An Interview with Henrietta

We sat down with the effortlessly chic Henrietta Royle, the creative force behind the brand. Henrietta, known for her eclectic taste and fearless embrace of colour, shared her insider tips and the philosophies behind her iconic looks.

What is your favourite colour?

It changes fairly regularly. Currently, I love violet and turquoise. I used to dislike orange and green, but I have now found shades that are wonderful.

How would you describe your signature style?

My signature style includes sleek colourful trousers, colourful sneakers or low-heeled court shoes, a complementary top, and big colourful jewellery. I appreciate interesting linings in jackets that allow for a contrasting cuff turn-up, adding a relaxed touch to smart attire. My philosophy on jewellery is that it should be seen; if not, why bother?

What's your go-to for relaxing on the weekend?

I opt for trousers with roll-up cuffs, loose long shirts that I can also roll the cuffs up, and a pair of sneakers in one of the many colors I own. I always wear earrings – I feel undressed without them.

What is the most precious item in your wardrobe?

A forest green, full-length double-breasted cashmere coat with a black mink collar and cuffs that I designed for myself. It makes me feel like a Russian princess.

What's your favourite occasion to dress for?

Weddings, because I can wear a hat, and balls because I can wear a slinky dress and I love to dance.

Hat or no hat?

Always hats. There's a hat for everyone and every event. The key is finding the right shape and wearing it at the correct angle.

What's your holiday wardrobe essential?

Cotton dresses, trousers, and blouses, paired with big colorful hats and beautiful scarves, reminiscent of Audrey Hepburn's style. For evenings, patterned cotton or silk peignoirs over a simple white camisole and trousers.

What's the best way to style your dresses or suits?

I prefer the elegance of the '50s and '60s, so slim-heeled shoes and complementary jewelry are my choices. I avoid very high heels as comfort and ease of movement are important. For casual wear, colorful sneakers without thick soles are great.

How do you approach your Zoom call style?

Considering Zoom calls only show the top half of me, I go for rollnecks in winter with big statement costume jewelry from places like Alfies Antique Market or the V&A. In summer, I prefer pretty blouses and statement earrings, always with a splash of colour.

What are some of your wardrobe staples?

I cycle a lot in London, so I have a variety of chic trouser suits, cashmere rollnecks, and colourful long cardigans for winter, and classic cross-fronted silk blouses for summer. For evenings, I rely on dramatic long coats that are forgiving and elegant.

How do you choose clothes for work?

Women's work attire should celebrate femininity and not just mimic men's clothing in dark colors. While block colors can look smart, they can be dull without lively buttons and accessories. Dresses and skirts should be appropriately long for authority, and confidence comes from wearing color and pattern.

What is your number one fashion rule?

Never wear just one colour, especially not only black or white. It looks blocky. Aim for at least two colours, using contrasting jewelry and other accessories to break it up.

Can you describe your look?

My look is colourful, patterned, feminine, practical, yet it also carries a bit of drama.

Who are your style icons?

Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly.

What are your favorite indulgences?

Having my clothes custom-made, getting my hair styled to look fabulous, and having my toes made resplendent by lovely people at my house.

What are your go-to beauty products?

I used to buy expensive beauty products but switched to standard high street brands, which work just as well without anyone noticing the difference. For me, a wonderful scent is crucial; I adore Boucheron for daytime and Clinique Aromatics Elixir for the evening.

Can you tell us about your first design?

It's a black spotted silk chiffon dress with a wavy hem that stops just above the ankle and has a strapless underdress. It's timeless, perfect for weddings and Ascot, and when I realized it would fit one of my models, it became a part of my first collection.


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