New face Willemijn Ubben walks for Prada for her worldwide debut at Milan Fashion Week
Scouted on the street in Amsterdam going to a Dua Lipa concert after her mum won the tickets on the radio, Dutch model Willemijn was in Paris within days, signing-up for The Claw Models Paris, Milan and the new Amsterdam branch. At just 18-years old she already looks like a top model, she has a fascinating yet beautiful face, lips shaped like a delicate flower, an intense blue gaze and a tall, lean frame.
Any model’s debut is a big deal, it can set-up the rest of their careers for better or for worse. Newcomer Willemijn Ubben from the Netherlands just walked for Prada for her first ever modeling job, one word: MAJOR. Rubbing shoulders on the runway with Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid and a dream worthy cast of girls, Willemijn was already showing the promise of inimitable charisma and talent for image making.
Prada’s model castings matter. It’s almost the model trend forecast of the season, making big statements on the runway. Known to have a newbie obsession, the brand has launched many big names in modeling such as Karolina Kurkova, Sasha Pivovarova, and Gemma Ward, along with current cool girls such as Lineisy Monteiro and Anok Yai. Willemijn Ubben is the most recent to date.
In a twist of fate, Dua Lipa was sitting front row at the Prada show, this time she was watching Willemijn shine.
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Q & A with Willemijn
How was your debut walking for Prada?
First of all WOW. I’m so grateful to walk my debut for such a beautiful and sophisticated brand and to work together with people who are so passionate and knowledgeable about what they do. The feeling when you walk the runway is indescribable. I couldn’t have had a better first show and can’t wait for what the future is going to bring me!
How was your first meeting with Miuccia and Raf?
Okay let’s be honest who wouldn’t be nervous walking in a room where two true fashion icons are in? Well, let me tell you I was! But that nervous feeling soon went away. With both Miuccia and Raf you can feel their passion and love for fashion but most of all I feel like they are very kind and honest people!
How did you get scouted?
This is why I believe in faith and good karma. I wanted to go to a concert of Dua Lipa. A radio show in The Netherlands was giving away free tickets for her concert, so my mom and I called like fifty times, but we didn’t win. I gave up hope but my mom didn’t. Suddenly she was love on the radio show and we won two tickets! The crazy part is that right before we walked into the venue I got scouted by The Claw Models. I was so astonished, it felt completely unreal, and I had never really thought about becoming a model. It was something I just dreamed about sometimes. But then I went to Paris to meet with the agency in their Paris offices. I fell in love with them and before I knew it, I was booked to exclusively walk for Prada at Milan Fashion Week! It’s so exciting!
What are your thoughts on modeling?
I try not to have too high expectations about modeling, but just believing in ‘going with the flow’ and see where it will all take me. But I do believe that with the right attitude and hard work I will experience the good things this new life can bring me.
Who is your favorite photographer?
Peter Lindbergh. I love his kind of photography so much, because his photographs people in a very natural way and I also feel like there is a lot of emotion captured in his pictures.
Do you like to dance?
Yes, I love to dance, what isn’t fun about putting the music on so loud you can’t hear anything else but the music and just dance until you drop? It makes me feel so good, that’s what I love about it!
What are you reading right now?
I must say I’m not really much of a reader but I’m trying to become one by reading the book Atomic habits by James Clear. I really like it because I’m a person who is always trying to be the better version of herself and this book really helps with that, I would really recommend it!
What are people surprised to find out about you?
Things that people are surprised by finding out about me is that I love watching F1 racing and that I know a lot about the cars, rules and the drivers.
words by MATTHEW ALLEN
photography ALENA AFANASEVA