Spend 5: Leslie Kirchhoff

Fashion shows are first and foremost about the clothes, however a designer’s creative vision hardly stops there. Behind every visionary is a team of creative individuals bringing the show to life with music creating the collection’s heartbeat. The right music not only brings the essence of each garment to life, sending tingles down the audience’s spine but it also leave’s a lasting imprint, the kind that stays with you long after the final curtain call. It’s little wonder then that the fashion-DJ role has taken up a coveted space during fashion week. Making waves amongst a cohort of talented female DJ’s is Leslie Kirchhoff, whose status amongst the crème de la crème of the fashion crowd is quickly ascending.

A woman of many talents, NYC-based Kirchhoff first fell into DJ’ing after watching her ex-boyfriend spin tunes around Paris. Since then, her rapid rise to one of the most sought after DJ’s would suggest it was fate and Leslie was always meant to be creating sweet sounds. When not behind the decks, Leslie is a photographer and filmmaker, having shot and worked for the like of Vogue and beyond. This cool-girl whose sky-high heels reflect her soaring talent first caught our attention though her enviable Instagram life. Oh to live the life of a fashion darling…

Naturally, we had to spend 5 with the lady herself, Leslie Kirchhoff…

Name: Leslie Kirchhoff

Occupation: Photographer, DJ

My career really started when: I moved to New York and started shooting for vogue.com almost 6 years ago

I shoot with: Canon 5D Mark III, Sony A7rii, Canon Ae-1, Contax T2, Fuji Instax, and a handful more

I look up to: Cass Bird

Photography work highlight: Either shooting Grace Coddington for The Coveteur, or Pharrell for vogue.com

Crowd pleaser tunes: Prince

My music aesthetic is: Disco, funk, old edits, and songs I like to label “songs you forgot you really love.”

Music to me is: My favorite part of an overall vibe or sliver of life. I just love that songs can hold such strong memories. Like, “Et Moi Et Moi Et Moi” by Jacques Dutronc was playing one of the first times I ever went to Boom Boom Room in New York, and now whenever I hear it I get such a vivid memory of that exact time in my life and it’s amazing

I learnt from: My ex boyfriend, DJ Jeremie Khlat, at Le Montana in Paris. I sat in the booth and watched him spin six nights a week for a while just observing, and then he taught me over the following few months. He actually taught me on CDs, which I used for a long time before learning to DJ with a computer

DJ work highlight: Not sure if I can decide on one. My favorite times were probably the smaller gigs back in the day like weeknight dance parties at clubs downtown. Spinning in the basement at Le Baron was always a pretty wild time—I could really play around with things and experiment. I’d mix things like Motown hits or Everly Brothers over obscure disco or house beats and find combos that just really nailed it

Biggest pinch me moment: DJing while Lykke Li sang vocals at her sister’s wedding, or spinning in Paris while Mick Jagger danced three feet in front of me

My daily uniform looks like: A lot of jeans and tees, or simple pants and shirts. Usually with leather boots or sneakers

Come evening, I like to wear: Generally the same things I wear during the day (if it’s just a normal night). But if I’m DJing, I wear heels and a dress. It’s essentially like playing dress-up, which I don’t think I did as a kid

To make a statement I: Throw on some lipstick or a cool jacket

Cannot leave the house without: CitiBike key and my DJ USBs. You literally never know when you’re going to suddenly need to bike somewhere or DJ somewhere. Literally never

Style muse: Mick Jagger

I have my eyes on: A Saint Laurent bag

Beauty I can’t live without: Aesop face cream

On speed dial: Roberta’s pizza

In my downtime I: Cook, watch documentaries, and work on crafty things

Favourite city: Paris or Tokyo

Next destination: Wisconsin for 4th of July

Let me share a secret: I returned the two kittens I adopted in January two weeks after I got them. I wasn’t ready to be a cat mom (and they were readopted so it’s okay!)

Best childhood memory: Playing outside in general. Walkie talkies and such

I wish I had more time for: Being outside and using walkie talkies

I am most looking forward to: The Wisconsin road trip my friends and I are taking next week

Life motto: Always try to make everything in life as pleasant as possible

See Leslie’s life in photos: @LeslieKirch