The city of Nottingham can sometimes fly under the fashion radar, even though designer Paul Smith hails from the Shire’ and opened his flagship store in the centre, so when the Elite Model Management team passed through town for one stylish Saturday only, we knew the Midlands would don their finest garments and not let Nottingham down.
As we glided up the escalator in the Victoria Shopping Centre, the brights lights and booming music filled the upper mall, as crowds of young women frantically filled in their entry forms in the hope of becoming part of the modelling Elite. Top scouts were dotted around on the look out for the next Gisele, Elle or Cindy, but as Elite’s PR and Production Manager, Ailish, told us “it’s difficult to say exactly what we are looking for; you just know when you see it.”
With the event in full flow, LoveScene grabbed five minutes with PR guru Laura Gallagher of Fluorescent PR, who told us a little more about the competition and how the day would unfold. “Today we are looking for ten finalists, who will be given a small make-over and some catwalk training, before coming back out and walking for us down the runway. We are looking for 12 girls and 12 boys to undertake a modelling bootcamp, then a winner will be chosen and also go on to the world final in China.”
Having never had dreams of becoming a top model – being just over 5 feet tall and a little on the curvy side has not worked in my favour – this LoveScene-ette decided to walk the walk and go through the application process on the day. It began by registering at the reception and scribbling down your age, ambitions and athletic prowess, before the Elite girls got to grips with your vital statistics.
Now the entrants have to be a minumum of 5’7′, and even in bright yellow Paul Smith heels I failed to make the mark, but they over looked this (literally) as I had my polaroid pictures taken in front of the tape measured background. After a turn to the left and a pose to the right, it was time to head on over to the directors’ chairs and let the fabulous make up artists create a masterpiece. My face was pampered with products from Look magazine’s Look Beauty collection, which is availble in Superdrug. One of the lucky girls chosen by Elite will be the face of the brand; definitely something to look out for.
My talented make up artist created a smoky eye look, and I asked her if any specific styles were chosen for the days event. ”We ask the girls what they are looking for, but mainly we offer either a smoky eye or a popping lip colour.” With many girls excited at the chance of becoming the next big thing in the world of modelling, some were just happy to receive a little pampering and to see the latest range of new products from Look magazine.
After a stream of entrants and what felt like a million flashbulbs, the final girls began to take their seats in the middle of the mall, as the Elite team placed their hair in neat ponytails ready for the crash course in catwalk strides. Just as the real world of modelling isn’t all glamour, the girls experienced this first hand as they were taken down the fire escape to don the heels and walk the walk. With many girls being under 18, they all managed to stay upright while remaining composed and looking every bit the part of a top model.
Once the masterclass was over it was time to hit the stage and look pretty in matching black Elite model T-shirts, something which the girls pulled off with class and ease. After a long day of searching, the hard work had paid off, with an array of fresh faced beauties to choose from; the team were in for a tough decision process, and would be in touch with the girls if they wanted to take anything further.
LoveScene found out first hand just what it takes to be a top model, and looks are just the beginning.