Cerys Matthews: ‘I wear my driving gloves to go round the corner to the shops’

<span>Photograph: Tim P Whitby/Getty Images</span>
Photograph: Tim P Whitby/Getty Images

This is the kind of outfit that I feel comfortable in, and comfort is up there for me. I’m not big into dresses and skirts, but I love a good suit. This was taken at the Asian awards a few years ago – I love saris and all the extraordinary silks in traditional clothes, but I think that, for my heritage, a suit and a panama hat suits me just fine. When it comes to clothes, I think it’s important to feel like yourself, more than anything. I have become a little bit attached to hats, but I don’t have that many. I had always been a big fan of Clint Eastwood, the suffragettes and Bob Dylan, and they all seem to have hats on in their best photos, so I just started wearing them, too. I find it cuts corners in terms of not having to worry too much about your hair. You don’t even have to worry too much about your outfit if you have a good hat on.

I’m also wearing my driving gloves; they are ace. I’ve worn them so often I need to replace them. There are so many iconic films where actors wear driving gloves – I put them on just to drive round the corner to the shops and it makes it feel a bit more adventurous and exciting. The pearls were just next to the door, so I put them on, too.

In the 90s, I used to wear clothes just for the ironic fun of it. It was often the most bizarre concoctions I could find. I had a gold cowboy hat and massive flares, with “Tommy” written down one leg and “Hilfiger” down the other, in three different colours, red white and blue. I’d wear it with a tiny silk top. My favourite quote is from Vivienne Westwood: “When in doubt, overdress.”

At the time, the fashion was for understated looks, just one or two colours or cargo trousers, but I just liked to throw it all on: kaftans, turbans, just to have fun with the clothes, rather than wear anything sleek or serious. As a result, I do look back at loads of photos and go: “Oh my God, what in the heavens was I thinking?”

Cerys Matthews is the co-founder of the Good Life Experience, 12-15 September 2019. Her book, Where the Wild Cooks Go is out now