Kate Moss – Biography
Kate Moss** (born 16 January 1974) is an English model. She has appeared on over 300 magazine covers. She is known for her waifish figure, uncommonly short height for a fashion model, and appearances in many advertising campaigns. She is also notorious for her high-profile relationships and party lifestyle. In 2007, she came 2nd on the Forbes top 15 richest supermodels list, estimated to have earned $9 million in one year.
** Note: Kate Moss was born & named Kate Moss – click here to see a copy of Kate’s birth certificate. Anyone referring to Kate as “Katherine Ann Moss” need to check their facts, and Kate’s birth certificate.
Moss was born in Addiscombe, Croydon, London to Linda Rosina (Shepherd), a barmaid, and Peter Edward Moss, a travel agent. Kate has a younger brother named Nick and a half-sister and half-brother. Moss’s parents divorced when she was 13. She attended Ridgeway Primary School and Thomas More Catholic School in Purley. She was not particularly noted for her academic success, although she did excel at sports. According to Fred Vermorel’s Addicted to Love: Kate Moss, “Out of eight GCSEs she scraped through with one C (in Science) and all the rest were Ds, Es and Fs”.
Moss was discovered in 1988 at the age of 14 by Sarah Doukas, the founder of Storm Model Management, at JFK Airport in New York City, after a holiday in Jamaica. Moss’s career began when Corinne Day shot black-and-white photographs of her, styled by Melanie Ward, for British magazine The Face when she was 15, in a photo shoot titled “The Third Summer of Love”. Moss then went on to become the “anti-supermodel” of the 1990s in contrast to the “supermodels” of the moment, such as Cindy Crawford, Claudia Schiffer, and Naomi Campbell, who were known for their curvaceous and tall figures.
Moss was voted 8th in Celebrity Sleuth’s “25 Sexiest Women of 2004″, 8th in Maxim’s “50 Sexiest Women of 1999″ and 22nd in FHM’s “100 Sexiest Women of 1995″. Men’s magazine Arena named her as their Sexiest Woman in their 150th issue. In March 2007, Moss won the Sexiest Woman NME Award. 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 1348th richest person in the UK, with a net worth of £40 million.
In July 2007, earning an estimated total of $9 million in the past 12 months, Forbes magazine named her second on the list of the World’s 15 top-earning supermodels.
Moss during her waif period.
Moss ushered in the waif look in 1993 (which prompted much speculation over her weight) with a highly publicized campaign for Calvin Klein. Her depiction in photographs also drew criticism from then-President of the United States Bill Clinton, who spoke out against the growing heroin chic trend. When questioned about her weight, Moss commented “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’?” Moss found success in the industry despite being unusually short for a fashion model and has worked for many elite fashion lines.
In addition to being known for her modelling work, Kate Moss is also an international fashion icon. She has garnered many awards for her 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 the year of 2005–2006, her style was influenced by Rock and Roll. Due to her reputation, she is credited for setting numerous trends. 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, as well as recently bringing high-waisted styles and waist-cinching belts back into popularity.
Moss has had campaigns with major Italian, French, American, and British designers including Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Calvin Klein, Roberto Cavalli, Chanel, Missoni, Longchamp, David Yurman, Dior, Yves Saint-Laurent, Burberry,Stella McCartney, Rimmel, and Bvlgari, including a campaign for the successful Brazilian label ELLUS during summer 2000. She has been featured in fashion spreads in most major fashion magazines including UK, US, and French Vogue magazines (as well as other international versions of Vogue), Another Man, Vanity Fair, the Face, and W. Moss has appeared on the cover of British Vogue alone 26 times. (in addition to dozens of other international Vogue covers) and has been featured on the cover of 17 issues of W, including one issue with nine different covers featuring the model. W even names Moss its muse (September 2003 issue). She has worked with the most well-known photographers in the fashion industry today, such as Mario Testino, Mario Sorrenti, Steven Klein, Juergen Teller, and Peter Lindbergh. She won the prestigious Vogue/CFDA award from the Fashion Designers of America in July 2005 as Fashion Inspiration. The haute couture dress she wore to the award ceremony was from the Christian Dior autumn 2005 haute couture designed by John Galliano.
April 2005 saw the launch of the Rimmel London mascara TV ad featuring a leather-clad Kate Moss riding a motorbike through London to the sound of the rock song “Another Cold Beer” by Steven Crayn.
Twelve months after her cocaine scandal, Moss made a comeback by bagging 18 top modelling contracts for the Autumn/Winter 2006 season: Rimmel, Agent Provocateur, Virgin Mobile, Belstaff, Beymen, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Roberto Cavalli, Longchamp, Stella McCartney, Bulgari, Chanel, Nikon, David Yurman, Versace, Mia Shvili, Calvin Klein Jeans and Burberry. Moss also agreed to make her first foray into the design world by designing a collection, in collaboration with Katy England, for Topshop, Moss launched a fragrance and body lotion range bearing her name in association with Coty in 2007.
According to Forbes, Moss was earning more money than before her scandal: her 2004–2005 earnings were $5 million and her 2005–2006 earnings were $8 million. In 2007, with estimated earnings of $9 million, she was the second highest paid model in the world, behind Gisele Bündchen.
In November 2006, Moss won the Model of the Year prize at the British Fashion Awards, the top accolade in British fashion, but the award divided opinion and stirred fresh controversy.
On 27 September 2007, The Sun published a story entitled, “Kate Moss dumped by seven brands”, describing her “cocaine honeymoon” as fading away. The story continues by stating that last autumn 2006 she had eighteen contracts in comparison to 2007′s eleven. And this time last year, fashion bible Vogue had six campaigns using Moss including Dior, Louis Vuitton and Burberry. November 2007′s issue has none. The story concludes by saying that an industry source has said “She is still very big but the honeymoon period has ended.”
Despite these press reports, Moss was later announced as the face of Donna Karan, Yves Saint-Laurent and Roberto Cavalli for spring 2008.
Despite all press reports and comments about her relevancy as a model, Moss frequently appears in advertising campaigns; most recently she appears in the Autumn 2008 advertising campaigns for Donna Karan Collection, Stella McCartney and Roberto Cavalli.
On 1 May 2007, a collection of clothes purported to be designed by Moss exclusively for the Topshop chain were launched across the UK in the chain’s 225 stores. These and all future “Kate Moss” designs are in fact creations by in-house Arcadia designers all signed to confidentiality agreements
A Kate Moss “countdown to launch” board filled a window of the company’s flagship Oxford Street store and on 30 April, Moss launched the clothing line at Topshop in Oxford Street, where she briefly appeared in the shop window modelling a red dress from the clothing collection just before the shop was opened, causing a media frenzy. Topshop has reportedly paid Moss £3 million for her work which consists of choosing designs and then modelling them, as well as allowing her name to be used on the garments. The collection of fifty designs includes clothes, bags, shoes and belts where prices range from £12 for a vest top to £150 for a cropped leather jacket.
Clothes in the collection include skinny jeans, one-shoulder mini dresses and T-shirts]with the letter K woven in to the design. However, purchases were limited to five items per shopper to prevent the clothes appearing on eBay, and customers were only allowed to try on eight garments in the shop. Despite these efforts, the day after the launch saw hundreds of items up for sale on eBay. Although bulk buying is restricted the collection is not a limited edition and the range will remain in stores for an indefinite period.
The collection received mixed reviews from the fashion press. British fashion critics lauded the range, however the New York Post hailed it “Duplikate”, based on the strong similarities between Moss’s own wardrobe. The range was mildly criticised by fashion advisors Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine, who argued that the clothing was modelled for only the slimmest of women, and that they were not suitable for the average woman’s figure. They stated, “No one has a figure like hers so her clothes only really look good on her – not real women.” The Topshop range was later released in the United States at the New York chain store Barneys, where 26 designs from the range were on sale for higher prices.
Moss’s underwear collection for Topshop went on sale on 22 October 2007. Alan McGee, Kate Moss, and BP Fallon DJing at Death Disco NY in 2004.
Moss 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 and ” Delia’s Gone” and “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” by Johnny Cash.
She has also provided vocals for songs by Primal Scream (the 2003 version of “Some Velvet Morning”) and Babyshambles. Her vocals are featured on the Babyshambles song “La Belle et la Bête”, singing the line “Is she more beautiful than me?”. 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”.
Moss has also DJ’d on more than one occasion at the Death Disco club with her friends Alan McGee and BP Fallon.
Moss is also known for her close friendships with many rock and roll icons and musicians such as Elton John, Mick Jones,Philip Colbert, Anita Pallenberg, Marianne Faithfull, Bobby Gillespie and Siobhan Fahey.
In 1999, Moss played a non-musical role in the British television comedy Blackadder: Back & Forth, appearing both as Maid Marian and as a fictional Queen of England “who looks good naked”.
Moss has also been the subject of portraits by contemporary artists such as Lucian Freud and Chuck Close. In 2005, a painting of Moss by Freud sold for £3.93 million at a Christie’s auction. Close has taken a series of daguerreotypes of Moss, which he has also translated into Jacquard tapestry.
On 8 May 2009, it was reported that Moss would begin writing an autobiography, published by Richard Branson who said the book would make “an interesting read.” It is reputed to have cost Branson £1 million.
Moss has been a supporter of the Breakthrough Breast Cancer charity, and in the 1990s featured in one of their target T-shirt campaigns. She also supported War Child (charity). Moss 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 which her close friend Sadie Frost also supports.
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.
Kate Moss has a daughter, Lila Grace Moss, born on 29 September 2002, with Dazed & Confused editor Jefferson Hack. She is also godmother to the two sons of The Clash member Paul Simonon and to the daughter of Sadie Frost and Jude Law.
Moss has long been linked romantically with former Libertines member Pete Doherty, first meeting him at her 31st birthday party on 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. Doherty planned to marry Moss during the summer of 2007. However, in July 2007 Moss and Doherty split. A removal van arrived to take away Doherty’s possessions from Moss’s home after they had a series of rows and arguments. Doherty is reported to have said, “It’s like living with a fucking stalker.” Moss had also changed the locks to the gates allowing access into her house. She was due to model on the catwalk for John Galliano with Linda Evangelista, Naomi Campbell, Lily Cole and Gisele Bündchen but was too distraught with her break-up to participate.
Moss currently lives with her daughter Lila in a £9 million townhouse in St John’s Wood, North London. Tabloids and gossip magazines frequently report on her status, and since Doherty, Moss has been dating Jamie Hince, guitarist for The Kills. The Sun reported on 26 March 2008, that Moss was due to marry Hince after becoming engaged during a trip to Amsterdam; however, various other British tabloids reported that the Sun article was false. On 22 April 2009, Lillian Berlin of American band Living Things said in an interview that Moss had slept with his brother and band-mate Eve Berlin in June 2008, during the time she was dating Hince.
British tabloids and the paparazzi, particularly the Daily Mirror, have long claimed that Moss habitually used cocaine. In interviews, Moss dismissed these claims as ridiculous, and the Sunday Mirror was sued successfully by Moss for claiming that she had slipped into a coma after taking large amounts of cocaine in Spain in the 1990s.
On 15 September 2005, the Daily Mirror ran front page and inside photos that seemed to show Moss snorting several lines of cocaine at a Babyshambles recording session. It was also reported that Moss snorted five lines in 40 minutes. It has been alleged by Babyshambles’ singer Pete Doherty that James Mullord, his former manager, sold the photos to the newspaper for more than £150,000. Within a short time of publication, Moss lost major modelling contracts with several international companies.
On 20 September 2005, the Swedish fashion retailer H&M, which had intended to feature her in a campaign of their autumn clothes range designed by Moss’s good friend Stella McCartney, announced instead that it was dropping Moss after the drug allegations. The contract was reportedly worth £4 million a year. A day later, Chanel announced that it would not be renewing its contract with Moss, which was set to expire that October, although the company said that its decision had nothing to do with the drug scandal. Burberry also decided to drop Moss’s campaign with them. Moss quickly issued an apology, though she stopped short of admitting drug use. “I take full responsibility for my actions. I also accept that there are various personal issues that I need to address and have started taking the difficult, yet necessary, steps to resolve them,” she said. “I want to apologise to all of the people I have let down because of my behaviour, which has reflected badly on my family, friends, co-workers, business associates and others.”Steve Busfield (23 September 2005). “Moss apology may limit damage to career”.
Moss continued to appear in major ad campaigns during this period for Dior. She was on the cover of the November 2005 W and also appeared inside in a multi-page fashion shoot. She was also defended by friends and supporters, including models Naomi Campbell and Helena Christensen, French actress Catherine Deneuve, her ex-boyfriend Johnny Depp, and designer Alexander McQueen. McQueen’s defence was especially notable, and during his walk-out after a fashion show he wore a t-shirt saying “We love you Kate”. British artist Stella Vine defended Moss in 2005 and painted pictures of her such as Holy water cannot help you now.
Artist Stella Vine also publicly supported Moss, and paintings by Vine of the model, painted during the scandal, were exhibited and reproduced in the press. Vine defended Moss, saying to The Independent: “I had been painting Kate Moss for a long time, both before the time of her crisis and during it. I felt very strongly for her – she’s a hard-working mum and it seemed as if suddenly the world turned against her.” Vine’s large paintings of Moss include Holy water cannot help you now (2005) and Kate unfinished (2005), whilst another had the slogan Must be the season of the witch across it in red paint. Vine compared the supermodel to Mona Lisa and said, “There’s a bravery in Kate’s eyes and I love her for that.” Vine felt the media should not have accused Moss of being a bad mother, arguing that “men can go off and take as many drugs as they want, have as many children as they want, and their parenting rarely comes into question”. A Vine painting of Moss was bought by Alexander McQueen.
Pop singer Robbie Williams said of Moss’s relationship with Doherty, “I can understand why Kate finds it difficult to leave Pete; he has a certain charisma surrounding him.” In November 2005, Moss ended her relationship with Doherty soon after he checked himself out of Meadows Clinic in Arizona, failing to complete a program for drug rehabilitation. Moss herself underwent successful treatment there in October and had urged Doherty to seek the same treatment himself. Doherty claims that their separation involved other issues, telling the The Sun newspaper that Moss left him because, “I can’t buy her diamonds.”
On 5 January 2006, the Metropolitan Police asked Moss to return from the US to Britain to answer questions about the September 2005 cocaine scandal. The following day, the Daily Mirror reported that Moss would return to Britain and face arrest for allegations of cocaine usage. She was interviewed by police in London on 31 January 2006, with her solicitor present, but reportedly made no admissions, and she was not arrested (photographs of alleged drug-taking are not admissible evidence in English courts). On 16 June 2006, British police finally dropped the charges for lack of evidence.
Ultimately, Moss was cleared of all charges and resumed her modelling career. Criticism of Moss has, however, continued, and her career revival has been viewed as a sign of moral and cultural decline by conservatives such as Peter Hitchens.
In 2008, it was reported that a £1.5m ($2.8m) 100% gold statue had been made of supermodel Kate Moss as 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.