Abbey: ‘I Always Make Time For Pete'
Britain’s Next Top Model presenter Abbey Clancy talks being a mum, judging the next generation of models and why she wants to have another babyé
On our way to meet Abbey Clancy, we’re considering the many times we’ve met the model turned presenter turned designer turned judge.
The 31-year-old – who is married to footballer Peter Crouch, 36, with whom she has daughters Sophia, five, and one-year-old Liberty – is a lady in demand, and since bursting onto the showbiz circuit she’s appeared on Hell’s Kitchen, won Strictly Come Dancing and lent her fashion expertise to Matalan, designing six successful collections. Now, for the second year in a row, she’s returning to the show where she made her name – as a judge.
A ‘proper’ northern gal (her accent is so infectious we find ourselves sporting a Scouse-manc hybrid) and besotted with her family (she gushes about them constantly) – just don’t call her a WAG. Try fierce, funny, hugely successful and – we have to mention it – absolutely drop-dead gorgeous.
Hi Abbey! We can’t wait for the next series of BNTM. Can we expect drama? With 12 girls in a room together, there’s definitely going to be drama! If it were boys it would be fine, they’d all get on and just talk about football. Have there been any challenges this time round? It’s so hard seeing them upset. I hate the eliminations – these gorgeous girls are standing there in front of you, wanting to please you and you have to let them go.
I feel like I’m crushing dreams. But I do try to encourage them, they can still go on to have a great career. What kind of judge do you think you are? I’m quite strict. Weirdly, I thought I’d be more sisterly, but I’m more mum-ish. I don’t take any messing around from them and I don’t like it when they’re all bitching with each other – I hate that. I just want them to take it seriously. It’s been over 10 years since you were a contestant! How does that feel? I try not to think about it [laughs]. But I’ve done a lot in a decade. I’ve married, had two babies, done loads of work and now I’m back as a judge – it’s incredible. It’s all the same team, we’re like a family. Do you think your daughters will follow in your footsteps? Sophia is very girly. She’s always in the mirror, singing, dancing and she loves her clothes, so I think she’s definitely more creative. Liberty’s going to be a rugby player [laughs], she’s a little bruiser. She’s the most incredible baby, she’s gorgeous. On the show, body confidence is an important issue. Do you think this is something you’ll instil in your girls as they’re growing up? I’m quite laid-back with the kids. I try and teach them to be kind, to be themselves and not to compare themselves to anyone. We’re a really close family. We haven’t gone there with the whole body confidence thing yet, they’re too young. I just want them to be happy and nice to people. A mum in the spotlight, what advice would you give celeb mums-to-be, like Cheryl? It’s hard being a mum in general. It’s exhausting and there’s pressure to bounce back. But having a baby is a big ordeal, your life completely changes, you’re absolutely knackered and not sleeping. Don’t compare yourself to anyone, do what you think is right – you’re the mum. I’m jealous that Cheryl’s going to have a newborn! Do you think you’ll have any more? I would like one! I love babies, yeah. I don’t think Pete will let me, though [laughs]. Look loves your style. What are your top red carpet tips? I would never spend a lot of money on something that isn’t a classic. My red carpet style isn’t down to me, though, it’s thanks to my amazing stylist, Angie [Smith]. I like to mix a bit of designer with high street. For example, I’d spend a lot of money on a leather jacket or a good bag, but then I’d high street everything else. With beauty, I use a hydrating serum by Skinceuticals [Hydrating B5, £61.95) – my skin’s really changed since I’ve been using that, it’s amazing. Make-up wise, I use Charlotte Tilbury, Sephora and Lancôme. You seem to love a good night out. Why do you think people make such a big deal out of you having a good time? It’s hard, the paps are in your face and you can’t do anything. [At the BRITS] I dropped my ring on the floor, I went down to get it and all of a sudden they’re like ‘ch-ch-ch’. What’s your idea of a perfect date? I’m going on a date tonight actually, we’re going to the cinema. Pete’s picking the film. Fifty Shades? Yeah, Fifty Shades! Actually, I always like it when we stay in a hotel, get a spa treatment and go out for a nice meal, a few cocktails and have a good brekkie in the morning. We’ve got quite a good social life, every day we’re with the kids, so at least once a fortnight we’ll do something with our mates. I think it’s important to do that.
Britain’s Next Top Model is on Lifetime at 9pm from 16 March
Mum’s the word: Abbey with Sophia and Liberty Abbey first became a star on Britain’s Next Top Model in 2006
The star (with Peter, left) was caught out by photographers at the BRITS
Abbey wed footballer Peter in 2011