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InStyle cover girl: Blake Lively
Blake Lively

At just 24, Blake lively has the full attention of Tinseltown heavyweights and fashion-world luminaries alike. And she's loving every minute of it.

Lively is having one hell of a year. Having appeared as silver-spooner Serena van der Woodsen in TV's slick drama series Gossip Girl since 2007, over the past 12 months she's hit the big screen in a big way. With film roles in tween flick The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and its sequel behind her, as well as smaller roles in more serious fare like The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, late in 2010 she turned in a much-hyped performance as a drug-addicted mother in Ben Affleck's The Town. Then, she gave action a spin, as a strong-willed fighter pilot in the mega-budget Green Lantern (in cinemas now), all the while banking more parts—she'll play a grifter in next year's indie film Hick, and star in Oliver Stone's upcoming drugland drama, Savages. Lively also made the transition from fashion favourite to style icon, dominating the red carpet in a series of spectacular couture gowns and being appointed by Karl Lagerfeld to front the advertising campaign for Chanel's Mademoiselle handbag collection. And the California-born beauty, who's famously rumoured to be dating 36-year-old actor Leonardo DiCaprio, even ranked on the "2011 Time 100", Time magazine's annual list of the most influential people. This prompted director Baz Luhrmann, who is currently directing DiCaprio on the Australian set of The Great Gatsby remake, to say, "Every now and then, an actor or actress manages to somehow channel the vitality of youth—that indefinable, natural, unprocessed glamour full of possibility and filled with anticipation for an endless future...[Blake] makes you feel that she, and life, are going to go on forever." And yet, she's only just begun. Here, she talks fashion moments, movies and men with InStyle.

I've heard you described as "the Lady Gaga of Hollywood", for your ability to change your style with great ease. Would you agree? "That's so funny! I wouldn't dare to compare myself with Lady Gaga; she is the queen of fashion extravaganza! I really love how she limitlessly experiments with all elements of fashion. I would never go that far, but I do also enjoy trying new things all the time."

Your wardrobe on Gossip Girl [on Fox8] is renowned for always being of-the-moment. Do you choose these looks yourself? "Unfortunately, I don't have enough time for that. I usually get home really late when we're filming and instantly drop into my bed. But I work with a great stylist on set. She knows exactly what I want and sometimes also surprises me with great looks. When I see something I really like, I usually take a photo and send it to her so that she can get it for me. Pretty convenient! I love to mix different patterns, colours and fabrics and I'm always looking for new and stylish combinations. That's what makes fashion so much fun."

Was it working on Gossip Girl that first sparked your love of fashion? "No, I inherited it from my mother Elaine. My mum used to be a model and actress, and always enjoyed sewing my clothes herself when I was a kid. It was a ritual for us to roam vintage stores once a week. She inspired me to dress myself more unconventionally and to mix different styles. Gossip Girl, of course, gave me the chance to develop my passion even further. In the show I play the rich New York It-girl, who always wears the latest designer fashion. Every day I'll find new amazing pieces by the best designers in the world in my set closet. Quite a paradise! I'm getting paid to wear fancy dresses in front of the camera. What else would I want?"

What are your thoughts on being considered a fashion icon? "I feel very honoured if people think that way of me but I never tried to be one. I understand why people like to see me as a fashion icon—after all, I have my own role models as well."

Which style icon inspires you? "I've always adored Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn. The style of their era was timeless and I'm very happy that a lot of modern designers still draw inspiration from them."

Who are your favourite designers? "That list is endless. Luckily, there are so many talented and creative designers. I love the elegance of Zuhair Murad, the extravagance of Marchesa and, of course, Chanel. But I also like to wear Valentino, Zac Posen and Yoana Baraschi."

Pick up the latest issue of InStyle to read more of our interview with Blake Lively.

Blake Lively InStyle Australia
Blake Lively for Chanel
Blake Lively's style secrets
On My Mind: Blake Lively
Blake Lively paints the town red
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