Fash­ion

Ge­or­gia Fowler takes to the Aussie beach to model evening wear for Stel­lar.

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - Stellar - - Contents - Photography DAVID MANDELBERG Styling IRENE TSOLAKAS In­ter­view SASKIA TILLERS

Look­ing the way she does, you’d be for­given for as­sum­ing Ge­or­gia Fowler would have a date ev­ery night of the week. But ro­man­tic love isn’t as easy for Fowler as you might think – or par­tic­u­larly high on her list of pri­or­i­ties.

“I’m never re­ally in one place, which makes it hard to find a boyfriend,” Fowler tells Stel­lar with a wry laugh. “And when I’m back in New York, I don’t re­ally want to be go­ing out with a ran­dom per­son. I want to see my friends that I miss and, you know, catch up on wash­ing and sit on my couch. And you’re not go­ing to find [a boyfriend] on the couch, right?”

De­spite her DOA love life, Fowler, 26, has long been a tar­get for the ru­mour mill. Al­though it was never con­firmed, for­mer Dis­ney singer and ac­tor Nick Jonas, who mar­ried ac­tor Priyanka Cho­pra ear­lier this month, re­port­edly ro­manced her last year, and One Di­rec­tion-turned-solo heart-throb Harry Styles drew spec­u­la­tion that his song ‘Kiwi’ was about her.

They both in­sist they’re just friends, but Fowler is in­deed a Kiwi; grow­ing up in New Zealand, she spent a “tomboy” child­hood in Auck­land and Aus­tralia and watched her fa­ther, pro­fes­sional golfer Peter Fowler, on the cir­cuit. “His work ethic is in­cred­i­ble, so grow­ing up that was re­flected, and he al­ways en­cour­aged me [to work hard],” she says. Af­ter she was scouted by an agency at just 12, Fowler packed her bags and moved to New York as a 16-year-old, where she has been based ever since.

“[I was lonely] all the time,” Fowler ad­mits. “It def­i­nitely wasn’t easy at the be­gin­ning; it was a real push and strug­gle. I look back now and am like, ‘Wow, that was brave,’ but at the time I just thought, ‘This is what you have to do.’ Then when you come back home your friends are hav­ing fun and go­ing to par­ties, and I’m work­ing with adults ev­ery day or get­ting my­self on a plane and wor­ry­ing about rent. So it was dif­fer­ent, but I don’t re­gret it at all.”

Fowler quickly re­alised that be­ing thick-skinned was a ne­ces­sity in the mod­el­ling world. “At an early age you try and please ev­ery­one,” she says. “You think that if you don’t get the job it’s ‘OK, I’m not beau­ti­ful,’ but now I [know] that some­times cast­ing di­rec­tors are look­ing for some­thing so spe­cific – it’s not about them not lik­ing you.” It wasn’t long be­fore her de­ter­mi­na­tion and hard work paid off – run­way book­ings flooded in for Chanel, Miu Miu, Ar­mani, Elie Saab and Max Mara, as well as cam­paigns for Diesel, Agent Provo­ca­teur and GAP, and count­less shoots for in­ter­na­tional mag­a­zines in­clud­ing Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Love, GQ and Glam­our. In 2016 Fowler also landed a star­ring role in the video clip for Se­lena Gomez’s song ‘It Ain’t Me’.

Her ca­reer was flour­ish­ing, but there was one gig that con­tin­ued to elude her: the cov­eted Vic­to­ria’s Se­cret Fash­ion Show, an ex­trav­a­ganza broad­cast across the world. For five years, Fowler at­tended the cast­ings, and was knocked back each time. Fi­nally, in 2016, she made the cut. “There were a lot of tears,” Fowler tells Stel­lar. “It’s a big deal. It was al­ways the goal. I had dreamed of it be­fore I re­ally knew I could even be a model. Adriana [Lima] was on my high-school di­ary grow­ing up – I’ve al­ways looked up to her.” Three years and three shows later, she has fi­nally earned those muchde­sired an­gel wings.

Fowler will soon get a break over Christ­mas in New Zealand with her tight-knit fam­ily – and is par­tic­u­larly look­ing for­ward to spend­ing time with her two young nieces. When her older sis­ter Kate’s pri­vate life re­cently

“I was lonely all the time. It wasn’t easy at the be­gin­ning”

came un­der scru­tiny af­ter she split from Sydney hos­pi­tal­ity king Justin Hemmes, Fowler was there. “You just don’t read [the sto­ries],” she says of how the fam­ily coped. “There is no need to know about what any­one else is say­ing be­cause no-one re­ally knows what is go­ing on. Peo­ple will say what they want, and so be it.”

There’s only a lit­tle time for rest, with the new year see­ing Fowler step up for a role as Stella Ar­tois’ Spe­cial Guest at the 2019 Port­sea Polo, as well as at­tend­ing Stella Ar­tois’ iconic Sen­so­rium din­ner in Vic­to­ria’s Pt Leo Es­tate on the night prior. Hav­ing rapidly gained a rep­u­ta­tion as one of Aus­tralia’s premier fash­ion events, the polo sees Aus­tralia’s style and sport­ing elite come to­gether for a week­end on Vic­to­ria’s Morn­ing­ton Penin­sula. “I’m so happy to be in­volved,” Fowler says. “I’ve al­ways loved sport, and it’s such a clas­sic, so­phis­ti­cated event. It’s a place to get to­gether with friends, an ex­cuse to dress up and cel­e­brate the amaz­ing Aus­tralian fash­ion in­dus­try.”

Fowler leads a charmed but un­set­tled life­style, she ad­mits, yet has no plans to put on the brakes any­time soon. “There are def­i­nitely a lot of sac­ri­fices,” she says. “And hope­fully one day I will find some­one and set­tle down, but it’s chal­leng­ing try­ing to find some­one that’s suit­able and un­der­stand­ing who won’t try and hold you down. I am not that kind of girl. I am a hard worker and I am not go­ing to let any­one stop me.” Ge­or­gia Fowler is Stella Ar­tois’ Spe­cial Guest at the 2019 Port­sea Polo, tak­ing place on Jan­uary 12 at the Point Ne­pean Na­tional Park.

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