KILL ME NOW: My Top (or rather rock bottom) 3 Face Palm Moments…
There are moments in my modelling career that haunt me to this day. Opportunities I had to *wow* people with my incredible style (!), glowing skin and my wit and repartee in order to get in there with the big guns and nail top jobs. I genuinely had some golden opportunities. But, sadly and somewhat predictably, I messed up.
You must read these stories, cringe for me, and learn your lessons from it. ALWAYS turn up in your model ‘school uniform’. ALWAYS be clean, fresh and professional. And ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS Google the client before a casting or job so you know what what’s expected of you!!!!!!
To back up my advice, please enjoy and weep on my behalf for some opportunities royally wasted….
1) My Julien McDonald Callback
I got loads of amazing Fashion Week castings when I was a New Face at Premier, because they are an top drawer, huge agency and actually there was rather a lot of fuss about me when I started.
Sadly, I do look back and think that the agency could have given me a bit more guidance – what to wear, how to act and how to style my hair etc. If only Modeltypeface had been around!
This is how I turned up at a Julien McDonald THIRD CALLBACK for his fashion show dressed in New Balance trainers, leg warmers on my arms (honestly, it was a *look* back then but mine were illuminous yellow), my mum’s 70 year old friend’s jeans from the 60s (which had a Roberston’s Jam Gollywog transfer on the pocket) and MY BROTHER’S SCOUT SHIRT. Also, I had acne, and this haircut. I didn’t change into heels, as I didn’t own any.
I remember Julien’s face, which of course I might have mistaken for awed wonderment but was really a disgust as deep as the browney-golden hue of his skin.
I did not get the job.
2) Christopher Bailey
Yes, Christopher Bailey, the man that turned Burberry around from…
…Into the multi-squillion pound luxury label, broadcast on multi-media platforms, that it is today.
So, I was doing showroom and fittings for Burberry, which is one of the lowest jobs a model can do. But you should never treat a job like a rubbish job, even if it is munching-on-my-balled-up-fist-dreary. You should always be an utmost professional.
So I turned up, and didn’t have a great deal to do, and they put a biscuit tin and a Metro in front of me. The thing about biscuits is that I don’t actually like them that much. They’re all dry and crumbly and make my mouth feel coated and I feel so very thirsty. But you start with a little plain thin one, then you think ‘that was boring. I’ll try a chocolate coated one.’ Then that’s disappointing, so you think ‘Well I’ll try one in the foil wrapper – maybe that’s more exciting.’ Ad nauseum.
So, Christopher Bailey walks in! Wow! Any other model would stand to attention, smile, say nothing unless prompted and come out with the odd pithy remark that makes him chuckle, give you the once over and think ‘you know what? I can picture this girl in my show!’ Campaigns galore, here I come!
Sadly, all I could think was ‘I wonder if the Viennese Whirl is a bit more interesting.’
So Christopher kept trying clothes on me, and I kept reaching over his head for more biscuits as he fiddled with hemlined and pattern placements, constantly showered by crumbs cascading from my mouth.
Not my classiest hour.
Maida books all the most enormous shows.
Wait, before I start this story, can I say that I actually don’t find it that funny? Honestly, it’s one of my most embarrassing stories EVER. This might be the first time I’ve ever told it.
Ok so Maida is HUGE in the casting world. I used to go to her castings from the very beginning, when I wore fleeces/trainers/acne through to when I actually started dressing like I was meant to, my skin clear, my hair and body sleeker and my bag containing heels and a portfolio that had decent shoots rather than text books and test shoots.
Maida did quite love me. She never booked me, but she always gave me a huge smile and remembered my name, despite all the trillions of models that attend her castings.
She booked me on a show or two, and then booked me for a big fashion show in France. Loads of fellow models were going. This was during a bit of a weird time in my life. All my friends had headed off to Uni, I was a bit lonely, and I was enjoying partying quite a lot. I suppose I was shedding the innocence of suburbia and school and feeling like a grown up who had been on the cover of Arena.
I was still a total virgin who had to wear a retainer at night, though.
So, as you can imagine with 20 male and female models, relationships started developing and everyone got paired off.
I didn’t, but there was a bit of a spark between me and a guy named something like ‘Melon’ though it can’t have been Melon. He had a girlfriend, so it was more of a friendship, but one night as we walked through a beautiful garden, we played hide and seek and he gave me a little kiss on the mouth. It was so romantic.
So the next day, I had to leave the job for a shoot back home in London. There was one more show to go that all the other models had to do.
PS I’m DYING RIGHT NOW.
So I hugged everyone goodbye, ’til I got to ‘Melon’. He kissed me on the mouth, so I figured we were gonna snog. So I went to put my tongue in. Then he didn’t open his mouth. AND I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT TO DO! So I sort of forced my tongue in. AWKWARD! ARRRRRRGH!!!!!
IN FRONT OF MAIDA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
One of the worst moments of my LIFE (and I’ve had worst moments aplenty).
I never got booked for another Maida show 🙁