In Conversation With: Lady Violet Manners


What are you working on at the moment?

At the moment I am busy with a few exciting things. I set up my own consultancy earlier this year (my website is still in progress) and have two amazing clients; Perowne International and 5 Hertford Street. I’m especially excited to be working on the re-launch of The Bloomsbury’s beautiful new bar at the heart of the exquisitely refurbished hotel with Perowne. It’s an iconic hotel in the heart of the West End and has been re-created by the pre-eminent Martin Brudnizki Design Studio. The Coral Room (new bar) showcases 36 specially commissioned artworks by the very in-demand young British illustrator Luke Edward Hall – inspired by The Bloomsbury area and the work of the Hotel’s famous architect, Sir Edwin Lutyens. I love this project because The Doyle Collection (who own The Kensington and The Marylebone alongside the Bloomsbury) are exceptional at re-imaging how to bring to life their properties iconic architectural history, live and soul in a fun and contemporary way. I think because of where I grew up, I always veer towards these kinds of projects.

How would you describe your style?

I’m a real mix. I think that’s the best way to describe my style. I’m the ultimate dress for how you feel kind of character. For work I love wearing tailored two-piece matching suits, with a beautiful tailored Max Mara jacket layered over the top. For outside of work I’m always inspired by interpreted Parisian style. So, a great pair of jeans, cashmere sweater, t-shirt and Converse with an Isabel Marant slouchy jacket is always my fail safe combo.

What are your favourite current winter looks that you can share with us?

I love winter for layering. Right now, I am loving wearing two-piece suits. They are the perfect outfit for taking me from the office to cocktails and dinner. Paired with a crisp shirt during the day and smart trainers and styling them up in the evening with a loose t-shirt, great jewelry, bold lip and heels.  

Best establishment for a night out in London?

5 Hertford Street any day of the week.

How is it best to politely avoid someone at a party?

Smile and say hi then cast your eyes towards someone else and make a b-line for them (even if that someone else is imaginary!)

How would your sisters describe you?

Bossy, driven, loving, live and soul of a party, kind, family orientated and worldly.

The country or the city?

Both. Ideally in equal measure. My mother always says going back to the countryside calms and grounds me after hectic weeks in London, I try more and more to get up home to Belvoir or our new place in Derbyshire as often as I possibly can.

What are you currently reading?

I often have more than one book on the go which probably explains why it takes me a while to finish them. Currently I am reading How Women Entrepreneurs Can Think Bigger, Build Sustainable Businesses and Change the World by Stephanie Breedlove. I picked this up in the airport in LA and the other book I am juggling is Resolution, my father’s book which came out May this year. I have never read a book about any of our family history (although there are lots) I’ve learnt the bits I know by listening in on tours of the castle over the years or stories from my great aunts, uncles and grandparents; it’s so incredible to read my father’s book which focuses on our families 18th Century naval ‘hero’ Captain Lord Robert Manners.

Best thing you’ve heard in a London taxi?

I love our black cabs. I think they are an integral part of London and Britain as a whole. The rest of the world identifies London with our black cabs. I always love hearing how long they have been a black cab driver – the longest I remember someone telling me was 37 years!

Any tips for getting through the Christmas party season?

My rule during the Christmas season is to keep Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday alcohol free no matter what plans you have and you’ll survive.


Interviewed by Annette Kellow