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Kelley Ash is a ghost in Stevie Nicks’s closet, or at least she feels that way. When she’s not modeling, she’s on the open road blasting Neil Young and blogging about it.

She sells her vintage finds in her online store, Wild at Heart Vintage, and stays grounded by holding her head high. SHK talked to her about the meaning behind her double digit birthday, her nomadic nature and her obsession with Johnny Depp.— Maria Eilersen

You strike me as someone who doesn’t care too much about what other people think — is that true?

I have come to terms with the fact that you cannot please everyone, so yes, this is very true.

How did you get into modeling? What’s your “scouted” story? (How old were you?)

I was fresh out of high school, shopping at the mall when some lady came up to me. She handed me her card and told me to come see her cause she thought “I had what it takes.” So I bribed my best friend to come all the way to Long island to see what this was all about. Five or six train rides later I left with a broken heart. It was one of those scams, they wanted me to pay 3,000 beans to become one. Fuck that. I was a little jaded from the entire experience. So once I came to LA I gave it another go and here I am.

How do you stay grounded

I hold my head up high.  Always.

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Do you have any memorable moments working with a certain photographer or model/artist? Anything that taught you a lesson, embarrassed, amused or intimidated you?

The first gig I booked was Prada. I remember going to the casting and seeing all these supermodels. I was feeling super insecure because my book sucked and I hardly had any experience. I was still excited they wanted to see me so when my agent called me to tell me I booked it I nearly had a heart attack from excitement. From that moment it taught me to always stay positive because you never really know what can happen.

All of your editorials seem to share this aesthetic, less commercial & more artistic  — is that just by coincidence?

My whole life is one big coincidence. Seriously it really is… They say it is because my birthday is February 11th and it has something to do with double digits.

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You’re not scared of a little playful nudity. Where do you draw the line between porn and art?

I am very comfortable in my own skin. I appreciate art and the way some photographers are able to capture it.

Tell me about your childhood in L.A.

I grew up in Southern New Jersey. I listened to Bon Jovi and had a bad attitude.

And your vintage store? How did that come about?

My bedroom closet collapsed and I thought I need to start selling some of these clothes. If you saw my closet, I looked like a hoarder. I still have issues parting with pieces. Anyway I had my blog Wild at Heart, that was doing really well so I used it as a tool to promote my store. Everything just fell into place.

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Where/how do you find the clothing you sell?

I travel all over. I just hit up all the thrift and vintage stores.

Can you elaborate on why/how Wild at Heart is “a collection of gypsies although born in generations too late?”

I sometimes feel like Stevie Nicks or a ghost in her closet.

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Are you a nomad at heart? What do you love about being on the road? What’s your most memorable road trip?

There is no greater love for me then hoping in my car, blasting some Neil young and hitting the open road. I love the feeling of freedom. My all time favorite road trip was almost 30 days long. My agent wanted to kill me for booking out so long but it was well worth it. I went from Los Angeles to Monument Valley Utah then to Austin Texas. I shot with my favorite photographer and good friend Harper Smith in Monument Valley, Utah for Bona Drag. So while we were shooting they were filming some movie. I could tell it was a big production, so our tour guide tells me it is for the movie The Lone Ranger. My star struck teenager came out of my body like an exorcist and I lost it. I am obsessed with Johnny Depp and sure enough I got to meet him that day. I was floating for about a month after that. All and all it was a magical trip that I will never forget.

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Lastly, we like to ask all out subjects what they’d like (or would like others) to

See: Beauty all around you. It is everywhere.

Hear: The Black Angels cause they are on tour right NOW and are an amazing band.

Know: YOURSELF.

Follow Kelley:

Twitter

Blog

The Black Angels “Entrance Song”

 

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