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.
Did you have a chance to watch the Royal Wedding? From walking down the aisle to seeing the way that they looked into each other’s eyes, it was a wedding out of a fairytale. To celebrate, I thought it was the perfect time to share Alina Petra’s evening gown collection with you. Did you know that it was inspired by the Royal Wedding?!
When you need a little inspiration, put on a beautiful dress and channel your inner Princess.
Ever since I was little, my mom used to dress me up in beautiful dresses and make me feel like a Princess. When I saw Alina Petra’s evening gown collection, I felt like I was in a dream. I remember sitting at Style Fashion Week in awe. Each model who walked down the runway looked like she walked right out of a story book.
Designed in Los Angeles, Alina’s gowns are made from Italian lace. While this is her first evening gown collection, she’s been known for her sexy swimwear. She’s turned the beach into a runway with her steamy bathing suits. “This is my first evening gown collection and a definitely big step forward from being only a swimwear designer.” – Alina Petra
Personally, I think it’s inspiring to see her try something new and design evening gowns. I like how she channeled her energy into creating chic yet romantic looks. I can help but imagine what it would be like to walk down a grand staircase or attend a lavish garden party in one of her gowns.
My Top Looks:
Get to know more about designer Alina Petra and her collection through our exclusive interview:
Jenny Alweiss (Jenny A.): What was the inspiration behind this collection?
Alina Petra: The Royal Wedding. I wanted to create a very chic and romantic look.
Jenny A.: What was your biggest challenge with this collection?
Alina Petra: The only real challenge was moving the gowns from LA, where they were made to NY. I was freaking out though the entire flight thinking that my dresses are ruined!
Jenny A.: What made you decide to design evening gowns?
Alina Petra: Designing gowns was my longtime dream, so it was about time to start doing it instead of dreaming it.
Jenny A.: When did you first become a designer? How long have you been a designing for?
Alina Petra: I basically started making clothes at age 5 for my dolls, but professionally I have been doing it for about 3 years
Jenny A.: What was your favorite memory from your fashion show at Style Fashion Week?
Alina Petra: Style Fashion Week was an amazing experience for me! Mainly, because how they made me feel during the preparation for the show when things got very stressful and were feeling like everything could go wrong. But I had so much fun instead. Everyone was very cool and supportive.
I want to hear from you! What did you think about the Royal Wedding? Be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow my blog’s Instagram @newstylemode
“Give a girl the right activewear and she can conquer the world”
Active wear isn’t just for the gym anymore; it’s becoming the new fashion statement. From cute sports bras to chic leggings, athleisure is the “out of the day.” To sum it all up, athleisure is basically fashionable clothing that is made for working out. But you don’t have you don’t have to workout while wearing it, you can wear it anywhere – sitting in class, taking a walk or just hanging out with friends.
During New York Fashion Week, I saw Janelle FUNARI New York’s performance wear on the runway at Couture Fashion Week. It’s modern. It’s sexy. It’s stylish. Oh, and it just so happens to be designed for the “city warrior” A.K.A the busy New York City girl. Which is what I am.
How cute?! Some of the models walked onto the runway with adorable little pugs. They were wearing designer outfits from Janelle FUNARI New York, showing off the collection’s fashionable dog apparel. Just imagine… you and your dog can look stylish together! #twins
While I typically don’t walk out of the house in just a sports bra and leggings, I could really imagine myself wearing the Janelle FUNARI New York collection. The collection spoke to me. It’s an all-black women’s collection which gives off a feminine yet edgy vibe. I really like the outfits – between the blazers and leggings – It’s definitely something I would wear while walking down New York City.
“Our Couture Athleisure collection was created to empower all who wear it and inspire woman to feel confident, comfortable and elegant! We want our fans to be able to wear our line day to night and to feel like a warrior!” – Janelle FUNARI New York
I really like how this collection can be worn both in the day time and at night. Most of my days are pretty jam-packed so having an outfit that would be perfect for all times of the day sounds like a dream.
My Top 3 Looks on the Runway:
This is my favoritelook from this collection. When I saw model Madison Puricelli walk down the runway, I saw myself.
2. Matching outfits?! Just imagine you and your dog are both wearing designer apparel. How cute? But seriously … adorable
3. To me, this outfit says “Don’t try and mess with me. I am fierce.”
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“….Beauty is being able to walk a runway and silence a room by your presence…” – Victoria Whetzel
When model Maggie Doyle walked down the runway at the PLITZS Fashion Marketing’s model competition, captured my attention. I remember sitting at the Judges’ Table and looking into the chattering audience. The moment Maggie walked down the runway, the room they were silent. All eyes were on her.
Even though the PLITZS Fashion Marketing competition was Maggie’s first runway experience, she held herself like professional model. She was able to capture the room.
Almost a month later, when I was at New York Fashion Week, I was very happy to see her walking for Emuleos’s Tougher Than Diamond Collection. It’s really exciting to know that I was there to see the first step towards her modeling career. She walked for PLITZS Fashion Marketing during New York Fashion Week!
Jenny A (Me) : What was it like to win the Women’s Model of the Year Award at PLITZS Fashion Marketing’s model competition? Maggie: It was such an incredible feeling! I had no prior experience modeling but I worked hard leading up to the show. I practiced my walk and selected outfits for each category that would best represent me and that would look good on the runway. When I heard my number being called [as the winner], it was surreal. It inspired me to pursue further modeling opportunities.
Me: What do you think about when you walk down the runway?
Maggie: Before stepping onto the runway, I think about what I need to do in order to best model the clothing. As I take my first step onto the runway, the only thought I have is to exude confidence. I know what I am supposed to do as a model and once I’m on the runway it’s all about delivering that. If you’re not confident, people will notice, and they won’t buy what you’re ultimately trying to sell in both a figurative and literal sense.
Question from Kristy my followers: What was your favorite item to model?
Maggie: My favorite look that I modeled in the PLITZS’s Model of the Year competition was the black formal outfit. I chose a versatile black romper with an attached skirt and heeled booties. It was a bold look and made me feel very confident on the runway.
Me: What is the hardest challenge you’ve faced so far as a model? Maggie: I think the hardest challenge I have faced as a model is accepting that I may not always like the way the clothing looks on me or how the photos turn out, but it’s part of the job. In order to be a good model, you have to wear the clothing with confidence and make it look the way the designer intended on the runway. You have to be willing to get out of your comfort zone.
Me: What was your craziest modeling experience?
Maggie: With the little experience I have had, the PLITZS New York Fashion Week show was my craziest modeling experience. Modeling for twelve different designers in the span of 6 or so hours was hectic. I had no idea what it would be like beforehand! It was crazy walking off the runway to a team of people waiting to help me change outfits, makeup, and hair for the next designer.
Me: What are your goals and dreams? Maggie: My goal in life is to help others. I plan to graduate with a degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Social Innovation. There are far too many people in this world whose needs are not fulfilled and I want to change that. My dream in life is to one day see my photos in magazines.
Me: What are your hobbies? Maggie: I like to cook. I love cooking for friends and coming up with new & healthy recipes. I also like to paint! When I’m visiting home, my mom and I paint together in her studio.
Me: What is your favorite superhero or animated character?
Maggie: My favorite animated character is probably Remy, the rat from Ratatouille. He’s so determined to be a chef despite the fact that he’s a rat. I love his determination!
Question from Gabriella my followers : Do you have a certain workout routine? Maggie: I have a very busy schedule between work and classes so a lot of the time my workout is speed walking through Grand Central to make a subway or train! But when I do have time, I go for a run or take a SoulCycle class. However, I do follow a pescatarian diet and try to cut out any processed foods which helps make up for my erratic workout schedule.
Me: If you could be a fruit or vegetable, what fruit or vegetable would you be? Maggie: I would probably be a mango since it’s delicious and versatile. It also reminds me of being at the beach, which is my favorite place.
Maggie modeled for New York Fashion Week at PLITZS in Feb 2018. You can follow her on Instagram @maggiedoylem
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“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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