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Modeling Advice from Supermodel Isabella Rossellini

Isabella’s Top Tip for Aspiring Models

I ran into the timeless beauty Isabella Rossellini on the red carpet at Fashion Group International‘s fabulous Night of Stars gala last week. (Well, OK, she was on the red carpet; I was elbowing reporters along the fringes.) She was a vision of elegance, with impeccable posture and the calm countenance of someone who has spent her life around red carpets. You can’t look at Isabella without seeing her mother, Ingrid Bergman. You also see a woman who is aging gracefully, refusing to jump on the Botox and plastic surgery bandwagon. That is especially impressive for someone whose beauty and identity were so intertwined through her life. But clearly that entanglement was in the beholder’s eyes, not in the heart of this wise woman. I was lucky enough to have a few words with her…

Isabella Rossellini

Isabella Rossellini

JJ: What is your #1 tip for aspiring models out there?

IR: Well, you know, there is very little one can do. You are either selected for jobs—and it’s wonderful when that happens—or you’re not. There isn’t much you can do about it.

JJ: It’s good for aspiring models to hear that, because you just can’t take it personally.

IR: You can’t take it personally. And you shouldn’t lose weight or get plastic surgery to try to be accepted, because it either happens or not. It’s like winning the lottery.

JJ: Why did you come out to the Night of Stars tonight?

IR: I am here tonight because Natura is winning an award, and a friend of mine , Roger Schmidt, is the executive at Natura. I came to give him the award. 

Karen Elson

Model Karen Elson

Model Karen Elson, truly aging like a fine wine, presented to Superstar Award winner Diane Von Furstenberg. Elson described her as the foxiest woman on the planet and the person who essentially runs the fashion business. I remember modeling for Diane for a Home Shopping Network episode shot at Diane’s HQ in the West Village, or more specifically the Meatpacking District; it figures that Diane was there long before it was declared the it place in New York.

Diane Von Furstenberg

Diane Von Furstenberg

Debbie Harry livened up the presenter panel. Glenda Bailey, EIC of Harper’s Bazaar, was thrilled to have someone as cool as Blondie introducing her.

Diane’s speech honored her dear friend Oscar de la Renta, with whom she dined weekly up until his passing several weeks ago. Her tender words revealed two close friends, disrobed of their celebrity and exposed to the same mortality we all face.

It was not a frivolous fashion fete by any stretch. But, the fact remains, dear readers, the fashion dictators can be a fickle bunch, so keep Isabella’s words in mind and don’t take it personally.

Stay tuned for some adorable scoop from Kids Fashion Week in New York!

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