Where are you from originally?
I was born and raised in Antwerp, Belgium.
How did you get started?
I got scouted at a festival in my hometown at the age of 15. I remember it was a nice summer day and I was there with my friends when a woman came over and asked me if I was interested in becoming a model. To be honest, I couldn't believe I had the potential of working in the fashion industry. I was a shy type of girl and had no idea my height, boyish features and eyebrows would give me the opportunity to start a career as a model. I was just standing there, thinking the nice lady was making a joke.
Was heading to Paris difficult that first time?
It was at the beginning. I went to Paris for my first model trip and I was afraid and unsure on what to expect. I saw all those beautiful girls at castings and I felt like I didn't fit in. In the beginning I was homesick-- but after a week or two I didn't want to go home anymore. I guess that is how I still feel about traveling, as it can take some time before a city grows on you.
With the model biz-- what's been your favorite experience?
Jobs in countries you haven't been before are the best. It allows you to explore new places, people and food. Trips like that expand my horizon. I walked for Dior in Monaco and Moscow which was absolutely amazing. Those venues were just breathtaking. For instance, they built a runway next to the harbor in Monaco, so you could see the Mediterranean in the background. In Moscow they built a huge reflecting set in the middle of the Red Square. When you are part of a show on such extraordinary locations, it just brings everything to the next level. That's what makes it all so memorable.
How have you changed from the start of your career?
I am less afraid to take risks and I love to travel. It is addictive to keep on discovering new places once you start exploring. It also made my mind more open for new ideas and experiences. I'd say that, now, I am more stimulated to do creative things in life and to see the beauty in nature and photography. Finally, modeling encourages you to find and express yourself. You express yourself in many ways, even without speaking. I am more aware of that now and I try to develop a way to tell my story with my presence.
What's something about yourself that might surprise people?
Besides modeling, I studied sociology and economics for 4 years at the University of Antwerp. It hasn't always been easy to balance out work and studies-- but going to University gave me the opportunity to maintain a normal life at home and to do the things you're supposed to do at my age. It is a different life from what I am used to now, but I am thankful for being able to experience both.
What do you do when not working?
I've danced since I was very little, so I take dance classes wherever I go. My favorite one is Pineapple in London, a dance school in the heart of Covent Garden.
Besides working out or dancing-- I enjoy exploring the city I am in. I go shopping, visit museums, look for local markets and find nice bars/coffeebars and restaurants.
Other aspirations outside modeling?
I'd love to have a nice gallery or shop somewhere in Paris or London. Or work as an editor for a magazine. Even being a tourist guide in cities I used to live in. Or to continue my studies and get another master's degree. We'll see what happens…
When you're in Paris-- any favorite places or things to do?
Sit next to the Seine in the evening sun while sipping from a glass of wine and eating good food. Or just walk around and get lost. That’s still my favorite way to discover and explore.