Many designers and brands are all about Gigi and Bella Hadid but their older half-sister Alana is also making her way in the industry.
The Los Angeles stylist and personal shopper is in the early stages of developing her own label of denim jackets, and as a brand ambassador she recently helped the Ann Taylor-owned Lou & Grey open a store at 138 Fifth Avenue. Hadid is also styling and art directing a few photography books for her friend Alisha Goldstein, a portrait photographer and founder of the creative agency Jane Smith. She also has her own T-shirt collection called Current Moji.
Fashion definitely runs in the extended Hadid family. Her mother Mary Butler modeled a bit in her late teens and early 20s, and Hadid’s older sister Marielle worked in the industry for years as a buyer and designer for Guess and other companies. Hadid’s brother Anwar is an IMG model like his sisters Gigi and Bella. “We talk to each other about fashion in the way that sisters would talk, but not necessarily as a stylist or a model,” Alana Hadid said. “They used to ask me a lot more for advice. But as you get older you know your own aesthetic. They might say, ‘Should I wear these shoes or these shoes?’ But by and large, they know what looks good on them and have gotten that down.”
Asked if the younger Hadids are aware of the influence they have, Alana Hadid said, “They don’t really think of themselves that way. They just try to conduct themselves the best that they can. As far as dressing, they dress the way they like. It’s cool for them, but it doesn’t affect their everyday life. They’re pretty down-to-earth. I’m a little in awe with how down-to-earth they can be with photographers and paparazzi with 21 and 23 or however many million followers they have on social media. [Gigi has 24 million on Instagram.] I’m like the baby with the lowly 108,000 [on Instagram].”
The 33-year-old Hadid also occasionally styles for the Los Angeles boutique Curve, where she worked in retail for three or four years. “What I love about Curve is — for lack of a better term — you don’t feel like a shop girl. Nevena [Borissova], who owns Curve, really treats you like a stylist. She fosters that idea. She treats clients there like not trying to sell them a piece. You’re really trying to sell an aesthetic, a fashion lifestyle.”
Hadid said of her own style, “I actually was not into fashion at all as a child. I was pretty eccentric in the way that I dressed. I wouldn’t have considered myself fashionable. Maybe if I was wearing it now it would be fashionable but at the time it definitely was not.”
A political science major at the University of Arizona, Alana Hadid earned a master’s degree in international relations and diplomacy at Bond University on the Gold Coast of Australia. As a grad student in Australia, she got into the country’s fashion blogs and brands. Hadid is now intrigued by a similarly homegrown streetstyle from Denmark and Sweden. “One of the cool things about Scandinavia is that they’re not as aware that people care. There’s something super-pure about that.” she said.
Speaking of her career switch, she said, “It was a lot of schooling down the drain. I’m sure my parents weren’t too excited. But I Iearned a lot about diplomacy, which with anything in life you need. And I lived in other countries. I know a little bit more about the world. Nothing is a full waste. I definitely think I’m happier with what I’m doing.”
Venturing into her own business, Hadid can count on her father Mohamed for guidance. “What’s great about him is he’s incredibly busy but he’s always willing to stop and take the time to talk to all of us, even though he has so many children, about whatever we need. He always has great advice and a lot of lawyers if we need them,” she said with a laugh.
While her father has clashed with fellow real estate developer Donald Trump over the years, Hadid has repeatedly taken issue with the Republican candidate’s views via Twitter. But she said her opinions have nothing to do with her father’s professional showdowns. “I have formed my own political opinions. Yes, my dad and Trump had their own wars over land and deals, but that’s just the nature of that business,” she said.”When it comes to politics though, I have never been about my views. I probably wouldn’t be tweeting about Trump unless he was running for president.”