Style King: Vinnie Woolston

Never in his wildest dreams did Kiwi model Vinnie Woolston think he would be the face of Yves Saint Laurent’s male fragrances. But the launch of new YSL L’Homme Ultime – which hit counters in mid-July – signalled the second chapter in the relationship between the French fashion and beauty house and the Raglan-based model. “It’s an honour to be chosen, and I’m very grateful,” says a humble Woolston. Woolston, who imagined he would grow up to be a league player or pro skateboarder, made his modelling debut around 14 years ago. “I got approached a couple of times when I was working in my local surf shop and never really thought much about it,” he says. It wasn’t until he grew tired of his job that Woolston decided to take the idea seriously. “I asked a local model in my town about it. She gave me the number of 62 Models, and I’ve been with them ever since.”

The model has come a long way since his first job for Workshop Denim; recently Woolston starred alongside Cara Delevingne and Kate Moss in a campaign for Spanish fashion label Mango. Woolston admits he was a little starstruck by Moss at first. “She was very down-to-earth and a true professional. She made it very easy; we had a good chat and shared a couple of beers. She’s definitely cool!” As for the YSL advertising campaign, Woolston says the shoot was action-packed. “It was awesome shooting in beautiful Chile, the production was huge so there was a lot going on.” You can take the boy out of New Zealand but you can’t take New Zealand out of the boy: Woolston – who takes the wheel of a vintage Mercedes in the advertisement – says, “Thrashing the Mercedes was the best.” Currently Woolston spends a fortnight every few months working overseas in the fashion capitals of the world. When he’s home, Woolston misses the different cultures, scenery and food, “All the things you can’t experience unless you’re in that country.” But home is really where Woolston’s heart is. “I miss my friends and family and the laid-back pace of life. The first thing I do when I get home is give my darling daughters big kisses and cuddles!”


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Five minutes with Elle Macpherson

How does your new lingerie collection differ to projects you’ve worked on in the past? 

My past arrangement was a license. With Elle Macpherson Body I wanted to create a business venture that truly encapsulates my vision so I have formed a joint venture with a fantastic partner, Simon de Winter. He is a very successful Australian entrepreneur who is completely aligned with my hopes and aspirations for the brand and we are 50/50 partners. The collection Elle Macpherson Body is sexy yet sporty with great attention to detail, strong silhouettes and bold unexpected colours.

What is the biggest challenge in designing lingerie? 

I believe that true luxury is comfort and style. My aim was to design the perfect t-shirt bra, which I could never find, and I think I have achieved that.

Can you talk about the inspiration behind the collection? 

I wanted to design a collection that suited not only me but my teenage step-daughters as well. I wanted a collection that was designed for a modern woman and the way she lives her life every-day. Elle Macpherson Body is as much about attitude as it is about lingerie, reflecting the Australian lifestyle and its signature fresh, uncontrived spirit.

Who do you see wearing The Body? Did you design it with a certain woman in mind? 

I designed the collection for all modern woman. Beautiful and confident in her own skin, she could be any age or shape. 

 Do you have personal favourites from the line? 

At the heart of the collection is Body, a selection of modern sport inspired t-shirt bras and knickers in microfibre and air-tech mesh, which I love as there are a great variety of styles that I can wear with different outfits. My absolute favourite piece is the bodysuit, which is such a cool new silhouette and so easy to wear with jeans or a suit. 

You talk about the range flattering different body types. How were able to achieve this? 

Using design lines and clean styles, I hope I have created a wide variety of silhouettes to suit different body types. There is a lightly padded plunge push up bra that is great for smaller busts and unpadded bras which suit many bust shapes. There are bras from an A to a G cup, and soft cup bras with racerback details for a sporty yet sexy styling. I also focused on back detail as a woman often turns her back when dressing, I thought it was important to make sure the back have great styling as well.

We’ve paid attention to create high cut legs to elongate the leg and have placed back straps in such an apex as to accentuate broad shoulders and a narrow waist. I believe well designed lingerie can completely change your body shape. 


 What do you think the best way is to approach buying lingerie? 

Most importantly, get fitted properly. It makes such a difference when you wear the correct size and is so much more comfortable too! It can also create a cleaner silhouette under clothes – there is nothing worse that bulges in the wrong places due to too tight bra.

 Any tips for curating the perfect collection of lingerie? 

I would say to every woman to invest in fresh lingerie as often as possible – don’t wait for it to get old and tattered. And if you love a style get it in a few colours. Try experimenting with a body suit like The Body or Edge bodysuits in my new collection. What you put under your clothes, what’s inside, is as important as what’s outside. 

Elle Macpherson Body is available now at Farmers. 


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