The new romantic: why Felicity is the face of 2006

When Felicity Gilbert decided to make her career in the fashion world she expected a long fight to gain a toe-hold in the notoriously competitive industry.

But within an hour of inquiring at the Storm modelling agency she had been signed up. Seven days later she was being photographed by Mario Testino.

She has now been picked by the fashion bible Vogue for the "Class of 2006", which showcases 21 of the world's most promising models. The "Class of 2005" included the likes of Lily Cole and Gemma Ward.

Since October, Gilbert has been photographed for an advertising campaign by the fashion house, Chloe, worked with the models Christie Turlington and Malgosia Bela, and featured in British, French, Italian and Japanese Vogue.

Gilbert, 20, who lives with her mother in Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire, follows in the footsteps of iconic predecessors who were discovered by Storm, including Kate Moss.

Sarah Doukas, the owner of Storm, who spotted Moss as she waited for a flight at JFK airport in New York nearly two decades ago, was struck by Gilbert's "exquisite" look.

Victoria Inman, a booker at Storm, said: "We see hundreds of girls each week and we could all immediately tell she was something special. We took photos of her and within the hour, we told her that we would like to represent her. She looks very interesting and is also extremely beautiful and has a real aura about her."

Her delicate, romantic features could indicate a move away from last year's look, dubbed "freak chic" by the fashion press, led by models including Erin O'Connor and Karen Elson, for a return to a more classic image.

"There seems to be an interest in people looking more beautiful these days, and fashion is much more feminine at the moment," Ms Inman said.

Although Gilbert had no modelling experience and was 5ft 7in tall - petite in the fashion industry - she was sent to meet Testino. "She and Mario Testino gelled immediately. She was really happy to meet him, she's a very unassuming girl, as well as being very polite and intelligent," Ms Inman added.

Sophie Baudrand, the fashion bookings editor at Vogue, said Gilbert had been chosen as one of "fashion's freshest faces" by Prada's casting director, Russell Marsh, who is known for setting trends in the modelling world.

"Felicity is quite little but has an exquisite face. She looks lovely. She is in the February and March issues of Vogue and she has done a Chloe advertising campaign. She seems to have a Sissy Spacek look, sort of on the cusp of womanhood. She is in-between, neither a girl nor a woman. She is quite ethereal," she said.

Ms Baudrand said the models in Vogue's "Class of 2006" were showcased because fashion editors noticed "a whole new wave of girls" on the fashion scene.

"We don't do this every season. We happened to do it this time because we just noticed these faces. Until four or five years ago, there were either the Kates or the Naomis and people knew who they were, or there were those where it didn't matter who they were. Now modelling has become more collaborative and we are asking a lot more of them, so today's models have developed more personality," she said.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Account Manager, London

£18000 - £22000 per annum, Benefits: Excellent Uncapped Commission Structure: ...

Sales Executive, London

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Charter Selection: This exciting entertainment comp...

Digital Producer / Digital Project Manager

£28 - 45k: Guru Careers: A Digital Producer / Digital Project Manager is neede...

Account Manager, Spanish, London Bridge

£30,000 + 20K Commssion: Charter Selection: This rapidly expanding organisatio...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz