Where would you find the hush team at a party? The kitchen, of course. That’s where the real conversation happens. You get to meet and know all sorts of interesting people, share life stories over a glass of wine and, if you’re lucky, hear a juicy secret or two as well.
So, while we’re missing out on real-life gatherings, we’re bringing them to you instead. Our new series is dedicated to getting to know those most fascinating of party people; the movers and shakers, the doers and makers – from entrepreneurs and athletes to writers and fashionistas.
First up, we’d like to introduce you to Gayle Rinkoff, stylist to the stars. With over two decades of experience in the fashion world, she’s styled top celebrities including Helen Mirren and Tess Daly and her work has appeared everywhere from Vogue to Vanity Fair.
Hi Gayle. So where did your career as a stylist begin?
My first full-time paid job was as fashion assistant at The Daily Mail. Prior to that, I interned at She, Company and Cosmopolitan. I made a lot of tea and spent a lot of my time in the notorious fashion cupboards that every magazine has.
What is your favourite part of your job?
Without a doubt, being on a shoot. I love how you can turn up in the morning with one set of ideas and, by lunchtime, the whole story has changed – and it’s usually for the better. Pulling everyone’s ideas together is what brings out the best in people.
What’s one moment in your career you’ll never forget?
Gosh, there are so many! It has to be receiving the biggest bunch of flowers and a bear hug from Meatloaf (yup!). He apologised for throwing his toys out the pram on set one day. Let’s just say I bore the brunt of it.
What does your dream day off look like?
The sun is shining, the birds are singing and I’m definitely in Es Cucons, Ibiza with a good book and a large G&T. Aside from the current situation, I normally spend my life running around like crazy. Just to stop and be still is a real luxury for me.
What book do you have on the go right now?
I have literally just finished The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne, which I highly recommend, and I’ve started Where The Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. I’m also re-reading The Book of Joy, which is a conversation between The Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu in which they discuss the challenges of living a joyful life.
What would we find on your bedside table?
Apart from my books, a silk eye mask from Ridley London, Intense Night Oil and Pillow Spray by Votary, my daughters’ hair bands from that day and a pair of earrings.
Do you prefer film or TV? And what are you watching?
Definitely TV. My husband and I love a good box set; we have ploughed through them over the last six weeks. Some of our favourites have been Unorthodox, The Morning Show and The Loudest Voice. We’re currently watching Succession and are totally hooked. It’s a grower; the first two episodes are a bit slow but it’s totally worth persevering.
We’re always on the lookout for new recipes to make at home. Any suggestions?
Yes! We are vegan and make a really simple vegan chilli from Deliciously Ella. The whole family can eat it if you go easy on the spice.
2 carrots, grated
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
50g tomato puree
2 x 400g tins black beans
1 x 400g tin red kidney beans
1 jalapeno pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
1 teaspoon chilli flakes (add more if you like it extra spicy)
Brown rice, to serve
Salt and pepper
Place the carrot and garlic into a large saucepan
Add the passata, tomato puree, both the beans, jalapeno pepper and chilli flakes to the saucepan, along with some salt and pepper to taste.
Cook the chilli for about 10 minutes, stirring well until it’s lovely and warm and everything’s nicely mixed together.
Pour the chilli over brown rice and enjoy.
What’s your drink of choice?
Hendrick’s Gin and Tonic
Where’s the first place you will travel to when we can go exploring again?
We had a six-week family adventure of a lifetime planned for all around Indonesia in the summer. We have had to cancel so I am trying to rearrange it for next summer. In the meantime, we think we will go on a road trip in the UK somewhere, if allowed.
Where is your happy place here at home?
It’s actually my mum and dad’s house. I love the memories it evokes, the coziness, the warmth, the smells. It reminds me of a very happy childhood.
If you could invite any women to brunch, who would they be and why?
It’s a big table!
Jennifer Saunders – the one person who never fails to make me laugh
Michelle Obama – I totally loved her biography
Jennifer Lawrence – so I can girl crush over her!
Adele – for the tunes and the cheekiness
Who do you follow for style inspiration?
Arielle Charnas from Something Navy. I pretty much love everything she wears
What are your favourite hush pieces — and how would you style them?
I love the pink Surf City sweatshirt and khaki shorts together. They’re such a great colour combination. Worn with trainers or sandals, cocktail in hand, they’re perfect for when the sun is going down and it gets a bit cooler.
I also absolutely love the Marianne dress – it is so versatile. I’ll wear it now with ankle boots and a biker jacket or a chunky cardigan, and then with sandals and a basket bag in the summer.
What’s your go-to staying-in style?
It’s all about being 100% comfortable when I am at home. Bottoms must have an elasticated waist, because I can’t bear anything digging in. Then, I layer up with a vest and a slouchy sweatshirt. I really feel the cold so layers are key.
If I then have to jump on a Zoom call, I can easily change into a nice shirt or a fancy top. Once the weather warms up, it’s all about dresses. They’re super easy; it’s one item to think about and you are ready to go. If it then gets chilly, you can throw on a cardi or a jumper.
Follow Gayle on Instagram @gaylerinkoff