This is one of my favorite times of the year! To celebrate, I’m sharing my behind the scenes exclusive with supermodel Farah Zulaikha.
Farah is one of the most open, edgiest yet sweetest models that I know. When I was first thinking of creating my fashion blog, I didn’t know where to start. I remember walking into the makeup room at New York Fashion Week and finding Farah. I knew that I wanted to start a fashion blog but i didn’t know if I was truly ready. I ran the idea by Farah to see what she thought of it. Farah loved the idea and encouraged me to just start… all while getting her makeup done!
Would you believe two years later, we had our exclusive interview in that same make up room?!
The video above shows my exclusive behind the scenes look with Supermodel Farah Zulaikha while she was getting ready for designer Alexandra- Popescu-York’s fashion show in New York City.
It’s that time of year again! New York Fashion Week is right around the corner, school’s back in session…and models from all over the world come into New York City to audition to be in the big Victoria’s Secret fashion show!
Last year I blogged about what it was like to be at the Victoria’s Secret castings. This year, I didn’t know what to expect. I only had 20 minutes to be there. But what can you really do with 20 minutes? Little did I know that in that short amount of time, I was able to meet Victoria’s Secret model Sadie Newman. Some may call it destiny and some may just say it’s a coincidence, but last year Sadie was the first picture in my Victoria’s Secret post. Now a year later, she’s posing with me in the middle of Manhattan.
If the Jenny last year could see the Jenny this year, she’d be shocked. So much has changed in my life, it’s incredible. Many of you have been asking where I’ve been… The truth is I took the summer to refocus on myself. Just a few days ago, I received the sweetest phone call from one of my original models, Shinice Kelly. She told me that she is actually putting her first fashion show together in March. It really touched my heart to hear what an impact my blog had on her life. It’s moments like those that really remind me how important my blog is.
So with that, I just want to thank you for all of your love and support.
You can read last year’s post about what it was like to be at the Victoria’s Secret casting auditions here.
“Nothing is impossible. The word itself says ‘I’m possible’” – Audrey Hepburn
I can’t tell you how proud I am of model Charlotte Smith. She’s made something that might have seemed impossible into a reality. She walked for her favorite designer Dan Liu during New York Fashion Week. Here is the inside scoop of what it was like!
Catching up with Charlotte Smith:
Jenny Alweiss: How was modeling for Dan Liu?
Charlotte Smith:Absolutely incredible! He’s my favorite designer. What I love about Dan is that he cares about every model. He won’t put a model in a dress he doesn’t think fits. He wants the model to look incredible. He puts heart and soul into every look and it shows!
Jenny: What inspired the collection?
Charlotte:The Spy Who Loved Me movie with James Bond. His collection was a powerful Bond girl. It was sexy. We wore sunglasses and a headscarf on the runway which was based off of Audrey Hepburn. I adore her.
Jenny: What is Dan Liu really like?
Charlotte: He’s so talented. He has a strong vision and brings out your confidence. He told each model “this is what you’re doing” and explained what he wanted. He boosted the overall moral and he’s very enthusiastic. He was so excited to be there. He told us for this collection, “no smiles, you’re dangerous – you’re a badass spy!”
Jenny: What was it like to be on the runway?
Charlotte:I was on cloud nine the whole time! I wore one of his signature pieces – a jacket with a bird on the back. Dan chose me to be the one to rip off my sunglasses and wink at the end of the runway.
Jenny: What were you thinking about when you were on the runway?
Charlotte: I was imagining myself as a spy. I kept thinking “I am a spy. I am a bad ass. I’m so happy to be here.”
Jenny: Were your outfits comfortable to wear on the runway?
Charlotte: Yes! His clothes are incredibly well made.
Jenny: Speaking of being a spy, do you have a favorite spy movie?
Charlotte: I love the James Bond movies. They’re great!
Jenny: Were there any funny moments at the fashion show?
Charlotte: Yes – Madeline, one of the models needed to borrow my heels even though were in the same show! It was chaotic. Also, there were like 5 people working on me at the same time – spraying my hair, touching up my makeup, and helping me get into the clothes. They were just zipping up my dress right before I had to go.
Jenny: What were the other models like?
Charlotte: They’re so sweet. We were all supportive of each other. We got waffles together after the show with all of our hair and makeup still on!
Jenny: Question from Igor in the audience: What drives you?
Charlotte: I have a mantra “I’m working to be the best version of myself.” You can’t change yourself for a designer. You have to stay true to yourself. You are enough and if a designer doesn’t like you, don’t take it personally. Always keep your options opened. Be your best self.
“Upon the onslaught of doubt, lift your chin and raise your gloves.” – Emuleos
Channel your inner boxer because designer Emily Prozinki’s Tougher Than Diamonds Collection by Emuleos was kickin’ ass at New York Fashion Week. My jaw dropped open when the first model strutted onto the runway and modeled like a female boxer. She wore boxing inspired hand wraps and threw some “punches” in front of the cameras while wearing a beautiful off the shoulder black dress with diamonds on the side of her torso.
Glamour meets a fighter. Each piece was a mix between a stylish diva and fierce warrior. I noticed that all of the models were wearing either wearing boxer inspired hand wraps or bedazzled boxing gloves. Every model wore a sparkling visor protecting her eyes along with one of the shimmering outfits from the collection. I really love the fact that each outfit has a killer name like Dimond Class, Rival, Monarch and Showstopper.
When I saw Emuleos’s collection on the runway, I immediately knew that I needed to get the inside scoop. The collection represents facing yourself and shattering your inner demons. Designer Emily Prozinski asked me “what’s tougher than diamonds? Women are!” She explained to me how as woman, we often doubt ourselves and we shouldn’t. We should say “I can” and not the words “I can’t.” All of her pieces were influenced by female boxers who fight their battles. The message behind her collection was extremely empowering.
Her collection really spoke to me since the past few months have been challenging for me both personally and professionally. I have to remember that I am tougher than diamonds and no matter what comes my way, I need to stand my ground. Sometimes you just have to raise your gloves and fight for what you believe in. I can tell you that I might not literally be wearing boxing gloves but there is a fighter inside of me. I am so glad that Emuleos expressed the female warrior though her collection.
Behind the Scenes:
Here’s an exclusive interview I had with designer Emily Prozinski where she explains the inspiration behind her collection. Standing next to Emily is model Alicia Ann, modeling the outfit named Diamond Class, the collection’s signature look. This is the first time that I added subtitles to one of my videos, so if you would like to use that feature, it is available to you. Just click the little “cc” button on the bottom of the video and the subtitles will appear.
Back in January, model Victoria Summer Whetzel and I were both fashion show judges for PLITZS Fashion Marketing’s Model of the Year competition. I admire how sincere she is. First off, she had a really cute Betsey Johnson telephone purse which has a removable phone set handle that plugs into her cellphone. Basically, her purse can turn into a working phone. How cool? But in all seriousness, Victoria is a really sweet and down to earth model.
During the competition, she pointed something out to me that I didn’t realize. For the Model of the Year competition, there were 3 categories – petite female models, male models and 5’8″ female models. She mentioned how PLITZS Fashion Marketing didn’t have a plus-size category for curvy models to compete in. As a curvy model, Victoria hopes that the next year’s PLITZS Fashion Marketing’s competition will have a plus-size/curvy category.
Jenny A. (Me) : When you were a judge at the PLITZS Fashion Marketing competition, what were you looking for in each of the model candidates?
Victoria Summer Whetzel: I was mostly looking for someone who could command the space as soon as they hit the runway. This is the modeling industry, so everyone is beautiful. But I believe the standard of beauty is changing. It’s more than a pretty face and a physique that lives up to society’s standards. Beauty is taking care of yourself and being proud of who you are. Beauty is being able to walk a runway and silence a room by your presence. Beauty is being kind to others and being kind to yourself. That’s what I look for in a model.
Me: Is there something you are looking to see more of on the runway? A specific look, personality, walk…etc?
Victoria: I would love to see more plus-size and curvy models of course. Models like Ashley Graham, Denise Bidot and SO many more. Plus-Side models are body activists and I think their activism has moved mountains in the modeling industry. They have paved the way for many emerging models, including myself. I hope one day I can be a leader in this movement too.
Me: You’re trying to break into the modeling industry as plus-size model. What is the hardest challenge you’ve faced so far?
Victoria: I think the hardest challenge I’ve faced so far, is proving to myself that I have what it takes. Far too often, we are the ones holding ourselves back. Sometimes it’s important to take a moment to remind ourselves that we are enough and celebrate ourselves for all that we have to offer.
Question from Liana in the audience: What kind of food do you usually eat? We hear all these stories about how models don’t eat to stay thin because “thin is in.” How do you cope with that kind of mentality?
Victoria: Being thin has never been a part of who I am, so I just try my best to put foods into my body that make me feel good.
Me: Do you eat certain foods before modeling?
Victoria: I don’t eat anything specific. I eat whatever I feel will make me do my best work that day.
Me: If you could be a fruit or veggie, what fruit or veggie would you be?
Victoria: I would be a watermelon. They have a ton of seeds that represent growth and they are better when shared in the summertime. 🙂
Me: Overall, do you find it difficult to be a plus-size model?
Victoria: Being a plus-size model is hard. Being any kind of model in this industry is hard. But you just have to remember that you get to tell people who you are. They don’t get to tell you who you are. One example of this comes from a recent experience here in New York City.
I attended an open call for an independent designer’s showcase for their swimsuit line. Most of the girls at the call were sizes 00-6, but there were a handful of plus-size girls there too. Probably around 5 or 6 in all. All of the petite model’s took turns modeling a bikini from the designer’s line. The designer then decided she wanted me to also model one of her designs. She said I was the most ‘fit’ of the plus-size girls and she wanted a curvy model. She gave me a swimsuit to put on, and as soon as she handed it to me, I realized it was the same exact bathing suit she had the petite models wear. This swimwear was not designed for girls like me. It was made for a model probably around a size 6.
At first, I felt embarrassed because the swimwear didn’t fit, but I put it on anyway. That day, I saw my first real glitch in the industry. I was being asked to wear this suit, so the designer could say she designs for plus-size models. But I am not a Size 6. I am a Size 12 and I am grateful for designers out there who celebrate me for being just that.
Victoria modeled for New York Fashion Week at PLITZS in Feb 2018. You can follow her on Instagram @theofficial.vsw
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It’s finally here! Happy Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show day! I have been looking forward to this since August when I was at the castings. You can read about my experience at the castings here. Since then, I have been following the Victoria’s Secret Angels to see the inside scoop. I heard that Victoria’s Secret Angel Lais Ribeiro is going to be wearing the $2 Million Champagne Nights Fantasy Bra. Oh la la.
I decided to dedicate this week’s posts to the Victoria’s Secret Shanghai Fashion Show. I guess you can say the next few blog posts will be Angel themed.
Here are the important details for tonight’s show:
The show is tonight, Tuesday November 28 at 10/9C on CBS.
Musical guests include: Harry Styles, Miguel, Jane Zhang, Leslie Odom Jr., and Yundi Li.
I just finished watching the Go Behind The Scenes Of The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Dress Rehearsal sneak peak for the VS Fashion show – it was fabulous. I always love seeing the excitement backstage. There is so much that goes on behind the scenes of a fashion show between changing outfits, hair & makeup and getting ready to walk. After looking at all of the backstage Bombshell moments, I had to share some of my favorite photos with you.
I can’t wait to see the show. It looks like it is going to be spectacular! I hope that one day I can attend a Victoria’s Secret Fashion show. But for now, I guess cuddling up in my pajamas while watching it on TV will have to do.
What do you think? Are you excited? Who’s your favorite Victoria’s Secret model?
Keep calm and gobble on! This year my friends and I decided to be trendy and make our own Friendsgiving. We wanted to do a little something special for the holidays. There were about 10 of us and we all had to bring our own dish.
My mom and dad helped me put a delicious assortment together. My mom baked her famous broccoli quiche and my dad raced to get some boxes of donuts. My parents are the best! I think the new motto should be keep calm and call mom & dad.
Honestly, it was so heartwarming to see everyone come together and celebrate. While we were all eating I looked around the room and just thought about how thankful I am.
I just want to take the time to thank all of you for being so wonderful. I hope you have a fabulous Friendsgiving, Turkey Day and Thanksgiving!