She’s so cute and so fine, she’s so sweet, she blows our mind! Can you feel our love buzz for Staz Lindes? She’s the 21-year-old Tumblr-superstar who stole our hearts as Jeremy Scott’s muse in Moschino. Ooh, Spongebob suit you sir!
Born in London, but raised in California, Staz Lindes is the 21-year-old model, musician and muse everyone’s talking about. Scouted at a bowling alley in Santa Monica as a teenager with short pink hair - “The modeling agency had me dye it and I was super mad about it!” - fashion and music run in Staz’s blood. Her dad, Hal, was a guitarist in rock band Dire Straits, while her mum, Mary, was a model and muse in the 70s. Staz’s Instagram and Tumblr offer a gorgeous, sun-drenched account of her life, lounging with friends in LA, Joshua Tree and New York. They also double up as an unexpected agony aunt board for her 36,000 followers! Some ask her how to make friends, some want to know where to find love, while others confess their fandom straight out, “love u staz, you’re the coolest of the cool!” Welcome to the age of the people’s model, where the girls with the most social media realness not only win our hearts, but get the best jobs too. Staz’s appeal lies in her accessibility. Standing at a demure 5’7, with sun-bleached hair, big blue eyes and cupid lips, she’s the girl at school you always wanted to be friends with, who hangs out with all the cool boys at all the cool parties. Staz’s stardom was confirmed this month when she walked for one of autumn/winter 14’s biggest shows - Jeremy Scott’s debut for Moschino. Rocking a SpongeBob SquarePants fur coat and pedal pushers, Staz found herself walking alongside supers Jourdan Dunn, Lindsey Wixson and rising star Binx Walton. But just like her dad, it’s music that’s her real passion. Making the move from LA to the Big Apple last year, we caught up with Staz to talk about her new band, The Paranoids, her love for John Waters and how indie boys and the Chateau Marmont suck in equal measure.
You’ve followed in your dad’s footsteps and started a band, tell us about it...
Music is what I feel like I’m supposed to be doing. I started a band called The Paranoids and we recorded the other day. I play guitar and sing. I’m living my parent’s life all over again! It’s crazy. My mum was modeling but also married to Peter Frampton before my dad (“Oooh baby I love your way...”). I remember her coming into my room when I was 14 and saying, “It’s so weird you’re listening to Dylan, because when I was 14, I was doing the same!”
“Walking in Jeremy Scott’s show for Moschino was crazy. I was with all the really big girls, Binx, Lindsey Wixson, Lily McMenamy... I was like ‘how did I get here? This is not what I signed up for, I’m 5’7, I didn’t plan to do shows!’”
Do you fancy rock ‘n’ roll boys too then?
Yeah, I can’t help it. I can talk about The Beatles for hours; I can talk about The Stones... Of course models and musicians is such a cliché I’m playing into.
If I were a model, I’d go for hip hop stars!
Yeah, but how many models do they have?! Maybe I should go for Bieber like all the other models are doing.
Is Jeremy Scott your biggest champion?
The photographer David Mushegain started pushing for me about two years ago. I feel like once I met him, doors started opening. Jeremy Scott believes in me like crazy. I always think. “OK, this is the last time he’ll use me.” Then when he was named Creative Director of Moschino, I sent him a text saying “Wow, that’s amazing!” and his response was, “I can’t wait to wrap you up in Moschino!” So I shot Moschino’s press pictures with him and he was like, “Babe, we like the pictures so much, we’re actually going to use them as our lookbook pictures.” From there, he invited me to do his first catwalk show for Moschino in Milan.
How was that?
It was crazy! Jeremy’s own show here in New York and the Moschino show in Milan are the only real shows I’ve done. Jeremy is the least stressed out guy you could meet. He’s so mellow. He loves clothes and wants to make clothes that are part of people’s memory and that are fun. Milan was all the really big girls. Binx, Lindsey Wixson, Lily McMenamy... I was backstage with Kiko, who is a huge star in Japan. I was like, “How did I get in this position? This is not what I signed up for, I’m 5’7, I did not plan to do shows!” It was the most unique experience ever – I don’t want to do any other shows after that. It was the best!
Both you and Jeremy are very into Americana.
We both have this weird Pee-wee’s Playhouse, John Waters, old school throwback style about us. We go to flea markets together when we’re in LA. We both have this nostalgic neon dreaminess.
“LA is so strange and weird. Old glamorous Hollywood is still rotting there. I can’t stand it when people act like they’re guarding the President and they’re just guarding James Franco. It’s so lame!”
What is your LA life like?
My life in LA is pretty relaxed. A month will go by there and I’ll be like, “Woah, I haven’t done anything!” It sounds like an exaggeration, but for me in LA, it’s like, “Let’s get juice and go hiking. Let’s sit in the park...” That is literally what I do there. I’ll go to the beach; I’ll lie in the sun... My rent is like nothing and I live in Silverlake. I also love having a car. I love having that comfort zone. The thing with LA is it’s comfortable, and it’s good to make yourself feel uncomfortable, especially at my age, that’s why I moved to New York.
Can you give us some driving soundtracks?
I have an old Volvo, so I have a cassette player. I really like listening to big band in my car, because it feels like you’re driving luxuriously. I like Beach Boys. There’s this old school hip hop station in LA called KDAY and they’ll play Snoop and Dre all day. LA is so strange and weird. Old glamorous Hollywood is still rotting there.
Have you been to The Magic Castle?
Oh my god, I went for the first time recently. I loved it. Three hours of magic! My friend Stella got turned away at the door because she was wearing shorts.
I got turned down at the Chateau Marmont because I was wearing shorts.
I hate the Chateau. It’s so boring. I can’t stand it when people act like they’re guarding the President and they’re just guarding James Franco. So lame! At The Magic Castle, the magic is lame - the magicians have ponytails - but I just let myself believe it’s actually magic. I love all the weird stuff that still happens in LA. I just read this John Waters book and the first chapter’s about LA and it’s talking about all the weird shit. It’s Crackpot, from 85. He’s so good.
I met him once.
Noooo, shut the fuck up! My favourite quote from him is, “I’m so lucky to be having a happy childhood as an adult.” What was he like? Oh my god, you have to tell me everything!
He was great. We talked about his book Role Models. You should read that too.
I watched Polyester the other day. That movie came out with scratch and sniff stickers for the audiences. I would love to be in a John Waters’ movie. What if I reached out to him when The Paranoids are actually really good and say, “Please can you direct our music video?” Wouldn’t that be amazing? If I can relate to him, it’s worth trying to connect with him. I’ll send it out to the universe. You never know what might happen!
How did you become a role model on social media?
I don’t know. It’s kind of scary. Coming from LA, I do a lot of Nasty Gal, so its teenager stuff. When they find out the personality behind that model they start following their lifestyle. I have 35,000 followers. But a lot of them are little girls, literally 11 years old.
Do you take the photos on your Tumblr yourself?
I’ve always carried a disposable camera in my bag, but now I’ve switched to a point and shoot and I use my dad’s Nikon too. I love taking portraits of my friends. It doesn’t matter if that person’s photogenic.
On your Tumblr it looks like you’re turning into an agony aunt?
I get the most ridiculous messages! Most of the time they’re really sweet and I’ll wake up to emails like, “You’re so cool! How can I get into modeling?” but sometimes I’ll wake up and get people saying, “I saw the Jeremy Scott show and you blew it.” Sometimes it’s really hard. The internet is weird – it’s such a mirage!