Miss Belgium

Miss Belgium

About two year ago my friends signed me up for the miss Belgium competition, about 5 months after they had send my photo with a motivation letter i got an email from the organisation telling me i was invited to the casting day the week after in a nearby hotel in Flanders. At first i was not happy at all that my friends did this, and most importantly that they did this behind my back. But i couldn’t stay mad at them, i know they didn’t meant it in a bad way.

2 weeks later it was the casting day, arriving in the reception of the hotel there was a huge table with names of the invited girls, who was already inside, and who they were still expecting. I went over to the table, i gave my id card and in return i got a number, i was Kelly, number 26 from Schilde, a village right next to Antwerp.

Next thing they made all of us sit around big round tables in the lobby of the hotel, there were 3 big tables just for miss Antwerp, (Note, when entering the miss Belgium competition you automatically have to represent your city first, and if you win either 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place in that competition you’ll be able to go to Miss Belgium). In total there were 78 pre selected girls waiting until they heard their names being called to go inside the room where the jury would interview you with ex mis Belgium’s and members of the press. I didn’t care so much for the whole competition until that moment, that’s when i got very nervous, i saw all of these beautiful girls and i felt honoured they already pre selected me, thinking i could compete with them.

I wore a black pencil skirt with a white short sleeve top and some sexy heels underneath it, my hair was in a bun and i did my lipstick in a bright red shade.

After 2 hours of waiting in the lobby, talking to the other girls it was my turn, i remember thinking, either you get it or you don’t, don’t stress, try staying focused and give great answers to what they’ll be asking you.

I closed my eyes, walked a few steps, and thought, confidence in 1,2,3…. and go!

There i was in front of 3 tables put together with in total 27 people of the jury staring at me, ‘So Kelly, what brought you to enter this competition?,

25 Minutes later i walked out and felt relieved it was over, i had to go back to the lobby and wait for the results.

After another hour a member of the jury came back, and one by one announced the girls that will be participating and right at the end he said…’And last but not least, miss number 26’.

I couldn’t believe it, i didn’t think it was real, until i double checked with the member of the jury, ‘Are you sure you mean me when you said number 29” ‘Of course’ he said, ‘Who else would it be’ and he left, got our contracts, and a agenda page with a detailed list of all the events we had to attend.

I was in between working and studying, when i got the email that we would be having a press conference in 2 months time, everybody from the Belgian press would be there, including celebrities, famous bands and singers, models, famous Belgians…

And we had to perform a catwalk, in both bikini and evening gown, i was starting to become nervous about that, but i kept thinking to myself ‘I can do this’.

The day arrived of the press conference, i was excited and nervous at the same time, i already done many catwalks and photoshoots in the past so i was more excited to know what it would be like this time on a stage like this, in one of the biggest and most famous nightclubs of Flanders. One by one they called us on stage, and we had to say our name and number and which province we came from in front of a huge crowd, all of the miss Antwerp girls had agreed that when one of us entered the stage we would crazy enthusiastic about each other, we got mixed with the different provinces, and we were able to stand in front of the stage every time a girl from Antwerp came on stage to cheer and clap for her. By the end of the evening the 32 girls from Antwerp became really close friends, we became one of the closest groups in the competition.

When it was time for the actual election night, 2 months later, we sort of all knew who was going to win, we had heard about the pre elections and we knew already who managed to enter the top 5, in between the press conference and the election i went to Australia, which made my chances to enter the top 5 pretty slim, because i had missed on a variety of pubic events in those two months which is was normally supposed to attend.

Before the election we had 3 days to rehearse our dance on stage, how to enter the catwalk one by one after each other, it wasn’t difficult but it was hard to get all of the girls including 2 other provinces who were having their elections at the same time on stage all together, doing the dance we had to do, and knowing when to walk on stage.

I did not particularly like it so much, i preferred the modelling industry a lot more, because i felt like it was more honest, and it also left more room for imagination, i loved posing as a model but in the miss competition i wasn’t allowed to pose like a mode, i had to pose like a miss, which is so much harder.

In the end, i was very happy it was over, i don’t regret participating, i’m honoured and glad that i’ve been able to participated, i met a lot of new people during that time. And i’ve made a lot of new friendships as well.

But would i do it again?, No. but i’m very glad i did it once in my life, and i thank the organisation for giving me the opportunity.

It also taught me a lot about myself, and i got some really beautiful friendships out of it, and until this very day when i see my ribbon, saying ‘candidate of miss Antwerp for miss Belgium 2016’ I feel proud that i’ve done it.

 

 

 

IMG_4060

Wo-Men

Wo-Men

Because i am a woman i get comments from random guys or even girls telling me to cover up, i know people who claimed that if you go out in a miniskirt you’re basically asking for it, i have friends who say that belittling woman is not so bad since it’s all just a joke.

It sometimes scares me how i have to change myself in order to go outside or to go to the beach, when i take a metro in Paris at 9 in the evening and i’m scared, i’m scared because I’m all alone and there are a group of guys shouting things at me like ‘hey baby let’s have some fun tonight’,

And if i tell this to my friends they will ask me what i was wearing… How can what i wear be relevant to how i’m being treated sometimes?

Why should it matter if i wear high heels? or if i wear a low cut top?, if i say no, the answer is no.

I salute the woman that go out there and walk into the metro wearing whatever they feel like, especially since summer in Paris can be very humid and hot, while i appreciate most of my friends helping me when i’m alone, i’m also sad that this is what it came to these days. When i did a photoshoot 4 years ago with a friend photographer the idea was to do a super uber sexy photoshoot, just to show my femaleness and be me, i got a shower of comments after that from mostly females i must say, saying i was took sexy, saying that i should take the photos down from Instagram or Facebook, saying that i should cover up more (note, i was in a bikini on most of the photos, there was literally nothing you could see on the photos that was explicit) and i still got these sort of comments,… I like to be sexy when i can, i like wearing agent provocateur lingerie and wear clothes that could show a little skin, this does not mean at all that it’s ok to call me things, or to shout things at me when you’re drunk, this does not mean that i want you. This does not mean that i’m only thinking about one thing. This means, that i’m a woman and i do be or have whatever i want.

I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.

— Maya Angelou

 

How to be a model

How to be a model

This is a question i’ve been asked many times,

I’ve started my career as a model when i got scouted at age 15, by a British agency based in London, i remember my very first photo shoot like it was yesterday, i was so shy and scared that i wouldn’t be good enough, by my 4th photoshoot i got a really nice photographer and the vibe in the studio was so chilled and laid back, i didn’t felt pressured and i felt super at home there, when the cameras turned on, and i got my make up and hair done, it was finally showtime, and that’s the i figured that i became i different persona when i’m in front of the lens. I sort of create this Kelly that is not afraid of anything, that is strong enough to handle anything, that can do anything, it was sort of like having a superwoman’s side, and i could change myself from shy Kelly to Kelly camera ready right away, and i loved it, the fact that i could change myself and make or break a picture was a very powerful thought for me. i could dress up, or be au natural, i could do or be anything i wanted… When somebody takes pictures of me today, i still do this trick, i don’t pose, i completely put myself and my mind in the scenario i’m trying to show.  It’s almost like acting but with small stops to capture the right photo.

That is why, really explaining you how to pose is never gonna work, it’s in your mind, you gotta transform yourself like you are in that moment, if it’s a fashion shoot imagine you’re Doutzen Kroes, do not think you’re a starting model, never think you’re a starting model or not a model, everybody can pulls this off. it just needs some imagination and have fun with it.

It will take a while before you will learn to apply this to your everyday photoshoot, but one day, it’ll start to come to you automatically, and you won’t even think about doing this anymore.

But most of all, have fun! Photoshoots are tons of fun, do not stress out too much, i remember a photoshoot once where the girl had never done a photoshoot before and she was really nervous, and i was the photographer, the first pictures weren’t but they weren’t wow wish either, so i stopped the photoshoot and talked to her for a little while, what’s she’s like in life, the sort of things she loves, she told me she liked Beyonce and her music a lot, i said that’s great, what if i play a bit of Beyonce and we’ll dance a little and you have to act as though you are her, she started giggling, she said i can never do that, i said why not?, she said, because i’m not her, i said you don’t have to be her, to imitate her, that’s what actors and models do, We laughed so much during this photoshoot, we danced in the middle of the city centre of London, it was one of those amazing photoshoots that i will remember forever, she really went with it, and finally believed that she was good enough, and gave me some amazing images, until this day nobody understands how i managed to take photos like that from her.

Believing in yourself as a model is a must, do not think you’re average, no, you are the best model here, start to believe that, not in acting cocky but in knowing your worth. ❤

 

12188246_881052615342851_7333528043650375763_o1932659_539225899525526_1514264696_o1048983_417939908320793_430053310_o169980_310606712387447_308747345_o

This is a message to all the naysayers.

This is a message to all the naysayers.

To all the people that told me i couldn’t do it, and to all the people that still say that i cannot do it.

This is to all the people that felt the need to belittle others who have a dream and who have the passion to pursue that dream.

To all the people that don’t believe in other people achieving their goal or dream.

One message for you guys: ’You can’t sit with us’-

When creating something in your life, or when you’re trying to reach a certain goal you always get so many naysayers, so many people that will tell you not to do it, so many people that rather see you on your knees instead of having the success you work so hard for.

Too many naysayers, too little yaysayers…

But don’t ever let that stop you from doing what you love, from being who you are or from chasing that specific goal or dream, in life there is only one person responsible for creating your dream life and that person is you. NOBODY ELSE.

If you wanna get something out of this life, go get it,
Do what you can in order to get what it is you dream of.
Never stop, believe you can make it happen, act as though it is impossible to fail, and persevere.
Keep holding on, keep doing the work.

I remind myself often of this Les Brown quote that says ‘In life you’re either in the way or on the way’.

The in the way-ers will try to knock you down with all of their power, but you cannot let that hold you back, people are scared of successful people, of people who are determined to chase their dreams, to have that dream job, or live their dream life, but you should not listen to the negative people, they are easy to recognise because whenever they talk about their achievements it usually starts with the occasional ‘I also tried to do that and i failed’. it’s the standard answer you get with naysayers, because they ‘tried’ to make something out of their lives and it failed, so instead of trying it again they feel like it’s better to be bringing other people’s dreams down 24/7.

But it doesn’t matter what they do, all that matters is what you do, and what you continue to do.

Keep working, keep creating, keep believing in yourself and before you know it you’ll be going at full speed towards making your dreams become a reality.

Never underestimate the power you have within yourself to change your life, or to inspire others.
You never know when one day you might become somebody else’s inspiration to pursue their dreams..

 

If you can dream it, you can do it.” —Walt Disney

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” —Eleanor Roosevelt

“Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star.” —W. Clement Stone

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” —Arthur Ashe

Love yourself <3

Love yourself <3

Self confidence,

If you’re like me and you are a rather shy person it is very difficult for some to feel self confident.

When i was younger i always expected self confidence to come with aging, but as i grow older i realised that self confidence is something we should learn to have within us.

We tend tot hink that when we have everything, and when everything in our lives is going perfectly, we will be at our best and so will our confidence be, and that is a wrong idea to live with.
Self confidence, should not only happen when everything is right or when you think after losing 10 pounds you will finally be good enough…

As a kid i moved to Spain from Belgium with my parents,
I remember my first years at school, i didn’t knew the language and making friends was complicated since they all spoke Spanish, i was also homesick for the first 3 years or so. I kept longing to move back to Belgium… I felt myself more and more crawling into my own little niche. A niche i build myself by the thoughts i had about myself and they weren’t positive…
when i turned 14 i made a decision not to let myself down and make something out of my life, it was time i would stand up for who i was and not what other would want me to be.
Thankfully i had very comforting parents who stood by my decision.

At age 15 i got scouted by an agent from a modelling agency in London. The agency was based out in London and in Canada, they asked me to do a test shoot and 2 months later i was signed with them, unfortunately London thought i was too young for the business, and so they tried to help me from a distance they put me in contact with agencies in Barcelona since this was closer to home, and would’ve be such a big move to move.

I went to Barcelona when i was 16 years old, i went to work in an agency in the city centre of Bcn (short for Barcelona), I was very shy, had really long hair, was pretty tall, and not so skinny. I was really scared from all the stories i had heard about the industry, i was terrified i wouldn’t be able to do it, to have the courage to even go to a casting at all and present myself. But what i had learned in the upcoming 2 years was so much, i quickly made some friends in the industry and had the time of my life, it was fun, we would go to vip parties, do tv commercials for axe and volkswagen it was so much fun, we were living the dream….
Until i got 18..i started being homesick again, and i would spend all my free weekends traveling to Belgium, I would miss my family in Belgium a lot, and i would find ways to be able to stay longer in Antwerp every chance i had, so i one point i decided i wasn’t going to wait any longer, i quit my job with the agency in bcn and moved back to Belgium.

And then the most weird thing happened… Since i was 8 years old i expected my own country to make me feel comfortable and safe and at home again…And it totally backfired, i didn’t felt at home at all, i realised i had spend too much time away from belgium to ever feel at home here again. After a few months i was diagnosed with an illness, which wasn’t very pleasant, it got the best of me for weeks, i was sick for months and living off strong medication to get me through the day. At one point i had spend one week in the hospital and i got 2 days off and they told me to have so fun because the next few examinations will be a though one.
My mom and i went to Brussels to grab some lunch and she asked me what i wanted to do in those days, right at that moment i saw a car from Paris… ‘ I wanna go to Paris’ i said, she looked at me and went are you sure? it’s a few hours driving, ‘yes’ i wanna go, i haven’t been in years and i felt lik Paris was going to give me something i wouldn’t find anywhere else.
The next day we took the car and went to Paris, it was as if a new world opened in front of me, beautiful houses, all the best stores, the sun was shining, it was as if i was dreaming.
5 months later i moved to Paris and it has been the best decision i’ve ever made.

But to go back to subject, we think that we can grow or learn self confidence, but it isn’t, we have to let go of all the woulda coulda shoulda and just enjoy life, do what is it you love, because working on yourself is as important as figuring out where you wanna live, and how you wanna live.
Life is what created you, what makes you you.
Enjoy how you look like, appreciate your body for all the amazing things it does, if you think you’re too fat or too skinny, don’t worry about it, let it go and relax.
Do what you feel is right, don’t do what others think you should.
Only listen to your own voice, that voice deep inside you that knows,

You are beautiful as you are with what you have, cause what you have is plenty.
and if you have a dream you wanna realise, don’t be scared to try it.
It might be scary, it might be big, it might fail but it might also give you your best life possible.
So as you’re reading this now, relax, take a deep breath, enjoy your life the way it is right now, even if it’s not how you want it to be at this point, but you gotta appreciate what you have already before dreaming about others things you wanna have.

Love yourself, because you are a perfect human being, put on this earth to do amazing things in your life and others.

The experiences of my past have made me the strong 22 year old woman i am today, today i have a healthy love for myself, i know what my worth is and i don’t let anyone tell me differently.

The person that i am today, had achieved so many things my 14 year old could have never imagined me doing, and if i had the opportunity to give my younger self some tips and advice, i’d tell her not to worry, whatever it is you want it will come to you as long as you believe in yourself and in what you are doing. Be proud of who you are and never let anyone tell you you’re not good enough. You reading this, are perfect.

“Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

― Steve Jobs

I have an everyday religion that works for me. Love yourself first, and everything else falls into line.

— Lucille Ball

IMG_3843IMG_3845IMG_2091

Fake nipples!

Fake nipples!

Let’s talk about nipples!

They are sexy, they are beautiful, and they come in all different shapes and sizes.

Nipples are huge this season, just look at Kendall Jenner, or Bella Hadid.

Nipples are the next big thing! Many fashionista’s say that sometimes the look of a nipple peaking through the clothes are what makes an outfit a great outfit, designers have known this for years, just take a look at the new pre-fall collections and you’ll notice nipples are it these days!

I personally love the look of it! It’s sexy, it’s a bit provocative, and it very feminine.
But i don’t particularly like the feeling of not wearing a bra, i know lots of woman find it refreshing to toss their bra’s in the air late at night or throughout the day, but i personally stick to mine dearly. It’s a very personal feeling, but i think that everybody is allowed to feel however they’d like, or wear whatever they want.

Not so long ago i read about ‘fake nipples’, there’s a woman in Michigan making fake nipples, under her own brand called ‘Just-Nips’ She started her company about one year ago and it has been booming every since, the idea consists that woman can be sexy whenever and however they’d like, and if they feel like showing a little nipple you no longer have to face not having to wear a bra for it.

I was intrigued to say the least…

I went to the website and ordered two pairs of nipples, cold edition (which is one of the most common sizes) and the freezing edition, (which is slightly bigger than the cold ones).
5 days later my nipples arrived, i was thrilled! I figured i should really show them off on my first day wearing them, so i wore a sexy top, with an open neck and shoulders in dark blue, and a blue Diana von Furstenberger pants underneath it.

My first trip would be shopping on the Rue Saint Honore in Paris, there i went walking down one of Paris most crowded shopping street with my two new best friends proudly pointing through my top.
I noticed some people would stare, others would smile at me.

But the feeling it gave me was indescribable… I felt super sexy, and confident, I felt like i could rule the world, or for that day my world at least. It gave me a certain extra boost throughout the day.

In general the comments i’ve received throughout that day were all really positive, many people especially woman came up to me and told me how much they appreciate my look.

Most of my male friends who i had told the story, thought it was a weird thing to do, but i don’t see it that way, we are beautiful sexy woman, who have the right to be sexy and show our sexuality, if that means going braless go do it, if that means wearing fake nipples, by all means do it.

The company’s owner, Molly has also been helping breast cancer organisations by sending them free fake nipples. The company has since it started send over a 1.000 fake nipples to breast cancer organisations.

http://www.justnipsforall.com

The day i met Glenda Bailey & Olivier Rousteing

The day i met Glenda Bailey, editor in chief from Harper’s bazaar US & Olivier Rousteing creative director from Balmain Paris.

It was a hot and sunny day mid May in Paris on a Saturday morning, and i had wanted to go shopping on the the Rue Saint Honore in the 1st arrondissement of Paris, so i ordered an Uber and got there by the early afternoon.

I noticed there was a bit of a crowd in my favourite store in Paris, (Colette it’s on Rue Saint Honore nr 13) Colette however is known for its amazing parties, and Vip guests, it wasn’t so long ago that i met Karl Lagerfeld and Wil.I.Am in that same store for the launch of Wil.i.Am’s new music earplugs.

I didn’t knew if there was an event that day, but something was different, it felt like the staff were preparing themselves for something…Something big.

I walked up the stairs and there she was…My Idol…Glenda Bailey! It didn’t thought this was real, i thought i had some kind of vision but i could never imagine her to be in that store right when i was there too.

Harper’s Bazaar US celebrated it’s 150 years anniversary, for the special occasion they launched a book, a must-have book for all the fashionista’s! Containing many interviews, and photos from legendary people. The party existed out of mostly editors and fashion bloggers, fashion photographers, fashionista’s…I felt like i just arrived in the sweetest kind of heaven!

 

I was so excited when i saw Glenda was even autographing the books, i couldn’t wait much longer, this is the kind of moment you cherish for the rest of your life, meeting Glenda Bailey! When it was my turn for my book to get signed i felt myself becoming nervous, i was really excited, Glenda herself was so sweet and humble, she told me i had a great style, and that she loved what i was wearing! I was so honoured,  little later Olivier Rousteing came into the store, i was starstruck! I couldn’t believe he was standing in front of me, it was too much for me handle so i went to the other side of the store, until i had enough courage to ask him for a photo.

 

Olivier didn’t stay long unfortunately, but i did got a selfie with him 🙂

Glenda, me and 5 other people all stayed chatting, and i have met some amazing people that day!

This is the kind of day that happens unexpected but is always so welcome, I will forever be honoured to have met Glenda and Olivier.

 

IMG_4788IMG_4792IMG_4802