“I have a figure, and there aren’t many girls out there right now who have that.” Carmen Kass
Hailed from the small Estonian town, Carmen Kass has made a reputation as one of the world’s top fashion models with countless high-profile gigs under her belt. Coming to prominence as a model featured on L’Officiel and Vogue (France), Carmen gained even more recognitions for her appearances in the Gap commercials and the Victoria’s Secret catalogues, as well as being the model of the Christian Dior perfume “J’adore.” She also has worked with such renowned designers as Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein and Christian Dior, among others.
The VH1/Vogue Model of the Year for 2000 joined Estonia’s ruling Res Publica party in early 2004. She then ran for the European Parliament after her native land joined the European Union in May 2004. Although she was not voted to the European Parliament, Carmen acquired about 2000 votes from the Estonian electorate. Also in 2004, she was elected president of the Estonian National Chess League and managed a campaign to get the right to organize the 2008 Chess Olympics in Tallinn. Unfortunately, the right was given to Dresden, Germany.
Romantically, the Estonian beauty is known for her affair with actor Leonardo DiCaprio. She has also been linked to marketing/public relation-boyfriend Richie Akiva.
Childhood and Family:
In Tallinn, Estonia, Carmen Kass was born on September 14, 1978. She was raised in Paide, a village outside Tallinn, Estonia, by her single mother who was a waitress, and attended the Estonian Business School. When not working, Carmen keeps herself busy by practicing such sports as horseback riding and chess.
Tallinn-born, Paide-raised Carmen Kass began her modeling career at age 14 by joining a regional agency named “Baltic Models.” Entering beauty pageant circuits, the blue-eyed brunette took home the title of Miss Pride and soon sheltered her royal position as the Miss Jrvamma. Carmen’s first modeling break came when an Italian modeling scout invited her to model in Milan after seeing the gorgeous girl in a local supermarket. Finding a way to go by faking her mother’s signature (her mom refused to sign the documents that would allow her to fly to Milan), Carmen spent the next three months in the fashion city to establish modeling career.
At age 18, Carmen decided to move to Paris to more professionally model. A year later, she received international recognitions as the cover girl of such major publications as L’Officiel and Vogue (France). She went on to score success with appearance on Image (UK), Madame Figaro, Elle (Australia), Numero France, Vogue (France) and Vogue (US) in 1999.
Also in 1999, Carmen became one of the fashion runways’ hottest commodities. She brightened up the catwalks working for numerous foremost designers like Oscar de la Renta, Ralph Lauren, Gucci, Jill Stuart, MaxMara, Michael Kors, Moschino, Nicole Miller, Prada, Tommy Hilfiger, Louis Vuitton, Valentino, Alberta Ferretti, Anna Sui, BCBG, Bill Blass, Calvin Klein, Chanel, Christian Dior, DKNY, Dolce & Gabbana, Gianfranco Ferré and Gianni Versace.
Her supermodel status was further confirmed with appearance in many big advertising campaigns, including for Donna Karan, General Motors, Chanel, Guy Laroche, Krizia, Versace and Calvin Klein. But, she is perhaps most familiar for her Gap denim advertisements and being the face of the Christian Dior perfume “J’adore.” She also becomes the spokes model for one of the world’s leading cosmetics merchants, Sephora.
Now a resident of New York, Carmen has become a staple for the two largest American fashion magazines, Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue. She even has raised her star status by appearing in Victoria’s Secret catalogues. One of the most sought after models, Carmen, who is represented by “Women” in New York, and “City” in Paris, has reportedly purchased part of her former agency, “Baltic Models.”
Branching out to acting, the supermodel took on the supporting role of Prof. Kaia Hiiernum in the movie Welcome to America (2002), jointly directed by Rish Mustaine and John Sjogren and starring Michael Madsen and Tom Sizemore. Two years later, she added the drama film Point&Shoot and the Estonian murder-mystery film Täna öösel me ei maga (We Won’t Sleep Tonight) to her still limited acting resume.