charli xcx takes us behind the scenes of her new house of holland campaign
Using all she learned from 'America’s Next Top Model,' Charli is fierce as the face of her mate Henry’s new eyewear campaign.
She's so fancy, we already know. Currently out in LA putting the finishing touches to her "could change the sound of pop music" (and probably will) next album, Charli has somehow found time to hang with Swedish songwriter BFF Noonie Bao, make documentaries on feminism in the music industry for the BBC, roadtrip to Salvation Mountain, release a collection with Boohoo.com, and now model for HoH too. We caught up with the Londoner to talk sexy poses, PC Music and Valentine's Day.
How did you come to work with Henry?
I'd been wearing his clothes and sunglasses for a while. I've always loved how vibrant and fearless his prints and designs were. When he asked me about wearing his sunglasses 'professionally', I was like 'YES, this will definitely be fun.'
Tell us about the first time you met…
I think it was at a party. He was DJing and playing some ultimate classics... maybe Spice Girls or early 2000 J.Lo. We just hit if off from there, I guess.
Describe Henry using only your own song lyrics…
I DONT CARE, I LOVE IT! God, I just cringed inside.
What's your go-to photoshoot pose?
I'm not sure. I feel like I'm always throwing my head back a lot. Also, I think I open my mouth a lot. It all sounds a little porno, I suppose. To be honest, I never really know what I'm doing.
Who or where did you learn it from?
I used to watch a lot of America's Next Top Model when I was younger, so perhaps there?!
If Henry had made you one of his slogan tees back in the day, what would you have liked it to say?
DRUGS SEX AND XCX ;) or XCX CASHING CHECKS.
If you had to wear a pair of sunglasses from the collection for the rest of your life, which would you pick and why?
My favorite sunglasses are the ones in the lead campaign image, because they are chic and sexy and cool. I kind of feel like I'm actually in Charlie's Angels when I wear them.
Do you remember having any amazing 90s sunglasses as a kid?
I had some pretty awesome sunflower ones and maybe some marble ones, too.
Wearing sunglasses inside. Discuss.
If Lou Reed did it, of course it's cool.
How's your LA album time going?
Amazing. This album could change the sound of pop music. It's the album I've been trying to make forever. And now I've done it.
Who are you working with?
SOPHIE, BloodPop and Stargate. Plus my best friend and favorite collaborator, Noonie Bao.
What can we expect form the record?
There are some high-octane plastic moments and then more piano ballad situations. I'm into East 17 right now.
Having made your BBC documentary on the subject, what're your current views on the issues facing woman in the music industry?
It's what you make it. If you take control and be the boss, then you are the boss. If you call out any horrid situations that might occur and report and discuss misconduct then you're the boss. If you own your sexuality -- whether that's being overtly sexual or totally androgynous -- then you're the boss. Women aren't victims in this industry. We are more powerful than ever. I've said all I want to say about this, and while I obviously register the fact that it's important to have these conversations about being a woman in the industry... it's like, you know, I'm just here. I'm just doing my thing. Whether I've got a pussy, whether I've got a dick, whatever. Right now I'm just here to be creative and be wild.
Which three new artists are you convinced will take over the world?
Cuckoolander, Hannah Diamond and Yung Jake. They are all totally different artists but all extremely talented in their own ways.
How did you come to work with SOPHIE?
I organize a writing camp in the countryside in Sweden. It's kind of just a hangout where we all make music and party for a week. I wanted to ask SOPHIE to come to work on stuff and he did. That's the first time we worked. That was last January, and since then we've worked all over the place on numerous different things. He's a real original. I admire him greatly.
Is PC Music the future of music?
It could be. They have a very futuristic outlook on pop, which I think should be seriously listened to to keep the format interesting. They just know how to keep things next level. Whether it can be transferred to mass market has yet to be seen, but they are an extremely talented and intelligent bunch. They'll make an impact for sure.
Do you have Valentine's Day plans?
I'm actually joining my friend Andrew Wyatt for this performance art piece he is doing at MoMa. I'm not sure how much I can't say much about it but it's going to be beautiful.
Ultimate track to soundtrack V-Day?
10CC! Or "Barbie Girl" if you're trying to get rid of your date.
Text Francesca Dunn
Photography Amber Grace Dixon