When fresh-faced Karlie Kloss walked her first runway back in September 2007 for Calvin Klein’s spring 2008 show — well before she had honed her powerful, pantherlike strut — it’s hard to imagine that the long-limbed 15-year-old from St. Louis could’ve guessed the trajectory her impressive career would take. Kloss, now 22, isn’t as ubiquitous on the runways these days, instead nabbing magazine covers and ad campaigns all while wearing myriad entrepreneurial hats: as a baker, designer, student and social media star with her own YouTube channel and 2.8 million Instagram followers. Oh, and she’s also Taylor Swift’s BFF.
New York Fashion Week, September 2007 George Chinsee
Today is World Water Day. This year, more than 840,000 people will die due to lack of access to clean water. That’s unjust, and it’s also unnecessary. There’s been tremendous progress in the past 20 years; as a result, more women are able to work for income, and more children are able to go to school.
“She’s the new Cindy Crawford. She’s become a brand. She’s an American girl and is very much part of that dynamic. She’s from the Midwest and family plays a big part of who she is and who she’s become. She travels with her family and her sisters. Her work ethic is unlike anything you’ve seen in your life. She’s always punctual and pleasant. There are these creatures in the world, and every now and again a new one comes along. She’s the new one.”
Charles DeCaro, creative director of Laspata/ DeCaro on Karlie Kloss (x)
‘Is he a model or is he singer?” Justin Bieber needles members of his entourage during a photo shoot as he glances at images of himself on a computer screen.
That’s a question that the pop star — and his fans — may be asking
themselves more and more frequently. Bieber, who just turned 21 in
March, says music remains his top priority, but it is very clear that
fashion is becoming an increasingly important part of his persona. He
just flexed his well-toned muscles for Calvin Klein’s underwear and jeans campaigns — and the brand flew him to Hong Kong to perform at a cruise terminal and anchor a brand event. This spring, he cut a stylish figure at the Met Gala,
sporting a gold-embroidered Balmain jacket with the brand’s designer
Olivier Rousteing — Bieber said the two are such good friends that they
hear from each other on an almost weekly basis. Meanwhile, he is gearing
up to make a cameo appearance in the hotly anticipated “Zoolander 2.”
Finally, the musician says it’s only a matter of time before he designs
his own men’s brand of fashion and streetwear.
“Just being recognized by the fashion world in such a way so far has
been awesome,” says an upbeat Bieber, smacking on blue gum during an
interview on the 15th floor of The Landmark Mandarin Oriental just hours
before his performance at the Calvin Klein
event. “I’m excited to venture into a new lane….Really new and
something I’ve always really liked, but now I’m just moving forward into
Zipping into the hotel suite on an IO Hawk, a mobility device similar
to a Segway without the handle, Bieber acknowledges that fashion —
specifically the Calvin Klein campaign — is helping him transform his
image as he enters adulthood. The Canadian singer calls the
black-and-white Calvin Klein ads with Lara Stone a “transitioning tool.”
The sexually charged images recall the brand’s iconic 1992 campaign
with Mark Wahlberg, aka Marky Mark, and Kate Moss.
Bieber does give off something of a transitional vibe, of someone
still coming to terms with adulthood and his own maturity — and how to
handle it. During the interview, he speaks softly — at times just above a
whisper — and earnestly. He seems like a guy who has been instructed to
choose his words carefully.
Then there’s the flip side. Later that night, a large crowd of
cheering and screaming fans greeted the singer as he arrived at the
venue, a ferry terminal and former airport along the Kowloon waterfront.
Bieber plays a longer-than-anticipated set including “Where Are Ü Now,”
a new single he recorded with DJ trap/dance duo Skrillex and Diplo, an
acoustic version of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car” and some of his older
hits like “Baby” and “Boyfriend.” He also unleashes a few doses of
attitude. “Don’t f–k with my levels,” he snipes at a sound producer in
the middle of a song. At another point, he abruptly asks photographers
to put their cameras away: “It’s annoying.”
Bieber’s temperamental reputation doesn’t appear to be an issue for
Calvin Klein. “The bad-boy image? There are a lot of bad-boy images out
there, whether it’s been Prince, whether it’s been Mick Jagger — you
know, it’s kind of part of the music industry,” says Kevin Carrigan,
global creative director for CK Calvin Klein, Calvin Klein Jeans and
Calvin Klein, ahead of Bieber’s performance.
Bieber has had his share of legal issues and run-ins with the law
over the past few years — most notably a 2014 charge of driving under
the influence that was settled via plea bargain. While he doesn’t
discuss any incidents specifically, he does address what seems to be the
constant drama surrounding him in more general terms.
“I don’t think anyone has really doubted my musical capability and
that’s what has sustained me this long, through all the negative stuff
that’s been portrayed of me,” Bieber says.
“People wanted me to apologize, which I don’t know if it’s really
fair. I’ll definitely take responsibility…as I’m growing but I’ll never
apologize for being human and making mistakes,” he says. “I think that
that’s just part of growing and living and becoming a man or a woman.
It’s been a cool learning process. I’m really happy where I am right
now, that’s for sure…take a second to, like, step back and evaluate the
situation and think, OK, that might not be true, or just give me the
benefit of the doubt. That’s all I ask.”
As he attempts to put forth a more adult image, Bieber’s style and
fashion knowledge are evolving. The star says he has developed a new
appreciation for things like styling and fabric quality.
In terms of Bieber’s current style, the singer says he is “really
into, like, drapy things, drapy sweaters, layering pieces.” As for his
favorite brands, he gives Calvin Klein a predictable name-check before
mentioning Balmain and Jerry Lorenzo’s Fear of God.
Given that enthusiastic banter, it’s no surprise that Bieber is
thinking about launching his own fashion brand at some stage — he
actually said as much during a WWD interview in 2011. But he stresses
that he is not in any rush to jump on the celebrity fashion bandwagon —
and expressed a rather humble reason why.
“I haven’t lost that passion. It’s just such a big deal….I just want
to make sure it’s perfect and right and take my time with it. I know
Kanye [West] has been working on his stuff for years and failed and came
back and tried again and failed. It’s about trial and error and I don’t
know if I’m ready for that yet,” he says. “Fashion’s definitely really
important, but I got to make sure I’m ready for the failing part of it
because I know that comes with it. It’s not easy. It’s not like putting
out an album.”
Doing just that — putting out an album — is Bieber’s focus for the
moment. The singer has not released an album since 2013’s “Journals.”
Bieber says he is working with a host of collaborators, including the
aforementioned West and Skrillex and Diplo. A release date has not been
“You’ll find yourself in the studio for months at a time and find
nothing and then all of the sudden it’s like bang, bang, bang and you
get [ideas] like one after the other,” he says. “Finally you get in a
rhythm and a motion, and I feel like that’s where I’m at, just kind of
finally collecting all of the songs that I want to come out.”
Growing up under public scrutiny definitely poses its challenges —
perhaps that is why Bieber seems to feel so passionately about the
pitfalls of social media and the damaging effects of bullying. “It’s all
perception of how you take it in…if you, like, get satisfaction from
the love, you’re gonna die by the hate,” he says. “[I] use it like a
platform for me to reach out to people and that’s it. Not use it for
validation or something like that.”
He adds that technology creates an especially tough environment for
kids today. “I think that’s what’s ruining the younger generation is
they feel so judged and they have to be some sort of way,” he says. “I
just believe that’s discouraging a lot of kids and I want to help [with]
that in any way I can.”
That motivation is what prompted Bieber to invest in Shots, a
year-and-a-half-old selfie app that strives to create a cyber-bully-free
environment because there are no comments or like-dislike features.
Bieber himself is gearing up for a new level of exposure with his upcoming turn in “Zoolander 2,” his first acting role.
“I start the movie off. The first thing you see in the movie, which
is pretty cool. I do this whole, like, parkour sequence,” he says. “I’ve
never really done something like that before. I didn’t expect Ben
[Stiller] to be so hands on….It was really cool to have him direct me in
such a nonthreatening way. I wasn’t intimated at all.”
“That’s a loaded one, I haven’t the slightest idea. I hope to be happy and healthy and continuing to challenge myself in new ways. I really love my job. I love modeling and working with designers and photographers. I hope I’m still doing my day job.”
Karlie Kloss on where she sees herself in 10 years (x)