Featured in The Royalty Issue as part of our ‘New Faces Round-Up’, which we take very seriously, Erjona Ala is the 16-year-old Kosovan-born beauty whose face is a picture and figure down to running through mountains in Norway.
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She has one of those faces that fits together. You can’t put your finger on what it is that makes her so incredible to look at – it’s just the whole picture, the features that work together, and almost against you. Slightly elfin ears, an unusual shaped nose, symmetrical green eyes and delicate but definite cheek bones give Erjona the power of a fairy queen, but maybe she’s queen of the bad fairies. There’s something cold in her beauty, which captivates you all the more, like the characters in her favourite book Twilight, with their perfect porcelain faces and unknowable allure that drops you at their feet. She doesn’t blow you away, she draws you in. The teen book is also her favourite film, her style icons are Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen and her favourite singer is Taylor Swift, but there is nothing teeny about Erjona’s face. She already looks all grown up, fully formed, and not just ready for the big world, but capable of conquering it. No one has found a bad word to say about her, not even on Fashion Spot, we’re all under her spell.
Signed to Elite Model Management London, Miss Ala tells i-D online about growing up in Olso, her beauty regime and Facebook addiction.
Tell us about being scouted… I got asked and told a couple of times that I should try modelling, so randomly one day I decided to go into an agency in Oslo with my parents, and straight from that meeting I got sent to my very first photoshoot where I got to wear high heels for the first time! Then I got asked if I wanted to join the Elite Model Look in Shanghai. This was in 2010; when I had just turned 15-years-old.
Describe yourself in five words… It’s hard to describe myself, but I am going to try: Loyal, down-to-earth, simple, sporty, honest.
What was it like growing up in Oslo? I was about one or two years old when we came to Kristiansand with my family, from Kosovo. I grew up in Kristiansand, a small town in the south of Norway. It was very quiet and wonderful. We live very close to the sea, so there are lots of beaches to choose between during summer. I always used to run a lot in the woods and mountains with my parents and friends.
What was it like taking part in the Elite Model Look competition? Such an amazing and exiting experience, where I got to meet lots of new people. And that is where I started, so it was all new to me. It was not until I got back home that I said to myself: “oh, hey, you were in the elite model look competition!”
How did you feel when you were asked to walk exclusively for Balenciaga last year? I was shocked and couldn’t believe it at first. I got so happy and called my Mum to tell her right away. My Dad was with me during the whole fashion week! I was only 15 and it was my very first fashion week. So I was very excited and a little scared though. They were such amazing and kind people that took care of me in the best possible way.
What’s your beauty regime? I love jogging and almost everything about training. So I guess it has to be to train.
How do you define beauty? I think that beauty comes from inside. So if you have a beautiful heart, you’re beautiful.
What do you get up to when you’re not modelling? Normal teenager-things. I like being surrounded by family and friends. I go to school, study and go to the cinema with the girls. I did athletics and sprinting for many years, so I still like to watch it and do some jogging. And I love spending time with my two cute, little brothers, who are twins!
What’s the most played song on your iPod? Oh, that changes all the time! Every day I find some new favourite song. ‘The Best Day’ by Taylor Swift and ‘Ritual Union’ by Little Dragon at the moment.
Who are your favourite models? It’s hard to only name a few, as there are so many good models that I admire. But if I had to, Naomi Campbell, and Gisele.
What are your friends like? They are funny, energetic and supportive!
What’s your first thought when you look in the mirror? Probably something like: ‘You shouldn’t have been sitting on Facebook till late at night…’
Are you in love? No :P
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