So as I said previously, in the run up to the launch of Curvy Kate’s new 2015 worldwide model search, I will be blogging about all things ‘Star in a bra’, including my own personal journey through the competition, so here goes…
I was first introduced to Star in a Bra by 2012 finalist, Charlotte Upton. We went to school together and so naturally I had her as a friend on Facebook. I was browsing one day (procrastinating from Uni work I suspect) when I came across her plea for votes in a lingerie modelling competition, being the nosey parker I am, I investigated. What I found was so inspiring; a group of girls that were so happy in their own skin and confident in flaunting their curves but also a brand that 100% supported this. I was hooked, and from that moment on I promised myself that I would enter the next year.
Well 2013 came around and my lovely other half, Sam, had just jetted off on a 4 month travelling trip around the world (I definitely wasn’t jealous) and I was in my 3rd year of Uni in Northumbria (I definitely was jealous). So as a typical (and pretty lonely) student I spent all my time on social media, so I couldn’t possibly have missed all the Star in a Bra build-up on Facebook. I was so excited because I had wanted to do something just for myself and the competition turned out to be the perfect opportunity at the perfect time.
I remember the day I took my photos vividly. I took myself off to my bedroom, stripped down to my smalls and got snapping. I didn’t tell anyone about my idea of entering until after I had done it so I had to take the pictures myself, it was surprisingly fun though, choosing what sets to wear and finding the best light to take the pictures in, I had a blast! After taking what felt like a million photos I scrolled through and picked out what I felt were the best 5- the ones that stood out because they showed my figure and my personality. I felt slightly panicked as I uploaded them to the website, the not knowing what could happen was daunting, I could easily not be picked at all but I could also go through and actually have a shot…the suspense almost killed me!
One of My Full Length Entry Photos
One of My Head Shots For Entry
Once my pictures were uploaded, then the waiting game began. I had to wait until the entry period closed and then also wait for the Curvy Kate team to decide who they were going to put through to the final 30. Not knowing was really tough, and also not knowing anything about who else had entered or how many competitors was so frustrating.
It was in this waiting time that I broke the news to my family and friends that I had entered the competition. Sam was amazingly supportive, he called while he was in Australia and I told him all about it. It was great to know he was behind me 100% and even promised to get everyone he met in the backpacking hostels to vote for me if I got through! The next person I told was my mum, she knew I was pretty confident in myself so it came as no shock to her and after I told her about Curvy Kate’s message she was all for it. My dad was the tricky one…he’s the typical over protective father and when he heard the words ‘Lingerie’ and ‘Modelling’ in the same sentence he automatically assumed I’d be on page 3 with everything hanging out. He wasn’t happy but once I showed him some of the content from previous years and explained what Curvy Kate stood for he soon came round to the idea and began to see it more as a celebration of curves and women than a sleazy glamour campaign. I was very lucky to have such a supportive network around me of people who praised what I was doing rather than shaming it.
A week went by and the results were due to be out, I wasn’t sure when so I went on Facebook to check and low and behold, there I was. My picture in the final 30 line-up! I screamed and then my flat mate screamed it was an amazing feeling and my confidence was boosted 10 fold!!! I posted a message on Facebook to let everyone know I’d been selected and to get ready to start voting. This is where the hard work began. Rallying for votes was tough, it was nice at first with everyone congratulating you and saying they’ll vote but as time went on I began to feel a bit of a pest. My Facebook and Instagram were covered; there was nothing about anything other than Star in a Bra. I even got Twitter in an attempt to use this as tool to gain votes. It was relentless, and pretty tiring. I sent every single one of my Facebook friends a direct message with details of how to vote and continued to pester until the top 30 voting closed.
Now the waiting began again, it was only a few days as the votes were counted and I was at home in Yorkshire when the result were due to go live. Just as I fired up my laptop to check, Ia text came through on my phone.. “You’re in the top 10 mate!!! Well done!!”, My good friend Ellie had beaten me to it… all I could do was shout- “MUM I’M THROUGH!!”, we jumped about and we had a drink to celebrate. I was through and going to the top 10 photoshoot; I was ecstatic. The photoshoot took place the next week in London so I booked my trains and got ready for the shoot by having my hair coloured and by getting a spray tan. The team had asked us to research what kind of hair and make-up we would like so I chose bouncy curls and smokey eyes…I was so excited.
The day came around and I boarded the train in my loosest clothes (so as not to leave marks) with freshly washed hair and not a scrap of make-up on. I was ready for my make-over! On the journey down I worried about how I would pose and what I’d have to do but I also worried about what the other girls would be like, I was scared it would be bitchy and competitive but I had no reason to worry. I arrived at 10am and was greeted by the lovely Curvy Kate team and lead into a small room where I would be having my hair and make-up done. A couple of the other girls we’re already there and they were so friendly. The makeover then commenced and within a couple of hours I was transformed. Cue: modelling time. I had never been in front of the camera other than to have one of those ‘photoshoots’ you have with a friend and then pay a small fortune to have them printed out so I didn’t really know what I was doing. I think at the beginning, I must have looked like a rabbit caught in the headlights, but I soon relaxed in to and felt at ease and I actually started to enjoy myself. The group shots were the best though, all us curvy and confident girls lined up was amazing to see. After the shoot was finished we were all gifted with the set we had shot in and given a big fluffy Curvy Kate dressing gown to take home. It was a lovely souvenir and a great reminder of a truly fantastic day.
Behind the Scene Shot of Me Posing
The Final Voting stage:
I received the pictures from the day via email and if I’m totally honest I wasn’t happy with all of them. I felt they didn’t show my figure in a very flattering way and that my hair was too big but I tried to pushed this out of my mind and focus on the fact you’re your own worst critic and listen to the people who said I looked good. The voting went live a few days later and the effort for votes increased, I contacted local press where I was featured in 3 newspapers, I sent more messages to my Facebook friends (who couldn’t fathom why they were voting again) and I joined groups and societies on social media trying to rally up the votes. I was tired of doing it but knew if I gave up there would be no chance of me winning so I kept at it. Finally the last day of voting came round and the lines were closed. It felt very strange to not know where you were in the running and that it was totally out of your hands with nothing else you could do to change the outcome.
A few days later the day the winner was to be announced arrived. I was petrified and my stomach kept doing flips. I was in university and everyone in my tutor group kept asking how I’d done and if I knew yet, the suspense was awful. My computer wasn’t working and as 12:00 came I refreshed the screen and as it loaded slowly, Lotte’s picture came into view. My heart sank. I won’t lie, I was initially really disappointed as I obviously would have liked to have won however as the page loaded some more my own image came into view with ‘3rd’ underneath. This lifted my spirits and I felt immediately better, I could tell people that I hadn’t won but that I had placed as a runner up. I was over the moon with this and then I felt so happy for Lotte as she really was a worthy winner and a natural born model. Plus my time with Curvy Kate was far from over….
Working at Moda Trade Show after coming 3rd
Working the Debenham’s Model Mate’s Campaign with My Future Boss Hannah
If someone had told me before I entered the competition that I wouldn’t only have an amazing time but also gain a career out of it I’d have laughed in their face but looking back on my time in Star in a Bra shows anything can happen. I didn’t win but I gained some great friends, a whole heap of confidence, job opportunities while I was at still at Uni and ultimately my job now as PR and Marketing assistant. It was a one off experience, and something that has genuinely made a huge difference to my life and how I view myself.
If you want to enter Star in a Bra then click the link….go on, do it, it could change your life too.