From left: Donna Karan Pre-Fall 2011; Oscar de la Renta Resort 2011
Where are you right now?
I’m sitting in my apartment in Williamsburg.
Do you have a favorite spot in your neighborhood?
There’s this café called Blackbird, which is really cute and reminds me of a European or French café. They have crepes, and sometimes there’s a piano player playing music. And then there are a few restaurants . . . I’m a vegetarian, so I really like Bliss, a vegetarian place, and some other Thai and Japanese places.
How long have you been vegetarian for?
A year. I was raised [mostly] without meat — my parents mainly made pasta without meat every night, so since I didn’t really grow up with it, I didn’t really like it so much. And then a year ago, it was really strange — I was in a plane, and I got chicken, and I looked at the chicken, and I thought it just looked so gross. And then I felt like, well, I’m kind of half vegetarian [already], so I decided I’m not going to eat meat and chicken anymore, period. I eat a bit of fish because otherwise I feel really weak. I’m not vegan. I eat cheese and eggs and yogurt.
We heard you just came from Stockholm. You were shooting for H&M?
Yeah, I was shooting for H&M. This was for the catalogue, but I shot the campaign earlier this month.
How long were you in Stockholm for?
Two days. It was really nice because I had some spare time, and I went swimming and to the sauna and dinner and drinks with the other model [Clement Chabernaud]. It was a really relaxing time. The sauna, I never realized how good it makes you feel. You’re glowing after.
From left: Jason Wu Resort 2011; Chanel Fall 2010 RTW
Any other recent travel?
I traveled to the Bahamas for the H&M campaign, which was super nice. It was so crazy, because I’d never been there — we were flying in this plane which only had two chairs next to each other, and it made this stop in between. It was like taking the bus but through the air. And when you fly above it, the sea has such crazy colors, you can see all these turquoise and baby blue colors. It was really beautiful actually.
No, no, no. It’s for the summer.
Do you have any other fun shoots coming out that people don’t know about?
Well, I’m not allowed to say everything about shoots that are coming up, but you never know . . .
Dior spring 2011 campaign
Do you prefer doing runway or photoshoots?
Shooting, I really prefer shooting. I do really appreciate seeing how people make clothes, but it’s more like observing. For me [as a model], the only thing I contribute to that is walking over the catwalk. And I prefer to be part of creating an image. It’s more relaxing, there’s more time with the team when you’re shooting. You really work together with the photographer, and I feel like it’s much cooler to take pictures. I prefer to be part of something creative.
Is there anyone you really like to work with?
I really like Inez and Vinoodh, and Vivienne Sato, she’s an art photographer. And I like the stylist Marie Chaix.
When you shoot with [Inez & Vinoodh], they give you freedom to do what you want. I feel an appreciation for each other’s work, and they have a good eye for what they want to achieve, with very strong opinions. And they also know how to get something real out of you. They don’t try to make you something you’re not.
What about anyone you’d like to work with?
I would love to work with the photographer who makes really untouched pictures, Peter Lindbergh. I worked once with Paolo Roversi and would love to work with him again. And then I would love to do something for Alexander McQueen, because I love their collection.
Do you plan to do all four major fashion weeks?
I’m not going to do New York Fashion Week for now — I’m shooting at the studio. I missed [New York] castings because of H&M, and I think it’s better just to leave it. So I’m skipping New York. But I might do Paris or Milan, I’m not sure yet.
What are your Fashion Week essentials?
I always carry a book with me to read, because we have to wait and wait [backstage]. And also a writing book — I like to take notes, and write about what I see, maybe draw a little bit. I like drawing a lot.
What are you reading right now? And what are your favorite books?
I just started The Diary of Anais Nin, it’s really chaotic. I really like The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, it made a big impression on me. And I had an absolute Harry Potter addiction when I was younger. I’m so excited when the movies come out.
Vera Wang spring 2010 campaign; Chanel beauty fall 2010 campaign
Anything new in your wardrobe you’re excited to wear during fashion week?
I bought some new shoes — black leather Alexander Wang shoes. I really love these shoes, they’re flat and a bit manly but very structured. And I got these high heeled black Ann Demeulemeester ankle boots. I just think they look very cool.
First thing you plan to do after it’s all over, post-Paris Fashion Week?
Celebrate my birthday, which is the 27th of February. If I can, I might go home to my parents’ because I didn’t go home for Christmas or New Year’s. I haven’t been home for a long time — since last summer. So I would like to go to Holland and chill and celebrate my birthday with them . . . and my mom’s birthday is the 2nd of March, so we’re going to get a very small party for the family together.
Did you have a job over the holidays that kept you from home?
No, I had this really strange urge to go and travel by myself. I really felt I had to experience and learn, so I went by myself to China for two weeks, to do volunteer work with elephants in the north. And I was in the jungle for a bit.
What’s your favorite moment in your career so far?
That’s a hard one. I really enjoyed opening Burberry actually, because I was really nervous and I didn’t expect it at all, and I hadn’t really opened shows before. Oh! And when I heard that I was doing the Prada campaign, that was quite a big thing.
Any aspirations outside of modeling?
I’m very into art and reading and I’m also doing acting classes — I started last Spring, in May or something. I can’t do it super regularly, but I try to do it when I can.
What are your guilty pleasures?
Chocolate, for sure. Dutch chocolate. I really like healthy desserts, but when you eat in a vegan restaurant, the dessert is so good that you have to eat the dessert.
Who are your closest model friends?
Dorothea Barth Jorgensen, Sara Blomqvist, Saskia de Brauw — she stayed with me in my apartment recently — and Iekeliene Stange. Dorothea’s my roommate. We’ve been living together for a year and a half. Before, her, me, and Sara Blomqvist each shared one apartment, and then Sara, she moved to London to live with her boyfriend, so then Dorothea and I looked for another apartment in the same neighborhood in Williamsburg, and we found a really cool one.
What do you see for yourself in the year ahead? Any resolutions?
As a model, I meet so many great people, I’m doing nice jobs, I can see countries and do so much fun stuff, and I have some spare time. I really want to return some of that energy; I want to do something good for friends and family or an organization. I feel like I should make myself useful in some way. My parents really want to come to New York, so I got them tickets to come in May and stay with me. And there’s this really cool organization called Clean Clothes [Campaign], which is trying to improve the lives of people that make clothes around the world, who hardly have money to eat. Being in fashion, I’d really like to do something with them.
And what are you up to tonight?
I’m going to be very relaxing and do bikram yoga and then watch a movie with Dorothea, I think. We just got Requiem for a Dream in the mailbox. I hear it’s super intense. We’re probably going to watch it, because we both saw Black Swan, which I’m really really obsessed with, and [Requiem is by] the same director, so I have to see it.