Emilia Wickstead’s To-Do List
Since the launch of her eponymous label in 2008, we’ve come to rely on Emilia Wickstead for precisely tailored, ladylike pieces with a tasteful side of kook. Wickstead’s collections boast a modern grandeur with a super feminine sensibility and flattering shapes.
And with an exclusive eight-piece capsule collection with Matchesfashion.com this season, she’s bringing us the perfect floral sundresses as well as easy, breezy skirts and shirts that we can’t wait to live in all summer long. “I wanted it to be about ‘that’ dress, ‘that’ skirt and ‘that’ knit – the pieces that every woman simply can’t live without,” Wickstead tells us, adding that it’s her first time designing an all-cotton collection. “The cotton keeps each silhouette fresh, cool and modern. With the bright, floral prints, these dresses and skirts are made to have fun in.”
We asked the New Zealand-born, London-based designer what she’s up to this week. See her plans below.
I love exploring the antiques market in Kempton Park for research and for things I don’t need but just have to have. I’m going to look for a desk for my new office in Ladbroke Grove – I want something special and unique. I’m always looking out for beautiful furniture that needs to be lovingly refurbished.
My last purchase was a pair of 30s chairs – small and low with fringing along the bottom to sit in my daughter’s bedroom. I love the atmosphere, getting up early for the best finds, getting ridiculously over excited about my purchases, taking them home and cleaning them all up and finally, showing them off!
Photo by Jamie Orlando Smith, Courtesy of Chiltern Firehouse
I love sitting in a booth or window seat with a grapefruit juice and poached eggs and avocado on toast. The hospitality is always amazing and the food, fresh.
And of course, the girls are dressed in Emilia Wickstead [the hostesses’ uniforms are designed by Wickstead]. I designed these uniforms around the ease of a one-piece outfit but with some twists on each look. There is a coordinating top, skirt and a jumpsuit, always all in the same colour. I wanted each look to have a little touch of unexpected sexiness. So when the girls turn around, you can see the open back on a high-neck, fully fitted jumpsuit. It makes it very cool and playful and fits in with the Chiltern Firehouse atmosphere.
Chiltern Street is filled with great cafes, magazine shops and plenty of cute stores including a brilliant newsagents called Shreeji, which stocks an amazing array of magazines. I often stop by after going to Chiltern Firehouse to pick up a few to take back to the studio.
Now that our offices have moved to Ladbroke Grove, there’s always a perfect excuse to go for coffee at The Electric. I’m going to meet our sponsor there to talk about next season. As my schedule is so busy, I really appreciate having a go-to place.
My wonderful friend Blair is visiting from San Francisco this week. Blair was with me from the beginning of Emilia Wickstead, when the entire operation of our business was run from our store on Cadogan Place.
I am also hoping that we can go to Victoria Miro Gallery in Hoxton to see the Yayoi Kusama exhibition. I’ve heard it is absolutely amazing and it’s so rare that I can find time to visit galleries, which I love to do.
Summer drinks at home
Every year, I throw a summer drinks party at home for my team to thank them. It’s such a fun excuse for everyone to get together in a non-working environment and have some fun. I will come back from work, throw on a colourful dress (out of my jeans and T-shirt from work) and put on a red lip. I will then prepare everything at home – my daughter helps me in the kitchen. And I’ll fill my home with flowers from FLOWERBX – hydrangeas and pink chrysanthemums are my favourites.
Emilia Wickstead's eight-piece capsule collection is available now at Matchesfashion.com.
Interview by Jainnie Cho