She’s got a hit show, a mega summer movie and a contract with Chanel—so, yeah, things are going pretty well for Blake Lively. She tells her new best friend, singer Florence Welch, all about it.
She makes you feel that she and life are going to go on forever.” Can you guess whom director Baz Luhrmann was talking about in his tribute to one of Time’s 100 most influential people of 2011? Streep? Kidman? Bacall? Nope—it’s Gossip Girl’s Blake Lively! Her role as Serena van der Woodsen may have made her a household name, but it’s Blake’s impressive drama chops (have you seen her turn as a drug-addled single mom in 2010’s The Town?) that have helped her land movie parts more seasoned actors would kill for. And she’s quickly becoming a fashion icon (without a stylist, mind you). Karl Lagerfeld—Mr. Chanel himself—brought her as his date to this year’s Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute gala, one of fashion’s highest-profile events, calling her an “American dream girl.”
This summer, Blake fights big-screen villains with Ryan Reynolds in the blockbuster Green Lantern; next up is the indie drama Hick and a role in Oliver Stone’s Savages. The girl’s on fire—and did we mention she’s only 23? Listen in as Glamour’s guest interviewer, Blake’s good friend Florence and the Machine singer Florence Welch, pumps her for details on all that good stuff and more.
FLORENCE WELCH: Blake, you looked a-mazing at the Met ball the other night.
BLAKE LIVELY:Stop it! I think we love each other too much—it’s not healthy! The performance you did that night, it’s the best thing I’ve been to yet.
FLORENCE WELCH: It was so nice having you in the crowd. I remember meeting you after my first show in New York. You got the band pizza, and they instantly fell in love with you. It was so sweet.
BLAKE LIVELY: I feel like the story of our meeting should be a little more happenstance so I sound less like a stalker, but it’s not. My brother was obsessed with you. When he played your album for me, my jaw dropped. Two days later you were playing the Bowery Ballroom, and we said, “This is serendipitous! We’re supposed to see her.”
FLORENCE WELCH: [Laughs hard.]
BLAKE LIVELY: So I got a ticket, and when they said, “Do you want to come backstage?” I’m like, Oh my gosh, I would love to meet this wonderful goddess! And then you were the nicest person I’d ever met. I thought, I need to know her better.
FLORENCE WELCH: And then Vegas was really fun as well, wasn’t it? That sealed the deal on our friendship, spending New Year’s together in sparkly outfits, standing on a table.
BLAKE LIVELY: You said, “Come to Vegas!” and I rounded up 16 of my family members.
FLORENCE WELCH: I think it was your uncle or your dad who went to get me ice because I’d fallen off the table mid-freestyle rapping.
BLAKE LIVELY: Well, it’s difficult to wear such high Louboutins and also freestyle rap. [Laughs.]
FLORENCE WELCH: [Pauses.] How am I doing on interviewing you so far?
BLAKE LIVELY: Wonderful!
FLORENCE WELCH: OK, my career in journalism can start, then. So how does it feel to be the face of Chanel’s Mademoiselle handbag?
BLAKE LIVELY: It’s such an honor. When I found out I got [the job], you and I went to dinner and concocted this plan, like two little girls at a tea party, saying, “Oh, it would be the best if we had a party. And you’ll perform, and we’ll do it in Paris.” Like you and I were in charge of Chanel!
FLORENCE WELCH: What’s amazing is that you don’t have a stylist, do you?
BLAKE LIVELY: You know, my mom modeled and made clothes, so I always had such an appreciation for design. And then Gossip Girl completely blew open the door to fashion for me. I’d go to fashion shows and call my publicist and say, “Can I wear that?” I think I became my own stylist by not knowing any better. And once I was told it was time to get one, I thought: This is one of my favorite hobbies! And I’m going to pay someone to steal my hobby from me? That’s a terrible idea!
FLORENCE WELCH: It’s incredibly fresh, your look. I can imagine you stepping out of Studio 54 with Andy Warhol on one arm, looking radiant. How would you describe your personal style?
BLAKE LIVELY: I should have you describe it—that was incredibly flattering. There’s no one thing I would say, because like me, my style is growing and changing, and it’s very moody. [Laughs.]
FLORENCE WELCH: It was interesting what you said to me about being nervous on the red carpet at your first Met ball.
BLAKE LIVELY: You’re referring to this beautiful teal Versace dress that I wore. I loved that dress, but I am far too shy to walk around in a dress like that with a slit up to my neck. So I thought, The only way I can wear this is to pretend I’m someone else. Who is somebody who completely owns her sexuality? I thought, Marilyn Monroe! So I’m going to be Marilyn Monroe tonight.
FLORENCE WELCH: That really does help. When you’re getting ready for an event, what are your rules?
BLAKE LIVELY: I like it to be easy. I don’t feel like I have to do so much with hair and makeup, because I’m the mannequin for these beautiful clothes, so I never want to do anything too distracting. Most of the time, I put my hair in a ballerina bun, and I take it down and it’s wavy, and then I leave. I feel shy when people are fussing on me. And my diet of choice before events is a chicken potpie from Tea & Sympathy, because they never have enough food at these things.
FLORENCE WELCH: You are a great cook! My gosh, I had an amazing time having brunch with you, and you made the most delicious—what in the world was it?
BLAKE LIVELY: Puff pastry and then those little pancake balls. I’m always traveling, and I get so excited when I find a new spice or a new sauce. This is absolutely crazy, but I wanted a sauce from New Orleans, and they wouldn’t send it because the FDA didn’t approve it. I called the restaurant and I said, “OK, can you buy a teddy bear and cut it open and put it in and send it?” They’re like, “No, we are not the drug cartel; we’re not sending you your sweet potato sauce in a teddy bear.”
FLORENCE WELCH: Knowing you—you’re such a happy person—it’s strange to me to see you play a f—-ed-up character so well, like you did in The Town. What draws you to those darker roles?
BLAKE LIVELY: That’s the real me—that’s what you don’t know! [Laughs.] No, I’m drawn to those roles because [they’re so] rare, especially for someone my age. Women in film are often the prizes for the men and nowhere near as layered or complex as the men get to be. My character in The Town was written for a 37-year-old. I had to fight for that role. But also, I’m not this super-tortured soul, so it’s fun to be able to go there.
FLORENCE WELCH: I can imagine that you could be quite tough if you needed to be.
BLAKE LIVELY: Well, I have a strong sense of myself. That gives me a sense of security, you know? If I define myself by things that are always changing, like the public’s opinion or what I’m wearing or what job I’m doing, there’s no stability in that.
FLORENCE WELCH: You’re a fighter pilot in Green Lantern. Was that fun? Did you get to fly a plane?
BLAKE LIVELY: I got to do a lot of flight training in the flight simulator. It was unbelievable. Now I’m, like, the coolest aunt ever.
FLORENCE WELCH: I’m learning a lot over this conversation. You are really good at doing interviews, Blake. How was my interviewing?
BLAKE LIVELY: I get shy, but having you do it makes it easier. I feel like I need to interview you now!
FLORENCE WELCH: OK. Call me!
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