NEW YORK — In the age of omnipresent publicists and “off-limit topics” lists, Chrissy Teigen is refreshingly unfiltered. On Twitter, the model (currently boasting 525,000 followers) frequently updates her feed with off-kilter quips and daily observations, and real-life Chrissy is no different. WWD caught up with Teigen at the launch of her fall XOXO campaign, held at The Brickwood in Manhattan on Thursday night where, in between bites of cheese and sopressata, she talked about working with the brand, her upcoming book proposal, “The Real Housewives,” and more.
WWD: When did you first see the campaign?
Chrissy Teigen: I still keep seeing new images on Twitter, or people are sending me images. The other day [one] sent me a text that said, “I saw you at Macy’s.” I was like, “When was I at Macy’s?” But then she sent me a picture that I hadn’t seen before and it was amazing.
WWD: What do you think of the final product?
C.T.: I’m so proud of it. The day was so fun because the entire team reminded me of when I used to shoot old-school. My shoots when I was 19 or 20 were very much like family; we’d go to dinner after and we were all just working towards the common goal of creating a beautiful photo. This is the first shoot since then that I felt like I had that again, because now it’s all about budgets and timing. I just had such a good time.
WWD: How do you relate to the brand?
C.T.: I love XOXO. I grew up with the brand, and the campaigns — from Tyra Banks to Lily [Aldridge]. I feel like I’m an XOXO girl, even without being part of this campaign. A lot of times you are presented with a brand who wants to work with you, and it’s tough, because you don’t know if you want to represent them. This felt right, and it felt like I got it.
WWD: What’s up next for you?
C.T.: I’m working on a book proposal. It’s much harder than it sounds. Most people these days use ghostwriters, and I’m very adamant about wanting to be a huge part of it. That for me is something that I’m able to do while still being able to travel and see John [Legend, Teigen’s husband]. I’m maybe at 1 percent done. It is such a collaborative effort. As a model, everyone is in charge. You show up and you do what you what. But this, I have to show up and I have to bring s–t. It is really challenging.
WWD: What are you writing about?
C.T.: I’m not going to make a traditional cookbook, with a recipe and a picture. I have to share a ridiculous, f–king story. I have to show my weird Instagram. I have to show my failure and my success. I want it to be really relatable. I want girls to be excited to make a meal for their girlfriends, for their man, whatever. I want people to have fun cooking, That’s it. My biggest goal is to have people who say, “I can’t cook,” understand that they can cook — they just won’t. It’s all about your own taste and adding your own flair. I want people to stay in and cook on a Friday night and not have f–king FOMO [fear of missing out]. Just stay home, watch “[The Real] Housewives” and be happy.
WWD: What’s your favorite city of “The Real Housewives”?
C.T.: I grew up in Orange County [Calif.], so my heart is in Orange County. I feel like Jersey is very dark. I don’t know if I like that. Orange County and Atlanta are my favorites. Beverly Hills I love, too. They are f–king rich and unrelatable. With Orange County, I’m like, “I’ve been to that restaurant.” Beverly Hills, they just have a huge party at Yolanda’s [Foster] house. Yolanda is like my biggest inspiration in life. The love that Yolanda and David [Foster] have…I would love to see myself as Yolanda. Just throwing parties and being like, “Guys, let’s just paint today.”
WWD: What do you think about her daughter, Gigi Hadid, modeling?
C.T.: I love Gigi. She is my baby. She’s brilliant. Not only is she the sweetest person, but she’s so smart, she’s so down to earth, she goes to school, she is in Tom Ford ads. She is what I wish every young model would be. I wish there was a Gigi in my time, when I was modeling.
WWD: Tell me about your MTV cooking show, “Snack-Off.”
C.T.: “Snack-Off” is ridiculous. John had never seen an episode until episode five. We laid in bed and watched it together for the first time, and I’ve never laughed so hard in my whole life. I really was like, “This show is hysterical.” There are these one-liners from [comedian] Yassir Lester. He became one of my best friends. We text every day. I’m so proud that people can see Yassir shine. He’s hysterical. The thing about comedians is they are so f–king brilliant. Yassir is very worldly, and that ties into his comedy.
WWD: Have you caught the acting bug from being on TV?
C.T.: Acting is a different thing for me. I don’t think I could be anything but myself. For example, maybe I could be in “Mean Girls,” but I’m never going to pretend to be a Natalie Portman. I can’t see myself doing that. That’s a fact. I’m fine not being a model-slash-actress.
WWD: Would you ever do your own reality series?
C.T.: They call it “docu-series” now. I love how they lead with that. “It’s not reality, Chrissy, it’s a docu-series.” If I’m running around and buying a monkey, it’s a reality show, not a docu-series. It would truly have to be based on a specific topic, but I’d still be very scared. I don’t know. I want to have a family. I want to have babies, I want to have a home, I want to cook and I want to talk s–t. That’s what I want to do.