Alena Blohm is our August/September 2019 Model of the Month.
With an intellect that transcends her years and incredible versatility of beauty, the German beauty has built an enduring modeling career that seems fated.
Blohm grew up in the small municipality of Weyhe in the district of Diepholz, Lower Saxony, Germany.
At sixteen years old, she was discovered at a street casting for a production in her hometown. The Photographer of the shoot showed her photos to his husband Patrick Lazhar, who has been working for Model Management (Hamburg) one of Germany's most renowned agencies for more than 25 years and the rest is history. When she started out, she only modeled over summer breaks because she was still in high school and it was the only time she could travel. Blohm's foray into Fashion was supported by her family, her grandmother in particular, who encouraged her development.
For its 2014 show in New York designer Ralph Lauren chose Blohm personally and she opened the show. Soon, the 2016 Polo Ralph Lauren advertising campaign followed and she continued her streak with campaigns for top fashion labels (Lanvin, Jeremy Scott, Moschino and Forever 21 to name a few) and appearances in major Fashion glossies (Vogue Paris, i-D, Harper’s Bazaar Paris and Elle Russia to name a few). She soon became an iconic presence in her country alongside the likes of Heidi Klum, Claudia Schiffer and Toni Garrn.
Blohm is one of an elite coterie of models like Lara Stone, Georgia May Jagger, Lindsey Wixson, Jessica Hart and Abbey Lee Kershaw known for their lovely gap-toothed grins. At present, she lives in New York and when not busy, she spends her time running, gymming and cycling.
Perky and upbeat, with a soulful gaze, and an unwavering passion for everything she approaches, Blohm has the kind of buzz most models only dream about. Below, she shares with FMD what she’s learned about fashion, the key to happiness, and her secret to always smiling. Read on to learn what the top model had to say, and check out her Cover Story
For its 2014 show in New York designer Ralph Lauren chose you personally and you opened the show? How would you describe the feeling of such an accomplishment?
I love working for Ralph. It's such a classic iconic brand and I adore that he is ALWAYS so nice to everyone backstage. I always look back to that day I opened the show and still can’t believe that it happened :)
Your grandmother has supported you from the beginning. How was she a role model for your career?
Yes definitely. I love how open-minded she is and she taught me to do the same and see the world in a different light. I love my Grams.
You have walked the runway for many top designers, but now primarily work for editorial spreads and Advertisements. Has that been a conscious shift for you?
Since I started, I always worked more on the Advertising side rather than the runway. And I’m not mad about it. The runway shows are stressful and I personally love photoshoots.
You've traveled all over the world at sixteen. How did you manage to study at high school and juggle modeling?
I finished my school first and then went into full-time modeling when I was 18. I think It’s important to concentrate on one thing at a time and my parents were very strict about giving 100% in school.
Out of all the places your career has taken you, where was the most memorable?
Australia & South Africa
Give us 1 fact about you people may not know
I love riding motorbikes.
Are you a morning person or night person?
How would you describe your style?
I feel like my style changes every day. I wake up and my mood decides what I’m wearing. Usually, it’s very casual, cool and comfortable.
Have you found your own personal style has changed since you've been working in Fashion?
I can't really say that because I was so young when I started modeling and wasn’t really sure what my style was. But I think I definitely have more fun trying new things out.
What is your favorite form of exercise? What do you like about it?
Running. I love going for a nice outside run. It keeps my mind off things and I always feel happy afterwards.
Name your five essential items you wouldn't leave the house without
Lipbalm, Gum, Airpods, and Wallet. That’s it. My bag is pretty small :)
What's the 1 outfit that makes you feel sexy and confident?
Mini dress, cute leather jacket and heels.
Distinctive features are always something to smile about and front-tooth gaps combine quirk, insouciance, and charm. You are one of an elite coterie of models like Lara Stone, Georgia May Jagger, Lindsey Wixson, Jessica Hart and Abbey Lee Kershaw known for their lovely gap-toothed grins. At the beginning of your career did you face any criticism or have to deal with overzealous Photoshoppers retouching your teeth?
Never. Since I started I never had problems with it. In school, on the other hand, I hated my teeth and people were making fun that they weren't 'perfect'. But I think that's what teenagers go through to eventually feel comfortable with who they are. It all takes time.
When you're not busy modeling, what are some of your favorite things to do?
I love cycling in central park.
Tell me about growing up in Weyhe?
I love Weyhe. I love going back and being at my moms' house where I grew up. It still feels like home. I love to jump on my Bicycle and drive around and realize that nothing really has changed. It's really comforting.
What are your favorite hangout spots in your hometown? Do you have any travel tips for those visiting Weyhe?
I guess my mom's garden hahaha!
How would you describe your use of social media?
I try not to think about it too much. It has such a big role in our lives but sometimes I think it just gets very overwhelming.
Which social network do you use the most?
If you could go back in time and give your 16-year-old self some advice what would it be?
Don’t rush! Your time will come. And don't grow up so fast!
If you could give a new model any one piece of advice you wish you'd been given when you started out, what would that be?
YOU ARE YOUR OWN BOSS! Listen to your feelings!
You currently reside in New York? What do you love most about it?
I love the energy and the people. And that everything is always available. 24/7.
Do you at times feel drawn back to Germany?
Oh, 100 percent. Especially when I realize that I’m missing out on an important event. Usually, my Mom is pretty good with making my homesickness go away after a little FaceTime conversation :)
You are always smiling! How do you stay positive?
Everyone has bad days too but I always feel really grateful for who is in my life and how lucky I am to be living this dream.
What is your life motto? Is there a quote or mantra you live by?
Thank you, Alena, for this inspiring interview!
note: all answers are original and unaltered - Interview & Intro by: Clinton Gonsalvez - Special Thanks to Negeva Norval-Dogra and Patrick Lazhar @ Model Management (Hamburg, Germany).