Lourdes Leon doesn’t have a public Instagram. She’s never given a sit-down interview. You won’t see her face regularly in Hollywood party pictures or in the front row. She isn’t even signed to an agency and doesn’t seem particularly thirsty for public attention. And yet her inclusion in Miu Miu’s Spring 2019 ad campaign, alongside other young talents like Zazie Beats and Maya Hawke, signals her arrival as a fashion It girl without question. Especially considering Miu Miu has a knack for casting of-the-moment It girls in its campaigns.
Shot by photographer David Sims, the moody images find the usually long-haired Leon with cropped hair, riding in the back of a vintage sedan with the styling emphasis clearly on the brand’s shoes, bags, and accessories.
Of course Leon does have one major advantage: She happens to be the eldest child of Madonna. Still, it’s not like Leon jumped into the fashion spotlight her first chance (the 22-year-old did four years at the University of Michigan, her mother’s alma matter, first) and rather took a more metered approach. Unlike certain other children of the rich and famous, it’s not like she popped up in the front row one day and then refused to leave.
Here, a look back at Lourdes’s dip into the fashion world.
2002: Attending a Versace Retrospective Opening
Madonna happens to be close friends with Donatella Versace (and was with Gianni as well), so much so that Versace only recently revealed that Madonna was one of the first people to visit her after Gianni’s death. So it’s no surprise that one of Leon’s first public appearances alongside her mother was at the opening of the Versace retrospective at the Victoria and Albert Museum. Then just 5 years old, Leon appeared in a now iconic image alongside her mother, Versace, Versace’s daughter Allegra, and Chelsea Clinton.
2010: She Becomes the Creative Director of Her Mother’s Juniors Line Material Girl
Madonna hasn’t historically been as active in expanding her brand into consumer products as other pop stars, but back in 2010, when she finally got around to creating a clothing line for the juniors department of Macy’s, she of course recruited her own then–teenage daughter as her cofounder and creative director (though Leon stayed behind the scenes mostly and Taylor Momsen served as the brand’s first celebrity face). In case you’re wondering, yes, the brand has been successful enough that it is still sold today.
2012: She Pops Up in Her First Front Row With Kelly Osbourne
Momsen didn’t last long as the face of Material Girl, and she was soon replaced by Kelly Osbourne, and it seems like Lourdes and Osbourne hit it off enough to make a few public appearances together, including one at a Zac Posen fashion show (in case you’re wondering, their famous musician parents did almost once appear on a song together, but that’s a whole other story).
2016: A Stella McCartney Ad and the Alexander Wang Front Row
Leon headed off to Michigan for college in 2014, and her public appearances with her mother became even fewer and farther between than before. Though she did fly back to New York to sit in the front row at an Alexander Wang show in 2016 (incidentally, the next day her brother Rocco Ritchie would be unveiled as the star of the brand’s look book).
She also appeared in a fragrance ad for the daughter of another musical icon: Stella McCartney. Fittingly named “Pop,” the scent’s campaign also featured Amandla Stenberg and Grimes.
2018: She Makes Her Runway Debut and Attends the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award
With college behind her, the fall of 2018 saw Leon get serious about making major moves in fashion. She surprised everyone by popping up in a seashell bra at the presentation of designer Rio Uribe’s Gypsy Sport collection.
But wait, there’s more. Later that season, she showed up at the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Awards in November in an eye-popping dress from nominated brand Luar.
2019: A Miu Miu Campaign
Less than a month into 2019, Leon scored her first major fashion campaign, and we can only expect for her profile in fashion to continue to rise. Who knows, maybe one day she’ll start a public Instagram too.