Having just been nominated as Favorite Female Model of the Year in the Simply You Magazine (SYM) Lifestyle and Fashion Awards, local fashion model, Princess Verukiruaije Tjozongoro, says she is now ready, steady and ready to face all challenges in the modeling industry.
This en-route to recognition as one of the best local and international fashion models, is her ultimate goal. Princess is also busy building her own brand Princess. “Princess is a brand itself, and every person is some sort of a brand, how you want to be portrayed and be seen as a person, what you stand for as an individual,” explains she. She adds that with her brand, she has already set her mark within the modelling industry in Namibia, and her dominance is vivid. She’s one of Namibia’s “It models” having modelled at the Angola International Fashion Show, covered the ramp during Windhoek Fashion Week in 2016, with designers from nearby African countries. Her agent, Steve Mbingeneeko, from the Ubuntu Modeling Agency, says they are not in a rush to enter the international markets before she has made her mark locally. And a nomination for SYM fashion awards is just another step in the right direction. “The fact that she has been recognised for the local awards, we are now in the process for the next step,” says Mbingeneeko. Princess is currently with different organisations locally such as Girl Child, to instill confidence in youngsters, which they need for their empowerment. Ubuntu scouted her in 2016, and has since been promoting her. “We knew she possessed the elements of a model and we signed her right there and then,” says Mbingeneeko, adding that the agency offers local representation for models within Namibia. Ten models are currently on their books.
Princess says sometimes for a model to make their mark on the industry, it could take a bit of time but she believes being part of modeling agency has helped pushed herself and her brand further.
Her highlights in the industry includes walking for Oppidan Fashion Show in the capital organised by Lafika Joyce; Fashion Festival organised by the Fashion Council of Namibia; Inclusive Fashion Show at the University of Namibia (Unam), and working with people with disabilities and creating awareness.
She have also catwalk for the Windhoek Fashion Week last year, closing off the event for David Tlale, an elite South African designer. Apart from that, Princess has also worked for Wuma Vitamin Energy Drink campaign by local musician, Ees.
Princes also did a photo shoot with the Ubuntu Modeling Agency party for their two years anniversary. The shoot was done by the renowned photographer Tim Brunauer, and Princes was wearing collections of Hambe Andrea, which featured in the Monochrome Magazine’s July cover.
Princess matriculated from the Academia High School and has Accounting and Auditing diploma from the University of Namibia [Unam]. She says it was always her dream to take part in different pageants, but after scouting by Ubuntu and on stage for the first time, she felt like she has finally found her destination. Although she never participated in any pageants during school, the perception of people was that she is pageant’s animal. “I tried it out once at university when I was a student and took part in some few pageants. But it was never for me. The fact that you have to smile and always pose, and the notion of competition of females among one another is not ideal for me. I am a high fashion model,” she explains.
Princess was inspired by renowned fashion models such as Karlie Kloss and Winnie Harlow. To achieve her modeling ambitions locally and internationally, Princess says commitment, dedication and drive are important. But the key to becoming an international model is not about fame. “That comes along in the journey, it’s inevitable.” She signs off.