She took the crown as Miss Universe back in 2012 and now, Olivia Culpo has her eyes set on dominating the fashion industry and more.
Photo | Hudson Taylor | @photobyhudson
Creative + Fashion Direction | AllanTroy | @allantroy_
Fashion Asst. | Gabriela Mershad + Anastasiia Znova| @mersheykisses @nastiaznova
Production Asst. | Jeanette Chiu |@jeanette.sc
Hair | Cesar Ramirez | @cesar4styles
Makeup | Anthony Nguyen | @anthonyhnguyenmakeup
Manicurist | Shigeko Taylor | @nailsbyshige
Art Direction | Tony Todd | @mediaenhancer
Kode | It takes real dedication and perseverance to participate in the pageant circuit. Let alone to actually take the top honor of Miss Universe like you did in 2012. Growing up did you always want to be a pageant girl or is it something you kind of just stumbled into?
Being in pageants was definitely not something I thought I would ever see myself doing! I knew I wanted to get into the fashion world, so I did a lot of research, and now here we are! Entering into Miss Rhode Island was a huge step towards the career I knew I wanted for myself. I was certainly not a “girly girl” growing up, and I learned a lot from the other girls in the pageants. They taught me so much about fashion and beauty and I will forever be grateful for that experience.
Kode | You’ve truly taken to fashion now that your pageant days are behind you and you are truly killing it with your style. How did you get into fashion and what do you think best describes your personal style? I love trying out different trends and styles.
I really love the idea of being able to express myself through fashion, and I think that is something a lot of people can get behind. My style is constantly evolving. Just like you change and evolve as you grow, so does your wardrobe! I love to try out different trends – Right now I am really into fanny packs and layering. I think there is something so vintage and fun about the fanny pack, and layering is such a fun way to turn a dress you’re getting tired of into a totally different outfit by adding a simple T-shirt or even a turtleneck underneath!
Kode|You’re pretty much a permanent fixture on the fashion week scene. What is your favorite part of attending fashion week and are there any designers whose shows you consistently look forward to seeing?
During fashion month I especially love playing with street style fashion. There are no rules during this time and I get to be as creative as I want! I see the incredible looks the fashion editors are wearing, and it is so inspiring to me. I look to them for constant inspiration for my looks. There are so many shows and designers who blow my mind during fashion month. Every year I look forward to seeing what designers like Dior, Saint Laurent, and Vauthier will reveal. This year especially I and am very intrigued with what Jacquemus, as well as Sally Le Pointe are doing. All of the shows remind me of art, and I am so excited to see what everyone will reveal!
Kode| You’ve now got some acting credits under your belt, what is it that drew you to acting and what type of roles can we expect to see you play?
I started acting in college and completely fell in love. It is such a great outlet self-expression and I am constantly trying to become a stronger actor. I hope to play many different roles, as I believe being a great actor is being able to become so many different characters on screen. As far as movies being released this year, I have a small part in the new Amy Schumer movie “I Feel Pretty” coming out this summer.
Kode| You also recently opened a restaurant with your family in Rhode Island, what has it been like working so closely with your relatives and have you learned any new skills along the process? I’m sure that has to be special for the city with you being former Miss Rhode Island.
Owning The Back 40 in RI with my dad has been such a fun adventure! I am so close with my family in the first place, so it was natural to go into business together. Going into the restaurant business just made sense for us. My dad actually owns other restaurants in Boston, and that has really made this venture so smooth. My whole family loves to cook, and we are just having such a great time with it! This past year we had Thanksgiving dinner at Back40 with all of our extended family and friends, and that just makes it so special.
Kode|What are some lessons you feel you learned from your past relationships and do you have any advice or other young women looking to find love?
I know this sounds so cliché, but I really do believe it is so important to always follow your heart and stay true to yourself. It is so important to know who you are, and to love yourself before even trying to find someone else to love! Find someone that brings out the best in you and supports you in everything you do.
Kode| We recently saw the promo for your upcoming E! docuseries “Model Squad” featuring yourself Devon Windsor, Ashley Moore, Ping Hue, and a few more beautiful ladies. What was it like filming the show and can you give us a preview of what it is we’ll be seeing you all get into on the show?
Filming the show was so much fun! It was the first time I really had a camera crew with me for all times, so at first, it did take some getting used to! I really had such a great time filming this show, and it was such a great opportunity to get to know all of the other girls on the show so much better. They are all powerful and inspiring women!
Kode| What’s the biggest motto you tend to live by in life?
I don’t have one motto, I think that at different times in your life, different saying speak to you. My favorite motto right now – What happens to you happens for you.