late interior designer and architect David Collins, because he was a friend of ours.

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An indulgence I would never forgo is facials with Sarah Chapman. They make you look really fresh and young and are just so relaxing – she really takes you to another planet. £165; 259 Pavilion Road, London SW1 (020-7589 9585; sarahchapman.net).

If I didn’t live in London, I would live in the Cotswolds, where we have a weekend house. I love the air, the natural beauty, the sounds and the emptiness of my days that can be spent entirely with my family. I love browsing the antiques shops in Tetbury – Brownrigg is one of my favourites; it’s filled with treasures – and lunches at The Swan a really pretty pub in Southrop with its own kitchen gardens. I do my grocery shopping at The Organic Farm Shop in Cirencester, and on Sundays I decamp to my friend Plum Sykes’ house for a gorgeous lunch with lots of wine and gossip. Brownrigg, 14 Long Street, Tetbury GL8 8AA (01666-500 850; brownrigg-interiors.co.uk). The Organic Farm Shop, Abbey Home Farm, Burford Road, Cirencester GL7 5HF (01285-640 441; theorganicfarmshop.co.uk). The Swan at Southrop, Southrop Manor Estate, GL7 3NU (01367-850 205; thyme.co.uk/dining/the-swan-at-southrop). 

If I weren’t doing what I do, I would be a full-time mum. That is my fantasy. Could I do it? Probably not.

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