The Misshapes


Leigh Karl Instagram Photo 2

We’ve been in serious holiday mode as of late, and we couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate the end of the year than with some killer party playlists. So, we asked some of our favorite musicians to do just that. Our Lady DJ series will feature 10 straight days of curated tunes to get us in the seasonal spirit. First up: Leigh Lezark from The Misshapes. She’s a part of the NYC-based trio who created sounds for some of the biggest runway shows (think: Zac Posen, Viktor & Rolf, and Henry Holland). When Leigh isn’t throwing down some stellar beats, she models for Gap, H&M, and DKNY (just to name a few!) and works as Chanel’s beauty ambassador. Luckily, she found time to talk all-things music and fashion and created her ultimate holiday playlist just for us.

(Photo by Karl Lagerfeld)

Tell me about the name The Misshapes. How did you come up with it and why does it work for you guys?

Misshapes comes from a Pulp song. We liked the way the named sounded and the song lyrics about kids that don’t fit in coming together, sort of like our party.

How did you all meet?

We met at a night club in NYC going out as teenagers.

How has the NYC DJ scene evolved since you started?

We actually started DJing in 2005/2006 and at the time there weren’t many DJs focusing on new music. When we began DJing we really wanted to support new bands and musicians, so we relied heavily on the internet and social media to find the newest music. The internet has really created this global shift in how we get our music and the type of music people are listening to. It’s allowed artists like The XX or Lana Del Rey to reach an international audience and break into what would have been considered mainstream. It has also given way to to this new wave of EDM (for better or worse—you choose).

The Misshapes Photo

(Photo by Inez & Vinhoodh)

Tell us about your process for creating soundtracks for runway shows. Do you see the collection first and get inspired from that? Or does the designer tell you want they want?

It depends on the designer. We usually look at mood boards, sketches, fabrics and any finished pieces during the weeks leading up to the show. Some designers know what kind of tone they want and others look to our suggestions. We collaborate with the designer and their team just as a composer would with a director and producer for a film.

How does music influence your personal style?

I don’t necessarily think either has influenced the other in a specific way, but music, art, and fashion have always gone hand in hand. Each complements and influences the other on many levels. Kanye West and Lady Gaga are perfect examples of how all three are now just part of any artists’ repertoire.

How did you meet Karl Lagerfeld? How did you end up becoming a Chanel ambassador?

I met Karl a few years ago when he invited us to his Lagerfeld runway show in Paris. He’s photographed me multiple times—most recently for the Little Black Jacket book he produced with Carine Roitfeld. I was in a film for the Chanel Saint Tropez collection where he had me play Coco Chanel, Bianca Jagger, and Colette. We also DJ tons of Chanel and Karl events all over the world.

Any super awesome gifts from Karl?

Karl gave me the Chanel gun heels, which are always a favorite. They are one of the limited-edition Chanel heels, and they literally have metal guns in place of the heel.

Leigh Little Black Jacket

(Photo by Karl Lagerfeld)

What’s a typical Saturday night for you guys?

No day is ever typical. We are either DJing somewhere in the world or on a plane. If we’re in NY, we’re most likely hanging out with friends at Paul Sevigny’s new club Paul’s Baby Grand in Soho/Tribeca.

You’ve been traveling so much lately! What would was your highlight of 2013?

A highlight of 2013 was going back to DJ in Bali, Jakarta and Thailand. Visiting all the beautiful temples and getting to feed baby tigers with bottles.

What’s coming up next for you in 2014?

Next year we have our first compilation/remix album coming out and we’re really excited for that. We’re starting 2014 in Tulum with the XX, Grimes, John Talabot and FKA Twigs performing at the Maya Ruins on the beach. After that, we’ll be in NYC preparing for fashion week in February!

Leigh’s Holiday Playlist:

Mariah Carey – All I Want for Christmas
Madonna – Santa Baby
Elvis – Blue Christmas
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – All I want for Christmas
The Raveonettes – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
Julian Casablancas – I Wish It Was Christmas Today
The Knife – Reindeer
Eurythmics – Winter Wonderland
The Waitresses – Christmas Wrapping
Drake – Hold On, We’re Going Home
Wham! – Last Christmas
Destiny’s Child – 8 Days of Christmas
TLC – Sleigh Ride
R Kelly – World Christmas
Ludacris – Ludacrismas
Jackson 5 – I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
Marvin Gaye – Christmas in the City
Brenda Lee – Rockin Around The Christmas Tree
Frank Sinatra – Let is Snow! Let it Snow! Let is Snow!
David Bowie & Bing Crosby – Little Drummer Boy/ Peace on Earth
The Polyphonic Spree – Happy Xmas/ War is Over
Bruce Springsteen – Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
Jose Feliciano – Feliz Navidad