Younger sister to Gigi, Bella Hadid is IMG Model’s big OMG moment this year.
Blue leather print tunic by TOMMY HILFIGER
“Obviously, Chanel is my goal,” says Bella Hadid, IMG Models’ freshest new signing. Already the talk of the fashion world, having recently shot editorials with three different Vogue titles (Australia, Teen, and U.S.) and made her runway debut with Desigual during New York Fashion Week last fall, she’s well on the way to her Chanel dreams.
If that wasn’t enough, Hadid has also just begun classes at Parsons New School of Design in New York, majoring in photography. “I just became a model four months ago,” she says, throwing a look of faux exasperation at her sudden success. “I thought I was going to have six months to get used to school, but I’m working non-stop.”
She credits her work ethic to her stepfather, David Foster, a record producer who has worked with vocalists Andrea Bocelli (whom she calls “Uncle Andrea”), Josh Groban, Céline Dion, and Michael Bublé. “I moved to New York when I was 17,” says Hadid. “Coming from Malibu High School,
it’s crazy to be submerged into something that’s so fast-paced. Everyone’s trying to do whatever they do, and no one really looks at you, so you’re just like, ‘Okay, I guess I’ll just do what I do.’ It’s taught me that everyone’s out for themselves, so you have to keep working hard. My stepdad always says, ‘If you’re not working on the weekend, someone else is.’ My sister and I always talk about that.”
Black pinstripe waistcoat with gold chain, black leather short, metallic gold leather ankle boots by TOMMY HILFIGER and rings models own
Star print silk dress and metallic gold leather ankle boots both by TOMMY HILFIGER
Gigi, her supermodel sister, has played a huge part in helping Hadid settle into the new city – plus, they live five blocks from each other. The slightly elder sibling (Gigi is 19) has had a bit of a head start, recently being named Daily Front Row’s model of the year. But to Hadid, she’s still the same sister she grew up riding horses with. “She’s killing it,” she says. “People say to me, ‘Oh so your sister is so famous,’ and I’m like, ‘Wait, people know who she is? She’s my sister! I’m the only one who knows who she is!’ and then I see paparazzi going after her.’”
Hadid grew up on the outskirts of the limelight, but she still understands the sting of fame. Besides Bocelli and other musicians being family friends, her mother Yolanda Foster is one of the stars of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, and Hadid and her sister have struck up friendships with Kendall and Kylie Jenner.
When we speak, Hadid is back at home in Malibu for Christmas break. The sunshine is lighting up her unbelievably multi-coloured eyes (seriously, they look like a supernatural puddle of oil). “I don’t even know if this is stupid to say, but I guess my style is kind of grungy,” she says. “I don’t really think about it. I just like to be easy and comfortable. I try to represent my personality through my clothes. I wear a lot of vintage stuff. I like to go to flea markets. I wake up with my best friends at 5 a.m. and go to the Rose Bowl here. I don’t like shopping at places that a lot of people know about, because then everyone’s wearing the same thing that you’re wearing, which freaks me out. I just put on a pair of my vintage Levi’s and some random T-shirt from Etsy and I’m good to go.”
Otherwise, Hadid insists she’s just a normal girl, listing the Stray Cats, Mac DeMarco and Drake as her go-to musical heroes and using the Postmates app on her iPhone to order in her favourite foods: pizza, hamburgers, french fries and ice cream. “When I’m not working, I’m sleeping or eating,” she says. “Eating is a really big hobby of mine. Sometimes my friends force me to go hiking, which is cool for a second, but then you realize that you’re exercising, and then it’s not really cool anymore.” With that, she makes a funny face and laughs.
The mid-January weather in Malibu is brisk enough for Hadid to throw on a Zadig & Voltaire bomber jacket with plaid pants, but nowhere near as frigid as the weather she’ll head back to in New York. And while she’s not looking forward to New York’s chill, she is definitely excited about the impending fashion weeks. “I was supposed to walk Moschino in London for Pre-Fall, but I was in Asia, so I couldn’t do it, which was really sad,” she says. “Hopefully, next fashion week [I’ll walk] in London, Milan, and New York, and everywhere. Besides, I haven’t been [to any fashion weeks] because I’ve lived here, and I was in high school. I just graduated and now I’m fully immersed in the New York scene. But I’m still also in college, so I have to go to school and stuff!
Photographer: Ben Rayner
Fashion Editor: Ashley Furnival
Words: Maxwell Williams