Three years ago, Kaia Gerber mentioned in a private exchange that she was wearing an off-the-rack H&M. We were standing back from the crowd milling around her mother Cindy Crawford, super model and Omega brand ambassador. Pleasant and unpretentious, Kaia engaged easily with an absence of self-consciousness and entitlement. She was 13 years old.
Flash forward to the Trésor launch in Berlin. Kaia Gerber is introduced as Omega’s newest brand ambassador. She walks into the Omega launch party of the Trésor, wearing Versace right down to her shoes. She is now all of 16 years old, confident without being into herself.
Kaia Loves Asia
When OMEGA asked her to be the face of the Trésor collection, she was overwhelmed. She had begun modeling and was in fact a rising star in the fashion industry. Becoming an Omega brand ambassador meant doing more in her already full schedule but she says, “I’m so grateful for everything that I’ve been given.”
The relationship with the luxury watch company is a family affair. It began with her mom Cindy Crawford and eventually included the rest of her family, from dad Rande Gerber, to her brother Presley. Family is important to Kaia, counting the close knit relationship of parents and her brother as top in her life. Omega is personally synonymous to family for her as the luxury watch company took their family together to Omega events around the world. She recalls happy memories particularly of Asia. “We went to Beijing for the Olympics,” she shares. “That was one of my favorite trips with OMEGA. I love going there and always try to find excuses to go back.”
She mentions another Asian country, referencing her mom Cindy. “My mother lived in Japan for a few months. She told me that Asia in general was her favorite place. As a young model, she loved going there and people responded well to her.”
In Her Brother’s Clothes
As brand ambassador of the newly launched Trésor watch, Omega considered Kaia’s input in creating the watch that is intended to reach out to a younger generation. “Today, you don’t need a watch to tell the time,” she says candidly. “Everyone has a phone, so I think that’s why a watch is important to me because it’s become this classic piece that you wear because it feels good. If you see someone in a watch, you know they really like that watch.”
Something about the Trésor reflects part of who she is. When asked to describe the distinctive quality of the Trésor, she says, “I think style, because it brings both the classic style and the newer edgier style.” Describing her personal style, she says, “I’m definitely a bit more of a tomboy than my mom was, always have been growing up. I have an older brother so I would steal his clothes all the time and dress up like him, so I think it’s just very relaxed and simple.
“But I would say, my style is classic but with a bit of edge. I follow the rule of less is more. That’s what’s so amazing about OMEGA and the Trésor specifically. I wear jeans and sneakers every day, so you can wear it with that and then can dress it up to go out. I think part of my generation is mixing luxury with more of a street style or something with a more comfortable attitude.”
IG Following at 13
Kaia enjoys being a model. “What I love about doing shows is they are all so different. It’s a new experience with each one. I’m just so happy to be there. It’s a dream job for me. I think it’s really cool because you get to travel and to meet people from all around the world that you wouldn’t normally get to meet. That part of it makes it really fun and exciting for me.”
The recognition is something that still surprises her. “If someone knows my name and I’m like, wait, are talking to me?” She adds for emphasis. “I don’t think there was one moment when I understood it. I was about 13 when one person started following me on Instagram and I thought, how did they find me? From there it became to how it is now.”
On coping with the attention she is now getting, Kaia says, “I try not to let it affect my everyday life. I try not to view myself as anything out of the normal. I think people should do what they want to do, especially when you’re young and only 16, so I don’t let it affect my life.”
When asked about being a role model for other 16 year olds, she replies, “I would never assume that somebody saw me as a role model, but if I can inspire one girl or one person that means the world to me and I hope I do a good job.”
Kaia Gerber appears in the cover of Lifestyle Asia, July 2018 Edition, The Millennial Issue. To read the full cover story run to the nearest bookstand or download the FLIP100 app now.