This Party Hosted by Kate Moss Was A Lesson In Fashion Debauchery
Celebrity Style

Kate Moss’s 30th Birthday Party Was A Lesson In Fashion Debauchery

David Westing/Getty Images

Lots of my peers are entering their 30s, which is, for obvious reasons, a strange age to inhabit. This is the decade that most people are expected to get married and have children and assume powerful positions in the workplace. One of my friends marked this dreaded-to-some milestone with pizza-making activities at Pizza Express – an age-related breakdown if there ever was one – while others have continued to celebrate like the robust freshers they once were.

I have enjoyed myself at these kinds of things because there is a shared bond that I have been encouraged to uphold. But when this pap-shot of Ellie Bamber recreating Kate Moss’s 30th – she was shooting the model’s Noughties-set biopic Moss & Freud in west London – began to circulate on the wires earlier this week, I yearned for how different 30 might have looked in the early Aughts. Back when the traditional mantles of adulthood – ie, having savings and owning a flat within relative distance of Zone 9 on the TfL map – were perhaps within easier reach. Rich models there will always be, but the property ladder is now almost unscalable for poor uglies like me.

Kate Moss celebrating her 30th in 2004. David Westing/Getty Images

Kate Moss held her now-infamous ‘The Beautiful And Damned’ celebration on 19 February 2004. The tabloids at the time speculated that the supermodel had been planning to charter a private jet to transport 75 guests to an “exclusive resort” in Jamaica where Anita Pallenberg and Rhys Ifans would take in a private performance from Primal Scream… but what actually happened on that night is of even greater legend. Think: a ringlet-topped Kate in floor-length aquamarine sequins – a dress that first outfitted Bond-girl Britt Ekland at the 1974 premiere of The Man with the Golden Gun – sweeping through the Mandarin Oriental and Claridge’s hotel with Naomi CampbellGrace JonesGwyneth PaltrowStella McCartneySadie FrostChrissie Hynde and Tracey Emin in a shoal of flapper dresses and a cloud of Marlboro Golds smoke. (The smoking ban had – mercifully for them – not yet come into effect.)

Stella McCartney at Kate Moss’s 30th. David Westing/Getty Images
Gwyneth Paltrow at Kate Moss’s 30th. David Westing/Getty Images

That the soirée reportedly descended into an orgiastic reception at Agent Provocateur-founder Serena Rees’s house is all part of the lore that collects around Kate Moss as one of fashion’s foremost rockstars, a Croydon girl turned catwalk supernova who continues to inspire myth-making even as a wellness-loving 50-year-old in the Cotswolds. Perhaps that is why Moss has covered more than 40 issues of this magazine and it might also explain why the figurative artist Lucien Freud first sought out the model as muse before the Oscar-winning director James Lucas decided to set their relationship to film 20 years later. I wonder if my artistic creation at Pizza Express will at some point be given the same treatment.

This article was originally published on British Vogue.

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