There’s a reason why Taylor Swift has graced so many covers of DOLLY over the years - she’s one of the most down-to-earth celebs we know! From schoolyard bullies to boys who broke her heart, Taylor's talked about it all, both in song and in her ever-candid interviews. Now, as she readies for the release of her fourth studio album, Red, Taylor shares her latest lessons in love and life.
What inspired the album, Red?
"The inspiration came mostly from the relationships in my life. Most of them were fat-paced and out of control, resulting in a lot of good and bad feelings. In my mind, that intensity looked ‘red.’"
Do you have a ritual when it comes to songwriting?
"I don’t have any specific rituals and I’ve never written two songs the same way. An idea could hit you in the middle of the night, or you might say something in a conversation that would make a great lyric. I’ve written songs in airports, tour buses, hotel rooms and on my bedroom floor. Writing songs is my way of dealing with love, feelings and relationships.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learnt since the last album?
"I’ve learnt so many lessons in the past few years. I’ve experienced great joy and great pain, and had to learn how to balance the two. I’ve learnt that love has absolutely no pattern, and no one will ever be perfect. Mostly, I’m just proud that this is the diary of my life. And I figure that if I rite songs and my life and my life is always changing, my music will be too."
How have you stayed grounded through all the success?
"I’ve always just figured that life will be much more enjoyable if I stick to what I love. I love music. I love my family. I love my friends. I love my fans. I love dresses and winter and cooking. I don’t necessarily love going out into noisy bars, so I don’t do it."
So what do you get up to when you’re just hanging out?
"My friends and I like to talk, vent and laugh about everything from life, to love, to relationships, to work. And we love coming up with activities like face painting, cooking something new, or playing games. My friends love to be spontaneous, loud and fun. That’s why I love them."
What’s your number one rule when it comes to friendships?
"I think it’s important to keep friends around you who are brutally honest. It’s easy to gravitate towards the people in your life who tell you exactly what you want to hear, but that’s not always the best thing for you. If one of your friends has the nerve to tell you, ‘No, I don’t think you did the right thing,’ it can be a good thing for your character. I also don’t get caught up in trying to trying to be cool. The coolest people I know don’t care about being popular or trendy."
So what makes Selena Gomez the ultimate BFF?
"Selena and I are like sisters. We tell each other everything and laugh for hours about stupid inside jokes we’ve had to years. She knows my quirks and I know here, na dit’s so great to have a friend who know your storyline."
So many girls get super nervous around guys. What’s your advice for staying boy-confident?
"My advice about boys has to do with how you prioritize them. They can be a part of your life, but never let a boy BE your life. They can live in your world, but never make a guy your world. Knowing who you are and being independent and strong on our own will be attractive to the right guy; one of my goals is to always be OK with who I am, aside from love and boys. I love for someone who has passions that I respect and his own career. Someone who loves what they do is really attractive to me."
What’s the best way to deal with a broken heart?
"When someone has affected me emotionally, the only way for my to get past i or make sense of it is to write a song. And time is a big healer too."
What’s your advice for someone having a touch time as school?
"I’d tell them they’re not the only one who feels out of place. Everyone does. Also remember that the friendships you should focus on are the real ones, and that high school isn’t everything!"
How would you describe your style?
"I would define my fashion style as feminine, retro and classic. I have so many dresses ad skirts in my closest. My favourite thing to wear is a dress. It’s my immediate go-to-piece."
What’s your latest DIY project?
"My last DIY project was blackberry jam. Everyone loved it! I made labels that said things like ‘I don’t think you’re ready for this jelly’ and ‘jam session.’ And then laughed, by myself, in my kitchen."
Taylor's Hit List
Forget raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens! Here are a few of Taylor's favourite things.
Fragrance:"I like a daring fragrance that’s sweet-smelling with some warm tones. Right now I’m wearing my new Wonderstruck Enchanted perfume."
Thing In My Pantry:"Olive oil. I use it to cook a lot of recipes."
Breakfast Cereal:"Cinnamon Toast Crunch."
Book:"The Hunger Games or To Kill a Mockingbird."
Time of Day:"Morning."
High School Teacher:"Mr. Schwabe, my criminal justice teacher. He used to be a Chicago police officer and told us heaps of amazing stories. It was the most exciting class I ever took."
Gift I’ve Received: "My parents have a video of me getting my first guitar under the Christmas tree when I was about nine. I look PSYCHED. And it ended up being a gift that changed my life."
TV Show: “Friends.”
Flower:"I love hydrangeas - they remind me of the East Coast."
Precious Stone:"I love opals. When I was in school and didn’t have any friends, my mum used to take me to jewellery stores after school and let me look at the opals. She knew they were m y favourite, and that seeing them make me feel better. They’ll; always make me think of how wonderful she was to do that."
Animal:"My cat, Meredith!"
Inspirational Quote:"It’s from one of my songs but whatever. ‘People throw rocks at things that shine.’"