Meet Sabrina Servance! Our Monday Model.
Sabrina is a plus size model whose journey to self-love has been “a marathon, not a sprint.”
Congratulations on all of your success as a Plus Size Model. How did you get started modeling?
I have been trying to model since I was a teenager and was rejected a LOT! That never stopped me. Being on a reality show really helped put me in a different spotlight that I didn’t have before. I used it as a stepping stone to put me in front of the right people.
What has been your favorite experience thus far – the one you are most proud of?
I have had so many so it is hard to pinpoint just one. One is definitely walking for Ashley Nell Tipton’s fashion show during NYFW for JCPenney. It has always been a goal of mine to be on the runway for NYFW. Another is seeing my image on the clothing tags for Society+. I never thought I would be on websites, let alone being on a clothing tag! I’ve also had two magazine covers. It’s surreal to dream about things and have them actually happen.
Just like any craft, there is a learning curve – how did you learn how to model – both print and runway if applicable?
I learned by taking advice from a lot of people in the industry who know what they’re talking about. Also, I learned from making mistakes. I don’t think that every shoot is perfect and I don’t think that every runway show is either. I take every experience and think of what I can do to improve. Before every shoot and runway, I look at pictures of other models and watch videos to get inspired. I even have three of my “sister friends” Akili, Gia, and Pnut take photos for me on my down days so I can get new content and practice.
Did you have mentors or role models who helped and inspired you along the way?
Jovanna Reyes and Tamara Ivey are definitely two people who have mentored me. I met them both at Plus Night Out when I was filming Big Women: Big Love. They took so many chances on me. Jovanna gave me my first cover shoot(my first editorial honestly) and really worked with me on my angles, my posture, etc. She really taught me to see that I am capable of whatever I put my mind too. Jovanna always pushed me to strive for better. Tamara Ivey also pushes me. She takes me out of my comfort zone as far as fashion is concerned and always has my back. Tamara gave me so many opportunities with Ashley Stewart! They are all an amazing team and I am so lucky to have been able to be part of the great things they are doing.
There are countless others who have helped me along the way and I’m so grateful (Jessica Kane for giving me the chance to model for Society +, Gwen DeVoe, Maddy Jones, the list goes on and on). And there are so many bloggers and models who treat me like one of their own and inspire me to do better every day of my life.
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?
When most people think of a plus-sized model, they think of someone who is essentially perfectly plus(small arms, flat stomach, small waist). I am not that! There have been so many times when people say “ It is so great to see someone who is shaped like me!”It makes me feel like I have done my job. People in the industry don’t think that a visibly plus model can sell clothes. We can and we do! I think that models like me show the world that you can have big hips and a sizeable butt and STILL slay!! It’s not about size. It’s about how you wear it.
You exude confidence with every step you take, were you always this confident? Tell us a little bit about the journey to confidence.
It took me a long time to be the woman I am now. I was bullied a lot growing up and I never thought I was beautiful – I didn’t even own a full-length mirror to look at myself. One thing I always had thought was style. Even though I felt I was ugly, my outfits were always awesome (ok not ALWAYS ha). I loved fashion. I could wear whatever and be whoever I wanted depending on my look. However, something clicked years ago. I realized that I spent way too much time dwelling on the words of others. And I decided to start living for ME. It was beyond putting on a nice dress and pretending to be okay. I learned to love myself. It took a lot of tears and a lot a-ha moments. I don’t regret any of it. I’m actually glad I was bullied. I know it sounds strange to say that. But it made me focus on who I was inside. I have my days where I don’t feel great (don’t we all). But overall, the Sabrina you see today is strong and knows her worth.
For our readers who are interested in starting a plus model career, what would you suggest are some top tips to get started?
Research, research, and more research! Go to model boot camps(Liris Crosse has an amazing one).Work with different photographers, stylists, and makeup artists. (I’m working on this myself) Also, things don’t happen overnight. It’s okay to have some bad shoots and some bad runway experiences. They will help you grow as a model.
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 modeling career?
If you ask my friends, I’m always doing the most. And it’s so true. My style is very eclectic. I can go from a flowy maxi and lots of accessories to rocking a cape blazer. I’m always dressed up. Being a model has helped me wear things I would never have worn otherwise. I have definitely started being more bold with prints on the bottom and wearing shorter dresses. Before, I always uncomfortable in anything that made my butt look bigger. I got over that when I was missing out on some really great fashion pieces. So I started to take risks and wear stripes and shiny fabrics. Because why not?!
What are you some of your favorite places to shop your style?
I love H&M, Ashley Stewart, Eloquii, Rue 21, and JCPenney to name a few. I really like wearing pieces from indie designers like Courtney Noelle and Ready To Stare. Also, I like to go thrifting so I can deconstruct something and make it my own.
What does life look for you outside of the modeling world?
Outside of modeling, I actually have a full-time job as a Visual Merchandise Manager. I have no idea how I work 40+ hours a week on top of everything else I do. But as Tim Gunn says, “Make it work!” Traveling is also a big part of my life. I try to go to as many events as I can!Living in Florida has given me the opportunity to meet a lot of new people. So I get to go to a lot of cool charity events. And if you follow me on Instagram, you know that I spend a lot of time with my boyfriend, Addison, playing video games, board games, or at the comic shop. (I’m a nerd.)
Thank you for taking time to chat with us today! What is one message you would like to leave with our readers today?
Everyone has a different journey. If you aren’t in a place where you feel super confident in what you wear, and more importantly, who you are, that’s ok! Don’t feel like you have to be where your friends are. Where people on the internet are. You will get there. Definitely do not ever let anyone tell you (or treat you like)you are anything less than amazing. Because you ARE amazing. It’s okay to take your time to learn to love yourself. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.