Taja Feistner
image with artdirection
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Interview

Taja Feistner

She’s not only the star of a Prada short film but also an Energy and Sustainability Policy student. The activist model Taja Feistner – born and raised in the Midwest – has walked for Mulberry and has been on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar, but she hasn’t forgotten the film of her childhood, Alice in Wonderland. Let’s now get to know her up close and personal, hearing the story from the girl herself.

Taja, you recently starred in Prada’s episodic film project ‘Nylon Farm’, but how did you first get into modeling?

When I was discovered for modeling, I was a college drop out working two jobs in Iowa. One of the jobs I had was as a waitress in a restaurant and one night my now mother agent came in for dinner. She was really persistent about me giving modeling a shot. I had never thought of it as a possible career!


image with artdirection
image with artdirection

Thrifting is one of my favorite pastimes. I grew up with really frugal parents who taught me the value of money from a young age. It started with me realizing how many more cool and unique pieces I could get if I shopped second-hand: I wanted to have things that no one else had. As I got older and more interested in environmental issues, I realized how much my choices to avoid new purchases were actually good for the planet.

Being a model, you’re always on the go. What’s in your bag right now?

I’m a super low maintenance girl. I just need my chapstick, my credit card, my Contax T2 camera and I’m ready to go pretty much anywhere.


Are you into thrift shopping? I’ ve read you’re pretty eco-conscious!

Thrifting is one of my favorite pastimes. I grew up with really frugal parents who taught me the value of money from a young age. It started with me realizing how many more cool and unique pieces I could get if I shopped second-hand: I wanted to have things that no one else had. As I got older and more interested in environmental issues, I realized how much my choices to avoid new purchases were actually good for the planet.


Needless to say, you travel all over the world. What’s always in your suitcase?

As I just said, I really love thrifting. So I always take my little luggage scale with me to make sure my suitcase doesn’t get too heavy with goodies I find in different cities.


That being said, as there are lots of misconceptions about modeling, I’d like to ask you what the best (and worst) part of your job really is.

There is a lot of good and bad that comes with modeling. Other than the egos, hierarchy, social media pressure and extreme politics of high fashion, the hardest bit for me is the inconsistency of being a freelancer. It’s common to have to wait 3-4 months to receive a paycheck from a job. So you have to stay on top of things and save money for the slow periods. The best part for me is definitely the traveling: we get to experience places you’d probably not even think to go to as a tourist.


Let’s now focus on your own wardrobe. What’s your favorite garment?

I love a good corset. I think there is something quite enchanting about them: they’re the perfect mix of elegance and rock and roll!


Let’s now focus on your own wardrobe. What’s your favorite garment?

I love a good corset. I think there is something quite enchanting about them: they’re the perfect mix of elegance and rock and roll!


How do you define your personal style? Has it changed since you started modeling?

My personal style has definitely changed since I started modeling and still varies a lot from city to city. When I started modeling, I was living in LA and I quickly adapted to the more bohemian vibe of the people around me. In each city, I become a different version of myself. In Paris I’m more polished and ‘chic’, in Milan I’m a bit more feminine, and in London I’m probably the most myself: a bit boyish, punky and quirky. It’s really important, as a model, to always try to represent who you are, but also to be a bit of a chameleon.


And what’s your go-to look?

My go-to look is definitely a vintage T-shirt and jeans. As much as I love piecing together funky looks, sometimes it’s just best to look effortlessly cool!


Do you have any style-related advice on how to stand out from the crowd?

I would say a pair of vintage sunglasses. It doesn’t matter what you’re wearing; if you have a sick pair of retro shades, people are bound to notice you.


One last question: what’s that one thing you had to wear for a job and wished you could bring home?

I got to wear a bunch of archive Vivienne Westwood wedding dresses for a shoot and, if I could, I definitely would casually wear one for the rest of my life!


It doesn’t matter what you’re wearing; if you have a sick pair of retro shades, people are bound to notice you.

Shop The Selection

Alexander McQueen

Leather sandals with fringes

Salvatore Ferragamo

Pleated printed silk dress

Tory Burch

Quilted leather shoulder bag

Burberry

Reversible oversize cape-coat

Dolce & Gabbana

Pleated midi skirt

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