Elizabeth Scarlett, London designer and founder of her eponymous textiles and accessories label, is my ‘Woman of Substance’ for May. Elizabeth Scarlett creates luxurious homeware inspired by soft lighting, tranquil colour palettes, and the gorgeous South of France. Relaxed canvas accessories feature fun, summer-ready embroidery, making their clutches, pouches and bucket bags a must-have for your impending holidays. Elizabeth lives in West Hampstead with her fiancé Alex. She and I met for lunch at the AllBright Club in London’s Mayfair.

Elizabeth, congratulations on your fabulous brand. Do tell us how it all began.

Thank you very much! Since I was a little girl I have always loved painting and drawing, particularly drawing pictures of animals and nature. I’d always dreamed of being a designer when I grew up. When I was 24 I moved in with my boyfriend and he had a very entrepreneurial career at the time, I felt very unfulfilled with where my career was going. I knew so strongly that I wanted to be a designer, to make beautiful textiles, the softest bedding and use my handpainted illustrations to embroider onto products so people can have the perfect travel pouch when they go on holiday. My signature designs are pineapples, palm trees and jungle leaves which evoke this feeling of exotic travel and wanderlust. So I just set my mind to it and put everything into developing these items and started working with worldwide stockists such as ASOS to spread my designs far and wide. We now sell everywhere from France, to Bali, to Australia, and my hometown London where I design all of the products in my studio. It’s been an amazing journey and this platform has enabled me to live my dreams and turn my passion into a career.

Mindfulness plays a key role in your brand. Is mindfulness central to your personal world as well?

Elizabeth Scarlett has always been about welcoming you in to a softer, more colourful world. To me this means slowing down and being more mindful, noticing the details and relishing the remarkable ride that is life! There is so much sweetness in every day moments that can go unnoticed – fields full of flowers, starry skies, animals with intricate markings, seas bursting with colour, movement and light, the energy of a sunset – I could go on and on. I find so much joy in taking time to notice these things, so drawing and painting them takes me to an even more mindful place. I hope this feeling is translated through my products and everything the brand stands for. Now, more than ever, with so many distractions in our tech-filled lives, it couldn’t be more important to stay connected to yourself, breathe and be present and a bit more mindful. Things have certainly got a lot busier for me, so I try to practise this every day, whether it’s pouring myself a soothing cup of tea and sipping it slowly, taking a moment for reflection and breathing down from 20 -1, or better yet fitting in a yoga or meditation class at my local Triyoga center in Camden.

You have a strong aesthetic - not just for your collection but also for your website and Instagram feed. Do tell us more about how you created such an engaging feel for your brand.

I’ve always had a strong vision of what Elizabeth Scarlett should look like. I work with people who really understand me and what I’m about, so I keep it all quite personal. I work with my best friends who also happen to be incredibly talented, Harley shoots all of my lookbooks and Sabrina helps me style shoots and events. I hope what brings it all together is the simplicity of the designs and the aim to inspire a more light hearted, playful yet authentic world. I aim for ES to be approachable and down to earth, so I speak to my audience like I would speak to a friend and I share what I think my friends would like and find interesting.

We love your embroidery work – what inspired you to include this technique for your pieces?

Way back when, I experimented with printing my designs but the moment I used embroidery for a sample, it brought them to life in a completely different way. I love how the threads come together like a painting would, with each of the different colours building the design and the glimmer of a golden stitch catching your eye.

London is fundamental to your brand, just as it is for ours. What makes our capital city so special for you and how do you feel it adds to your brand?

I’ve travelled a lot and there is nowhere like London. I love that it is a multi-cultural melting pot full of imaginative creatives and wordly explorers. London makes me feel like anything is possible and that every day a special moment can happen, whether it’s sharing a smile with someone on the tube, strolling down a busy street just at the moment the sunshine breaks from the cloud or being able to get any type of cuisine at any time in the day! The architecture and interiors are unparralleled – there are so many beautiful restaurants, quirky shops, colourfully-painted houses and intricate gardens. I feel it adds to my brand by making me feel so inspired and giving me a desire to seize the day!

You are a great fan of Winser London. Do share what are your favourite pieces for the Summer and how will you wear them?

Winser is perfect for me as a young business woman. It makes me feel classic, comfortable and confident. My go-to outfit for Summer would be the ivory V-Neck Top along with the Milano white cotton pencil skirt – perfect for feeling light, airy and smart in a busy London own. You can’t beat a tailored white blazer so I’ll be throwing a Lauren Boyfriend Blazer to keep me warm in the Spring breeze. I also love a good dress, so I’ll be wearing this blue Lace Dress to take me from day to night.