MY WORLD: CLAIRE THOMSON-JONVILLE
ELLE EXPLORES the LIFE, STYLE and MAISON of CREATIVE CONSULTANT CLAIRE THOMSON-JONVILLE
The fashion editor welcomes us into her Parisian home
VERY FEW PARISIANS canclaimtoliveinan actual house. I’ve seen my fair share of apartments and lofts, but never a house with its very own front door. Until now. Claire Thomson-Jonville, the Scottish creative consultant, former editor-in-chief of highglamour cult magazine Self Service, and 37-year-old mother of two, is one such lucky resident. She lives in a charming three-storey maison that she stumbled across on a real-estate website — ‘A house, in the 8th arrondissement!’ she says, still with a trace of disbelief. It sits in a quiet courtyard, by a block of Haussmannian apartments not far from the Champs-Élysées.
When we meet, Thomson-Jonville has been here only a few months, but she’s nicely settled in. The floors — a mix of marble and wooden parquet — are warmed by Berber rugs she found in Morocco, while a new, invitingly sprawl-worthy linen sofa from Merci (a boutique in Paris’s cool quarter, Le Marais) lines one side of her living room. Prints by photographers Juergen Teller and David Sims (regulars on the Self Service masthead) hang on the walls, along with iconic imagery by Corrine Day (including the endlessly Instagrammed black-and-white portrait of a young Kate Moss). Her bookshelves are chock-a-block with carefully curated back-issues of magazines, and the surfaces are artfully cluttered with Byredo candles and stacked Hermès boxes. ‘I have an eye for still life,’ Thomson-Jonville says jokingly, in an accent that can only be described as ‘international’ with a slight Scottish lilt. ‘It comes out more when I’m with my parents, but I’ve lived in a lot of places; it really changes depending on where I am,’ she explains.
Almost everything is in its place. But she’s still keeping an eye out for a vintage mirror and coffee table. ‘My to-do list on my phone is literally “buy furniture”, but I wanted to live in the space, and then start buying things,’ she says. ‘But I have no time!’ This year has been one of change for ThomsonJonville: along with the new address, she left her post at Self Service after ten years to break out on her own as a freelance creative consultant. First up is her recent collaboration with Parisian tailoring brand Pallas on a debut collection of 11 looks. She’s currently working on part two, which is to be presented during fashion week in October.
“THIS IS THE HOME of A WOMAN WHO WORKS in FASHION – SURE of HER STYLE FROM
an EARLY AGE”
Though Thomson-Jonville opened the door today wearing denim cut-offs and a white tank top — it’s 3O-plus degrees in Paris, after all — these days, her walk-in wardrobe is dominated by a number of well-cut suits. ‘I’ve been having my suits made at Pallas for a few years now, so we developed the Claire suit: a single-button jacket that you wear open, and a masculine trouser that I always wear with sneakers,’ she says, adding definitively: ‘That’s the look.’
When it comes to trainers, she has more than 3O pairs stashed in her home, and is a devoted fan of Nike (the Off-White x Nike Air Jordan styles are currently on high rotation). There are also monogrammed pouches and the odd fashion blanket spread through the house — one, by Hermès, artfully folded in the bathroom, and another green throw by Céline chucked over the bannister (which is much loved by both her three-yearold daughter Georgia and 18month-old son Étienne).
Make no mistake, this is the home of a woman who works in fashion, and ThomsonJonville has been sure of her style from an early age. ‘I remember my mum taking me to Joseph and I would be very specific: I’d get a pair of black trousers and the same trousers in grey. I did have a boho moment at one point — but we all did, right?’ she laughs.
At weekends, her pace slows significantly and she seeks out family time, heading to the ‘Jardin des Tuileries and Parc Monceau,’ she says, reeling off a list of nearby green spaces. While she rarely has time to cook (‘I just can’t be bothered,’ she says, with refreshing frankness), she clearly relishes down time at home. When she’s not travelling for photo shoots or fashion weeks, she says it’s motherhood that gives her perspective. ‘You can get all dressed up for an event, but if you’re dodging chocolate fingers, you can’t not be grounded,’ she laughs. Or as you could say, a house (no matter how rare) is not a home without someone to make a mess with.
“A SINGLEBUTTON JACKET AND
a MASCULINE TROUSER with SNEAKERS. THAT’S
THE CLASSICS Prints from noted photographers,including Juergen Teller,feature in the house
READING LISTCult style titles including Self Service, the magazine Claire editeduntil 2O18
PACKINGESSENTIALS Forever on the move, Claire always has a holdall ready to go
WARDROBESTAPLES A classic suitis Claire’s signature, such as those she’s designed withPallas PERSONALTOUCH The house isfilled with snapshots of Claire’s twochildren
THEFRAGRANCESTom Ford perfumes and pillar candles double as chicstill-lifes