Nadia Rahmat: It's a 'privilege' to be known as the Marc Jacobs model

NADIA RAHMAT, 24
The “Marc Jacobs girl”

Yes, she’s that girl who clinched one of 11 coveted spots in the Marc by Marc Jacobs (MMJ) Spring/Summer 2015 advertising campaign. Thanks to that, UK modelling agency Nevs contacted her just a week after the images were released – and Nadia is now the only Singaporean represented in its portfolio of 280 models.

Nadia, who is of Malay, Arab and Indian descent, went to London in April for castings with respected fashion photographers like John Rankin.

It all began last year when she gamely submitted a photo of herself – signature braids, henna tattoos and all – through Instagram, using the casting call hashtag #castmemarc. Hers was one of more than 400,000 entries, but within days, she got an e-mail from the MMJ team informing her that she had been shortlisted. “I thought it was a scam!” she says. It wasn’t. Within a couple of weeks, they invited her to New York City for the fi nal casting round, where she met Marc Jacobs himself.

“I was so nervous – I thought (the MMJ team) would cut my hair. But I had travelled all the way to New York, so it was go hard or go home.” It turned out that the spunky hopeful didn’t have to worry: the MMJ team loved her hairstyle and nicknamed her “braids girl”. For the record, Nadia’s signature look is inspired by British singer-songwriter FKA Twigs.

Although she is still referred to as the “Marc Jacobs girl”, she accepts it as a compliment. “It’s a privilege to represent Singapore for such a big brand and it’s very humbling.”

For now, she’s not planning to venture into full-time modelling while she juggles being a final-year communications student at SIM University and an event coordinator at Super 0.

“I want to keep my options open first. My plan is to try as many new things and gain as many contacts as possible before I decide which path to take!” she says.

PHOTOGRAPHY: WINSTON CHUANG, ART DIRECTION: EVON CHNG, HAIR: AARON NG/DECORUM, MAKEUP: BENEDICT CHOO, USING M.A.C. SWEATER & SHIRT, ROBINSONS THE HEEREN, ALL ACCESSORIES ARE NADIA’S OWN

This story was first published in Her World Magazine July 2015.

For more inspiring stories on Singapore women, read on to find out what it’s like for this woman to run a funeral palour and more about the teacher quit her job to save the sharks.