Martha Ward; editor, stylist and antique magpie. Discover her go-to
London designers, her treasure hunting tactics and how she kept her
cool in front of VogueTV's cameras.
As a fashion stylist; a contributing editor for Harper's
Bazaar and Editor at large for Town and Country, you've worked with
a loyal and diverse range of A-listers and brands. Tell us about
the most memorable moment in your career to date
I think there
are too many standout moments to name just one but the joys of my
job, for me, is the diversity and I think that being freelance
enhances that. I remember rushing from an editorial shoot in a cold
and windy Camber Sands to interview Karl Lagerfeld for Vogue.com
and then onto a red carpet to fix an actress in her dress and I
think the eclectic combination of jobs at any one time is the most
standout aspect of all and I am continually excited by
You are known as a 'magpie' for all things antique and
vintage. Where are your go-to places in London to find hidden
I am always on
a quest for a gem, be it an item of clothing, a piece of jewellery,
or something for my home, so life is one long treasure hunt. If I
pass by Gray's or Alfie's I can't not go in for a scour and I will
never ever leave Portobello Market on a Friday emptyhanded. The
antiques and vintage fairs I will always visit too (Hammersmith is
a good one) and all around Brick Lane and Spitalfields are fabulous
vintage shops and fairs. It's a country-wide adventure and not just
London and the key is to go to as many as you can.
Lunchtime at the Cross Keys in Chelsea, London.
Everyday diamonds styled with the new Baja Deco ID Bracelet,
launching July 2017.
Who are your favourite London based designers and
I will forever
love Erdem and Emilia Wickstead for their exquisite fabrics and
cut/style of dress. Huishan Zhang is another favourite who I have
known from the very start and he brings great joy to every fashion
week. Mother of Pearl is another very special brand, and then I
have a huge desire for all things Burberry - Christopher Bailey's
points of reference are always my inspiration - there are too many
to name! Don't make me choose…
Where do you seek inspiration and creativity in the City
of London? Do you a favourite art gallery or shopping destination?
We have so
many incredible museums and exhibitions in London it's hard to
narrow it down. I love the V&A for their wonderful bookshop,
the RA (Royal Academy of Arts) for their shows and also shop, the
Dulwich Picture Gallery always has glorious exhibitions (Ravilious
and also Vanessa Bell in the last year) but then the spaces alone
are inspiring enough - just think of the British Museum, The
Wallace Collection and Tate Britain. You barely even need to see a
What is the best style advice you have ever
I'm sure I
never received one piece of advice as such, but somewhere from
childhood seeped into my subconscious that you are free to wear
what you choose and what feels right. I've never, ever been a slave
to fashion. Iris Apfel sums it up perfectly for me - "I don't have
any rules because I'd only be breaking them".
Martha Ward captured on the iconic streets of Chelsea.
Martha, self-styled in Signature, Linear Bead and Fiji
You spent a number of years working as the anchorwoman
for Vogue TV, interviewing dozens of fashion sensations and
A-listers. Do you have any tips for keeping your composure in front
of the camera?
thing is to not to feel nervous about who you're talking to as it
comes through and that offsets the whole interview. I always think
of it as more as a conversation that an interview as it immediately
makes it more relaxed. Oddly it came naturally to me, I don't know
why as it wasn't a part of the industry I sought out, it was just
presented to me one day out of nowhere and from there, overnight,
it suddenly became a big part of my career.
What wisdom do you impart to clients on styling
jewellery and accessories?
Don't be too
matchy matchy. And when it comes to jewels, I either keep it super
simple and minimal, or I'll stack lots of bracelets and pile on the
necklaces; Monica Vinader makes that very easy indeed.
You have a very specific style and have never been led
by trends. Do you have a forever-piece of jewellery?
I wear a
selection of gold bangles on each wrist and have done for years.
They never come off. They are from various places but MV stands for
three of them.
Martha stacks and styles diamond pieces with engravable
friendship bracelets for an elegant everyday look.
Do you have a favourite MV piece?
bracelets… no one does personalising like MV does. It's another
level. I have enough pendants and bracelets engraved in either M or
Martha to satisfy all the Marthas in London…. slightly worrying. I
also adore the rings, particularly the Riva Diamond Hoop rings that
are hollow in the middle.
If you could have anything engraved on a Monica Vinader
bracelet what would it be?
MV have the
most amazing catalogue of things to engrave on their bracelets -
animals, flowers, all manner of love and wish tokens, but I always
opt for something not on the list, not because I'm being contrary
but because I suddenly have a desire for something else. I don't
want to list them as they may suddenly be on the list and thus
appear on everyone's wrists and then it's a little less special for