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What the Team at Ford Models Wears to Work and Who They Follow on Instagram

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Ford Models is one of the most powerful modeling agencies in the world. With an impressive talent roster that has included everyone from Twiggy and Elle Macpherson to Chanel Iman and Emily Ratajkowski, you'd think that the company is trained to intimidate anyone who walks into their office. We experienced quite the contrary during a visit to their Los Angeles outpost, where we met six of Ford's coolest staffers.

Besides offering serious style inspo—we want PR director Taj Alwan's print-tastic Clover Canyon top, men's agent Taylor Noonan's ASOS double buckle belt, and digital booker Sara Nagel's Topshop denim jumper—Team Ford is incredibly chill and happy to share their trade secrets, including how to really get scouted by a model agent. They also hooked up an inspiring list of fashion Instagram accounts that they're currently obsessed with, which instantly upgraded our feeds.


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Taj Alwan, PR Director, is wearing a Clover Canyon top, a Topshop skirt, an ASOS necklace, and Topshop shoes.

Favorite supermodel moment:
Tough question! Probably George Michael's "Freedom! '90" music video with all the original Supers.

Your craziest fashion week moment:
Probably when I lived in Milan and was working for Dolce & Gabbana. I was asked to interview show guests on-camera while they entered Metropol Theatre. It was my first fashion job and I found it super nerve-wracking having to strike up small talk with fashion heavyweights like Mario Testino, Rachel Zoe, and Franca Sozzani. Bless them for having patience with me and my long awkward pauses.

Favorite up-and-coming model:
It's hard to pick just one since there are so many rising stars at Ford. I'd say Zuzu Tadeushuk. She's walked for so many great fashion houses—from Chanel to Valentino—has starred in campaigns like Public School, and has graced the pages of Vogue. She's not only stunning, but also a talented artist. Her infectious personality and versatility will make her a force to be reckoned with.

What people don't know about working at Ford Models:
Ford is one huge family. Models come in often to chat with bookers not just about the careers, but also to get advice about stuff going on in their lives. People usually think bookers are solely concerned about booking and closing deals, but they leave their doors open to stop and address any concerns their models have at any time and on any time zone! The atmosphere at Ford is fast-paced, but everyone has fun doing what they do.

Favorite fashion Instagram accounts:I'm a huge @michelgaubert fan! I appreciate his dry humor and playful approach to fashion. Other faves include @cassblackbird, @modelsdot, @art8amby, @bat_gio, and @le21eme.

Most prized fashion item in your closet:
My Marni necklace. It has a satin ribbon closure and colorful stones. I like to dress it up or wear it with a tee.


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Rachel Williams, Agent — Women's Division, is wearing a Topshop jumpsuit, Alice + Olivia pumps, a Zac Posen bag, a "bomb-ass personality," and "a Jewish sense of humor."

Favorite supermodel moment:
When Shalom Harlow was spray-painted by two robots while standing on a rotating platform at Alexander McQueen's spring 1999 show. No words.

Wildest casting experience:
My background is in commercial casting, which is its own crazy world. The most memorable moment in casting was holding auditions for a microwavable popcorn ad where the actresses had to scream at the top of their lungs in the script. We put 60 screamers on tape each day, for three days straight, including a horror movie star whose special talent was her high-pitched, blood-curdling scream. The ringing in my ears lasted for days.

Top tip for getting model scouted:
Be specific with your city of residence when you use hashtags on Instagram. #model is so saturated, but #modelinLA or #labasedmodel is more specific. I'm always searching, so the more details, the better—without losing sight of your safety or privacy, of course. Also, don't have a full face of makeup in your selfies. I can't see what you look like.

Favorite fashion Instagram accounts:
@90supermodelsdaily to be inspired aesthetically daily, @theacademynewyork to feed my mind and soul, @violetgrey to feel chic and on vacation every day even when I am not, and @telavivian to keep one foot in my favorite city.

Most prized fashion item in your closet:
I own three Theodora dresses by Ronny Kobo. I wore the white one to my bridal shower last weekend, and I have black and navy ones for date nights with my fiancé. They are clutch and the designer is a straight-up saint. Thank you, Ronny!


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Jesse Simon, Agent — Men's/Womens' Division, is wearing an Aether top, Siki Im jeans, a Jean Paul Gaultier belt, a Pedegumo watch, and Frye boots.

Favorite supermodel moment:
Back in 2014, my co-worker Sam booked one of our iconic guys, Ryan Burns, for a 16-page story for Vogue Hommes. It was shot in Africa by one of my favorite photographers, Glen Luchford. Duffy, who is an amazing hairstylist, cut his hair off and the story was about him basically ripping through Africa on various motorcycles, hanging with elephants, giraffes, hawks, tribesmen.

Your craziest fashion week moment:
A guy we used to represent (nice kid, but a troublemaker) booked a bunch of major shows in New York. He must have gotten so wasted the night before a full day of shows that he nearly fell off the runway in rehearsal for his first one. Needless to say, the casting person called us immediately and we had our assistant go pick him up while we tried to salvage the other shows. He basically puked on her and the car service when she picked him up. Needless to say, he was cancelled from the rest of his day.

Favorite up-and-coming model:
We have a kid named Frank Nadolny who has been with us since he was about 15 or 16. He's now 18 and is working non-stop. His first job when he was 16 was with Hedi Slimane, and he's also worked for Alexander Wang. I think he will be around for a while—not a flash in the pan. Longevity is more important then how fast these kids rise.

Top tip for getting model scouted:
Be yourself. If you send in images or come into a meeting with us coming off fake, it won't go well. Be genuine.

Favorite fashion Instagram accounts:
The hairstylist I mentioned earlier, @duffy_duffy, because he posts fashion stuff, music stuff, dogs, shows, and stills from The A-Team. He's a funny dude!

Most prized fashion item in your closet and why:
My Frye boots because they always look cool no matter how long its been since I've shined or resoled them.


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Sara Nagel, Digital Booker, is a vintage blazer, a Topshop denim jumper, a Free People striped shirt, an Urban Outfitters scarf, an Adina Mills ring, and Warby Parker glasses.

Favorite fashion moment:
The general existence of David Bowie. And this NSFW photo of Iman and him by Victor Skrebneski, 1991.

Favorite up-and-coming model:
Jacob 'Eppy' Epstein. He's currently in the Converse campaigns, rides motorcycles, and is super nice.

Top tip for getting model scouted:
Invest in developing the skills and passions that make you a compelling person instead of trying to fit the mold of what has been typically considered a "model." So many different types of people are beautiful and I care the most about what makes you interesting; less so your height or dress size.

Favorite Instagram accounts:
@ladygrouplove and @theycallmeyama from @grouplove have amazing energy and wear crazy shit that works perfectly for them; Dre Babinski of @steadyholiday has fantastic taste; Karlee Parrish of @parrishworkroom is a designer and model with amazing taste and is probably too busy to update her IG; photographers-models-actors @yanayatsuk, @marcmpatrick, and @wikiworden.

Most prized fashion item in your closet and why:
My All Saints leather jacket. I love it because it was a gift from Dwight Yoakam and Emily Joyce—probably two of the most fashionable people I know. I opened it on my birthday at a vegan restaurant and no one gave me side-eye at my leather intrusion into their vegan life because it was that damn cool.


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Taylor Noonan, Agent — Men's Division, is wearing an All Saint leather jacket, a Rag & Bone T-shirt, Topshop jeans, and an ASOS belt.

Favorite supermodel moment:
Marky Mark rapping for Calvin Klein in the '90s!

Your craziest fashion week moment:
Fashion week is always crazy. For men's fashion week, a casting director in NYC called me at 11pm Eastern time and said he needed our model to get there ASAP for a fitting before tomorrow's show. I remember trying to get ahold of him but he was at a fitting for another show. After numerous emails and phone calls, he made the fitting. He also walked in the show and did amazing!

Favorite up-and-coming model:
Tough choice since we have such great new faces. I would have to say Lucas Ucedo. We scouted him here in LA about a year ago. He’s only 19 and has already walked in New York Fashion Week, booked campaigns and has shot for well-known editorials. He has a great career ahead of him!

Top tip for getting model scouted:
Most people think it’s all about appearance in our industry. Someone could be gorgeous on the outside but if they don’t have a great personality and well-rounded interests, we won’t sign them. My advice would be to build up your Instagram following and exhibit not only your looks, but your hobbies, attitude, and lifestyle. Also, be confident!

Favorite fashion Instagram accounts:I'm obsessed with @stone_cold_fox! I follow a lot of fashion bloggers but my favorites are @the_salty_blonde, @sincerelyjules and @theskinnyconfidential.

Most prized fashion item in your closet and why:
This All Saints leather jacket. I got it for 30% off last year for Christmas. I wear it almost every day!


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Michelle Carimpong, Agent — Development, is wearing a vintage top, an Alasdair NY skirt, Bernhard Willhelm sneakers, Maison Margiela rings, David Yurman and Anna De Courcy bracelets, LZZR and Anna De Courcy necklaces, and a Natalia Brilli watch.

Favorite supermodel moment:
George Michael's music video for "Freedom! '90." Christy Turlington wrapped in a bed sheet is perfection.

Favorite up-and-coming models:
Ella Weisskamp and Clare Larsen. I love their versatility and how they have such strong distinct looks.

Top tip for getting model scouted:
Be yourself. I's not just about your looks, so be kind and have manners. Love what makes you different and celebrate it. Also, always have cute hair!

Favorite fashion Instagram accounts:
@mensweardog is a combination of my two favorite things.

Most prized fashion item in your closet and why:
The first items I bought with my first big check as a stylist: an Hermès money clip and a Comme des Garçons purse.