Lady Melissa Percy, or Missy as she is known to her friends, grew up in the countryside of Northumberland in the family home of Alnwick castle. The youngest daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland, Missy spent her childhood in the outdoors, After leaving school at the age of 14 to pursue a career in professional tennis, Missy went on to complete a course at Leith’s cookery school, before travelling. It was whilst she was away that Missy decided she wanted to design clothes to be worn by women like her – who loved the outdoors, but found they had nothing fashionable and practical to wear. This was when she came up with the concept of her brand Mistamina.
We caught up with Missy for the latest in our ‘My London’ series.
It would have to be Chelsea, as my mum has a flat there so we spent a lot of time there when we were younger and she’d let us visit Harrods and Hamleys . My brothers now live there as well as a lot of my friends, so it is where I tend to base myself when I stay in London. I’m a real foodie, so I love the range of restaurants in the Chelsea area.
Favourite place for brunch:
I’m a real fan of Colbert in Sloane Square. I love the interior features and the classic French food. I always order the Eggs Benedict with a side of crispy streaky bacon!
Best coffee in London:
I don’t tend to drink coffee, so I’m afraid I’m not best placed to advise here! I do love the The Wolseley for Afternoon Tea however, it’s in a great location next to the Ritz and they do a really great pastrami sandwich as part of the afternoon tea, there’s a nice buzzy ambience.
Favourite gallery or museum:
My favourite museum to spend an afternoon is the Natural History Museum, it always has been! When it comes to Galleries I adore the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibitions, so I try to find that as I am really interested in deep-sea aquatic animals – sharks are my favourite!
Tell us a secret:
I have a sunglasses obsession, I must own around 50 pairs of sunglasses – my current favourites are a pair I picked up from Oliver Peoples which I love.
Favourite place to shop:
My favourite shops to visit in London are Rag & Bone and Zadig & Voltaire, as well as Maje – it helps that these are all located close to each other on Sloane Square which makes for a quick and painless shopping experience! I like to be efficient when shopping if I can by just running in and out of the shop!
Favourite place to find inspiration:
I find being by the sea can be a great place to think as it is so calm and tranquil. Equally being in the mountains amongst the trees, I suppose anywhere in the countryside where there is lots of space can be really inspiring. I tend to find a lot of my inspiration when I am fishing, either on the North Tyne up in Northumberland or salmon fishing on one of the big rivers.
Best London destination for a date:
My choice would be Min Jiang as it’s my favourite restaurant – it is situated at the top of the Royal Garden hotel, it is a wonderful, authentic Chinese…. and done soo right! Their signature dish is the legendary Beijing Duck which is cooked to perfection in a wood-fired oven. I would recommend pre-ordering the duck for an unforgettable experience, enhanced by the view over the London skyline.
Definitely Hyde Park, when I’m in London it’s where I go to run as it’s like a little bit of countryside in the city.
Favourite food market:
This is such a hard question, I really like fresh fish so I would probably have to say Billingsgate market. Otherwise, on Saturday mornings and a bit closer to home there is the Pimlico farmers market on Ebury Street.
Your sanctuary in the city:
It would have to be the rooftop of my old flat in Chelsea, for me it was the perfect bit of space in the city. You had total privacy and plenty of space across the rooftops and above the city, it almost felt like a little bit of the countryside in London and the views of the sky were just perfect.
What inspires you?
Views and being outdoors, I could watch water forever as it gives me time to think. I draw a lot of inspiration from the countryside, being in the rolling hills or where there is a lot of open space around me really helps me to be creative. It helps that my label Mistamina is designed for outdoorsy girls, as this is where I draw most of my inspiration from.
This season I’m loving:
Jumpsuits! I recently wore an Emelia Wickstead baby blue jumpsuit to the Royal Wedding which I absolutely loved, they can be really glamorous and a modern take on a traditional dress.