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August 29 2014

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3 posts tagged "Ashley Brokaw"

Milan’s Major Modeling Moments

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Clockwise from top left: Natalia Siodmiak, Binx Walton, Irina Liss, and Nastya Sten

More so than in any other city, Milan designers and casting directors are known to favor established models over newcomers, but this week we witnessed a slew of fresh faces break through to the front of the pack. Many of the girls who started strong in New York and London (specifically, Malaika Firth, Anna Ewers, Kate Goodling, and Ophelie Guillermand) kept the pace up in Italy. Then Miuccia Prada and casting director Ashley Brokaw introduced us to a whole new set of noteworthy rookies, including Nastya Sten (bottom left), Irina Liss (bottom right), and Paulina King. Flaxen-haired Sten debuted as an exclusive at Proenza Schouler (another Brokaw-cast show), scored a semi-exclusive spot at Prada, and went on to walk Jil Sander, Bottega Veneta, Roberto Cavalli, and open Aquilano.Rimondi. Meanwhile, we’ve fallen head over heels for Liss’ tight-lipped look. The otherworldly Russian followed up her Prada premiere with turns at Jil Sander, Dolce & Gabbana, and Missoni. Finally, King made a splash at Prada, Marni (she bookended the show), and Jil Sander.

Another thing Milan was previously known for was overlooking minorities, so it was thrilling to see many of our favorite up-and-coming black models, including Firth, Binx Walton (top right), Cindy Bruna, Maria Borges (we never could’ve guessed that she would open Giorgio Armani), and Kai Newman making major strides this week. Newman, who hails from Kingston, Jamaica, positively wowed us at Gucci and Jil Sander. We can’t wait to see her go on to crush it in Paris.

Natalia Siodmiak (top left) is someone who has been making the rounds for several seasons but is suddenly at the top of everyone’s watch lists. After ending London on a high note with turns at Christopher Kane and Giles, the gap-toothed beauty cranked up the sex appeal at Gucci, Versace, and Emilio Pucci, and opened and closed Max Mara. It’s gratifying to see someone who’s been paying her dues finally have a moment. Speaking of moments, who could forget Moschino’s memorable roster of old-school supes, including Pat Cleveland, Alek Wek, Erin O’Connor, Jodie Kidd, and Diana Dondoe? Another runway high point was Liya Kebede and Malgosia Bela walking Emilio Pucci. And, naturally, there’s plenty in store for model-followers in Paris. Just today, iconic Snejana Onopka made a cameo appearance at Anthony Vaccarello, whipping the Fashion Spot forums into a frenzy.

Photos: IndigitalImages

One To Watch: Katryn Kruger

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Prada’s Spring ’12 Steven Meisel-lensed ad campaign was released yesterday, and unlike last season, when casting director Ashley Brokaw cast unknowns like Kelly Mittendorf, Ondria Hardin, and Antonia Wesseloh, the blonde and brunettes in this campaign—Natasha Poly, Kati Nescher, Elise Crombez, Ymre Stiekema, and Meghan Collison, included—are more familiar faces. One name, however, was new to us: Katryn Kruger. The brown-haired teenager from South Africa made her big debut in October in Paris, where she walked exclusively on the runway at Givenchy. She might be a newcomer, but this isn’t Kruger’s first time working with Prada—she appeared in the label’s Resort lookbook last summer. Her agency, IMG, wouldn’t dish any details about what she’s got in the works, but after booking one of the coveted spots in Prada’s ad campaign, she’s a model we’ve got our eyes on.

Photo: Models.com

Catwalk Watch: Ashley Brokaw

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Before a model hits the runway—and before she snags her first editorial, her first ad campaign, and her first billboard—she’s got to make it past the sharp eyes of fashion’s casting directors, who are tasked with finding the perfect girls for designers’ exacting visions. In our fashion week series, the industry’s top casting gurus share their thoughts on who we’ll be seeing this fashion week—and beyond.

Ashley Brokaw casts Proenza Schouler, Narciso Rodriguez, Rag & Bone, and Tommy Hilfiger in New York this season. Below, she weighs in on a few of her favorite new and new-to-us faces.


Maria Bradley at FACTOR (left): “New face from Wichita, Kansas. Great tomboy vibe with a killer body.”

Vika Falileeva at DNA (center): “Beautiful blonde with a fantastic body. She has a great attitude and much more confidence this time around [the Russian model has walked in several shows over the past two seasons].”

Xiao Wen Ju at IMG (right): “A season under her belt has done wonders for her confidence. She has great presence when she walks and her face is divine. Xiao doesn’t look like anyone else out there.”

Photos: Courtesy of FACTOR (Bradley); Courtesy of DNA (Falileeva); Courtesy of IMG (Ju)