Fashion Retrospective: Gisele Bundchen – The Early Years
Back in the day the sultry Brazilian-born Gisele Bundchen was labeled “Olive Oyl” by her friends due to her skinny figure. Her exotic beauty was discovered accidentally while walking in a mall – imagine that!
Now Gisele’s face has become recognized on pages in countless catalogues, campaigns and runways. And she’s become one of the most successful supermodels the world has ever known. FashionTV gives you a retrospective of the beautiful Gisele Bundchen.
Like every Cinderella story, Gisele was born far from the spotlight and the runway in a small city in Brazil. She is one of five sisters – one that is actually her twin! Who knew? As a little girl Gisele dreamed of becoming a professional volleyball player and never actually thought her claim to fame would be on the catwalk.
Upon getting discovered in Sao Paulo by a modeling agent while walking around in a shopping mall, Giselle’s success was immediate. She was selected for a national beauty contest called “Elite Look of the Year” and won second place. Gisele was also recognized globally in an international contest. A short time later she was labeled one of the highest paid models in Brazil.
Gisele – retrospective clip 1998 – 2004
Gisele Stuns McQueen
In 1995 Gisele decided to branch out to other cities in the world in order to gain more career exposure. At the age of 16, Bundchen made her first steps on the glamorous New York Fashion Week runways. From that point on it was almost sure that the young Brazilian was going to be the world's next top model. Fashion journalists and top designers were obsessed with her unique walk on the runway – later denoting it “horse walk” – and were impressed by her charismatic charm.
In 1997 Gisele walked in a total of 42 fashion shows during highly anticipated fashion weeks all over the world. A year later she participated in one of Alexander McQueen's most memorable shows called “’Rain’ Ready-To-Wear.” In this show models were asked to walk in towering heels on a slippery runway. McQueen was amazed by Gisele’s performance. After that show she was asked to partake in many future projects for top designers and earned worldwide fame and recognition.
McQueen 1998 (Gisele is on 01:36)
Top designers from all fashion capitals wanted Gisele to walk their collections. In 1998 Giselle walked for top brands like Dolce & Gabbana, Gianfranco Ferre, Chloé, Valentino, and Missoni among many others. She also made the covers of many well-known fashion magazines, including French Vogue.
All over the world women and men alike fell in love with Giselle’s face and defined body. By 2000 she appeared on more than 600 magazine covers. The only person to have appeared at that time on more magazine covers than Miss Giselle was the late Princess Diana. Giselle’s $20 million contract with Victoria's Secret signed that year gave her even more credibility in the modeling world. She became one of the sexy steamy Angels for a consecutive seven seasons.
Gisele – Victoria's Secret retrospective clip
Over the years the Brazilian bombshell opened for countless fashion shows and took part in top-notch advertising campaigns. One of her most successful collaborations was with Italian brand Dolce & Gabbana. Between 1998-2003 Gisele participated in every fashion campaign the duo designers produced, and between 2006-2009 she was the face of the Dolce & Gabbana’s fragrance “The One.”
Dolce & Gabbana 2002 (Gisele opens the show)
Although it seems like designers just can’t get enough of Gisele, surprisingly she still has time to pursue interests other than modeling. In addition to wooing designers, journalists and photographers on and off the catwalk, Gisele spends a chunk of her life dealing with real estate – a long time hobby of hers. She once said that modeling takes just 40% of her time and the rest is dedicated to purchasing real estate in Sao Paulo, Los Angeles, New York, California, Costa Rica and Santa Monica.
Forbes Magazine listed Gisele as the highest paid model in 2011 earning $45 million. When she got married and became a mother, Giselle said goodbye to Victoria's Secret and the Angels. But this didn’t interfere with her successful career. She even launched her own skin care product line and her ability to radiate luxury as well as simplicity and affordability made her even more lovable all over the world. And in 2011 she was the face of many campaigns by Versace, Dior and H&M.
Gisele – 1999 – 2000 clip
Time has done nothing but good for Gisele Bundchen. And to think that it all started that day at a mall. Talk about being at the right place at the right time! But at FashionTV we believe that even if Gisele weren’t at the mall that day, her timeless beauty would have taken her to a longstanding modeling career anyway.
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