As sophisticated as ever

Octayvia Nance

GAIL Brown, founder of Sophisticate Models, celebrates the 25th birthday of her modelling school this month.

Brown, who started the school in her last year of high school, has achieved great success through Sophisticate Models in the national and international modelling and pageant arena by producing the 2010 Miss SA Teen, Mikaela Oosthuizen, then only 14.

She took time out from planning Sophisticate Models’ second fashion extravaganza, taking place this Saturday, to have lunch with La Femme at Cafe Capellini in Walmer Park Shopping Centre.

She had a slice of whole-wheat bread topped with fat-free cottage cheese, avocado, banana, boiled egg and sweet chilli sauce.

I like Cafe Capellini because of all their friendly staff. Walmer Park is like my second home. I love shopping and meeting my friends there.

The best thing about my career is sharing my passion for modelling and fashion with all my wonderful models and seeing them enjoy themselves.

I’ll know I’ve made it when after 25 years of running a successful modelling school, I know I’ve made it.

The person who has taught me the most is the late Peggy Thompson. She was the founder of Charm Modelling School. She was my modelling trainer, mentor and role model when I started my modelling career at the age of 13.

She taught me all about being sophisticated and making a success of whatever you set you mind to.

I have a soft spot for my three-year-old dog, Lucky. He’s my baby boy.

I should have studied public relations and marketing but in my matric year I had already started with my classes and with Sophisticate Models.

I’m not really into reading but to keep me up to date with all the fashion news and latest trends I love to read any fashion magazine, for example, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Marie Claire and Women’s Health.

When I was 16, I wish I knew how tough the modelling industry and running your own modelling school would be. It’s truly hard work.

My music weakness is any song from the 1980s … I still love listening to it.

Nothing makes me happier than spending quality time with my family and modelling training with my models.

My favourite item of clothing is my warm leggings during winter. I’m not really a winter person and get cold easily.

I absolutely hate People who are lazy, untidy, unfriendly, nasty and always late.

I also hate nastiness, jealousy and gossiping.

I am saving to buy a new lounge suite.

I share my life with my loving 16-year- old-son, Nathan … he is my life and my everything.

I can’t go a day without coffee and my laptop.

My favourite places in the metro are … I’m a rugby mom so on a weekend I’m mostly next to the rugby field. On a Saturday we rehearse for shows or host competitions. When I do go shopping I like to shop at Walmer Park Shopping Centre – it’s conveniently close to me. I like to meet up with my “girlfriends” at coffee shops. My family and I like eating out at St Elmo’s or Angelo’s. Over weekends I like chilling with my family and having a braai.

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