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Interview

A Weekend with Mrs. Alice

You are cordially invited to BWB’s afternoon tea with Mrs. Alice, where she has saved you a beautiful place at the table.

You are cordially invited to BWB’s afternoon tea with Mrs. Alice, where she has saved you a beautiful place at the table. Blush pink napkins & placemats, delicate plates with bamboo trim, pink tulip water glasses, tortoise shell cutlery, powder pink candles. The table is set — won’t you have a seat?

Alice Naylor-Leyland is a Swiss-born London gal who loves her table settings more than her piping hot cups of English Breakfast tea. Her first lessons in table decoration came from her own mother, leading her to develop a love for aesthetics and to study fashion at Istituto Marangoni. After designing housewares products with Aerin Lauder, French Sole, Fenwick and Misela, Alice created her own line of chic and elegant table decor. Starting with her signature “Tablescape in a Box,” Alice has been turning mothers and husbands into refined, professional hosts ever since.

Dine with us in style and whimsy as we explore what’s in Alice’s closet, calendar, cookbook, and more.

Friday day-to-night look?

I adore a floral jumpsuit. During the day, I live in jumpsuits with a classic pair of Supergas. Then, I add a lovely raffia wedge for the evening with a little bit more makeup.

Weekend dinner plans and table décor?

A large group of friends and a beautifully dressed table! I really try to decorate my tables seasonally. So, for the summer I would use locally-sourced flowers (I love peonies) and dress the table with complementary colors.

Favorite homemade meal and how you like to set the table for a family menu?

My favorite homemade meal is definitely a pomegranate and feta slow-cooked lamb with mint. It’s so fabulous, and I can make it in advance so that I have time to enjoy an apertif with our guests before dinner.

Saturday rituals?

I really love spending time with the children. For instance, we go on bicycle rides (something we have done a lot more in lockdown!) or bake together.

Favorite places to shop? (in the UK or around the world)

So many… But Emilia Wickstead’s store on Sloane Street in London is my absolute favorite for wonderful fashion. In addition, Smythson is another story on Sloane Street for the best stationery. For something delicious, Sally Clarke Shop in Notting Hill is a fantastic deli & bakery. For beauty, anything that Aerin Lauder does is always fabulous. I’m also finding Love Shack Fancy irresistible at the moment. When I’m abroad, I adore the linen boutiques in Forte dei Marmi. They also have amazing markets twice a week where you can find the most wonderful antiques.

Go-to beauty routine?

I am obsessed with The Cream from Augustinus Bader. It is life changing! I also use the Cosmedix gentle cleanser, as well as the face mask and hyaluronic serum from Dr. Barbara Sturm.

Dream summer destination…

My father’s house on Baker’s Bay in the Bahamas. It’s heaven on earth!

How you stay inspired…

Traveling and looking at old photographs from the 1950s. For example, I particularly love Howell Conant’s images. I also get a lot of inspiration from my mother. I always remember the image of her wearing the most gorgeous Chanel suit at my Christening. For my table decor, I am really inspired by the seasons. I use whatever I can find in my garden and then layer with complementary colors and textures.

Teresa Deely

Teresa Deely is a graduate from Columbia University with majors in English and Creative Writing. She is a freelance writer and marketing assistant working for clients in the wellness, jewelry, creative, and sports industries. She believes that one’s skin is yet another canvas and vehicle for art, and has loved styling her hair and applying makeup from a young age. Spending much of her time in educating youth and leading enrichment programs for children, she is highly motivated in discovering new ways to care for herself and sharing them with others.

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