Model Spotlight: Diandra Forrest

Diandra_Forrest_FabMagazine_02The fashion industry is obsessed with what’s different and what’s next.  Over time, fashion’s new look or different point of view becomes normalized as the new normal or style with a twist.

Diandra Forrest’s appeal transcends traditional beauty or the fashion industry as we think we know it. With an oeuvre that projects futuristic fantasy, Diandra expands our minds beyond the tried and true.

Downloads265Diandra Forrest’s outré looks have attracted the attention of Jean-Paul Gaultier, Vivienne Westwood, V Files, and Ralph Rucci. She has had editorials in Interview, Glamour, West End, OOB, and Portrait magazines. And Kanye West and Beyonce have cast her their videos.

Fashion Reverie Celebrity Style Editor Tijana Ibrahimovic sat down with Diandra and spoke with her about walking in Jean-Paul Gaultier’s fall 2014 show, hanging with Beyonce, and her pet peeves.

Our videotaped interview says it all!! Enjoy

 

Model Spotlight: Devyn

Downloads184Are fashion reality television shows still relevant? Some would argue that they have outlived their popularity and usefulness; others contend that as long as the ratings are still good, there must be some merit.

Though some fashion reality shows have come and gone, America’s Next Top Model is moving into its 21st cycle and Project Runway is its double-digit season. The real viability test of these reality shows outside of rating wars is if the contestants gain any traction in the ever-changing fashion industry from their appearances. Some fashion chroniclers would say no; other fashion insiders might beg to differ.

Fashion Reverie is on the positive side of the chorus. During the recent New York Fashion Week, Fashion Reverie observed several models from reality television walking in the shows of Josie Natori, Betsey Johnson, David Tlale, Sally LaPointe, Love by Diego Binetti, Sergio Davila, and Desigual. And Project Runway alumnae Christian Siriano, Leanne Marshall, Michael Costello and Dom Streater all showed fall collections.

Collages279Devyn is one of those models beating the odds against fashion reality show obscurity. Since her win on the first season of The Face, Devyn has walked in shows for David Tlale, Sukeina, Cesar Galindo, Laquan Smith, Joanna Mastroianni, and as well international fashion weeks around the world. And she is still going strong.

On the eve of the premiere of the second season of The Face, Devyn talked with Fashion Reverie’s celebrity style editor Tijana Ibrahimovic about her appearance on The Face, balancing modeling and motherhood, and her continued upward mobility in the fashion industry.

Model Watch: New Model Faces for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2014

Downloads116OK, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week fall 2014 is here. And the buzz this season is centering on all the new changes and policies that have been put in place around media registration and the redesign of  “The Tents” at Lincoln Center.

With all the hoopla about the unofficial rebranding of MBFW, very few fashion pundits are paying attention to the new model faces for fall 2014. True to form, Fashion Reverie always has its finger on the pulse of all things fashion. Remember, we take you from the front lines of fashion to the front row.  Here are just a few of our favorite picks of those tall, statuesque glamazons and sons of Apollo that through their ability to flaunt a garment, seduces us to purchase whatever they are wearing. Oh, if only we could be them!!

Images courtesy of wwd.com

Images courtesy of wwd.com

Nadja Giramata

Nadja Giramata has walked in shows for Tom Ford, Carolina Herrara, Lela Rose, Band of Outsiders, Moncler Rouge Gamme, Tadashi Shoji, Suno, Temperley London, and Richard Chai Love. She has landed campaigns with Topshop and Philipp Plein and has had editorials in Vogue Italia, Husk, and Garage magazines and the Financial Times. Nadja Giramata is signed with Trump Models and Elite London.

Downloads115Holly Rose Emery

This 17-year-old beauty from Auckland, New Zealand in just the last six months is taking the fashion world by storm. She has already walked in the couture shows Valentino, Armani Prive, and Elie Saab, as well as the ready-to-wear shows of Marc by Marc Jacobs, Marchesa, Tory Burch, DVF, Theysens, Mulberry, Ports 1961, DSquared2, Trussardi, and Moschino. She has had editorials in Vogue Russia, British Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar Australia and MFF Magazine.  And she has landed an advertising campaign with RMK Cosmetics. Holly Rose Emery is signed with Next Models NY, Paris, and London.

Downloads116

Images courtesy of fashion model directory

Georgia Taylor

If being bright-eyed and bushy tailed is the order of the day in the world of modeling, then 16-year-old Georgia Taylor fits right in. For spring 2014 this gamine beauty walked in shows for Christopher Kane, Alexander McQueen, Celine, Dior, Dries Von Noten, and Acne. She has had editorials in Grit Magazine, Dazed & Confused, and Voodoo Child. She is currently signed with IMG New York, London, Milan, and Paris.

Images courtesy of Boss Models

Images courtesy of Boss Models

Aly Ndiaye

Senegalese model Aly Ndiaye is one of the fresh faces that the fashion industry is taking notice of. He has had editorials in Superior, Elegant, and Fantastics magazines. Aly has already walked in shows for V-Files, Orley, and Vantan Tokyo. Aly Ndiaye is signed with Boss Models in NYC and Major Model Management in Milan.

—William S. Gooch

 

 

 

 

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Backstage Fall/Winter 2013

Collages188Though Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week fall/winter 2013 is over, as well as London, Milan, and Paris, memories still linger. We all love the way the collections look on the runway, and the way each model brings that extra something that makes us look at silhouettes, construction, fabrications and the designer’s point of view in new ways. Still, it is not all sparkle and shine.

In Fashion Reverie’s unique way of presenting texture, nuance and a broader spectrum of perspectives and with the assistance of our photo editor, Ernest Green, we demonstrate that Fashion Week is a collaborative effort. Putting a runway show together is a lot of hard work and without the collaborative spirits of makeup artists, dressers, the ground crew, PR firms, the technical crew, and the models and designers themselves the stunning presentations that we hold near and dear to our hearts would not happen.

That said: Fashion Reverie celebrates Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week fall/winter 2013 BACKSTAGE!!

Collages184The models backstage at Porsche Design know they look good. And they do!!

Collages186Gimme head with hair, long, beautiful hair, shining, gleaming, streaming, flaxen, waxen— “Hair” lyrics from the musical “Hair.”  Hair images are backstage at Richard Chai fall/winter 2013.

 

Downloads340Mama said there would be days like this.

Downloads339First looks backstage at Malan Breton fall/winter 2013

Collages185Oh the joy, excitement, and brotherhood that comes from being in a Nautica show.

Collages182The darker the berry the sweeter the juice. Does that apply to lips, too?

—Staff

Model Spotlight: Aminat Ayinde

What ever happened to some of the top contestants from America’s Next Top Model (ANTM)? Though Lifetime and the Style Network continually show reruns from all of the many cycles, other than Fatima Siad, Molly Steenis-Gondi, Jaslene Gonzales, Eugena Washington, and a few others, most of the contestants seem to have faded into model Neverland.

Though Aminat Ayinde is still not a household name, she definitely has not disappeared into fashion oblivion. Since 2009, Aminat has walked in every New York season of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, and can currently be seen as the model of choice for Emilio Sosa on Project Runway: All Stars season 2. Just witness the fierce strut of this gamine beauty, and it is all too obvious that Aminat Ayinde was destined for a career in fashion.

Unlike some ANTM alumnae, Aminat has transcended the ANTM post-career quagmire by staying clearly focused and using her charm and intelligence to stay relevant. And she didn’t have to change her name or her look to accomplish her goals.

Aminat Ayinde graciously sat down with Fashion Reverie and discussed her post-ANTM career, her faith and her love of fashion.

Fashion Reverie: Was modeling on your radar before you became a contestant on America’s Next Top Model?

Aminat Ayinde: Fashion was not on my radar before ANTM. My career pursuits centered around becoming a physical therapist. When I was recruited for the show I was a student at William Paterson University majoring in biology and African American studies. I assumed my path in life was to get an advanced degree, get a good job and have a comfortable life.

FR: If modeling was not on your radar, did you stay abreast of fashion and new trends?

Aminat Ayinde: I always loved fashion because my mother was very stylish and often flew to Europe to buy fabric for her garments. I am from Lagos, Nigeria and most fashionable women in Nigeria get their garments made by a tailor or a seamstress because wearing tradition garments is the norm in Nigeria.  There is not a huge retail or mall culture there, which I didn’t encounter until I came to the US.

But, I have always loved fashion, especially shoes. I have recently fallen in love with Jill Sanders.

FR: That said; who are some of your favorite designers?

Aminat Ayinde: I love Isaac Mizrahi from the late 80s and early 90s. I adore Paco Rabanne, YSL, Givenchy, and Valentino.  I love designers that understand a real woman’s body. I love some African designer such as Jewel by Lisa, Duro Olowu, Tiffany Amber, and David Tlale. They are combining traditional African design with modern construction and innovative textile fabrications, which is so refreshing.

Images courtesy of “America’s Next Top Model”

FR: Most people know you from ANTM, how did ANTM happen?

Aminat Ayinde: I was scouted for cycle 12, but prior to that I had been scouted for early cycles and I always turned it down. Monique Peters, who scouted me, finally convinced me to do it. Although I didn’t have to do an open call, the casting process was still tough.

When I finally heard back from the ANTM team I had already started my senior year at William Paterson University and I didn’t want to jeopardize my academic scholarship by leaving school and going on the show. I come from a strict Muslim household and my family and community frowned upon setting aside education for something as risky as a career in fashion, especially modeling.

FR: How do you balance fashion modeling with your faith?

Aminat Ayinde: The balance for me is quite easy. If you know where you come from and you understand the essence of your faith, the balance happens organically. I don’t like to put labels on anything. I am a citizen of the world. If I happen to be around elements in the industry that go against my faith or personal choice I avoid those things without judging people. Everyone has free choice.

I avoid things that would have a deleterious effect on my health. I am a fashion model so it is imperative that I look presentable and positively reflect my profession.

FR: Now back to ANTM.

Aminat Ayinde: There was this conflict of interest between my education and the show. My boyfriend at the time talked me into it and I got a leave of absence from my university. Prior to ANTM, I had only modeled in one fashion show for my university. So, I really was very green and had next to no experience. My only reference was what I read in fashion magazines and what I had witnessed on television.

Images courtesy of Fadil Berisha

FR: What happened to your career after your turn on cycle 12?

Aminat Ayinde: After the show I went back to school and graduated with honors. I naively thought that ANTM would immediately open a lots of doors for me, but after the show I couldn’t get representation by a major agency. The rejection did not deter me and subsequently in 2009 I walked in the ARISE Africa show at Bryant Park.

Interestingly enough, I booked the ARISE show myself, not through an agent or an agency. Originally, ARISE only wanted me as their in-house fit model for all the ARISE designers; however, I used that opportunity to showcase my abilities, and I ended up walking in their show. I learned from that experience how important it is to take advantage of every opportunity, and learn from every experience.  I will always be grateful to ARISE for giving me my first opportunity outside of ANTM.

FR: Which designers have you worked with post-ANTM?

Aminat Ayinde: I have walked in every Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in NYC since 2009 and I have walked in Nigeria and South Africa Fashion Weeks. I have walked for Heatherette, Supima, Sergio Davila, Ahn Young Chee, LaQuan Smith, Korto Momolu, ARISE Africa, Zulu Rose, David Tlale, Lanre DaSilva-Ajayi and many others. I have appeared in Ebony, Seventeen, Essence, Genevieve and WD magazines, as well as some bridal magazines. And I booked all these shows and magazines without an agency. I really want aspiring models to know that if you cannot get agency representation, do not give up.

Image courtesy of Keith Major

FR: You are Emilio Sosa’s model on the current Project Runway: All Stars. How did that come about?

Aminat Ayinde: The producers of Project Runway also produced cycles of ANTM. One of the casting directors who knew from ANTM asked me to try out for Project Runway: All Stars season 2; and they cast me. What is great about All Stars is that you work with the same designer throughout your tenure on the show.

It is also great to be back on primetime television. Some people may not agree with me, but if you are smart, television can open a lot of doors for you as a model. So many more people will get to see than will ever flip through the pages of a fashion magazine or attend a runway show.

FR: It is important as a model to have a sense of your own personal style. That said; what is your own personal style?

Aminat Ayinde: It is so important for an industry model to have a sense of their own personal style because in a major market there are so models that have charm, beauty and a great personality balanced with a great sense of style. You have to stand out among the plethora of working models, and one way to get noticed is to have your own personal style.

Now, that does not mean you should wear too much make-up and jewelry; you still want to look industry appropriate. But, you need a style that speaks to your personality and your perspective on fashion.

My personal is sophisticated, sexy chic. And I love to mix and match high-end designers with affordable clothes that show off the feminine silhouette. I actually have booked jobs just walking down the street based on my personal style.

FR: What’s next for you?

Aminat Ayinde: My immediate goal is to get agency representation with a top NYC agency and to walk in major shows in London, Paris, Milan and other major international cities. I would also like to transition into more television and film work.

—William S. Gooch

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Spring 2013 Backstage

Though Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Spring 2013 is over, as well as London, Milan, and Paris, memories still linger. We all love the way the collections look on the runway, and the way each model brings that extra something that makes us look at silhouettes, construction, fabrications and the designer’s point of view in new ways. Still, it is not all sparkle and shine.

Ernest Green, Fashion Reverie’s photo editor has provided some backstage images that illustrates that Fashion Week is a collaborative effort. Putting a runway show together is a lot of hard work and without the collaborative spirits of makeup artists, dressers, the ground crew, PR firms, the technical crew, and the models and designers themselves the stunning presentations that we hold near and dear to our hearts would not happen.

That said: Fashion Reverie celebrates Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Spring 2013 BACKSTAGE!!

Stephen Burrows spring/summer 2013 backstage

These Stephen Burrows beauties are ready for their close-up Mr. DeMille!!

Libertine spring/summer 2013 backstage

Libertine proves that spring/summer 2013 is truly all about color!!

Gant by Michael Bastian spring/summer 2013

 The inspiration for Gant by Michael Bastian was the Galapagos Islands and man’s need for survival and backstage is where the magic all started to take place!!

Perry Ellis spring/summer 2013 backstage

Though Daniel Silver and Stephen Cox stayed with Perry Ellis’ neutral palette this season the new twist they have put on the iconic brand seems to be working. And it all started backstage.

Nicholas K spring/summer 2013 backstage

Nomadic 70s chic was Nicholas Kunz point of reference for spring/summer 2013. The collection was chic, sophisticated and where fashion is heading. The slouchy aesthetic has never looked so cool!!

Duckie Brown spring/summer 2013 backstage. Photos courtesy of Ernest Green

This season Duckie Brown demonstrated that classic silhouettes and an edgy point of view don’t have to be separate bedfellows.

—Staff

Model Spotlight: Laura O’Neall

Modeling looks like such an easy, glamorous, cushy job, and the fashion reality shows would have you think just that. True, it can be glamorous and exciting, but it is a far cry from a day at the beach. Though some models live a luxury life and make a lot of money, most working models have a sporadic income while waiting for that one big break. No matter how beautiful or handsome these lovelies look in our favorite glossies, it takes a lot of hard work and perseverance to build a successful career. Still, most models will say it is worth all the rejection and hard work. And instead of living lives of quiet desperation, these courageous beings forge ahead, go after their dreams and live their passion.

Fashion Reverie gives its readers an inside look into the world of models by posting interviews and profiles of models from top agencies. Enjoy!!

Image courtesy of AIM Model Management

Fashion Reverie: How did you get started in the industry?

Laura O’Neall: My mom signed me up for a back-to-school fashion show for JC Penny’s when I was 6 years old and I just loved it. I thought it was like dance and ballet and just pirouetted down the runway. Later on I was signed to an agency in Houston, but there really wasn’t a whole lot of work. Then I later moved to NYC and signed with AIM Model Management.

FR: How long have you been with AIM and has modeling lived up to your expectations?

Laura O’Neall: I have been with AIM over a year and it’s been really good. Every day is different. I have lots of work and I have been working with really wonderful designers. Everyone has been a joy to work and there has been very little angst and drama.

Laura O’Neall walking in the Three as Four runway show

FR: Which designers have you worked with so far?

Laura O’Neall: I worked for Three as Four, Doo Re Mi,  Erin Fetherston, M. Patmos, Concept Korea, which I have walked for three times. I have also worked for EMU Australia.

FR: What are some of the designers that you would like to work with that you haven’t worked with yet?

Laura O’Neall: I would love to work with Riccardo Tisci at Givenchy, Rick Owen, Alexander McQueen, and Stella McCarthy.

FR: What would you say is your signature look and what about your look is appealing to certain designers?

Laura O’Neil: Designers usually see me as a Tilda Swinton type or as a very edgy, editorial model. I love that designers see me as an edgy, romantic type and that I project a very strong personality that goes beyond standard beauty. This point of view and my dramatic red hair keeps separates me from a lot of the other models.

FR: What do you like more, runway or editorial modeling, and why?

Laura O’Neall:  I started out on runways which in my mind when I was young was a form of dance, so that initially was the appeal. Runway is very fast and there is the performance element. But, now that I am older I also love photo editorials because I  get to become a character and I can see that character develop in photographs.

FR: What has been your most interesting experience as a model?

Laura O’Neall: I would say my most interesting was the scuba diving shoot in China. Though I had been swimming my whole life, scuba diving and modeling under water is another thing.  I had to look like I was  not holding breathe underwater in a massive bridal gown. And it was shot in a public pool, so there other people in the other part of pool looking bewildered and amused as I was struggling to pull it off. But, I pulled it off and it turned into a beautiful editorial.

Image courtesy of AIM Model Management

FR: You were a classically trained dancer and we know that some agencies shy away from models with extensive dance training because sometimes the training can make a model look too much like a dancer. How have you gotten around that?

Laura O’Neall: Dance can be a really good basis for posing and modeling. But, you have to find a way not to look like a dancer and move more naturally. Dance has not been an impediment for me because it taught me to be more aware of my body and move my arms and hands gracefully.

FR: I don’t know if you watch fashion reality shows, but if you do, how is working in the industry dissimilar from those types of shows?

Laura O’Neall:  It is completely different. On those shows they are trying to show the extremes of the fashion industry. Now, I have had those extremes, like learning how to scuba dive in three hours because I had to shoot an editorial under water, but those extremes don’t happen very often. You don’t have crazy challenges like that every week as presented on fashion reality shows.

FR: Unfortunately, there is a stereotype that models are not intelligent, and that they are just walking coat hangers that use their great looks to make a lot of money. How do you feel about that perception?

Laura O’Neall: Every one stereotypes or prejudges another person for a variety of reasons and you cannot control that. I don’t let a lot people, until I get to know them well, know that I am model because people have mixed feelings about modeling as a career choice. I would rather people get accustomed to my personality first and realize that I am not the negative model stereotype. I am not modeling to have a fast, glamorous life; if that is why someone enters the industry they won’t last very long. I love fashion and I want to have a long career.

Image courtesy of fashionmodeldirectory.com

FR: What would you be doing if you weren’t modeling?

Laura O’Neall: That is hard to say because I have been modeling since I was a child. Modeling has been a great exercise in cultural studies because I have traveled to so many interesting countries and met people from so many diverse cultures that perhaps I would not have met if I were not in this industry. So, may be I will become an anthropologist after modeling.

FR:  Do friends and family assume that because you are a fashion model you can get them free product, introduce them to celebrities or get them into fashion events? 

Laura O’Neall: People assume that because I get to wear these amazing clothes that my wardrobe is full of very, high-end luxury items. Occasionally I do get free clothes from designers but often enough it garments from previous seasons, or product that is not selling well.

FR: What’s next for you?

Laura O’Neall: Well, of course Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is next and I am now preparing to go on castings.

—William S. Gooch

 

Image courtesy of AIM Model Management

 

 

New Fresh Face: Dana Sass

 Fashion Reverie: How did you become interested in modeling?

Dana Sass: I was modeling as a child, and Ford wanted to sign me but I would have had to move from Madison, Wisconsin to NYC or LA when I was only 10 and my mother was not down with that! I moved to NYC three years ago and kept getting approached by photographers to shoot with them and found I really enjoy modeling and decided to make a career of it!

FR: If you weren’t modeling what would you be doing?

Dana Sass: That is a hard question, because I am doing everything I want right now. I love modeling and I am also working as an intern with fashion designer Loris Diran.

FR: What is currently playing on your I-Pod?

Dana Sass: On my I-Pod I havr Bad Girls playing, and my I-Pad has some Skrillex blasting!

 

Stats

Height: 5’8
Hair: blonde
Eyes: grey
Waist: 24″
Hips: 33″
Bust: 32″
Dress size: 2
Shoe size: 8

—Staff

AIM Model Management’s August Stephanie

Modeling looks like such an easy, glamorous, cushy job, and the fashion reality shows would have you think just that. True, it can be glamorous and exciting, but it is far cry from a day at the beach. Though some models live a luxury life and make a lot of money, most working models have a sporadic income while waiting for that one big break. No matter how beautiful or handsome these lovelies look in our favorite glossies, it takes a lot of hard work and perseverance to build a successful career. Still, most models will say it is worth all the rejection and hard work. And instead of living lives of quiet desperation, these courageous beings forge ahead, go after their dreams and live their passion.

Fashion Reverie gives its readers an inside look into the world of models by posting interviews and profiles of models from top agencies. Enjoy!!

 

Fashion Reverie:  How did you get your start as a model?

 August: I am of Haitian descent and I was discovered by Inez Bonilla of Painted Faces Model Management.

FR: Has modeling live up to your expectations?

Auguste: Like anything in life, modeling is what you make it. I never take anything for granted; I am savoring every experience and every moment of my career.

FR: What designers have you worked with so far?

 Auguste:  I have worked for Natori, Juma, Laura Siegel, just to name a few. I have also had editorials in Essence and I have been on the cover of TSR magazine. Overall, I have had very good experiences, and I always enjoy working with friendly people and being transformed by makeup and great clothes.

FR: What is your funniest modeling experience?

Auguste:  Once I asked a makeup artist for makeup remover, and she told me it’s her job to remove my makeup. So, I waited and waited and she never came back. I thought it was funny, me sitting there when I could’ve removed my own makeup.

FR: Who are some of your favorite designers?

 Auguste:   I adore Essence and Valentino, Yves Saint  Laurent, Garavani, Ralph Lauren, to name a few.

FR: Which designers or brands would you like to work for?

Auguste:  I would like to work for Tommy Hilfiger, Yves Saint Laurent, and Christian Dior.

FR: What do like more, runway or modeling for editorials and campaigns, and why?

 Auguste:  I like runway because it’s quick; (laughter) you walk and it’s over. But I would like more campaigns because a picture can last a lifetime, and campaigns also pay well.

FR: What do you plan to do after modeling?

Auguste:  When you model it is very hard to plan for another career because unlike a 9 to 5 job, you don’t know when will work again after your last project.  But, if I were to have another career, I would love to work with children.

FR: What is your favorite city?

Auguste:  That is a hard question because though I live in NYC, at heart I am a country girl and I love the outdoors.  I guess you can say I have learned to adapt and find exciting things to do in whatever city I am in.

 FR: How would you describe your personal style?

Auguste:  My personal style depends on my mood, but I usually keep it simple and casual.

 

Images courtesy of AIM Model Management

FR: If you could do something else other than modeling, what would you do?

 Auguste:  That is easy, I would own a farm.

FR: What’s next for you?

 Auguste:  The world is my oyster. I am cherishing life and make the best of all my opportunities.

—Staff

 

 

 

Model Spotlight: Georgette Badiel

Fashion Reverie seeks to give its readers an accurate perspective on a model’s life. It may be glamorous, but the fame and accolades are the result of a lot of hard work and sacrifice. Still, those glorious creatures who give character, movement and shape to a designer’s vision continue to excite, enthrall and inspire.

 

Fashion Reverie: How did you get your start as a model?

Georgette Badiel: I start modeling when i was 15 years old. I started in Ivory Coast with the local designers.

FR: Is this something you always wanted to do?

Georgette Badiel: No, I was dreaming to become someone who had a big responsibility in an office like a banker, doctor … not a model.

Georgette Badiel on the cover of ARISE Magazine

FR: Does modeling live up to your expectations?

Georgette Badiel:  I have had some great modeling experiences, but I’m always looking to expand and grow.  I am continually looking to work with more designers, brands, photographers and magazine that I haven’t work with yet.

FR: How long have you worked with Zang Toi and what is it like working for him?

Georgette Badiel: I have been working with Zang Toi for five seasons.  I have had such a great experience working with him that I always want to be a part of his collections every season. I always have so much fun working with Zang. He’s funny, specific, and always calm! Zang always make me look divine and special. I love him!

FR: What sets Zang Toi a part from other designers?

Georgette Badiel: Zang Toi is very special to me. He gives a lot of interest and attention to the people who are a part of his team and his models. When I go to his showroom, everyone is always in a good mood and that’s a reflection of his personality. He’s a good person inside and out. I also love his involvement in different charities.

FR: What is your favorite city?

Georgette Badiel: My favorite city is New York City.

FR: What is your funniest modeling experience?

Georgette Badiel: When i first come to New York, I didn’t speak English well. I went on a big casting for Russian Vogue. There were about more 10 girls lined up at the casting and I was the last in line. The photographer asked us if we knew how to roller skate, every girl said yes, and I followed along and said yes, as well! The same day, my agent called me and informed me I had booked the job.

When I got on the set, I had to model in roller skates. I was horrified and asked for high heels instead. Of course, I had to use the skates. It was a frustrating shoot, but I got through it. Looking back it was funny!!!

FR: Who are some of your favorite designers?

Georgette Badiel: This season, I fell in love with the collections of Zang Toi, Chado Ralph Rucci, Imane Ayissi, Ozwald Boateng, Laquan Smith and Jewel by Lisa.

FR: What designer or brand would you like to work for that you haven’t worked for already?

Georgette Badiel: I would like to work for many designers from Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, the House of Christian Dior, Hermes, to Jean Paul Gaultier …  The list goes on and on.

FR: What do like more, runway or modeling for editorials and campaigns, and why?

Georgette Badiel: I love runway, but I would like to get more campaigns!

FR: What do you plan to do after modeling?

Georgette Badiel: I have already started to work on my career post-modeling. I love lingerie and Africa, so, I have combined those two loves in my lingerie brand, Georgie’s Garden.

Images courtesy of Georgette Badiel

FR: If you could something else other than modeling, what would you do?

Georgette Badiel: I have my brand Georgie’s Garden … I created my foundation Models 4 Water to provide access to clean water to the people of my country Burkina Faso and the world… I believe I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing right now. Maybe inn my next life I will be a doctor.

FR: What’s next for you?

Georgette Badiel: I believe good things are coming! There is something about modeling that people should now; you never know what you are doing the next day. Anything can happen!

My friend, co-founder Heide Lindgren , through our charity, Models 4 Water www.models4water.org want to give clean water to people who don’t have access to clean water. Something as basic as clean water can be a huge challenge for impoverished people. As a child, I had to walk a long distance to get clean water. It’s very difficult to see young girls who don’t have hope in their lives.  Through Modes 4 Water, I am trying to give hope!!

Georgette Badiel is currently with London’s FM Model Agency.

—Staff

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