Last week first ever US Star in a Bra winner Krista Cousins embarked on her first ever trade show: Curve NY. We caught up with Krista to hear about her first ever job as Curvy Kate ambassador, and how she’s faring as America’s Bra Star!
It’s been great! Very exciting but still a bit unreal that sometimes I wonder if the excitement will ever wear off (I hope not!?) It’s been less than two months since I’ve won so really I’m eager to see what’s to come…
What’s the best thing about being a Bra Star?
The best thing is that my body type is appreciated and not ridiculed as in some other modeling. Also it’s so cool to really represent and stand for something, I’m sort of a symbol in that way and it makes me feel proud. Also everyone at Curvy Kate is superbly nice sometimes I wonder if they are robots with personalities programmed to “nice”!
How did it feel when you saw yourself in your Star in a Bra pics online and/or the catalogue?
I was so nervous and swore up and down that the pictures didn’t look like me at all! However I finally “opened my eyes” so to speak and it was so cool especially when I saw myself in a huge (maybe 10ft?) banner.
How was your first trade show? Can you tell us a bit about it?
It was exhausting and fun! The trade show was a lingerie and swimwear expo where companies showcase their goods to buyers to carry them in their stores (so hopefully more Curvy Kate in stores all over the USA!). It was no contest in that our booth was best looking and I’m definitely not just saying that. Imagine walking into an expo and seeing a booth covered in pink and purple ribbons, colorful flowers, pretty glass beads, it would definitely catch your eye. My role, of course, was the model! In order to give the best representation possible of the lingerie and swimwear, the client gets to look through the brochures, touch samples and also I would come out and model each item in the catalogue with each page turn. It was very fun but obviously not easy at first being in heels and constantly changing (I embarrassingly came out with my underwear insides out 3 times) but I really got the hang of it and everyone even the clients were laid back and nice to talk to.
Would you say that a correct fitting bra has affected you?
Definitely! Since it hasnt been too long since I won and I’ve been busy, I have been wearing bras that aren’t the right fit but when I was wearing the Curvy Kate sets I felt much better and it reminded me of how good it feels to wear the proper fit, even your posture is better!
How does it feel to be a role model for curvy girls in your country and worldwide?
Awesome! A woman in Australia contacted me through my blog asking for advice on taking her pictures to get noticed by the judges and I stressed the importance of being yourself and not trying to look super sexy or something like that but rather tap into her true self and she made it to the top 20! I’m so proud of her. Anyway, it makes me feel great because I want more girls to be ok with being themselves, it devastates me to hear them tear themselves apart: personalities, bodies and all. I want them to stop blaming themselves for who they are but instead become confident in blaming the media and clothing manufacturers for not celebrating their normal, natural and healthy bodies.
Are you looking forward to your next Curvy Kate shoot?
A thousand times YES! I’ve never been to Europe and London is such an intriguing city. I might try to stay a little extra to explore. I’m super nervous to model along side Sophie, Laura and Lauren etc. as they are so stunning!
Which are your favourite sets from the upcoming Autumn/Winter 2012 collection?
Obviously Entice, I’ve said it so many times but I really love it! I also am excited about Smoothie coming out as its a great everyday bra and works so well with everything you own but still isn’t boring. Ive also got my eyes on Gia in red and blush, still suitable for every day but very pretty and different.
Can you tell us three random facts about you?
1. I’m a huge nerd! I love video games, cartoons, the internet, school, comics etc
2. I love to dress in costume and never buy costumes but rather make my own for most halloweens, it’s my specialty.
3. When I was a kid I would only eat cereal with warm milk.
What message would you give girls who wanted to apply next year?
As cliche as it sounds- be yourself! Being a Curvy Kate girl is about sticking to your guns, smiles all around and accepting who you are. Be confident in your beauty and ignore anyone who tells you otherwise. Just look at yourself and who you want to be and the judges and the public will see that too! Even if you don’t make it, you’ve proven to yourself what you can do and your opportunity will never be over as long as you keep believing in your beautiful self!
We couldn’t agree more, Krista! We can’t wait to see you in London.
The first ever USA Star in a Bra competition is now over, and it seems that our winner, Krista Cousins, is still taking it all in! We caught up with our winner to ask her all the questions that we all so desperately want answering… how does it feel to win Star in a Bra?
It feels like switching from black and white to color television for the first time, everything is brighter but also a bit unreal. It feels like riding a roller coaster as it takes its biggest dip- your heart lifts, the air swirls around you, your giggles cannot be suppressed but the pure thrill remains. But most of all it feels like hundreds of people patting you on the back and saying “we believe in you”
How did you find out about the competition and what made you decide to enter?
I’ve been in an online, women’s forum since I was sixteen, so about nine years and one of the members posted about the contest and asked if anyone was going to enter. I did the should-I or shouldn’t-I dance for awhile. I thought to myself, “me in lingerie?!” just last year I was shy to wear a bikini on the beach! I even almost gave up while my boyfriend took my pictures but he encouraged me to do it and well I did! I decided that it wouldn’t be even close to the worst thing that could happen and thus why not! It helped that I also took the time to research Curvy Kate and their philosophy which ensured me that this wasn’t just a beauty contest but about standing for something more.
If you go back to yourself whilst applying and told yourself you’d win, what would you have said?
I would have told myself “where’d you park the unicorn that you rode on in?” Seriously, I didn’t think I would win as the top ten was filled with beautiful, intelligent and well spoken women and everyone was such a good choice, how could you chose? To top it all off, I even had a dream the night before the winner was announced that one of the other girls won and it was so realistic that I woke up a little sad!
What gave you the inspiration to make your Youtube videos? Do you think they contributed to your win?
I was actually inspired by the other contestants who posted their videos to the Curvy Kate facebook page! They were short and also introduced us to them which I thought was a great idea because you can only get so much about a person from a photograph and a paragraph of text. However, I had to put my own spin on things, I’m a huge music fan and big on theatre and the like. Additionally, I felt like it would be to full of myself to just sit in front of the camera and ask people to vote for me without giving them something in return! So I decided to add some entertainment, show my silly side, do my own lyrics and mostly just be my real self to stand out and I think it worked. I didn’t realize the effect they had at first until some people told me they had watched the videos multiple times, when once I uploaded them; I didn’t really watch them again!
Tell us about the Star in a Bra shoot in New York – we want to hear ALL about it!
ALL about it? If I only had the time! Anyhoo- being that a live here I didn’t get to stay in the hotel like the other girls and bond with them which was a bit disappointing since they all seem like such nice people. It was funny because I was the last girl, on the last day so I was very nervous about what to expect. I could catch a cab like I had expected and was running low on time to get to the studio and had to speedwalk/half-run in 90 degree weather and I was thinking to myself “great, I’m the last one and I’m going to embarrass myself as a sweaty mess!” However, once I got there it was much more different than expected! Hannah and Laura introduced themselves to me right away and they were still so perky and excited to meet me. In fact, everyone I met was very nice and not what I was afraid of, wanting to get it over with since I was last.
Laura took command and hoisted me into a myriad of bras and chuckled that I had declared that I was a 36F. Then I was right away to makeup and hair! The makeup artist was very talented and managed to do a neutral look that still appeared stunning while the hair stylist did her best to give me a voluminous vixen look although my hair wouldn’t cooperate.
Finally, it was picture time! Once again everyone was so nice and took the time to give me tips which were helpful and no one was frustrated with me when I did stupid things like jump up and down , laugh or freeze up. There were delicious cookies, chocolates and other treats lying around along with couches to lounge. I felt like I was on cloud nine and thus when it was time to part, I was pretty sad and lingering as we all said our goodbyes.
Would you want to do it again?
Definitely! The only thing I would change would be to keep my simple hair style to save the poor stylist’s arms and also introduce myself to the other girls earlier since I was a little shy and intimidated by them at first. Other than that, a million times yes as I later said to other who asked, it was one of the best days in my life.
Are you excited about coming to London?
I feel more in awe, actually! I’ve only been to a few other states, Canada and a few Caribbean islands but never to Europe or anything like that! Honestly, I had given up that I could ever visit Europe or travel like that for at least a decade due to the economy and such but now not only do I get to be photographed by professionals for an amazing brand with other amazing ladies but I get to visit an amazing city. Can you pinch me, Cheryl? Surely I’m dreaming!
Which Curvy Kate sets are your favourites?
This one is always such tough one! Entice is on the top of my list, it is a totally unique bra, I’ve never seen something so different, from the striped lines, to the delicate lace or even the little bow detail on the strap it’s stunning. After that I would have to say Tease Me as the runner up because in every color it is so beautiful and oozes sultriness while also maintaining magnificent detail.
Intimacy! It’s the only commercial, chain store that I know of in the U.S that does a valid, encouraging fitting process they are always friendly and have never shamed me about my body. I have definitely had bad fitting experiences, the worst was when I went to a store that measured me and then promptly sent me out the door while half-heartedly suggesting I try looking online for “that size”.
What’s next for you?
Endless possibilities it seems. If all else goes as planned I shall be retiring from Nannying forever and beginning my master program in the fall as well. I’ll keep blogging as usual but really it is hard to ever know or plan what’s to come and so I try to be open to things which is why I’m here talking to you today!
What would you say to someone who’s a bit nervous about entering the Australian Star in a Bra that’s now on?
Don’t be nervous, ok go ahead and be a little nervous. I know it seems hard to put on underwear, take pictures AND post them on the internet, right? However, even just taking those pictures helps you learn a little about yourself, simply just entering the contest will give you a confidence boost, if I can do it, you can do it! I’ll never forget a comment I saw on the Curvy Kate USA page- a woman had just submitted her pictures and boasted with pride that she took the pictures after eating a large meal and did not feel embarrassed. That is what it’s all about. Although there can be only one representative, [forgiven my cheesiness] everyone is a winner. We aren’t competing against each other but rather competing against tired images of monotonous looking models, stores not carrying realistic lingerie and clothing sizes, and body shame. So I say go ahead and do it! You can be the next winner and even if you don’t, you’re a winner in my eyes because you had the guts try and that’s worth more than your weight in gold.
Congratulations, Krista! We can’t wait to meet you again for the Autumn/Winter 2012 photo shoot later this year! What a worthy winner and ambassador for Curvy Kate.