When Anna Ewers was 16, she went to Colombia for one year on an exchange-student program. It was probably a very far cry from her home in Strasburg, Germany, but it seems she had no problems acclimating to her new world. "There was a model in my school, and she said, 'You look pretty. Come to my agency.' I thought, why not?"
So, off she went, as models do, for test shoots and "some fun editorials. Then, when I went back to Germany, I did nothing," she says. But, lo and behold, she met an agent, they drove to Milan together, and — voila! She was signed to Women Management, an elite, international agency.
The 21-year-old model got her start on the catwalks, sure, but the past couple of years have been something of an explosion for her. "About a year and a half ago, I was cast for Alexander Wang's first Balenciaga show in Paris," she says. "It was my first very big show."
Mr. Wang apparently saw something in Anna that he liked, for she instantly became a part of his entourage. "He's now a good friend of mine," Ewers says. "Ever since I started working with him, my career became more exciting. It's been great."
But, hanging with Wang is notoriously not an easy feat — the designer splits his time between New York and Paris at his separate design houses (his eponymous collection and Balenciaga, respectively). And, he still finds time to be a fixture on the social circuit. All of this meant a whole new world for Ewers. "Since I first met him, I feel like this is the time that I've changed most, from being shy [to becoming] more self-confident and very comfortable when we're going out," she says.
In fact, that once-shy girl is now the face (and very naked, greased-up bod) of Wang's brand-new denim collection, as well as a cover model on W's November issue and the recent subject of a December Vogue editorial shot by Bruce Weber.
In short, she's the stuff that superstars are made of. And, everybody is taking notice — just a little bit after Mr. Wang did. In fact, the designer also booked the model for his debut fragrance with his new house, simply titled "B." "There's an It factor to [Anna] that really intrigued and inspired me," Wang says. "I really wanted a face that was unknown, as opposed to a celebrity... It's nice to introduce someone new."
In the advertisement, shot by Steven Klein, Ewers appears, veiled, to allude to the "revealing" aspects of the perfume, which has notes of lily of the valley, violet leaves, and an "edamame accord."
"When I was in high school and my girlfriends started wearing sweet scents, I used men's deodorant instead," Ewers says with a laugh. "I like that this fragrance is fresh and green and has woodsy notes to it, as well. It's perfect for every occasion."
For Mr. Wang, the model and the scent both embody the dichotomy of the It factor: "She's a classic beauty, but she's also very modern," he says. Isn't that always the goal?
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