Celebrating Mother’s Day with 4 Fabulous Model/Influencer Moms
This month we are celebrating Mother’s Day with 4 fabulous model/influencer moms who are sharing their stories, and real-life lessons as they manage careers and motherhood.
Our cover model Lori Moran shared her experience with us in her cover story earlier this month and spoke about facing her infertility issues and allowing her body grace.
Can they do it all? Check out our interview with these inspiring ladies.
PMM: Can you take us back to when your modeling career started?
Katherine: I attended a local modeling school in Connecticut when I was 16 years old where I learned everything from runway modeling and commercial acting to makeup and hairstyling. I excelled in runway modeling and booked my first local runway show at age 18. A few years later, I entered the Torrid Model Search and placed top 8! This boosted my self-esteem and gave me the confidence to audition for Full-Figured Fashion Week in New York. This is when I knew I wanted to pursue modeling professionally.
After Fashion Week, I printed headshots and headed to every big agency open call I could find and ended up signing with an agency in New York. Shortly thereafter, I signed contracts with modeling agencies in Boston and Miami. I have now been working in the industry for over 15 years and have even had a few jobs with my one-year-old daughter Vivienne!
PMM: For people outside of the industry they assume modeling is all glamour. As a mother to a one-year-old can you take us through a day in the life of a model mom and what you’ve learned about yourself through this process?
Katherine: On a typical morning, I get up around 5 am to get ready for my day. This includes prepping my model bag (hair and makeup touch-up products, extra bras and undergarments, snacks, plenty of water, comp cards, and iPad portfolio) and dropping my daughter off at my parents’ house about 15 minutes away. I then head to catch my train from New Haven to New York (I live in Connecticut about 2 hours outside of the City). A usual modeling day consists of a few fit modeling jobs lasting a couple of hours, castings, or go-sees. I’m grateful for my commuting time on the train because it allows me to answer emails, voicemails, or social media messages, and sometimes I even catch up on my sleep! I’m usually home in time to pick up my daughter from my parents’ house and get dinner ready for my family before Vivienne’s bedtime at 8 pm. Busy New York days can seem like a whirlwind – but I love to stay busy!
PMM: You also have a blog modelwifemamalife.com… can you tell us about the blog and not only managing your career but your daughters as well?
Katherine: When people meet me, they often ask, “How did you get started in modeling?” I absolutely love talking about my experiences as a model over the past 15+ years in the industry. However, when I found out I was pregnant, I knew that my career would potentially change. I knew I wanted to bring my children along for the crazy ride in the modeling world and potentially get them involved as models as well. Vivienne has booked a few jobs as an infant, and I am so proud to be able to see her enjoying herself in front of the camera! In my blog, I share my experiences as a model, mom, wife, and homemaker with my audience that shows genuine interest in where I have been in my life and career, where things are going, and what my life is like right now as a mom, wife, and model. ModelWifeMamaLife.com was born in February 2022, and I am excited to continue sharing parts of my life with my readers that they may not know about!
PMM: There are so many models that are afraid that they won’t be able to manage motherhood and the demands that a modeling career includes. What are your words of wisdom to them and all of us looking to live a more balanced life?
Katherine: Never be ashamed to feel what you are feeling, whether that is sadness, guilt, and stress, or happiness, joy, and accomplishment. It is normal to feel overwhelmed and that you have the weight of the world on your shoulders. It is a full-time job being a mom! But you should also never feel ashamed of pursuing a fulfilling career. I am so blessed to be able to pursue my career as a model and also have time at home with my husband and daughter. I am very lucky to have family that lives close by who is supportive of my career and who are happy to help out with Vivienne when I need to travel for work. It’s also okay to not do every job that comes your way – as a Mom, your priorities change, and sometimes that even means saying no to modeling jobs. Remember why you are a model, the role you want to set for your “littles”, and try to maintain a steady work/life balance.
PMM: You look amazing in your head-to-toe Lane Bryant look, can you share your style aesthetic with us and what spring styles you are loving right now?
Katherine: As a busy Mom on the go, I try to stay stylish while also dressing practically and comfortably. Gone are the days of high heels and mini skirts for me – but that doesn’t mean I cannot still look polished and well put-together when grabbing coffee with friends, going to run errands with Vivienne, or even date night with my husband Jason. I am a more conservative dresser – and love that I can find styles that fit my comfort level and sense of style at Lane Bryant. Lane Bryant always has gorgeous styles for every season – but I am especially loving the different patterns they are showing this spring! They have everything from geometric prints to plaids to florals and tie-dyed looks. The smocked striped shirt I wore with the distressed jeans was the perfect mix of casual style and chic simplicity.
PMM: As a model, you work inside of an industry that is very much about what you look like. How do you speak to your daughter about being beautiful on the inside and how important it is? How do you explain what mommy does for work?
Anna: This industry can absolutely feel superficial at times but I try to teach my daughter that beauty begins within. My goal is for her to understand that beauty without substance is empty. Inner beauty will radiate outward.
She knows that I became a model because I wanted to see women like me represented. Plus-size women come in more than one shape and I wanted to bring some body diversity to the industry. Beauty is not one size fits all and there are so many plus women there with a belly and guess what? We are still beautiful, we shop, we go out, and we want to see women like us. She gets excited every time I tell her about a new job.
PMM: Balancing motherhood and work is a daily challenge for many of us. Can you share how you manage and what tips you can share?
Anna: Whew! This is a tough question. Sometimes it feels more like I’m juggling than balancing ?. The best tip I can give you is to have a small “village” of people you can trust to help you. I have to say I have the best village! They are the reason I’m able to have the flexibility to work in this industry. I try to make the most of the time at home and plan activities that bring us together. They forgot to give me the motherhood manual when they sent us home from the hospital, so I just do the best I can. I’m always open to learning ways I can improve.
PMM: Raising a young child of color also adds to our responsibility as mothers. Can you share how important it is for us to celebrate and educate our children about their worth and endless possibilities?
Anna: This is not just important it is crucial. From the time my daughter was born, I have tried to pour into her and fill her up at home. I want her to know that she is beautiful, intelligent, valuable, worthy, and capable of anything! Although she has been taught this since birth at 5 years old she came to me and told me how she didn’t think she was as pretty as other kids because her skin was too dark and her hair wasn’t long. When I tell you I cried! I balled my eyes out because I know the world we live in and what she will face but I never thought it would already affect her by the young age of 5! We make it a point to celebrate her beautiful rich melanin and her pippin’ curls. We read books, watch movies, and discuss the accomplishments of women of color so that she can see the possibilities that can be her reality. There is no limit for her!
PMM: Tell us about your Lane Bryant look and why you chose it?
I chose this Lane Bryant look because the color was so vibrant and the style was playful and that’s similar to my personality.
PMM: Can you tell us where to follow you, and book you?
PMM: You have openly spoken about the fact that you did not think that you would ever be a mom. How has motherhood changed you?
Maddy: It’s not that I did not like kids, but I’m the oldest child with two younger sisters and I always felt a bit like a mom to them. I also saw myself sharing head of household responsibilities with my dad because he was sick as I was growing up and I felt like my duties were to maintain the household. When I had Madison, it was a year or so after my dad had passed and I honestly had NO IDEA what I was doing but LOVE is always the answer and shows you the way. Over the years I have found myself to be more caring and compassionate. Especially after my daughter was diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum, it opened up my world to another community and way of looking at the world, its influences, and her future.
PMM: We see you on social media working with brands, modeling, consulting, and also working with models and influencers in front and behind the scenes. How would you describe what you do?
Maddy: I have been living in the service of the plus-size industry for over 16 years. I’ve devoted my life and have curated my life and made decisions based on the knowledge that THIS IS where I’m supposed to be. I believe that people should feel free to enjoy who they are regardless of size, shape, or age, and before it was popular to speak your mind and we had social media I was grabbing the spotlight from the people who mattered to make this point. I’m not new to the game… I’ve been here for a long time and I’m still here opening up doors and creating opportunities for those that seem invisible.
PMM: Let’s talk about balancing it all… how do you make sure that all the “balls” stay up in the air?
Maddy: Ahh! I think we all have different answers to this question but in essence, it’s the same. For me, I had to learn to walk in faith, do the best I can and not judge myself by others’ standards. I had to learn to enjoy the process because raising a child scared me, and after her diagnosis, I was terrified. I also had to remember ME, who I am, and how I could marry all the things that matter to me and create a life that I could be proud of. My child does come first and like Katherine said, sometimes I have to say no to opportunities because Madison comes first. But, I’ve been very fortunate to have an incredible support system that helps me and the industry has also been an integral part of my process. Lane Bryant in particular featured both Madison and me in a Mother’s Day campaign a few years back… knowing very well that she was on the spectrum. They were so accomodating and made us feel welcomed through the entire experience.
PMM: Let’s talk about what you and Madison are wearing?
Maddy: I love “twinning” with Madison but now that she’s a teen she does not always think it’s “cool”… lol! So for this shoot, I chose to wear these fabulous jeans with my new favorite color (lavender). My style is “every day”! Some days I’m relaxed in loungewear, the next day I’m in heels… it just depends… but for me looking good is absolutely essential to feeling fabulous. Madison is 13 years old and I want her to enjoy her youth so we opted for these overalls and I gave her a print top that matched “mommy” but not exactly. She loved it!