A Different Kind Of Model-Hyphenate
After Dsquared², we caught a bespectacled, dressed-down Carmen Kass sneaking out from backstage and took advantage of the five captive minutes a smoke break provides for a quick chat with the still gorgeous super. She’s mostly retired from the runway and has diversified her portfolio a little more than most models we know, taking an ownership stake in energy, property, and trading companies. If that seems unmodel-ish, well, so’s her chosen homes. “Places like New York are just too intense, too much about money, too much about ambition; it’s all too superficial for me,” she told us of her choice to divide her time between Estonia and Germany.
Given that she spends more time now in the office, we wondered about her staying power on the catwalk—it’s no slouch to open a major Milan show. “Everybody tells me it’s in the cheekbones, but I think that growing up in a cold climate sort of preserves the skin,” she told us, though she did admit that in these leaner times some “prestige” editorial shoots had not only asked her to work for free, but requested that she pay her own traveling expenses. We’re a long way from the Linda Evangelista “we don’t wake up for less than $10,000″ days, but a girl’s gotta have some standards. “Are they crazy? I get paid to work; I don’t pay to work.” We’re willing to bet Dsquared² wasn’t a pro bono arrangement.