Frankie Tavares – Plus Size Model
Congratulations on all of your success as a Plus Size Model. How did you get started modelling? Thank you! Last year I submitted my photos to a model call for MonifC. She picked me for a body positivity campaign showcasing different models of different sizes in swimwear. That campaign really launched my career.
What has been your favourite experience thus far – the one you are most proud of?
I have definitely been proud and grateful of my accomplishments throughout this journey as a whole. However, the most surreal experiences have to be walking in New York Fashion Week for Byron Lars and Ashley Nell Tipton.
Just like any craft there is a learning curve – how did you learn how to model – both print and runway if applicable?
Honestly I did not know how much it took to become a model. Its hard work! I am continuously learning new methods, learning my body and what works as far as clothing and poses. I attend classes and just practice in front of the mirror and camera. I also do runway so you can find me strutting down the grocery aisle or my driveway. I try to practice as much as possible.
Did you have mentors or role models who helped and inspired you along the way?
I am so thankful and blessed to have met so many people who inspire me. From designers to seasoned models, makeup artists, hair stylists and stylists. I am a sponge and I soak up as much knowledge I can from whoever is willing to offer it.
The Plus Size Industry has changed and continues to evolve – how do you think as a model you are able to help make an impact in how the world sees plus size women?
This has to be my favorite part of modeling. As a size 18/20 model that is on the shorter side for runway I have been able to walk in New York Fashion week and be chosen as the face for brands. I am visibly plus size and I love to show that. I get so much positive and truly inspiring messages from women all over saying how much I inspire them to put themselves out there and follow their dreams. Through all of this, that has to be my absolute biggest accomplishment.
You exude confidence with every step you take, were you always this confident? Tell us a little bit about the journey to confidence.
As a young woman growing up I was always on the plus side. I had thicker legs, fuller breasts and a chubby face for what seems like my entire life LOL. I’ve always embraced it. My mother’s side of the family were tiny women with petite curvaceous bodies. My father’s side were women who stood at 6’ tall and with goddess type voluptuous figures. My family as a whole was definitely made up of curves both big and small so it was easy for me to feel like I fit in. When we got together we would play in makeup and dress up and there was always so much positivity around the fact that we were so diverse. I owe my confidence to the women in my family for showing me that beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colors.
For our readers who are interested in starting a plus model career, what would you suggest are some top tips to get started?
RESEARCH. The internet is your friend. It’s really hard breaking in to the industry when you do not know where to start. Plus Model Magazine has helped me so much. Their tips and modeling 101 has everything you ever questioned right there for you. Also, don’t give up, don’t get discouraged and DO NOT compare your journey to someone else’s. My favorite motto is “What’s for me will always be for me.”
As a model you’ve had the opportunity to wear a variety of different styles, but what would we catch you in on an ‘off duty’ day? What would you call your fashion sense and how has this evolved through your modelling career?
I am all over the place with style LOL. I love a great pair of jeans and a t-shirt as well as a glam designer dress. My style has not really changed with modeling. I have always loved fashion and dressing according to my mood. My closet is full of all kinds of styles; you couldn’t tell what my style was just looking at my closet.
What are you some of your favourite places to shop your style?
I love thrift stores! I also love to shop online. I find so many great things online that I would not find in the stores. Forever 21 always has something I like as well as Lord & Taylor, Macys, Monif C and Joni Marie Ross Designs.
What does life look for you outside of the modelling world?
Oh wow, do we have time? LOL. I am somewhat private with my personal life but I am a proud soccer mom! (As well as a basketball, and football mom.) I have 3 amazing sons whom I run around with as much as I can. I have an amazing husband who is very supportive in all that I do. I also run a non for profit program as a human services coordinator. I help bring awareness of poverty to the community and organize events to collaborate with local businesses to help end hunger and poverty. It is a very demanding and you have to be fully invested in what you do but I love it. I have been a community leader for a long time, it is my passion to help others who need a voice and I hope to continue to be able to do both that and modeling.
Thank you for taking time to chat with us today! What is one message you would like to leave with our readers today?
Sounds cliché but NEVER GIVE UP. I am a full time mom, wife, business woman, community leader and a model. I don’t know how I make it all happen but I do. If you are truly passionate at something, work hard and it will happen. Nothing great ever came easy and it is a continuous learning process. Stay humble, be gracious, be kind and hustle hard. It’s not easy and there will be several challenges…. Just NEVER GIVE UP.
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