You live in the countryside but regularly travel in to London. Where are your go-to places in Chelsea?
I have fond memories of weekends from school when we would flock to the Kings Road, but what we actually did when we got there I really can’t remember (or probably share!). It seems so odd now doesn’t it? To just go to a ROAD. I feel The Pheasantry will always hold a dear place in my heart, as will 151 for obvious reasons but now I just love the quiet elegance of Colbert (thank goodness Corbin & King won that site), the charm of Chelsea Green and the secret finds in Sign of the Times, the incredible dill salad dressing at Poule au Pot, the new facelift of Sloane Street’s southern end and the feeling of familiarity and nostalgia Chelsea offers as a whole time and time again. The area never fails to calm me in the face of the hectic throng of London life, which really hits me every time I exit the tube. Leaving London was the best but hardest thing we ever did as a family so Chelsea’s familiarity is particularly rewarding.
What sums up your personal fashion style?
Colourful, casual (largely because it’s practical), yet considered. Now I’ve launched VCHSTYLE I really feel I have to present myself in a certain way. That first impression….it counts so much more now. The Vogue identity will always be there in part but being Ginnie of VCHStyle, it’s a whole new ballgame.
What jewellery do you wear every day and what do you put on for special occasions?
I never take off my wedding band. I rarely remove my engagement ring or eternity band which was a bespoke design after my first baby, Nancy. I am now the proud owner of a Kiki Classic Citrine Ripple ring, that’s taking pride of place next to my signet ring (again, I never take it off) this summer. I also tend to wear a Solange Azagury lip ring or I switch that with a Bulgari marble ring depending on the look I’m trying to put out – one is blue, one is purple (I like colour!). I love jewellery that sparks a conversation. For special occasions I will wear a pair of Ruby drop earrings my mother in law gave to me. They are magic, pure magic and very often I notice people talking to them and not to my face!
What are the golden rules you tell clients, when it comes to choosing jewellery?
Choose pieces you can wear as easily with a white shirt and jeans, or a work suit, as you can with a bikini and kaftan (and sun tan for that matter) – think year-round wearability. Jewellery does not need to be overt, it just has to be chosen because you love it and then you can be sure you will get lots of wear out of it. There is nothing worse than jewellery that just sits in a box. If someone gives you something you don’t like, tell them! There is no rule book anymore – wear Diamonds every day, wear them with jeans or with black tie. Pearls are not ageing. Wear them stacked with less expensive pieces to breathe new life into them, like a vibrant friendship bracelet or a plain gold band you bought in India, or a shell bracelet (we’ve all fallen for them) you might have from a favourite holiday. It’s about trying new ways of styling your old favourites. If in doubt more is more. I think that is one of the greatest approaches to have been born – the stacking trend. Everyone is getting on board with it. BUT sometimes, less is more and usually that is when you have a really bold fashion look going on – keep the jewellery more understated. Those in the know will acknowledge the quality of your jewellery. You don’t always have to shout!
What are your top tips for starting up your own business/consultancy?
One day you are up, the next you feel you want to shut down the whole idea. I love the turbulence but I also loathe it. I just want to get meetings in and projects signed off but remember you are a smaller fish as a consultancy and whilst you can still deliver the quality of a larger company, you do have to shout a little louder to be heard. We are in the midst of a sea change in retail, in creative ways of marketing, in new techniques for talking to the consumer – if your ideas are good, a sensible client should hear you out. A handwritten note still works wonders. But mostly, value yourself and others will value you too. That’s the best tip of all.
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