Winner of Top Model UK Classic 2021, we talk to Laurita about the industry and her career.

The model in me-Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė
Photography by – @mansoor7443 London Fashion week / Perfume – @crystaldaiva

Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė was the winner of Top Model UK Classic 2021. We talk to Laurita about the industry and her career.

The model in me-Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė

The model in me.

Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė

Photography by – @elwira_posiak_wansorra Perfume: @crystaldaiva

Modelling Origins

The origins of this industry date back to when people posed for portraits and paintings. The invention of the camera in the early 1800s divided it into many micro sectors. These include fashion, beauty and accessories, to name a few. Although a career path, the pay was historically poorly paid and known to be highly competitive. However, decades later, modelling is evolving from the sidelines and presenting opportunity. Needless to say that now pay is in line with other industries. Social media has influenced how models are perceived, so, in many cases, influencers are now wearing the same badge. 

“A rose can never be a sunflower, and a sunflower can never be a rose. All flowers are beautiful in their own way, and that’s like women too. I want to encourage women to embrace their own uniqueness.”

— Miranda Kerr

The Journey

A constantly evolving passion for carving out a niche. We caught up with Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė. Winner of Top Model UK Classic 2021, we talk to Laurita about the modelling industry and her career. Moving to the UK in 2005, she felt that she needed change. Participating in local modelling competitions from age 15, she instinctively knew modelling was of interest to her as a career path.

Where were you born?

I was born in Lithuania.

How would your friends describe you?

My friends would describe me as happy and jolly with a strong sense of personality who loves to socialise and create a positive, loving and welcoming environment with everyone I encounter.

She had a strong bond with apparel, often putting different outfits together, and a love for everything in fashion. Seamlessly experimenting with fashion accessories and colour options, she continues experimenting with colours, fabrics and design options even today. So, on some level, I personally think that these traits complement her passion for modelling.

Who was the first person who told you that you should be a model?

Everyone in my family always encouraged me to get involved in competitions and photoshoots. I met no resistance, and I’m proud to say that it helped me to achieve. So, personally and professionally, family support is very important, and I’m very thankful for that. In contrast, I know that not all models have that support mechanism, so I feel very fortunate.

The model in me - Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė
Designer – @saminamughal_fashiondesigner
Photo – @laurentrosemain

Is the modelling path very competitive? Why?

It is pretty competitive because everyone’s always trying to make themselves known, especially in competitions. After all, everyone wants to win. Moreover, models have to conform to a particular look in the past in contrast to today, where there is a step towards a realistic look. 

It’s still competitive; however, compared to the past, models now have tools like social media to give them a competitive edge. Ultimately, we are all competing to win contracts, and I don’t think that will ever change.

Photography by – Amir.phgraphy

“Always surround yourself with positive people”.

– Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė

Is the world of modelling glamorous?

Yes, it’s definitely glamorous. But, in addition, there’s lots of beauty and excitement. The ambience of fashion shows and your relationship with the designers impacts how a model feels. Some reasons models love this industry are red carpet events, parties, and photo shoots.

Who would you love to model for?

My ultimate dream would be to model for luxury clothing brands such as Chanel, Burberry and Gucci. I think that it would be such a fantastic experience. Those brands were and still are iconic. Furthermore, they still influence fashion trends.

What was it like to win the TOP MODEL UK Classic 2021?

It was absolutely unreal. The competition was huge with so many beautiful people. I never expected it. I felt extremely happy and honoured.

Laurita’s first competition was the: Southern Elegance modelling event in 2017. It was a launch pad for her career as following that; she had offers from designers, photo shoot opportunities and fashion show invitations. She told me that the experience was glamorous, exciting and inspiring.

Designer: @louiserousecouture Photo: @colinchau

What would you say if you had to summarise your life in one paragraph?

My life is full of good and creative energy, so I’ve always found it interesting. I’ve constantly found new opportunities to be myself everywhere I have been. I always felt I was in the right place at the right time. No matter how hard it can get, I’ve always told myself that you need to do what makes you happy, and I’ve always stayed true to that.

What advice would you give anyone who has an interest in modelling?

Firstly, it’s good to have a high level of self-belief. Secondly, dare to confront your fears and gain experience. Finally, the more you network, the more you gain self-confidence, which will open doors. Furthermore, you need a high level of confidence to distance yourself from the competition.

“Don’t let anything hold you back. Keep going”.

– Laurita Gruodytė-Žilė

Laurita gave me the impression that, on the one hand, someone can have a distinct look and a love for fashion. However, they still need to use available tools such as social media to create opportunities. On the other hand, there is a degree of being at the right place, at the right time. Furthermore, you must create opportunities for yourself and maintain a strong work ethic—a lasting impression from a model who continues to forge her way forward in her career. So, newbies must keep motivated and active on social media to enter this industry. Also, believe in yourself to develop your confidence, which can give you a competitive edge.

Designer: @pierre.garroudi Photo: @byfinchley