Chelsey Angers said that in the world of professional fashion modeling, you have to be prepared for anything.
At the Boston Fashion Awards show, held May 19, Angers walked the runway in dresses made by several well-known fashion designers. One dress, a delicate, low-cut red and flowery design, had to be taped to her body because it didn’t have a lot of support.
“They used double-sided tape so it wouldn’t fall off,” Angers said. “I was going to model a latex suit, but I’m allergic to latex.”
Angers said in order to properly display some of the outfits she needed to carry herself a certain way on the runway.
“I probably would have been nervous if I didn’t have experience walking the runway in different fashion designs,” she said.
Angers, 20, a member of the Haverhill High School Class of 2011, is making a name for herself in the world of fashion modeling. She said her passion for modeling was sparked by art and design classes she took in high school.
“I’m a very hands-on person and to learn something, I really need to do things with my hands,” Angers said. “I always had trouble understanding math and science, but art I understood perfectly.”
In her junior year at Haverhill High, she enrolled in a fashion design course, an elective at the time, and in her senior year she attended an after-school Access21 program in fashion design.
“I’ve always been artistic, but I was never given the opportunity to explore my creativity until I enrolled in the Access21 class,” she said. “We designed and made clothing, and it really prepared me to study fashion design in college.”
Her parents, DeeDee and Jeff Angers, said their daughter’s chosen career path shows there is good reason to keep the arts in Haverhill schools.
“She did better in the arts than in other subjects, so since that’s where her strengths are, we encouraged her to take art courses in which she’d be successful,” DeeDee Angers said.
Chelsey began modeling about a year and a half ago and recently modeled clothing at the Boston Fashion Awards, a nonprofit event which raised money for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. She was nominated for Best Female Runway Model, along with four other participants.
Although she wasn’t paid to model, the show was a chance for the kind of exposure she hopes will help her career to grow.
“A lot of the designers I modeled for are thinking about using me again, which is a very good thing,” Chelsey said. “I love modeling, as it’s exciting. It’s like going on a roller coaster.”
She said the important thing when walking the runway is to look calm and relaxed.
“You want to see the clothes, and not a nervous model,” she said of the audience. “It really is all about the clothes.”
Chelsey said she had an interest in fashion and modeling even before attending Tilton Elementary School and then Consentino Middle School.
“I remember watching awards shows on television like the Oscars and seeing all of the beautiful clothes, which really sparked my interest in fashion design,” she said. “I’d steal my mother’s bathing suit cover-ups and tie them into dresses, shirts and head wraps.”
Having a certain body type helps, she said about her 5-foot, 10-inch, size 2 frame.
“Models are supposed to be kind of a blank body, tall and thin and kind of like a clothing rack,” she said. “They want the clothing to look like it does on a mannequin.”
While studying fashion design at Bay State College in Boston, Chelsey began her professional modeling career and is currently a signed model at The Beauty Within Model Management organization in Rhode Island.
Over the past year and a half, she has participated in about 30 fashion shows and has walked or had photo shoots for many of the top fashion designers in Boston, such as Daniel Hernandez, Johnathan Joseph Peters, Julie Kontos and Candice Wu. She has appeared in various fashion publications.
“I just did a fashion show for Vogue Knitting, and I’m working on other projects ,as well,” Chelsey said.
DeeDee Angers said her daughter’s success is impressive because she participates in events with other models who have been in the industry longer than she has.
“Her college essay was about becoming a model,” she said of her daughter. “Everything she said in that essay has come true, except for signing with a really huge agency.”