Models Clémentine Dessaux and Mari Agory on challenging the status quo
Dessaux, left, in the Salome dress and Jaqlyn mules, and Agory, in the Broome sweater, Mac skirt and Alessia sandals
MA: How do you juggle doing Les Mijotés and AWP at the same time? Because you were also traveling and working as a model too.
CD: It's tough. At first, you don't know how to handle it. Then... it's still tough, but you learn how to handle it better.
MA: It's the same with motherhood. When I became a first-time mom, there were so many struggles in the beginning. That's what inspired Mama Talks NYC. I wanted to empower, inspire and create a platform for moms to have thought-stimulating conversations and exchange ideas. Because motherhood can be very lonely and, if you find another woman who is going through the same thing, you feel uplifted.
CD: I think that's what we have in common. We created our businesses because of our own experience and needs—and we both created communities around that.
MA: It's authentic. We have to support each other. It takes a village to thrive.
CD: What's interesting about having a new business, like ours, is the speed at which you can see changes. I always used to think it would take years.
MA: Isn't that what the entrepreneurs always say? That it takes years?
I wanted to show that this is what fashion could look like if we all try a little bit harder,” says Clémentine Desseaux. “Diversity is beautiful; it's high end.
MA: The power of the click...
CD: Someone asked us how she could make a change at her level—she thought because she didn't have enough followers that her voice didn't matter. But that's not true. Anyone can make a change. With social media, you can easily speak your mind and share your message. That's made a real impact when it comes to inclusivity.
MA: Social media zooms in on companies and makes sure they're keeping up with the times. Eventually, everyone has to get the memo to include people from all walks of life. What's your ideal point for the industry?
CD: When representation is something we don't need to push. It should be a normal part of the conversation. When we first started AWP, I remember thinking, Why isn't this something everyone already does naturally?
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