Nikki Grahame in OK! Magazine this week.
This week Nikki talks to OK! magazine (5 page spread) about her lifelong battle with Anorexia. In the magazine photoshoot they have dolled her up as the 60's idol Twiggy, in a 30th birthday party style shoot.
Happy Birthday, Nikki!
I've just had my 30th. It didn't feel the best. I think I am starting to be a bit more grown up. My mum has moved away to Dorset so I'm having to be a bit more responsible these days. I really miss her - she used to help me with my accounts and all my money stuff and mortgages and things like that. In ten years I'd like to be rich, living in Paris with a hot French guy.
Did you enjoy posing for the shoot?
Twiggy was my idol. I still do adore her. it was fun dressing up like that - half of my wardrobe is 50's and 60's anyway.
Twiggy got her nickname because of how skinny she was, was her look dangerous for you because of your eating disorder?
I don't think it was dangerous. When I was getting ill as a girl I used to love Karen Carpenter and try to copy her more then Twiggy. Twiggy was healthy. But there was a film about the life and death of Karen Carpenter and I used to watch it over and over again and became slightly obsessed with it.
Most people would watch it and think, I don't want to go down that path...
I used to watch it and think, wow, I want to be like her. I wanted to starve myself to death. That's probably where it all began, really. Maybe it was a coincidence that the film came out when I was getting ill. Someone of normal mind set would see her life as a warning, but someone of an anorexic mind set would find it appealing.
Where are you now with your anorexia? There have been reports that you have been struggling...
I did have a bit of a tough time a month or so ago. I was rewriting my autobiography and I relived a lot of demons. I had to edit the whole thing by myself and take out the bits I didn't feel were relevant anymore. But I've got loads of good support networks around me, and really good friends.
Are you back to a healthy weight?
I'm never going to be a proper healthy weight but I'm getting better then I was.
You were weighing all your food and exercising obsessively...
I'll always go to the gym, but the weighing of food has calmed down a lot. I went for pizza last week. Someone got me a birthday cake and everyone had a small piece and I finished the rest off myself.
What did you think about Vogue deciding they wouldn't feature unhealthy thin women on its pages? No heroin chic or size zero...
I think it's about time. It's fantastic that they are doing this. It should have been done ages ago. Vogue is one of the most elite fashion magazines so hopefully everyone will follow suit.
Would this have helped you?
To be honest, I think it's a chemical imbalance. I was born with this illness. But I do think the images encourage it.
Do you help a lot of young girls with eating disorders
I get loads of emails from young sufferers, people who have read my book and become inspired by me. It's really rewarding and it makes me think all the campaigning I do is worthwhile.
What revelations can we expect in your new book Fragile, Nikki?
My sister wrote the foreward, which is important to me. For years she's not been able to speak about my illness. She found it really hard going through it all. It has affected our relationship. She resented me for a long time - she is two years older and she saw it as if I was always getting all the attention because of my anorexia. We had a heart-to-heart about it and I wanted her to write about her own experience.
You must be thrilled to be auntie now - has it made you broody?
I love my nephew so much. When the time comes I will adopt from the age of five upwards. Some of these kids might come from damaged backgrounds... That doesn't worry me because I come from a very damaged background myself. If they are five and over, most of the hard work is done. I can't conceive, I won't adopt right away, I'm not ready to settle down yet.
Are you enjoying playing the field?
I love being single. I met a hot Parisian guy on my birthday. We kissed at midnight and he spoke French to me. It was so romantic! He said all kinds of seductive things.
'Voulez vous couchez avec moi, cesoir?' (Giggles) Something along those lines. But I didn't, I was a good girl. We stayed in touch but I think it was just a holiday romance. He was gorgeous.
Are you looking forward to Big Brother coming back?
Always! It's the best reality show on telly, isn't it? I love it! I will be watching every episode!