If looks could kill, this 21-year-old Dutch model might just be more of a threat to mankind than climate change would ever be. She’s got that exotic last name, that Brigitte Bardot thing, and you might even go as far as to say she possesses an X factor befitting of a girl group leader who is worshipped by millions. A part of that statement is true. Millions have actually seen her global beauty campaigns for the likes of Tom Ford, Dior, and Calvin Klein – and they have willingly parted money on the fragrance, lipstick, eye shadow, and nail colour she was promoting. If that’s not a testament to the strength of her pseudo fan club, then we don’t know what is.
MANIFESTO: What are you up to these days besides modelling? And which city do you spend most of your time in?
DAPHNE GROENEVELD: I live in New York right now. This is the place I spend most of my time and I travel from here. I moved in with a close friend of mine and together we work out and I’m working on some projects too.
M: Since you spend so much time on travelling for work, what do you miss about your homeland, Netherlands?
DG: I miss my family and friends the most. In the Netherlands, we have a dog and I miss walking around with him. That’s the first thing I do in the morning, going to the beach with my dog. Love it!
M: What is the turning point of your career? Who do you credit for giving you your start?
DG: The French Vogue cover with Tom Ford in December 2011 which was shot by Mert & Marcus and styled by Carine Roitfeld. That was such an iconic cover for me. I’ve worked a lot with them since and I’m very thankful that they have supported me for so long.
M: What have you learnt from this industry?
DG: Stay true to who you are. I think that personality is just as important as the way you look.
M: Do you recognise any changes in your life since becoming a model?
DG: Yeah, I started out as a shy kid. I grew up fast and got comfortable with my body. I learnt a lot about myself through travelling and working with different teams every day.
M: How has modelling changed your perspective of fashion?
DG: I remember when I was walking exclusively for Calvin Klein, I was going for numerous fittings for about a week and I saw the progress from up-close. I witnessed the fabrics turning into an amazing collection. And over the years I got to know so many great designers. Through [participating in] fashion week, I got to understand fashion. It is because every brand and designer has their own style.
M. Do you still look at fashion the way you used to?
DG: When I started modelling at the age of 15, I saw cloth as cloth. After a couple months of doing shootings and shows, I gained a lot of respect for the designers and their creativity.
M: What is the highlight of your career thus far?
DG: For me, it is shooting the campaign for Dior Addict. It was such an amazing experience. We were shooting in Saint Tropez for six days. I like commercials a lot.
M: You’ve been doing the fashion week circuit for over five years. How would you describe the experience of running around for fashion weeks? Do you still enjoy being part of the madness?
DG: Fashion week is something special (Laughs). I used to walk about 55 shows a season but that’s over now. And I don’t mind it at all. Walking shows are fun because you get to feel the adrenaline rush before you walk. But five weeks of castings, fittings and shows are a lot for your body to handle so after all the craziness all you can think of is sleep.
M: What do you do during your downtime?
DG: Hang out with friends, go workout or sleep.
M: What do you enjoy the most at this point in your life?
DG: Living in the Big Apple. It’s such a great city. I don’t think I can live here forever but for now I do really enjoy living here, there’s so much to see and do.
M: Do you have any personal goals or objectives for your career?
DG: I’d like to shoot more commercials. I do really enjoy shooting them.
M: Would you want to go back to college? If so, what would you study?
DG: Maybe not back to college, as I wasn’t a great student (Laughs). I’d rather go learn a lot about hotels because I’d like to build my own someday.
M: We know that you love reading about things related to health and food, and trying new restaurants. Where are you favourite spots?
DG: I know a lot of fun places in New York City like Friend of a Farmer at Gramercy, Spring Natural restaurant on Lafayette Street, Westville, and many more.
M: You like to meditate. How often do you practice?
DG: I try to meditate every morning for about five to 15 minutes.
M: And what’s your fitness routine?
DG: I’m working out five times a week. I try to mix up my workouts with Pilates, kickboxing, and ballet
M: What is it like having a famous face and being one of the top 50 models on models.com?
DG: It’s an honour to be in the top 50 and really sweet when people come up to me and ask for a picture. It doesn’t happen that often though.
M: Name three places that you want to visit.
DG: Australia, Thailand, and South Africa.
M: What’s on your current playlist?
DG: It goes from Adele to Kiss.
M: Any guilty pleasures?
DG: Wine and dancing. Love it!!!
M: Any weird habits?
DG: When I drive, I sing real loud and dance.
M: What is the weirdest remark or question you’ve ever received via social media?
DG: Someone asked me to send my signature so he could tattoo it on his body!
Photography: Luca Khouri
Fashion Director: Jonathan Yee
Styling: Eric McNeal
Hair: Matthew Tuzzoli
Make-up: Kim Weber
Styling Assistant: Anne Dordai
Photography Assistant: Tess Ayano & Josh Marten
Agency Support: Women Management New York