Katherine von Drachenberg
Kat Von D
Montemorelos, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico
She dropped out of school at the age of 16 to become a tattoo artist.
Tattoo Artist, Model, Musician, Reality TV Star, Entrepreneur, Author
- Father – René Drachenberg (Doctor, Christian Missionary)
- Mother – Sylvia Galeano (Christian Missionary)
- Siblings – Karoline (Sister), Michael (Brother)
- Others – Clara von Drachenberg (Grandmother) (Painter, Pianist, Teacher)
5 ft 8.5 in or 174 cm
62 kg or 137 lbs
Boyfriend / Spouse
Kat Von D has dated –
- Oliver Peck (2003-2007) (Married) – Oliver, who is a widely traveled tattoo artist and is every bit talented as Kat is considered to be, had a rocky marriage due to Kat’s alcoholism, self-centered behavior, and body image issues. He said he was happy to support her through her troubles but wanted a divorce after finding out that Kat cheated on him. They split in August 2007.
- Alex Orbison (2007-2008) – Kat dated American musician, producer, and director, Orbi for about a year. He was often seen on her LA Ink reality show when the two were dating. An inexplicable lack of interest on Kat’s part led her to break up with Orbi in 2008 leaving him heartbroken and resentful. Orbi confessed to a friend via a MySpace post that Kat made major promises of love and he fell for them very seriously after staying single for 5 years. He felt betrayed by how conveniently she fell out of love with him considering how smitten she was when they first met.
- Ville Valo (2008) – Since Kat is extremely fond of Scandinavian bands and spends a lot of time with musicians from that territory, there were RUMORs for a brief period that she might be dating Finnish musician, Ville Valo. But, Kat went public with her relationship with Nikki Sixx soon after, so that rumor did not last.
- Nikki Sixx (2008-2010) – Kat justified on her MySpace account back in 2008 that dating Nikki, co-founder of Motley Crue band, was a result of their long-term acquaintance and friendship. Kat was a huge fan of Nikki’s music and they got involved only after her alignment to Orbi was history. In 2009, Kat could not stop singing the praises of Nikki stating, she learned a lot from him and the two shared a mutual love for reading books. However, this was not meant to last and right in the beginning of 2010, Nikki announced an amicable split.
- Jesse James (2010-2011) – Jesse James, the famous reality star and motorcycle and car customizer, cheated on his then-wife, Sandra Bullock in 2010 which ended his 5-year long marriage to her. Kat Von D was Jesse’s rebound right after the couple split and gained much notoriety in the tabloids as a result. Kat felt a genuine sympathy for Jesse since the tabloids were projecting him as an absolute villain. They got engaged in January 2011 only to call it off in July later that year. Though Jesse managed to win Kat in August, but before the year was over, Kat publicly revealed that Jesse cheated on her with multiple women that led to a messy, hostile end to their brief relationship.
- Joel Zimmerman (2012-2013) – Kat’s love for music helped her find love again with famous Canadian DJ and Music Producer, Deadmau5 (or Joel Zimmerman). But, even this relationship was every bit volatile as the previous one. The two got engaged and Kat happily talked about her wedding plans on the Wendy Williams show. They unexpectedly called off their engagement in November 2012 but got back together as the year came to an end. Six months later, a bitterly upset Kat permanently ended her relationship with Joel stating on her Twitter account that his infidelity and lies were to be blamed as the primary reason behind their split.
- Steve-O (2015–2016) – Kat started dating Hollywood stuntman, Steve-O, most famous for his crude comic reality stunt series and film series, Jackass. Steve confirmed his relationship with Kat on Instagram reaffirming his faith in Kat’s lifestyle and values. However, by March 2016, both Steve and Kat deleted all the pictures with each other from their respective social media accounts confirming the end of their relationship.
- Rafael Reyes (2016-Present) – In 2016, artist, author, and musician, Rafael Reyes first met Kat Von D when she appeared in one of his music videos. Then, he wrote another song especially for her and she contributed her vocals to that song also. They married in February 2018. Later, in June 2018, they threw a party for their marriage. The couple has 1 child, son Leafar Von D Reyes (b. December 2018).
Race / Ethnicity
Multiracial (Caucasian and Hispanic)
Her parents were born in Argentina and share German, Italian and Spanish ancestry.
Her original hair color is light Ginger Brown.
She usually dyes it black among other colors such as red, blonde or bright ginger.
- Fair skin which appears even paler with her usual bright, Gothic makeup.
- Tattoos on her left temple, below the eyes and the entire body.
35-27-36 in or 89-68.5-91.5 cm
6 (US) or 10 (UK) or 38 (EU)
9 (US) or 6.5 (UK) or 39.5 (EU)
She endorses her own brands by the name of Kat Von D which represents:
- A makeup line launched in 2008 for Sephora cosmetic store, which is against animal testing and contains no animal related by-products.
- A limited edition clothing line released in fall 2011.
- Merchandise in her name sold at her Los Angeles Tattoo parlor.
She was though raised a Christian.
Best Known For
Being a part of the reality shows which showcase her craft as a tattoo artist in Miami Ink (2005-2007) and LA Ink (2007-2011) responsible for the popularity of her Los Angeles tattoo parlor High Voltage.
Her first studio album was Funking released in May 2011.
Played the character of Vanya in the horror film, The Bleeding (2009).
First TV Show
In 2005, she appeared in two episodes of the news show Fashion News Live.
- In the past, Kat has battled weight gain, alcoholism, and potential drug abuse.
- In 2010, when she was dating Jesse James, her ex-husband released a picture of a very overweight Kat accompanying an interview to InTouch. He revealed that Kat was obsessed with the idea of getting liposuction done and often consumed pills to lose fat.
- While filming LA Ink, Kat also revealed on camera that she had a cyst in her ovaries which had to be surgically removed.
- Though Kat has not confirmed speculation about all the surgeries she might have possibly undergone to enhance her appearance, she has now put her troubled past and associated bad habits behind.
- She eliminated her morning cup of coffee and fixes her own breakfast each day.
- Her diet is completely vegan now, though she keeps a track of her macros and ensures they are balanced.
- She consumes the remaining meals of the day at any of her preferred Los Angeles restaurants.
- Before heading to work at High Voltage, she goes for an exercise class at a gym nearby which usually comprises of cardio, Pilates or Yoga.
Kat Von D Favorite Things
- Handbag – Her American Flag bag made by Agatha Blois
- Designer – Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood, Vintage clothing, Thomas Wilde, Independent underdogs
- Tattoo – Her father’s high school graduation photo on her right forearm.
- Music Genre – Heavy Metal
- Female Vocalist – Gin Napolitano of Concrete Blonde band
- Band – Kent (Swedish Band), Motorhead, Motley Crue
- Song – Seed of Memory by Terry Reid
- Composer – Ludwig Von Beethoven
- Makeup Product – Eyeliner
- Skincare Product – Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub
- Perfume – Miss Dior Cherie
- Restaurant – Real Food Daily on La Cienega Boulevard
- Tattoo Artist – Kore Flatmo
- Shoe Type – 70’s Platform Heels
- Actor – Will Ferrell
- Movies – The Devil’s Rejects (2005), Zoolander (2001), Immortal Beloved (1994), The Last Unicorn (1982), This is Spinal Tap (1984), Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
- Country – Finland and other Scandinavian countries
- Animal – Cats
Source – LA Times, Allure, Into The Gloss, The Carousel, ET Online, YouTube, The Kit, TLC
Kat Von D Facts
- Katherine moved to Los Angeles at the age of 4 with her family.
- Kat was sent home as a punishment when in first grade because she was unable to spell her own last name.
- Her love for tattoos and makeup is primarily fuelled by her love for drawing.
- As a child, she wanted to be a doctor like her father because she thought one cannot make any money by drawing.
- Kat drew a tattoo for the first time at the age of 14. She drew a Misfits skull on her friend Oliver Guthrie’s leg.
- Her first ever tattoo was the letter J on her ankle drawn in old-English style in memory of her high school boyfriend, James. She eloped with him to Georgia but returned to California by herself just after a few months.
- After two years of drawing tattoos through hit and trial, Kat landed her first job at Sin City, San Bernardino at the of 16. She started making enough money to help her parents financially.
- While working at Sin City, Katherine became known as Kat Von D because a regular young client could not pronounce her full name.
- Kat is a published author. She released two books to her credit. High Voltage Tattoo (January 2009) and The Tattoo Chronicles (October 2010).
- She was shocked to unexpectedly stumble into her high school boyfriend, James after 10 years when he showed up at one of her public appearances during her book tour. Though she recognized him, she could not have felt more disconnected.
- She is extremely appreciative of hand-made clothing and objects.
- Kat loves skateboarding and used to skateboard to work when she was younger.
- She has lost count of the number of tattoos on her body. She’s got herself inked by more than 40 different tattoo artists.
- Her mother tongue is Spanish.
- She took lessons to play the classical piano at the age of 5 and continue to practice ever since.
- Kat’s parents were deeply religious, so she grew up largely listening to classical (Beethoven & Chopin) and religious music.
- Despite her busy schedule, she tries to include one hour of vocal exercises and two hours of piano playing every day.
- Although she loves kids, Kat claims that she was sure since the age of 7 that she will never have kids of her own because she considers herself more of a globe-hopping gypsy.
- She also owns an art gallery cum boutique named Wonderland Gallery right next to her tattoo parlor, High Voltage.
- Kat was unhappy with the direction and manipulated editing on the reality show Miami Ink. To gain creative control in her own reality series, LA Ink, she produced 3 of its 4 seasons until she decided she could not spare the time to continue.
- On LA Ink, she set the Guinness World record of giving the maximum number of tattoos (400) in 24 hours. The record was broken by her ex-husband, followed by many others.
- Visit Kat’s website @ katvondbeauty.com.
- Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and YouTube.