As a single mum, ex-banker, passionate supporter of the arts - and avid consumer of martinis - Rachel Verghis wears plenty of her hats. But it was her quest for the perfect sundowner that led to the creation of MarGin: a lockdown passion project that's evolved into an expertly crafted, artisinal gin business, which is now partnering with major art institutions and events, including the LAPADA Berkeley Square Fair and Frieze London.

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As an entrepreneur you’ve set up a number of businesses - tell us about your latest venture: MarGin?

I'm an old-school, diehard fan of gin and decided my own sundowner version was needed. Et voila, MarGin was born! A smooth, dry sipping gin, it's a homage to the 'white fiver' - there's no cacophony of botanicals but a high alcohol content to conjure up a new perfect Martini; revive the Gimlet; refresh the G&T.

It was a Covid project, dreamed up at a friend’s distillery in Edinburgh, and much fun was had disappearing up to Scotland during lockdown to “work”.  It was never a commercial endeavour to begin with.

You’re also deeply involved with the world of art; what trends and artists are currently exciting you in this sector?

Actually I have come full circle and fallen deeply in love with painting again. William Brickel, George Rouy, Christopher Hartmann, Danielle Orchard, to name but a few. It has surprised me too, as I was so deeply enthralled in new media, generative art, NFT art...

What inspires you both in work and in your personal life?

This made me think long and hard. Essentially why do I do the things I do? At the root of it is pleasure, I suppose. Creating gives me joy. Collecting, listening, watching others, watching my son - all of it inspires me. Not one thing I could put my finger on… but a really good question to reflect on!

What’s next for you?

I've been working on an idea for a private museum in Iceland, with a residency programme, library and school. I have long been associated with this beautiful, awe-inspiring place after first landing on its shores in 1999. There have been a lot of recent setbacks, and I'm not quite sure if I will ever get this finished, but I'm still dreaming…

If you weren't a collector and entrepreneur, you'd be...

An architect or industrial designer. I dream of making small huts and big chairs.

Other than a phone and keys, what's the one item you always have on you?

Louis, my son, found a small wooden square and carved out “Louis Square”. That. I carry it everywhere.

How do you relax when you're not working?

I don't think I am ever not working. Or my relaxing is thinking about working. I daydream a lot. About work…

What's your favourite-ever piece of art [either that you own or wished you owned!]?

This is never a fair question to ask a collector. So I defer to my first ever piece: Normal distraction from good conversation part 3 by the photographer Vanilla Netto. Cherished.

I also collect jewellery and design furniture – so perhaps the one thing I covet is the Chiharu Shiota necklace at Elisabetta Cipriani Gallery.

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