The artist and author takes us into her colorful world.

September 14, 2017
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leanne shapton
Credit: Kathy Ryan

This talented artist, known for her award-winning illustrated memoir Swimming Studies (Blue Rider Press), spends most days in her Greenwich Village studio, painting the same picture again and again-as many as 50 times. "My process is repetition. It's like doing laps," says the former competitive swimmer. Shapton begins by throwing a smock over her outfit, which is usually a vintage find (Ungaro, Scaasi, 1980s Chloé) mixed with new pieces by designers like Margaret Howell, 45rpm, and Rachel Comey. "My style is the love child of a ménage à trois among Lady Di, Vanessa Bell, and David Hockney," she says. Up next: a collection of stories, and a series of paintings inspired by a quilt her grandmother knitted -- two projects that keep her creativity flowing, stroke by stroke.

SLIP INTO THESE: The Prettiest Floral Pajamas
blouse perfume shoes skirt bag nail polish
Credit: Courtesy of Margaret Howell (skirt); Peter Ardito (others)

Her Syle

Mantra: "If it itches, don't wear it."

Everyday Shoe: "Clogmaster clogs. Kelly green is one of my favorite colors, and the shininess of the patent leather feels a bit fairy-tale." From $155, clogmaster.com.

Work Uniform: "A Tucker silk blouse and a skirt by Margaret Howell, which can take me from working in the studio to outside meetings." Baltic Sea Breeze Classic blouse, $295, tuckernyc.com. Skirt, $785, margarethowell.co.uk.

Trusty Carryall: "I rotate canvas bags that I can throw in the wash, like this flight tote from Wm. J. Mills & Co." $149, millscanvas.com.

Signature Scent: Tom Ford Neroli Portofino Eau de Parfum. $230 for 50 ml, sephora.com.

Must-have Makeup: Morpho Super Staying lip stain, in Zinnia. $27, morphocosmetics.com.

Skin-care M.O.: "It's high-low: Crème de la Mer concentrate and Cetaphil moisturizer."

Nail Polish: Essie's Playing Koi. $9, essie.com.

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tulips pg tips tea leonard cohen cd champagne
Credit: Courtesy of PG Tips (tea); Peter Ardito (others)

Her Home

Design Vibe: "Midcentury Italian and squashy English countryside. And everything is covered in books, drawings, and toys."

Prized Possessions: "A Vico Magistretti coffee table and the Yamaha U1 piano I found, perfectly tuned, on the street last year."

She Collects...: "Books, vintage clothes, and Ellsworth Kelly posters."

Favorite Flower: "Purple tulips from the deli."

Mood Music: "Leonard Cohen's tribute album, I'm Your Man." $8, amazon.com.

Breakfast: "An enormous mug of PG Tips tea and an almond croissant split with my daughter on the school run." Tea, $4.50, target.com.

Dinner-Party Menu: "Lambrusco, a bowl of rippled potato chips, French-onion dip, and delivery from Mario Batali's pizza restaurant Otto." Cleto Chiarli, $17, astorwines.com.

Evening Drink: Ovaltine.

printer and paints
Credit: Peter Ardito

Her Work

Art Supplies: "Kuretake Gansai Tambi watercolors. The pigments all have some white and black in them, so they're not too bright." From $15, dickblick.com.

Tech Gadget: Epson's PictureMate photo printer. $250, epson.com.

Touchstone Book: "Alice Munro's Who Do You Think You Are?, which I first read when I was a teenager."

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