Winnie Harlow: The best thing I could do? Be honest “

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After the success of the first season, it is finally back on Amazon Prime Making the Cut: the show, dedicated to new talents in fashion design, aired with the first episode of the second edition on Friday 16 July against the backdrop of a new city, Los Angeles. “I am happy to be in my hometown, Los Angeles, with a group of truly talented stylists and judges, for this second season” said Heidi Klum, once again presenter and executive producer “Last year she imposed so many new challenges on the world , and I am grateful to have been able to continue shooting safely, continuing with Tim on our journey in search of the next big international fashion brand ».

In fact, alongside her, we find Tim Gunn as always, but also an exceptional jury composed of some surprise guests, the Creative Director of Moschino Jeremy Scott and the supermodel Winnie Harlow.

The competition will unfold in eight episodes and brings together a group of 10 visionary designers and entrepreneurs from five different countries, who will compete for four weeks until the final show on August 6, 2021. As with the first season, the winner will win the $ 1 million prize to invest in their business, as well as the opportunity to sell a collection on the Amazon Fashion store and also have the support of a mentorship offered by the American giant. On the occasion of the second season of Making the Cut, we had the opportunity to chat with one of the new judges, Winnie Harlow: the model, in fact, became known in 2014 after having participated in turn in a talent show – America’s Next Top Model – is one of the best known faces of international catwalks and advertising campaigns. But also, and above all, one spokesperson and champion of diversity, thanks to the breaking of the aesthetic standards represented by the acceptance of his autoimmune skin disorder, vitiligo.

Having participated in a talent show in the past that contributed to his success, how do you feel on the other side this time as a judge?
“These designers have moved away from their families, friends and companies to join Making the Cut, so the best thing I could do as a judge was to give them my honest feedback: obviously, in the hope that they could use it to challenge themselves and grow in the fashion industry. “

With his splendid example he paved the way for narratives that need to be expanded in the fashion system and beyond: how would you describe your first steps in this world?
“My first steps in the industry were very challenging and I received a lot of no’s and rejections, which is part of the job in such a competitive industry. At the same time, I had some supporters who really believed in me, such as Nick Knight, whom I consider to be my “godfather” of fashion. The most important thing is that I have always believed in myself, I worked hard and I managed to turn those no into yes! ».

In terms of self-esteem and willpower, your career teaches a lot: as models or creatives in the fashion world, how do you think you can “train” this attitude?
“I work on myself every day, and there are good days and bad days. But I have decided that it is important for me to remain true to who I am, and to know that you must love yourself before anyone else can love you. This is true for your designs, if you are a designer, but also for whatever you do in life: you must love it before expecting someone else to love it, buy it, wear it ».

During her career she has already approached fashion design with collaborations, such as the one with Steve Madden: what relationship does she have with this creative part of herself?
“I love being creative, and I’d like to cultivate this part of me more to see where it takes me. In this season of Making the Cut, designers have the opportunity to collaborate with each other and with a well-known brand, so I really enjoyed seeing designers exercise their “creative muscles” in this sector too ».

In Making the Cut he had the opportunity to direct new talents towards an even more successful career: what advice would you give, in general, to young designers who would like to make their creations known to the world?
«Make sure your creations have passion. I also said it during the episodes of Making the Cut: a garment didn’t necessarily have to be something I wanted to wear, but what was created had to have passion and a point of view, to emerge and gain attention ».

What usually strikes you about the creations of an emerging designer? What characteristics should it have, in your opinion, to emerge in contemporary fashion?
“I think the wearer should feel like Beyoncé. Also, I think it is essential to see the personality of the designer in what he creates. In Making the Cut, I began to recognize the designs and looks that were taking to the catwalk, which showed me that the designers knew who they were and what they meant in their creations ».

How do you think young designers can positively exploit the global situation that has seen us all “slow down”?
“Young designers are full of creativity, so I hope that the slowdown has allowed and allows their creativity to flow, perhaps in ways that they themselves did not expect”.

What surprised you most about being part of the show, from the “internal” point of view as a judge, and from the “external” point of view as a protagonist of the fashion industry?
“I knew we were going to have to work hard during the shoot, but I didn’t realize how much fun I’d have with Heidi, Jeremy and Tim. We also had to make some really tough decisions to pick which looks to win during each episode, where we stayed until the wee hours of the morning discussing and pondering who deserved to move on that week. Making sure we chose the right look was important to all of us, given the opportunity at stake for the winner. I was really impressed with some of the designers’ creations, given the time constraints they had, so much so that there were even a few times when I loved what hit the runway and wanted to take the look home with me that night! “.

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