I've been getting Tweets from people thanking me for turning them onto Lana Del Ray, and she is a love at first listen kinda artist. That's certainly how I felt when I heard Video Games for the first time at Christopher Kane's Spring 2012 show, and then even more when I watched her on Jools Holland in October.
The buzz and hype around Lana has been non-stop since around the time of a post I did back in October 2011. Oddly enough the post I refer to above actually caused one of her publicists to call a colleague of mine and meanly shout at her down the phone. Now the story of Lana Del Ray and how she changed her image is part of why she is famous, and her story is not complete without some mention of it. Some journalists exercise their intellectual muscle on the not-so-modern construct of the performer as alter-ego; others "smell a rat" and question authenticity. To my mind the only fact that matters is that Lana is a great artist, and extremely beautiful with it.
As weeks go by, and more images of her appear across media, I'm finding I love her look and styling, when at first it jarred. But, you know, that's the trick of great styling and great fashion collections; if it looks a bit odd at first, or feels jarring to the eye then give it a few months and it will become fabulous.
This is the case with me. I love the way Lana looks like a triple cross between a sultry Hollywood starlet, an angsty gangsta teenager, and a fetish nurse. After deciding I loved her style, I had to find out who was styling her, reasoning I probably knew of or knew the person. I was right! Step forward Johnny Blueeyes! A few years ago I wrote about Johnny in Grazia. He was my NBF for a few weeks, we chatted too much on the phone, and he came into the office especially to give me a T-Shirt he had created for the fashion show of his label House of Blueeyes which Kate Moss had spontaneously jumped up from her seat and modelled in...
Johnny Blueeyes work with Lana Del Ray
Johnny is a true creative and total free spirit. He's as un-corporate as it is possible to be, extremely flamboyant, but also kind and warm and all about the underdog and the marginalised in society. Lady Gaga (who he has worked with - as well as Ana Matronic and Beth Ditto) could have borrowed her marketing spin from him. It makes me happy that he is working with Lana Del Ray; I adore that she chose him. Knowing they work together makes me like her even more as Johnny only works with properly edgy talent.
I wanted to chat with Johnny for this post, but he is on tour with Lana and cannot be contacted. Need to know facts are that he has one of the best vintage collections in London and that Johnny is also the Creative Director of fashion, art and music collective the House of Blueeyes, where he works alongside his fellow designers creating exquisite one-off pieces by special commission.
Hopefully I'll be able to share some of his latest projects with you soon. Meanwhile, I leave you with a couple of Johnny Blueeyes youtube's. One of him and Beth Ditto, the other of him talking to a journalist about his work and ethos.
In this film Johnny talks about his creative ethos, and dispenses advise on how to get on in the fashion industry. "Make your own world".