If you could nose inside any handbag, whose would it be? For us there is no question it would have to be French model, designer, author and one-time muse to Karl Lagerfeld, Ines de la Fressange. The brand ambassador to Roger Vivier and woman we would all love to be when we grow up, gives us the scoop on what she never leaves home without.
What does your bag say about you?
A lot! I have a cute, girly keyring but also a very classic, leather wallet in the same bag (schizophrenic). I have so many pencil cases, leather purses (maniac). It also probably says that I am busy. I am very busy.
Should a bag be identifiable?
So long as it looks nice, I don't care about brands, a basket can be beautiful. I love the Hermès Birkin bag but the "Miss Viv" by Roger Vivier is also great. Once I bought the Bottega Veneta leather basket and I still have it. I don't have one favourite - I work in the temple of beautiful bags (Roger Vivier) it is impossible to choose only one. Right now for day I'm carrying one called "Ines" (nice name) which you can wear over the shoulder, and, for evening, I have a satin one with a buckle that can be worn either on the shoulder or as a clutch.
What can you never leave home without?
Perfume. I keep a bottle in my car. I have a portable battery for my phone in monochrome stripes that my daughter gave me from J.Crew and each time I use it people ask where it's from. I also have a colourful phone cable from Colette that is absolutely gorgeous. Great sunglasses, Roger Vivier's fit perfectly and you look immediately like Audrey Hepburn or Jackie Onassis. In Paris I buy my eyeglasses at JLC in Rue du Bac but my own line will be available soon.
Clockwise: Ines bag, £1,450 and sunglasses, £325, Roger Vivier (rogervivier.com); gold purse, £185, Sophie Hulme; eye-glasses, £29.95, A.J Morgan; earphones, £29.99, Happy Plugs; notebook, £13.50, Moleskine; lipstick, £6.99, L'Oreal; phone case, £45, Iphoria; dog lead, £89, Mungo & Maud; bronzer, £34.50, Guerlain; Le Neroli perfume, £130, Roger Vivier; hairbrush, £20, Rock & Ruddle; bronze passport cover, £21.95, Undercover; long wallet, £240, Sophie Hulme; keyring, £40, House of Holland (available at Fenwick Bond Street)
Do you listen to music on the go?
Indeed, right now I'm listening to Jake Bugg, Ayo and Ben l'Oncle Soul.
And what are you reading?
Eckhart Tolle, Pilar Sordo, Patricia Daré: read them and you will write me a postcard to thank me.
What's in your little black book?
I love a boutique in Paris called Soeur in Rue de Bonaparte, it is great for brilliant basics with a charming twist. Marie-Hélène de Taillac on Rue de Tournon for simple, refined real jewellery and Cire Trudon, the world's oldest candle maker. Give your friend L'Admirable, with its irresistible eau de cologne scent and tell her that an It candle is even more mystical than an It bag!
What should no wardrobe be without?
A navy blue sweater.
Why are the French so chic?
Because they fake it and they don't care.
Whose style inspires you?
Marpessa Hennink, an ex-model living in Milan, Jane Birkin and Françoise Hardy, a French singer and actress.
What is your ultimate rule of style?
No more than three colours at any one time.
Complete the sentence: there is more to life than fashion…
There is life!
You can see more of Ines De La Fressange's work at www.inesdelafressange.fr.