More Q & A With Johnny, p. 3
From love to Louboutins, Johnny answers questions from fans.
Q. Your changing hairstyles are often a topic of conversation. What is your Alt. regimen?
I use the Soothe shampoo and conditioner
because it has peppermint in it and makes me tingle. For styling I tend to use Eric Alt himself, but when I’m left to my own devices I use Silken spray
to smooth me out, and then Poof
for some much needed, well, poof.
Q. If you could have dinner with any three people, alive or deceased, whom would you invite?
A. Lady Gaga, Karl Lagerfeld, and Catherine the Great. I think my reasoning behind these people should be pretty understandable if you know me!
Q. What do you think could be done to return figure skating to its former popular glory?
A. I’ve thought about this for years, and it’s the same as fashion: One day you’re in, and the next you’re out. When people find figure skating attractive again, it will be back. Figure skaters, at least in America, are constantly told what to do and how to act, and the end result is that they become a weird sparkly marching band of robots — and in the time of Lady Gaga, reality-TV stars and sky-high stilettos, people aren’t responding to the wholesome, family image that figure skating so desperately tries to uphold. Figure skating is a glamorous, backstabbing little world that would put The Real Housewives to shame, but nobody ever gets to see that because the kids are afraid they’ll lose a point or a supporter or a future sponsor. When freedom is achieved in figure skating, it will be popular again in America. I think I do a good job of putting the spotlight on our sport, for better or worse, and I hope other skaters can learn to be free and unafraid.
Q. Absolutely, completely, utterly OMG-I-have-to-be-buried-in-them favorite pair of sunglasses?
A. I will be buried in a simple pair of vintage black Chanel plastic frames with understated gold CC on the side.
Q. Is there one skating costume you look back on and think, “What the hell was I smoking?”
Many of them. I love my costumes and what they added to my performances, and each one is a huge part of me, but one that I absolutely can’t get over is the final costume
I created for “Poker Face.” It was black LACE, with strips of flesh down the back of the leg like a pin-up girl, a weird pseudo-corset thing happening, and, as if that wasn’t enough, giant rolls of film connected to three layers of shoulder pad on the shoulders. It was such an aggressive costume, and so heavy that I couldn’t jump or perform in it comfortably — but I own it. I looked like a crazy helicopter / drag queen / smart car, but I tried.
Q. What do you hope people will remember most vividly about you?
A. I hope people will remember that I was someone who pushed the envelope of what my craft expected, who did things his own way, and at the end of it all, was great at what he did.
Q. Do you ever have days where you can simply sit and do nothing? Or even if you could, is that totally against your nature?
A. I don’t have those days anymore. When in heavy training, I would take at least one day a week to do nothing but relax, rest my muscles, and decompress. Now I am booked every day from morning to night, and I’m lucky if I even have time to get to the grocery store for milk. When in training, I take rests because I have to for my profession, they’re enforced resting days, but in general it is against my nature to sit and do nothing. If I am bored and have nothing to do, I find ways to busy myself, and living alone everything ultimately rests on me to get it done. I’m like a shark: If I stop swimming, I’ll die.
Q. Do you have a favorite website (other than your own, of course)?
I’m kind of obsessed with Women’s Wear Daily‘s website
and also Hotels.com
. Even if I’m not going someplace like Tiraspol or Islamabad, I want to know what hotels they have.
Q. You’ve spoken a great deal about the way your parents’ different parenting styles were such a positive influence on you. What kind of parenting style will you use with your future children? What do you most hope your spouse will contribute?
A. The older I get I tend to think I will probably be a single parent. I am not opposed to finding a husband or wife, but I don’t know if I’ll hold onto someone forever. I think I would use the things from my parents that helped me along the way with my child. Discipline from my father and a free spirit from my mother. Of course I would spoil my kid to no end, and they’d be trilingual and have so many amazing characters and aunts and uncles to learn from. My mom is actually very excited for me to have a baby one day so she can teach him/her the ways of Weir!
Q. There is A LOT of whipped topping in your refrigerator in the Season 1 finale of BGJW. Discuss.
A. Ha ha! When that scene was filmed, it was just before the Olympic Games and my diet was in overdrive. If I’d had a very good day of training, I would allow myself a small bowl of whipped cream as dessert. It seems silly, but I loved it! I know you were expecting a dirty response!
Q. What is most likely to make you laugh? Most likely to make you cry?
A. I think I’m pretty poised and don’t usually chortle at just anything, but if I’m caught off guard, anything can hit me. A facial expression, a dirty joke, or a funny accent can send me over the edge if I’m not expecting it. I am constantly laughing at inappropriate times — as Kathy Griffin calls them, “The Church Giggles.” I cry a lot. I think I cry the most when I am nostalgic and longing for a feeling I’ve felt or want to relive. I also cry when I get very angry.
Q. What was the last book you read? What was your favorite book when you were a child?
The last book I read was Bloodlands
by Timothy Snyder. My favorite book growing up was When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit
Q. As someone who lives and breathes fashion, could you imagine sacrificing your vision to fulfill someone else’s idea of “you,” even if it allowed you to attach your name to a major label?
A. I have never and will never sell out. I believe in what I can bring to the table, and it is impossible for me to fulfill what someone else wants me to be. Nothing feels better than finishing a performance or a job and knowing you gave your maximum effort and did it the way you believed is right. My art is my own. Whether I completely destroy it or create something great, it is mine.
Q. You’ve done a beautiful job on Yuzuru Hanyu’s costumes. Have you designed for other skaters as well?
Thank you. Yuzuru is a great skater and really one of my favorite young athletes to continue the legacy of great artists in figure skating. I was so inspired to do his costume design. This season I’ve also designed for Ksenia Makarova
and Natalia Popova
in collaboration with Nina Petrenko. Maybe next season I will do many more!
Q. When playing Mario Kart, which character and vehicle do you most often choose?
A. I actually have my own character set up. His name is Nicky, he wears all black, and he has big green eyes and crazy lashes.
Q. Your skin is beautiful. What’s one super-secret product or strategy you use? (“Genetically blessed” does not count.)
A. No matter how tired or jet-lagged I am or how much champagne I’ve had, I ALWAYS wash my face and moisturize every morning and night. My life is so crazy right now that I need some structure no matter where I am in the world, and there’s nothing I look forward to more than my nightly come-down of showering, lotioning, putting on my pajamas, and watching an episode of something totally unrelated to my life. I’ve been insane about skincare since I got my first “spot” when I was hitting puberty and I vowed never to have one again. I’d say my go-to product is Clé de Peau’s “La Crème.” It makes me feel beautiful.
Q. You’ve spoken about wanting to create a new style of skating. Any hints you can share? Is this a change in technique? Artistry?
A. Designing a new style of skating for myself won’t be a difficult transformation. I’m a sappy romantic and obsessed with all things elegant, so that will always be my soul style. But on the ice you need to play many roles, and I hope I can adapt many of the things I’ve learned from the other art worlds of acting, fashion, music, and art to my skating, and come up with some kind of Johnny Weir hybrid.
Q. How tempting is it to simply pack up and move to Moscow?
A. Every time I am in Moscow, I want to be there forever. I love living in America and I love my country, but moving to Moscow always seems like a good idea. I always feel soothed and happy being there and seeing my friends and looking for life-changing moments. I want to be a Muscovite someday — not forever, but long enough to feel like I achieved another dream. The more I travel, the more places I fall in love with, and I either need to marry very well or win the lottery to live in all the places I love!
Q. What is the last thing you think about before you fall asleep? The first thing you think about when you wake up?
A. I’m an insomniac and hyperactive, so the last thing I think of before I sleep is usually, “God I hope I sleep.” When I wake up, no matter what, the first thought I have is, “I’m late!”
Q. What has been your greatest joy up to this point?
A. My family and friends, my circle, bring me the greatest joy in life. I try to be mother hen to everyone and nothing makes me happier.
Q. Gloves or mittens? Cake or ice cream? Ninjas or pirates? Ocean or pool?
A. Gloves as long as they fit tightly. Ice cream unless it’s competing with the vanilla meringue cake from Cipriani because that is the only cake that trumps ice cream. I don’t have a preference between ninjas and pirates, but if I had to choose I’d say pirates because they have fabulous jewelry. Ocean or pool? Neither. I’m terrified of water and am convinced that Jaws lives in my bathtub.
Q. What is your favorite part of Fashion Week?
A. I love the pageantry of Fashion Week. Everyone gets out their best coats, their best heels, every hair and makeup person is booked, and it’s all to sit front row to watch a parade of beautiful models selling the art their respective designers have created for the world.
Q. What helps you the most when you feel sad, depressed, or uncertain?
A. I give myself ten minutes to reflect on why I’m upset, find my inner rage, dance with it for a few minutes, and let it go. I am too busy to get hung up on being depressed. I am strong in that way. I don’t wallow in self-pity. I figure out what the problem is, change it if it’s possible, attack it if it’s not possible to change, and move on.
Q. Best thing about Australia besides Matthew Mitcham?
My favorite thing about Australia is the warmth there. People are so friendly and open, and it’s something you don’t experience everywhere in the world. People honestly want to help you, and they have the most lovely accents. I think that because Australia is so far away from everywhere else, the people are more unaffected by the world and therefore have kinder spirits. Maybe I’m wrong, but it’s something I felt. I love Australia so much and hope to live there someday, even if for a short time. In addition to human warmth, a short list: koalas, the candy, air quality, and, of course, Matthew Mitcham
Q. What is the most difficult thing you’ve ever had to tell someone?
A. Saying “I love you” to someone not in your immediate family is pretty hard to do, and terrifying.