According to Instagram, sisters are the new status bag. How else to explain the rapid rise of Kendall and Kylie Jenner, Bella Hadid, and Immy Waterhouse—all models whose siblings paved the (run)way? Even Cara Delevingne followed in the high-heeled footsteps of big sister Poppy, the current face of Stuart Weitzman.
Our money’s on Alaia Baldwin, the 22-year-old daughter of Stephen, cousin of Ireland, and sister of Hailey, who’s gearing up for a modeling reign of her own.
We spoke with the Nyack native at the Cinema Society and W Magazine’s premiere party for Saint Laurent, the decadent fashion biopic directed by Bertrand Bonello. Here’s what she said about her hair goals, her sister, and the problem with being selfie-centered.
Yahoo Style: So Alaia, how much Alaïa do you have in your closet?
Alaia Baldwin: Ha! That’s a great question, and the answer is, not enough! Although my mom just cleaned out her closet, and I got first dibs. I took some great things, like a Prada dress. And I think most of my Alaïa comes from her.
YS: Are you wearing any Alaïa tonight?
AB: No, sadly. And I’m not wearing Saint Laurent either—is that bad? I’m wearing Dolce & Gabbana, and my shoes are Zara… But Saint Laurent is a huge inspiration to me, style-wise, so getting to see this movie is really exciting. I’m hoping to come away with some new inspiration.
YS: You’re from a very public family. Do people make assumptions about you right away?
AB: Well, first of all, people keep thinking I’m Hailey’s little sister. But I’d like to set the record straight: I am her older sister! I came first! [Laughs.] I’m not even her “little” sister literally. We’re the same height!
YS: And you’re a model, too?
AB: I’ve been modeling for a little bit, and right now, I’m in the process of restarting my career again.
YS: What are your fashion goals?
AB: For me, I really love doing different editorials, especially the ones that are really intense with cool clothes and dark makeup… Runway work is great, but I think I’d prefer to do editorial shoots for print magazines.
YS: How will your career be different from Hailey’s?
AB: Growing up, people didn’t even think we were related. We have a little bit of the Baldwin grin in common, but we look completely different, and we are completely different…My goal right now is really to do edgy, high fashion editorial shoots. And then go from there.
YS: Do you have a career icon?
AB: I want to be like Freja Beha Erickson. Her style, her attitude, her body of work… I like her a lot. She was even my hair-spiration!
YS: You do have Freja hair!
AB: Do you know, I went to one of the most famous hairstylists in Hollywood, and they couldn’t do it! So I did it piece by piece. I brought five photos of Freja, from all different angles, to my regular stylist. She works in Rockland County, close to where I’m from, and she nailed it. We were very committed.
YS: A lot of your family friends, like Justin Bieber and Sailor Brinkley Cook, are huge Instagram stars. Are you planning on using your account as a modeling platform?
AB: Kind of? I like the part of Instagram that’s less superficial. I like showing funny videos, showing what’s happening. Of course, as a model, it’s important to post pretty photographs of yourself, and to promote your work. But I think the most successful models on Instagram go the extra mile by putting their personality into it. Now that it’s such a big marketing tool, and you can make money and book jobs just from your account, I see how important it is to be more than just “pretty.”
YS: What’s more important than being pretty?
AB: You’ve also got to be yourself!