Moss in 2005
|Born||(1974-01-16) 16 January 1974
Croydon, Surrey, England
|Occupation||Supermodel, fashion designer|
|Spouse(s)||Jamie Hince (m. 2011)|
|Height||5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)|
|Hair colour||Blonde (dyed)|
Kate Moss (born 16 January 1974) is an English model. Born in Croydon, Surrey, she was discovered in 1988 at age 14 by Sarah Doukas, founder of Storm Model Management, at JFK Airport in New York City.
Arriving at the end of the “supermodel era”, Moss rose to fame in the early 1990s as part of the heroin chic fashion trend. Her collaborations with Calvin Klein brought her to fashion icon status. She is known for her waifish figure, and role in size zero fashion. She received an award at the 2013 British Fashion Awards to acknowledge her contribution to fashion over 25 years. Moss is also a contributing fashion editor for British Vogue.
Moss has had her own clothing range and has been involved in musical projects. She has won accolades for modelling. In 2007, TIME named her one of the world’s 100 most influential people. She has inspired cultural depictions including a £1.5m ($2.8m) 18 carat gold statue of her, sculpted in 2008 for a British Museum exhibition.
She received media scrutiny for her party lifestyle and drug use. Drug allegations beginning in late 2005 led to her being dropped from fashion campaigns. She was cleared of charges and resumed modelling. In 2012, she came second on the Forbes top-earning models list, with estimated earnings of $9.2 million in one year.
Moss was born in Croydon, Greater London, the daughter of Linda Rosina (Shepherd), a barmaid, and Peter Edward Moss, an airline employee, and grew up in the Addiscombe area of the borough. She has a younger brother, Nick, and a half-sister named Lottie (Charlotte). Moss’s parents divorced when she was 13. She attended Ridgeway Primary School and Riddlesdown Collegiate, formerly known as Riddlesdown High School, in Purley.
Beginnings and heroin chic
Moss was discovered in 1988 at 14 by Sarah Doukas, founder of Storm Model Management, at JFK Airport in New York, after a holiday in the Bahamas. Corinne Day shot black-and-white photographs of her, styled by Melanie Ward, for The Face when she was 16, in a shoot titled “The 3rd Summer of Love”. Day discovered Moss when she was a young and unknown and described the pictures as ‘dirty realism’ or ‘grunge’. Moss then featured in the Levi’s campaign ‘Levis for Girls’, with great success, set up by The Design Corporation and again shot by Corinne Day. A further shoot followed for The Face, by Tony Briggs, entitled “Haute Coiffure”, Moss went on to become the “anti-supermodel” of the 1990s in contrast to the models of the moment, such as Cindy Crawford, Elle Macpherson, Claudia Schiffer and Naomi Campbell, who were known for curvaceous and tall figures.
Moss featured in the fashion look heroin chic in 1996 (which prompted speculation over her weight) with a campaign for Calvin Klein. Bill Clinton spoke out against the trend. Moss said, “It was just the time. It was a swing from more buxom girls like Cindy Crawford and people were shocked to see what they called a ‘waif’. What can you say? How many times can you say ‘I’m not anorexic‘?”
On 20 September 2005, the Swedish fashion retailer H&M dropped her from its campaign of autumn clothes designed by Stella McCartney because of drug allegations. The contract was reportedly worth £4 million a year. A day later, Chanel said it would not renew its contract with Moss, which was to expire that October, although its decision had nothing to do with the drug scandal. Burberry dropped Moss’s campaign with them. Moss apologised, though stopped short of admitting drug use.
Moss appeared in ad campaigns for Dior. She was on the cover of the November 2005 W and also inside in a multi-page fashion shoot. She was defended by designer Alexander McQueen, who, during his walk-out after a fashion show, wore a T-shirt saying “We love you Kate”. Artist Stella Vine also supported Moss, and paintings by Vine, painted during the scandal, were exhibited and reproduced in the press.
On 5 January 2006, the London Metropolitan Police asked Moss to return from the U.S. to Britain to answer questions about the September 2005 cocaine scandal. On 16 June 2006, British police dropped the charges for lack of evidence. Ultimately, Moss was cleared of all charges and resumed her modelling career. In 2015 Moss was escorted off an Easyjet flight by police after she became disruptive.
Moss has been featured in ad campaigns with Chanel, Balenciaga, Burberry, Stuart Weitzman, Versace, Rag and Bone, Alexander Wang, David Yurman, Givenchy, Roberto Cavalli, Kerastase, Isabel Marant, Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Calvin Klein, Alexander McQueen, Equipment, Rimmel, and Bulgari. She has been on the cover and in fashion spreads for most magazines including UK, US, and French Vogue (as well as other international versions of Vogue), Another Man, Harper’s Bazaar, Vanity Fair, the Face, and W. She has been on the cover of British Vogue 30 times, shot the inaugural covers for both Russian Vogue with Amber Valletta and Japanese Vogue, in addition to dozens of other international Vogue covers.
Moss has been on the cover of 17 issues of W, including one with nine different covers that featured her. W named Moss its muse (September 2003 issue). Moss has also featured on the inaugural covers of Numéro, Numéro Tokyo and Spanish L’Officiel. She has worked extensively with photographers such as Mario Testino, Mario Sorrenti, Steven Klein, Juergen Teller, Steven Meisel and Peter Lindbergh, and won the Vogue/CFDA award from the Fashion Designers of America in July 2005 as Fashion Inspiration. April 2005 saw the launch of a Rimmel London mascara TV ad featuring leather-clad Moss motorcycling through London to the rock song “Another Cold Beer” by Steven Crayn.
Twelve months after her cocaine scandal, Moss signed 18 contracts for autumn-winter 2006 including Rimmel, Agent Provocateur, Virgin Mobile, Calvin Klein and Burberry. Moss designed a collection, with Katy England, for Topshop. Moss launched a fragrance and body lotion range bearing her name in association with Coty in 2007. In November 2006, Moss was model of the year at the British Fashion Awards, the top accolade in British fashion, but the award stirred fresh controversy.
On 1 May 2007, clothes designed by Moss for Topshop were launched in the chain’s 225 UK stores. A Moss “countdown to launch” board filled a window of the company’s Oxford Street store and on 30 April Moss launched the clothing there, briefly appearing in the window modelling a red dress from the collection just before the shop opened. Topshop reportedly paid Moss £3 million. The 50 designs included clothes, bags, shoes and belts, prices from £12 for a vest top to £150 for a cropped leather jacket. Clothes included skinny jeans, one-shoulder minidresses and T-shirts with K woven into the design. In a collaboration with Coty, Moss has released four fragrances.
In early 2010, she designed handbags for Longchamp. In 2012, Moss modelled for the spring-summer collection for Supreme. Moss has been the face of the Mango since autumn 2011. In November 2012, Australian model Miranda Kerr replaced Moss for spring/summer 2013.
In January 2012, having seen Dutch illusionist Hans Klok on the BBC’s The One Show, Moss recommended Stella McCartney book him for London Fashion Week the following month. It was planned that Moss, a magic fan, would be Klok’s assistant, and she rehearsed three illusions, a levitation, a sawing in half and a guillotine illusion. However, she dropped out with temporary paralysis of her right arm due to a trapped nerve, and her place was taken by Alexa Chung.
Also in 2012, Moss appeared in the video of George Michael‘s White Light, inspired by his pneumonia. Moss performed with Naomi Campbell in the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games on 12 August 2012.
Moss posed nude for the 60th-anniversary issue of Playboy in December 2013. That same month, she received a Special Recognition award at the British Fashion Awards to acknowledge her contribution to fashion during her 25-year career.
At the 2014 Brit Awards in February, Moss collected David Bowie‘s Brit Award for Best British Male, while wearing a one-piece printed “woodland creatures” costume, as worn originally by Bowie. On 30 April 2014, Moss’s second collection for Topshop was unveiled. Her first collection with Topshop was a success resulting in a long-lasting relationship with the brand. The new collection is inspired by Moss’s own wardrobe and is being sold in 40 countries.
Moss was voted 9th of Maxim‘s “50 Sexiest Women of 1999” and 22nd in FHM‘s “100 Sexiest Women of 1995“. Arena named her sexiest woman in its 150th issue. She was on the November 1999 Millennium cover of American Vogue as one of the “Modern Muses”. In March 2007, Moss won the Sexiest Woman NME Award. In 2012 she was included on MODELS.com’s ‘The Supers’ list.
Moss has been the subject of portraits by artists such as Lucian Freud and Chuck Close. In 2005, a painting of Moss by Freud sold for £3.93 million at Christie’s. Close has taken daguerreotypes of Moss, which he has also translated into Jacquard tapestry. In October 2010, she appeared on the cover of Bryan Ferry‘s album Olympia. The National Portrait Gallery, London maintains seven portraits of Moss among its collections, shot by photographers including Mario Testino, Corinne Day and Sølve Sundsbø.
A £1.5m ($2.8m) 18 carat gold statue of Moss in 2008 was part of a British Museum exhibition. Entitled Siren, the 50 kg (110 lb) hollow statue was made by Marc Quinn, who described Moss as “the ideal beauty of the moment”. The statue is said to be the largest gold statue to be created since the era of Ancient Egypt. Quinn had previously unveiled a painted-bronze, life-size sculpture of Moss in a contorted yoga pose, titled Sphinx.
The cello rock group Rasputina had a song entitled “Kate Moss” on their 1996 album Thanks for the Ether. It imagines Moss attempting to pontificate an intellectual platform in the context of epistemology. She has earned awards for style, including the Council of Fashion Designers of America‘s fashion influence award and a place on the Vanity Fair international best-dressed list. In the early part of the 21st century, she was, together with actress Sienna Miller, one of the main proponents of boho-chic. She appeared on the cover of Vanity Fair‘s September 2006 style issue. In recent years, she has popularised denim cutoff shorts, Ugg boots, ballet flats, Vivienne Westwood Pirate Boots, skinny jeans, waistcoat, Alexander McQueen‘s skull scarf, Louis Vuitton‘s Sprouse Leopard Cashmere Scarf, and the Balenciaga handbag.
In 2008, Moss was added to PETA‘s ‘Worst-Dressed’ Celebrities of 2008′ because of her frequent use of fur. In 2012, Moss was among the British cultural icons selected by artist Sir Peter Blake to appear in a new version of his most famous artwork – the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover – to celebrate the British cultural figures of his life that he most admires. In 2013, the Belgian pop singer Stromae wrote Kate Moss into the lyrics of the song “Tous les mêmes,” singing “il n’y a que Kate Moss qui est éternelle,” translating into English as, “there’s only Kate Moss who is eternal.”
Moss appeared on Oasis singles “Don’t Go Away” (1998) and “Fade Away” (1994), and on the Be Here Now album (1997), playing tambourine, Johnny Depp playing a guitar. She has appeared in music videos such as “Kowalski” by Primal Scream, “I Just Don’t Know What to Do with Myself” by the White Stripes, “Something About the Way You Look Tonight” by Elton John, “Sex with Strangers” by Marianne Faithfull, “Love Don’t Bother Me” by Stage Dolls, “Delia’s Gone” and “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” by Johnny Cash, and “Queenie Eye” by Paul McCartney.
She has also provided vocals for songs by Primal Scream (the 2003 version of “Some Velvet Morning“), Babyshambles (“La Belle et la Bête”) and the Lemonheads (“You’re a Dirty Robot”). Prior to breaking up with Pete Doherty, Moss co-wrote four songs on Babyshambles’ second album Shotter’s Nation—”You Talk“, “French Dog Blues”, “Baddie’s Boogie”, and “Deft Left Hand”. In 1999, Moss played a non-musical role in the British screen comedy Blackadder: Back & Forth, appearing both as Maid Marian and as a fictional Queen of England “who looks good naked”. Director and writer Richard Curtis said in the making of the video, that they wanted “the best looking woman in England” to play the role. In 2014, she made an acting cameo as herself in The Boy in the Dress.
Moss has put her name to four perfume lines. Her first one, the original, is named “Kate Moss”. Other perfumes include Vintage Muse, Lila Belle and Love Blossoms.
Moss supported War Child. She also designed a charm in a necklace for Wallis in 2007 in aid of Cancer Research UK and said “I am happy to give my support to help fund crucial research, as so many lives are affected by this terrible disease.”
She has also helped to launch the SamandRuby charity in March 2006. The charity was started to provide funding for the education and shelter of Thai children. The SamandRuby organisation is named after a friend of Moss’s, Samantha Archer Fayet, and her 6-month-old daughter Ruby Rose who were killed by the tsunami while visiting Thailand.
Moss also supports the Elton John AIDS Foundation, the Hoping Foundation, the Lucie Blackman Trust, Make Poverty History, Comic Relief and Homes of Hope. On 22 November 2006, Moss recorded an appearance in a Little Britain sketch for Comic Relief at the Hammersmith Apollo as a character called Katie Pollard, sister of Vicky Pollard played by Matt Lucas.
Moss had a relationship with Libertines member Pete Doherty, first meeting him at her 31st birthday party in January 2005. On 11 April 2007, Doherty announced Moss as his fiancée during one of his concerts in London, at which Moss also performed. In July 2007, Moss and Doherty split.
Moss married Jamie Hince, guitarist of The Kills, on 1 July 2011 at St Peter’s Church, Southrop in Gloucestershire; she wore a dress by John Galliano. Moss and Hince split in 2015 and settled their divorce out of court in 2016. She has since dated German aristocrat and photographer Count Nikolai von Bismarck
According to Forbes, her 2004–2005 earnings were $5 million and her 2005–2006 earnings were $8 million. In 2007, with estimated earnings of $9 million, Forbes magazine named her second on the list of the World’s 15 top-earning models list, behind Gisele Bündchen. She made her first appearance in the British women’s Sunday Times Rich List in 2007, where she was estimated to be worth £45 million. She ranked as the 99th richest woman in Britain. In the 2009 Rich List, she was ranked as the 1,348th richest person in the UK, with a net worth of £40 million.
- Buttolph, Angela (2008). Kate Moss: Style. London: Century. ISBN 1-84605-429-X.
- Collins, Laura (2008). Kate Moss: The Complete Picture. London: Sidgwick & Jackson Ltd. ISBN 0-283-07063-3.
- Fox, James (December 2012). “The riddle of Kate Moss”. Cover Story. Vanity Fair. 628. Retrieved 2015-10-02.
- Kendall, Katherine (2005). Kate Moss: Model of Imperfection. New York: Penguin Group. ISBN 1-59609-033-2.
- Moss, Kate (1997). Kate: The Kate Moss Book. New York: Universe. ISBN 0-7893-0101-6.
- Vermorel, Fred (2007). Addicted to Love: Kate Moss (2nd ed.). London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 9781846097553.