Nikki DeLoach Talks ‘Awkward’ Season 5, ‘Sirens,’ Baby Son Hudson And Fashion: Exclusive Interview
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After five remarkable seasons, MTV’s hit show “Awkward” is coming to an end - leaving the careers of its stars at an all-time high. We called up Nikki DeLoach, who plays Lacey Hamilton, to talk about “Awkward’s” final season, her upcoming role on “Sirens,” her sixteen-month-old son Hudson and her stellar sense of style.
Hi, Nikki! How are you?
I am so good! I had a music class with my son, I’m doing interviews today, I just picked up some sushi and then I’m on to a table read for “Awkward.”
“Awkward” was just recently picked up for a fifth and final season! What do you hope to see happen in the final season?
That it ends up not being the last season and we go for five more seasons! And I hope, really and truly, that Lacey is able to send Jenna off to college and have their relationship be in a good place and maybe, for once in her life, to feel like she did something right with her daughter. Also, I would love for Lacey not to get too fat while being pregnant!
How do you feel about leaving Lacey behind?
I was just having this conversation with Barret [Swatek], who plays Ally. I was saying to her, “I’m so sad. I’m already so sad and mourning the loss of her.” I’m going to miss her so much. She’s been one of the best characters I’ve ever gotten to play in my life. I’m going to miss everything about her. I don’t know what I’m going to do! I hope I don’t go in a deep, dark depression.
On “Awkward,” you play Jenna’s mom, and the series has been filming so long that when you started, you weren’t a mom, but now you are. Did having your son change how you see Lacey?
Because of the way I work as an actor, I don’t really substitute my own life experiences. I build a character from the ground up and give them their own set of life experiences, so I can really inhabit the character instead of bringing my own life into it.
But I will say that is that becoming a mother has really taught me to be in the present moment as much as possible when I’m on set, because it’s really hard as a mom when you’re working to feel guilty and feel like you should be home with your child - but then when you’re home you’re thinking you should be working. I heard this really smart, wise guy say that balance is a load of crap. You’ll never be able to find balance. The best thing you can do is whatever you’re doing at that moment in time, just to give it 100% and be in the present moment. I’ve learned how to do that since becoming a mother and that’s how it’s affected how I work on the show.
You blog about parenting on SheKnows.com. What inspired you to start sharing those experiences?
When I was pregnant, I would go online and read up on being a parent and the preparation for what it looks like, and it’s all about, like, how to make the perfect homemade baby food. For me, I’m more of a messy human. I don’t always get things right and I make mistakes. I was looking for someone who was saying, “I fell on my face but I picked myself up and it was okay in the end,” but I wasn’t really finding that. So I began writing down my own stories and my own experiences and SheKnows is the perfect home for that.
You’re also very active on social media - you have almost a million Instagram followers! How do you find time?
I really think it goes back to balance. I’m not going to lie, it’s really hard and it’s a struggle I deal with every day, wanting to be there for my son and wanting to be a good wife and a good friend and daughter and sister and all of these things, but also honor what I came into the world to do myself: ever since I was a kid I wanted to entertain and I wanted to tell stories, and that’s been such a huge part of what makes me happy and my soul happy.
It goes back to what I said about balance, which is the best advice I’ve heard is that balance is a load of baloney. Throw it out the window, and every day wake up and say, “I’m going to be with my son in the morning and give him 100%, and then I’m going to set aside an hour to sit down and write my blog, and I’ll give that 100%, and then I’m going to go work and do a table read for ‘Awkward’ and give that 100%.” It’s really about being in the place you’re in in that moment of time in the most present way possible, and knowing at the end of the day that you’re doing your best. You have to know yourself that you’re doing the best you can. My grandfather always told me, if you’re doing the best you can, nobody can expect anything else and you shouldn’t expect anything else from yourself.
Your next role is on “Sirens,” which will air on February 10. How did you get involved with the show?
There's this amazing writer, her name is Annabel Oakes. She wrote on “Awkward,” so I had gotten to work with her before. And the showrunner for “Sirens,” Bob Fisher - who, by the way, I have to give a shoutout to, is one of the most kind, wonderful showrunners in the business. I also worked with him on an episode of “Traffic Light” many years ago - I got an offer from him to go on the show and play this mother who is overworked and overtired and exhausted and she’s a single mom with a young daughter. She is trying to throw a spend the night birthday party for her daughter, and along the way, something happens and the EMTs have to be called, who are played brilliantly by Kevin Daniels, Kevin Bigley and Mike Mosley. She ends up becoming best friends with the character Kevin Daniels plays - he becomes her new gay best friend, which he so desperately needs.
Let’s talk about fashion! You’ve been walking a lot of red carpets recently. How do you go about choosing your look for each event?
I have to give a lot of credit to my stylist, Hellin Kay. We’ve worked together for three or four years now, and she really knows me and knows what looks good on me, but she also pushes me to go out of my comfort zone sometimes. I have to give a lot of credit to her. For me, when I’m going to choose something, I want to wear something that’s comfortable - I’m not going to stand in a pair of heels that will kill my feet or wear a dress where I’m not going to be able to breathe - but mostly, I want something that I feel represents who I am. I want it to be a little feminine, sometimes a little edgy or sexy, but mostly classy and feminine. I’m not a girl that goes over the top, but I want to find something that I feel really good in and that gives me the confidence to step on that red carpet.
Well, you always look great! That’s exactly what I was noticing when I was looking at your recent photos: you have this very classic, elegant style and then every once in a while there’s this edge to it, which is very cool.
Yeah! Usually the edge comes in when Hellin is pushing me to wear something that’s a little bit different. At first, I’m like, ‘I don’t know!’ but then I put it on and she’s like, ‘You can do this!’ and I trust her. We have this great relationship. We have a lot of fun doing it, and I think that’s the most important thing - not to take any of it too seriously. But I’ve learned that over the last couple years, having a great fashion moment can really do a lot for you and your career. People take note and think, if you look good and present yourself well, it’s a good image of who you are and other people notice. It matters, and it’s important to both have fun while doing it and to represent yourself as best as possible.
Who are your style icons?
I love the Hepburns - Audrey Hepburn and Kate Hepburn. For Audrey, there was such a classic style to her. And for Katharine Hepburn, she was so bold in her choices and it was a time where women weren’t really wearing pants and she said, this is my way and I love that about her. Her personality really came through in the clothes she chose to wear. I also love Jane Birkin, she’s one of my favorites. Those three ladies can do no wrong in my eyes.
What are three things in your closet you can’t live without?
One is my J. Brand skinny jeans. I wear them so much that one of my pairs just ripped the other day when I put them on - they’re like five years old and I wear them so much that it’s a testament to J. Brand that they didn’t fall apart before then! I also value a really good T-shirt or a really solid blazer. You also need that basic little black dress that you feel sensational in, and you can dress it up with a pair of heels or wear a pair of tights and booties. If I have my pair of jeans and a T-shirt and blazer and a great dress that I feel good in, I can take those items anywhere I go. They’re always in my suitcase anytime I travel.
Is there anything else we should mention today?
Talking about “Sirens,” I want to say what an amazing experience it was working on the show. It really has something so special, and I hope that people tune in and watch or set their DVR. The three guys on the show are the nicest guys, but they’re also some of the funniest and most talented people I’ve worked with. They have a great group of people - Annabel Oakes as a writer and Bob Fisher as a showrunner - and I hope people keep watching and that it’s on for years. It’s a really special show.
We’ll definitely tell people to tune in - Tuesday, February 10 at 10/9C on USA!
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Feb 09, 2015 02:54 PM EST