Meet Me

IN LONDON WITH MARTHA WARD


Meet 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 that.

You are known as a 'magpie' for all things antique and vintage. Where are your go-to places in London to find hidden gems?

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 why?

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 show.

What is the best style advice you have ever received?

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 collections.

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?

The crucial 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?

My 'Martha' 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 me!

Shop Martha's Look

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