Lauren Santo Domingo talks personal taste: Part One

The co-founder and creative director of Moda Operandi, the e-tailer that offers catwalk pieces six months before they hit the shop floor, talks taste

Lauren Santo Domingo
Lauren Santo Domingo | Image: Weston Wells

My personal style signifiers are wearing colour and a high heel by Gianvito Rossi. I like to experiment with fashion and to look both polished and feminine but not overdone or intimidating. My go-to pieces are usually by Proenza Schouler, Oscar de la Renta, Givenchy, Céline, Chanel and Dolce & Gabbana, but I’ll try anything once and love discovering new designers. Every new season always brings a thrill.

The last thing I bought and loved was a Nexus ring by LA jewellery designer Yves Spinelli. I love the shape – five interconnected stacking bands in yellow gold and black rhodium with micro-pavé white, cognac and champagne coloured diamonds – and that I can wear it day and night. It bridges the gap between fine and fashion jewellery. $7,000; www.spinellikilcollin.com.

The 33-volume Pablo Picasso by Christian Zervos, $20,000 at Sotheby’s
The 33-volume Pablo Picasso by Christian Zervos, $20,000 at Sotheby’s

And the thing I’m eyeing next is an exquisite 33-volume collection of books about the work of Pablo Picasso, by Christian Zervos. Recently reissued, they were originally printed between 1932 and 1978 in collaboration with Picasso and contain 16,000 images and drawings. $20,000; zervos.sothebys.com.

A recent “find” is L’Heure Bleue, a luxurious riad hotel in Essaouira, Morocco. Designed by fêted French practice Studio KO, it is in the historic quarter of La Ksour and features beautiful suites, a traditional hammam and a rooftop pool with views of the medina. The service is impeccable and the Moorish influences give it an authentic feel. Rue Ibn Battouta, Essaouira 44100 (+2125-2478 3443; www.heure-bleue.com).

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An indulgence I would never forgo is the weekly fresh flowers I have delivered to my home and office by L Becker. I was introduced to this florist by Annette de la Renta, the ultimate resource for all things elegant, and the stunning arrangements appear to be straight out of Dutch still-life paintings. 217 East 83rd St, New York, NY 10028 (+1212-439 6001; www.lbeckerflowers.com). www.fincapascualete.com.

The last item of clothing I added to my wardrobe was a pair of high-waisted, stretchy skinny jeans by Saint Laurent. They are comfortable yet tailored and flattering at the same time. $575; www.ysl.com.

Santo Domingo’s Spinelli Kilcollin gold, rhodium and diamond ring, $7,000
Santo Domingo’s Spinelli Kilcollin gold, rhodium and diamond ring, $7,000

The artists whose work I would collect if I could are all surrealists. I am drawn especially to de Chirico, Magritte, Ernst and Dalí for their choice of subject matter, painting technique and subversiveness. De Chirico’s The Song of Love is a particular favourite.

The beauty staples I’m never without are Tata Harper’s Beautifying Face Oil and its Rejuvenating Serum, which I use as a moisturiser; I use all-natural beauty products where possible and Tata Harper’s are simply the best. I also like its Volumizing Lip and Cheek Tint – I can’t go without blush – and Chanel’s Inimitable Mascara in Noir. I use many different lipsticks, but currently I love Estée Lauder’s Pure Color Envy in a nude pink shade called Desirable. Chanel Inimitable Mascara, £25; www.chanel.com. Estée Lauder Pure Color Envy lipstick, £24; www.esteelauder.com. Tata Harper Beautifying Face Oil, $48 for 30ml,Rejuvenating Serum, $95 for 30ml, and Volumizing Lip and Cheek Tint, $35; www.tataharperskincare.com.

The courtyard of L’Heure Bleue, Essaouira, Morocco
The courtyard of L’Heure Bleue, Essaouira, Morocco

An object I would never part with is my wedding ring – a simple gold Tiffany band. www.tiffany.com.

The best souvenir I’ve brought home is a delicious Torta cheese from Finca Pascualete in rural Extremadura, southern Spain. This organic, almost liquid cheese is made from sheep’s milk and is perfect for dipping. No matter how much I bring home, it is always devoured immediately.

Santo Domingo’s Tata Harper Beautifying Face Oil, $48 for 30ml, and Rejuvenating Serum, $95 for 30ml
Santo Domingo’s Tata Harper Beautifying Face Oil, $48 for 30ml, and Rejuvenating Serum, $95 for 30ml

The last music I downloaded was How Could You Babe? by Canadian singer/pianist Tobias Jesso Jr. He has a very old-school sound and writes beautiful lyrics. I shared this track, along with Without You and Hollywood, with friends and everyone agreed he could be the next big thing.

My favourite websites are Site Unseen for discovering emerging furniture designers and ceramicists, and Pinterest for wonderful images and fashion finds. www.pinterest.com.www.sightunseen.com.

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Discover the personal style files of Chloé creative directorClare Waight Kellerand creative director of womenswear at Calvin Klein Collection, Francisco Costa.

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