Moss rolls towards 40, still gathering no dross
INTERVIEWING models is, to my job, what scrubbing loos is to a janitor — the worst bit.
I know it sounds terribly glamorous but if I’d gnawed off a finger every time a model told me her looks were due to water, sleep and whatever product she’s paid to spruik, I’d be digitless. Honestly, in 20 years of asking — and I’ve had big names witter into my voice recorder — not one has spoken the truth, namely: ‘‘I’m bloody lucky to look like this. It’s all down to genes. Don’t let either of us pretend that it isn’t.’’
I’ve got nothing against models per se: I, too, would demand squillions for prancing round in that nonsensical bikini/stiletto combo, pretending I wanted to make love to a bit of black Canon hardware.
I also get that designers have to show off their frocks and that a flesh coat hanger offers greater mobility than wire. But ever since Christy, Cindy, Naomi et al chucked a ‘‘ super’’ in front of what was a perfectly adequate job description, we’ve not just had to look at these baby giraffes but also listen to what they have to say.
For the most part it sounds very much like this:
‘‘I love working with Testino/ Meisel/ Lindbergh — he’s so inspiring.’’
‘‘Eventually I’d really like to move into business/ television like Elle/Miranda/ Jennifer has — she’s so inspiring.’’
‘‘Diet? No, I eat like a pig. Aren’t pigs cute? I find them so inspiring.’’
No, I’m not making it up. Thank God, then, for one model who speaks style rather than words; who refreshes her currency with each click of a camera lens and largely refuses to give interviews.
Kate Moss turns 40 next year and far from being a couple of forgettable syllables on the fashion ferris wheel, she continues her threedecade run of being the most loved model of all.
Others might celebrate with a profile in Vanity Fair or dinner for 100 cooked by chef du jour Yotam Ottolenghi. Mossy? She’s getting her kit off for Playboy.
I’ve loved her hard for all my adult life; can still remember the moment I saw photographer Corinne Day’s first breathtaking pictures. She was everything everyone else wasn’t — a subtlety lost on Generation Herd.
Even at 14 she oozed insouciance. I suspect she got it from her mum. After her first day chaperoning her daughter to modelling jobs, Linda
Mossy is not some ubiquitous sausage, minced and rolled out by the male-run modelling machine
Moss declared. ‘‘If you want to do this, you’re on your own. I’m not traipsing around London ever again like that.’’
Kate Moss the icon eclipsed Kate Moss the model years ago. In an industry predicated on replacing the old with the new, she’s remains as relevant as vintage Chanel. She doesn’t sell style, she is style.
Men don’t get her, can’t see the appeal. She hasn’t got the requisite pillowy boobs or Julia Roberts’ watermelon slice of a smile or Miranda Kerr’s perfect everything. And that is entirely the point.
Because Mossy is not some ubiquitous sausage, minced and rolled out by the malerun modelling machine. Rath- er, she’s quirky; flawed; a bon vivant and — crucially — unapologetic for being so.
She would never crap on about water or sleep. Indeed she’s stuck two fag-stained fingers up to both, opting for vodka as her preferred clear liquid of choice and eight hours’ dancing over the equivalent under the doona.
Dailymail. co. uk, which mocks most women in its ‘‘sidebar of shame’’, rarely sticks it to Kate. They wouldn’t dare. Because as she holidayed in the Caribbean this week, kayaking with her daughter, sunbathing topless, necking something other than agency- prescribed water, Kate looked like a slightly edgier version of everywoman. With her hair scraped into a top knot, her belly sagging as is typical on a sunlounger, her eyes — far from smouldering with the faux ‘‘bedroom’’ vibe of Gisele Bundchen — creased as if to say: ‘‘You know, I really dig mylife.’’
It hasn’t always been so. I remember being shocked lunching opposite her in a London restaurant in 2000. Her hair was a curtain of grease, her fingers twitched and her face glowered with angry spots. A few years later she was photographed snorting cocaine; several top designers dumped her and she ended up in rehab.
At the time she was dating the odious Pete Doherty.
For a while my ilk were on Moss Watch just as, years later, we were on Winehouse Watch. But she bounced back. She always does. From losing Johnny Depp, from being the face of heroin chic, from being dumped for younger models. Now, just three months short of 40, she entrances like no other. Partly, it’s due to a beauty that belongs to the camera.
But mostly, it’s because she gives us all of herself except words.
‘‘ Never complain, never explain,’’ remains one of her few utterances. It’s one that served her well.
Now, just three months short of 40, British model Kate Moss still manages to entrance like no other