Brown City Shakers: Diamond Divani, NYFW Model & Blogger
Diamond Divani is a model from Raleigh, NC who moved to NYC to further her career. After arriving in NYC, Diamond booked gigs in various shows, worked with celebrity photographers and modeled in New York Fashion Week.
Currently, Diamond has ventured into the world of blogging and has her own self-titled lifestyle, fashion and natural hair blog.
I had the opportunity to interview Diamond about her experiences as a model and blogger. She is definitely someone who works hard and goes after what she wants!
What was your biggest struggle as a model?
Fitting into the size category was definitely my biggest struggle. I was a size 2/4 and designers would try to put me in the plus size category. All of the designers would expect me to be a size 0 or 00. I was constantly told that I would have to lose weight and get down to a size 0-2.
At first, it did mess with my self-esteem and I decided that if I lost weight, it should be for myself and not others. It's just the fashion industry and I can't knock how they make their clothing to fit certain sizes.
Being a black model is hard. Some of the castings prefer most of the models to be either as thin as possible or a darker complexion (from my experiences). There are rarely different shades of black on the runway in most shows. You have to also be a certain size to be a black model. Black models have to be a 0 or even a 00. There is a certain type of black model that they want. It's hard to be a black model in the industry--they rarely pick models with natural hair. If you are natural, they want you to press your hair out or be bald.
Wow! Thats so insane. So, why did you choose NYC? What inspired you to move here?
I felt like NYC was right for me because I wanted to challenge myself. I experienced enough in my hometown as a model. It was time for me to branch out and put myself out there more.
What does being Brown In The City mean to you?
I feel like being Brown In The City is cultural. It's all about being yourself and knowing who you are in a big city. It's about accepting yourself regardless of the adversities that you may face.
What motivated you to start a blog?
Being able to express myself and have others view my ideas is what attracted me to blogging. I wanted to be able to connect with more like-minded people. I feel that it is better for me to blog to express myself. I enjoy being able to have a platform and a voice. I love attending shows/events and being able to write about it.
Who are your biggest inspirations at the moment?
My peers, close friends and family are definitely inspiring to me right now. They help me to remember to stay positive, encouraged and to go after what I want. They keep me focused on my goals.
How has modeling prepared you for blogging?
Modeling back home in Raleigh helped me to get started. Modeling in NYC helped me to broaden my horizons and to see things in a different light. Being a model helped me to deal with everyday situations such as networking, communicating effectively and taking constructive criticisms.
What advice do you have for young women who aspire to move to NYC to pursue modeling?
Stay encouraged. Stay positive. Follow your dreams. Don't have the word 'can't' in your vocabulary. Stay around positive people. Pray--a lot!
Diamond Divani has proven that she is a Brown City Shaker that is about her business! Head on over to her blog (www.diamonddivani.com) to follow her journey as a model and blogger.