Leomie Anderson is building a platform for girls to speak up
Leomie Anderson is a model, Victoria’s Secret Angel, brand director, blog runner, and more – don’t make us name all of her jobs, she’s got too many to count.
Perhaps her favorite job is running her blog connected to her clothing brand, LAPP. Her goal for the brand is to fight for young self-identifying women to have a voice, no matter how many followers they have on social media.
Leomie has plenty of ideas for women to take over the world, and she wants her blog to be a part of it. Check out our interview with her below, where she talks to us about wearing Michael Jackson’s famous diamond glove, her brand LAPP, and her go-to drugstore beauty buy.
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You just walked in NYFW for Jeremy Scott, and I’m assuming you’ll walk for more designers over the week. You’ve also been a part of the event for many seasons, now. What’s your favorite part about NYFW?
This fashion week, I was more focused on developing my other interests which are presenting and TV. I went to Atlanta to host the very first BET Social Awards on Facebook Live. It was dope, but I missed most of the shows to be there.
I love seeing all my friends again during fashion week and being able to find everyone you’ve missed in one place. It’s a really stressful time for models, but we go through it together so it’s nice to link up when we have time!
What has been the coolest show to walk for and why?
It’s a random choice but I’d have to say the time I walked for Philip Treacy, the iconic hat designer. He hasn’t had a show since and it was his first in ten years. I worked closely with him doing looks leading up to the show. The crazy part, though, was the fact that all the clothes were original Michael Jackson pieces and I got to try them all on. It included the original jacket from “Thriller,” and “Bad,” with Michael’s autograph. I even tried on his diamond glove!
Who do you dream of walking for?
I don’t have a specific designer but I’d love to do something couture. It’s just not something I’ve attended before.
You started out modeling, but now you also have your own clothing brand, LAPP. What have you learned pursuing a clothing business that you maybe didn’t know abut the industry while modeling?
Having a clothing brand isn’t just about the people you get it on, you really have to make sure it looks the part, has great visuals, and is great quality. My brand is still growing and I do a majority of the clothing part alone, so I know there’s still some room for improvement. I can’t just rely on getting dope people in it. If the product isn’t pushed right and doesn’t feel good on the customer, it won’t sell.
What inspired LAPP’s track collection?
The LAPP Track collection was inspired by the fact that I felt like, when it comes to women’s street wear, you were either buying a tight fitting tracksuit, a badly cut, very gym-like silhouette, or you were simply buying men’s.
The LAPP Track Collection is made to fit a variety of body shapes and can be worn in so many different ways. It’s a staple in anyone’s wardrobe! And let’s not forget the reflective piping, which is so dope for the gram! (laughs)
How would you describe your personal style in three words?
Cozy, sporty, easy.
Your brand LAPP has one of the most diverse groups of models I have ever seen, including a woman wearing a hijab. Would you say your brand represents inclusivity, and how do you want to pursue that even further?
I just wanted a dope group of girls repping the brand. Girls that I feel would wear the tracksuit. My tracksuit is for every type of girl, so I tried to reflect that. LAPP has the blog aspect, too, which is a space for all self-identifying women to have a voice. I come across all different types of people, so I’m always inspired to incorporate them into the clothing campaigns.
What would you love to see change in the fashion industry in the next five years, and how do you plan to push it along with LAPP?
I think brands need to challenge more issues with their visuals. Pretty stuff is cool, but I think so many more interesting stories can be told with the visuals of a brand that can start conversations. I just came back from Kenya where I saw my own Made In Kenya collection being made at the factory, and it inspired me so much. Fashion has the power to make people think.
There’s also a blog attached to LAPP brand, where people can submit their writing on issues that are important to them. How do you think your blog gives a voice to those who may not have originally had one?
I think in this day and age, people feel some kind of validation through the amount of social currency and influence they have. People with less followers or less contact with a wide audience may feel like what they have to say doesn’t matter as much because they can’t reach a lot of people.
I don’t want that to be a deterrent to sharing your perspective. I wanted to use the following that I have to share these women’s voices. I’ve had so many amazing pieces from all over the world come through and they inspire me everyday. You do not have to be a professional writer to submit, because you don’t have to be a professional to have something important to say.
What are your plans for the blog in the future? How do you want to expand?
I want to do more brand collaborations with the blog aspect, so that we can get funding to develop the brand. I want to do more video content and begin doing workshops and talks. I want to build a network for women and the female Buzzfeed all at the same time. [laughs] I think the possibilities are endless!
For anyone reading this who may want to contribute, what kind of material is LAPP’s blog looking for?
We are looking for pieces on anything and everything! If you have an interesting experience or a perspective to share, we want to hear. As long as you identify as a woman, your voice has a space on LAPP! You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your pitch whenever you’re ready!
What do you want people, and especially young women, to get out of reading the LAPP blog?
I want them to feel like they’re not alone and that there is at least one other person who understands what they are going through. Whether it’s micro aggressions in your work place, your experience with anti-depressants, contraception, or even being a teenage bride, I want all young women to feel a sense of community when they’re on the site. I want them to feel inspired, too.
What advice do you have for young women of color trying to make it in the fashion industry? Whether it’s designing, modeling, or owning a business.
Don’t try and change yourself to fit into what you think everyone will deem as acceptable or successful. Be strong and don’t shrink your personality for anyone, because in the end, you’ll last much longer in any field if you remain authentic.
What is your go-to drugstore beauty product?
Soap and Glory Sexy Mother Pucker XXL lip gloss in Pinkwell. Literally can’t live without that lip gloss around!
If you could only do your brows or your contour for a whole week, which would you choose?
Always a brow! Contour is extra and don’t make sense without a brow anyway. [laughs]
Best brand for a good color range of foundation?
I’m really loving Fenty but I just bought one from Make Up For Ever that I’m about to try out.
Photos by Enga Purevjav
Clothing from and styling by Yeha Leung of Creepyyeha
Hair by Marvin Francis
Makeup by Meghan Yarde
Thanks to Fusion Models