Philipa Steele's a spot in NYC
Many many questions and comments continue to come in about this young Sigatoka lass and her latest achievements. How did she get discovered? Who is taking her to NYC? etc. etc. How did Trump Model Management come to Fiji? How did she begin her modelling career?
As the excitement dies down and people read more, all of these questions will be answered by many.
As a fashion events company, we have watched this girl excel at her craft, we have spent hours with her and so we just want to join all Fijians and wish her well because she deserves our gratitude and congratulations.
Fiji Fashion Week first knew Phillipa was going to go far when she came 2nd in our inaugural MHCC Miss Teen Model competition held in 2012.
She was fresh out of Sigatoka with absolutely no modelling experience but she caught our eye. The point of the competition was to find models who were YOUNG and FRESH and train them under the Models Fiji Management so they could be runway models for Fiji Fashion Week held in October 2012.
From Day 1, Philipa showed a humility that was only unrivalled by her work ethic. No matter the long hours of photo shoots or the difficulty of travelling to Suva 2 hours each way by mini van to be at our weekly rehearsels, Phillipa did it all with a smile. She was humbled and always took the time to ask advise of our model trainers and managing director, Ellen Whippy-Knight.
Phillipa was always humble and graceful, qualities we know will set her apart from the rest in New York City.
For months, Phillipa would come to our auditions, stay at friends and relatives homes just to do what needed to be done to be able to walk the runway at Fiji Fashion Week.
In October of 2012, Philipa was one of the favourites of our designers and walked for almost every single collection. She was modest, a true Pacific beauty, almost always oblivious of her beauty.
After the show, we blazened her pictures everywhere because as our pictures will show, the camera just loved this Kulukulu beauty. Some people mocked her photographs, some saying she was too stubborn, but we knew that someday soon, this girl would be the reason Fijians everywhere wont have to explain which dot in the ocean Fiji was.
At our March 2013 model auditions/rehearsals, Philipa and two other of our top models; Amber Wardell and Mykaela Powell were photographed.
The shoot was aimed at showing the international looks of the three girls.
Phillipa came to that portfolio shoot with a head cold, runny nose and little sleep but she never complained until later that evening when she texted our staff to apologise for having not been in top form. As if any of us noticed! Our response: You did amazing and then we looked at each other and said: WHAT? Thats her when shes sick? Imagine completely well.
We are an events company, we organise world class fashion events that showcase our designers, our art and our models. We dont have much funds but we have much passion. We do what we do so that OTHERS will pay attention to Fiji and COME HERE.
We are excited that the Trump Model Management through another organisation came to Fiji and saw what we have hoped would be the case. That is what we work for. It doesnt matter to us who gets the credit because at the end of the day, it is a fashion industry we are building, an industry to create jobs and opportunities for our creative people, our artists and our models.
The Management of Fiji Fashion Week joins Fiji in congratulating Phillipa and wish her all the very best.
We put up pictures of Phillipa in excitement for this beautiful girl and ask you all to send her off to New York City (when she does go in Jan 2014) with a Fiji that is united in one cause: OUR BELIEF IN OUR COUNTRY and what we have to offer the world!