She has been in one of the fashion capitals of the world, namely New York city for a couple of weeks now. Her name is Gaone Pearl Mooketsi, and this is one name and face that you need to remember, for she is a Supermodel in the making. Mooketsi is a model signed under local company Juice Promotions Model (which is her mother agency).
Internationally the 1.8m model is signed under 28 Model Management Agency in New York. Over the past couple of weeks, she has worked for LEUNI (a big designer in New York fashion), SS19 from China, and featured in a Christopher Lowman show, as well as being featured in Vogue online. An elated Mooketsi tells Style that she works with a tight and busy schedule that revolves around castings, fittings and shows.
“It feels good to be a working model,” she says excitedly. Her highlights include walking the ramp for one of the biggest brands namely Pyermoss and Lowman. “Oh wow. It all feels like a dream. As a new face I feel I have done so well. It is not over yet, as I am still here. And I am working hard every day, hoping to get noticed by another big fashion house,” she points out.
Quizzed on how she is feeling at living her dream after so many years of hard work, she says she is over the moon. “I am proud of myself for having worked hard, staying focused, and dedicated to what I love. The fruits of my hard work are finally paying off. I am in the city that I dreamt of for so many years, the city of fashion,” says Mooketsi. She adds that sometimes emotions overcome her when she thinks about her mother agency.
“I remember when I first met her, she said to me, you are going to be big my girl, Botswana is not ready for you,” she shares. Her dream job is modelling she says. And she dreams about working for big international brands such as Ralph Lauren, Dolce & Gabana, Donatella Versace to mention a few. “I want to work with these brands on international campaigns, and also get endorsements deals from brands such as Coco Chanel and Dior,” she says.
“But obviously, I need something to fall back on. So upon completion of my Bsc (Hons) in Network Security and Computer Forensics at Botho University, I would love to learn one or two languages. And I would also love to own my own fashion house brand one day,” says Mooketsi. Other exciting development from the Big Apple is that she is now busy with fittings and show rehearsals for other projects that will be revealed in good time when she is confirmed.
New York which falls under the Big four in fashion is currently busy with the annual New York Fashion week. “Mind you it is the New York fashion week now, so everyone’s attention is on the fashion week. But we are hoping that she will book campaigns as well after the fashion shows. This means that your model will be exposed to fashion house magazines, beauty products, and other brands who do brand activation after the fashion week,” explains Julie Tsile, head of Juice Promotions Model.
Tsile says Mooketsi now is in the main board in New York, which means that she is officially listed as an international model to look at. This also means that all the big designers and fashion houses will now recognise her and she will get first priority alongside other models who are on the main board. This will go into her books, will build her confidence knowing that she is in it.
So what does that mean for Mooketsi? “Knowing that she is in it and surrounded by all the resources she needs to become a supermodel, it means that as a Juice Doll brand, she has made a name for herself and the agency let alone Botswana and put us on the map,” explains Tsile. “Now as she passes in New York they will say that Botswana girl and it brings tears to my eyes knowing how bad she wanted this, and that we made it happen for her,” she adds.
It also means a lot to her to have Mooketsi as a Juice doll ambassador. Tsile notes that it has always been a dream of hers to go to New York and spread her footprints there, but that life happened (school and marriage). “But I did make an impact in the modelling industry and have done a lot of shows in and outside Botswana including being on Vogue”.
She also explains that her stay was extended for two more weeks (she was slated to return earlier this week), as they wanted to give her more exposure and time to network with industry leaders and other models after the fashion week. “There are always photographers who would like to do photo shoots out of the runway so this gives her a chance to have these kinds of opportunities and also engage the media for a wider range of networking because we encourage our models to also grow as a brand themselves,” she explains.
She also notes that Mooketsi is an amazing young woman, and that she did everything she can with her self-sponsored agency in order to make sure that she competes or rather shows her talent at the world’s top models platforms. “She listens, she is hungry and she is doing so well in New York. Clients love her for her signature Juice doll walk. So I can only thank God because the sacrifices that I have made and pushing all my models including Mooketsi are paying off,” says Tsile.