Article by Martin Deeson
Daisy Lowe is a study in contrasts: radiant without a hint of conceit, understated yet colossally famous in Britain and in fashion circles. She is a model who has strutted for Chanel, Burberry and Vivienne Westwood. She has appeared in Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar and on catwalks all over the world. She is the progeny of rock stardom who has sexed up any number of music videos. For years she modeled for London’s Agent Provocateur – the hottest lingerie line on earth – which fit her perfectly.
“I’m more comfortable in my underwear than anywhere else,” Daisy says, laughing. “You don’t have to worry about how to dress your shape. It’s just there.”
Sitting in a coffee shop in London’s Primrose Hill neighborhood, Daisy, 22, is disorientingly hot and not overly clothed. She’s like a purple elephant in the room. No one can keep their eyes off her – not the men, not the women, not the waitress. Daisy starts to tell the story of how her life in the public eye began. It goes all the way back.
Her mother, the English singer-songwriter turned fashion designer Pearl Lowe, started a relationship with Danny Goffey, the drummer from the 1990s Britpop band Supergrass (they later married). Their home became the party house for the London music scene. When Daisy was a kid, the Gallagher brothers from Oasis, Kate Moss, Liv Tyler and actors Jude Law and Sienna Miller were regular houseguests.
“It was chaotic and brilliant and fun,” Daisy recalls. “And crazy!”
Pearl Lowe’s book about her partying years at the heart of the British music scene – All That Glitters – is subtitled Living on the Dark Side of Rock and Roll. It details her swan dive into heroin and cocaine addiction.
“She was very good at hiding it from me,” Daisy says. “I had no idea. When it comes to drugs I just think, Cool, thanks for learning that lesson for me, Mom, because I don’t want to have to learn it myself.”
Daisy got her first professional gig at the age of two; she appeared in a video for the band Curiosity Killed the Cat. At 15, she found out that the man she had always assumed was her father was not her real dad. Daisy confronted her mother, who admitted to a one-night affair with Daisy’s godfather, Gavin Rossdale, the lead singer of Bush. By the time the DNA tests were in and showed that Rossdale was indeed her father, the Bush frontman was married to Gwen Stefani.
“It was really hard for them,” Daisy says. “My whole life I thought my father was someone different. But Gavin and Gwen are really good people, and I value so much the time we get together. After seven years we’ve worked out how to be a family. I guess you can’t deny my rock-and-roll heritage! Both my parents – or all four of them – have done well in the music scene.”
“I’ve grown up with rock and roll, but that’s not who I am,” Daisy continues. “People think rock chick is code for ‘parties hard’ – but I don’t. In reality I’m a homebody. I love going to bed at midnight – apart from when I’m in Paris for fashion shows. Then I can’t help going out until four in the morning. There’s something in the air in Paris that drives me crazy.”
So what’s next for Daisy? “I did a burlesque show the night before I flew out to L.A. for the Playboy shoot,” she says. “That was fun. I like being creative, and I guess I’ll just go where the wind takes me.” Humble and yet larger than life, she’s a study in contrasts indeed. “It’s flattering that men think I can be sexy,” she says. “I would like it if taking my clothes off made other women feel they can do the same.