Karlie Kloss – American Fashion Model

by Kristine Bigcas

Karlie Kloss is a Victoria Secret Model, entrepreneur, and an active advocate of computer programming. She made her first breakthrough as a model for Abercrombie & Fitch but even before that, she was already working as a model since she was 14. She is currently balancing her modeling career with her studies. On top of that, she has also started appearing in music videos and series shows. Her latest feature was for the March 2017 issue of Vogue Magazine. She is considered to be one of the top 30 models of the 2000’s.

Early Life and Family

Born Karlie Elizabeth Kloss on August 03, 1992, Karlie, as she is simply called, comes from a family of Danish, German, and Polish descent. She was born in Chicago, Illinois before being uprooted with her family to St. Louis in Missouri when she was still two years old. She had classical ballet training as a child which has helped her practice walking like she was on the runway. She received her education from Webster Groves High School.

Karlie is close to her family. She has three sisters in total: Kristine, Kimberly, and Kariann. All three of them are born from the same parents. Their father, Kurt Kloss, is an emergency physician while their mother, Tracy Fares, on the other hand, is a freelance director. Her mother is a breast cancer survivor from about two decades ago since her first diagnosis.

She was teased as a “weird tall alien” when she was in high school mostly because her schoolmates and bullies didn’t read any fashion magazine. They had no knowledge about her modeling stints, especially those that were held outside of the country. On her channel, she revealed “As a kid, I was really tall and skinny and awkward and gangly—and I wasn’t confident. I’ve always been very open with my friends and family, but when it came to getting in front of a crowd, I always used to be very self-conscious and shy. I would go into a shell and just be very quiet.” But, through time, she was able to overcome the adversities and embraced who she was even more.

Personal Life

After a long gap year which she spent in modeling, Karlie decided to prioritize her studies and enrolled in the Gallatin School of Individualized Study of New York University. She had been wanting to pursue her passion for coding. She said that “It’s something that I’ve wanted to do for a very long time.” At first, Karlie thought that she would be rejected by the university but her high grades back in high school have helped her achieve her dream. After sending her application, she admitted that she checked her mail every day to see if the University has sent their reply already. On September 2015, Karlie started her first day as a computer science major.

Before she even enrolled in New York University, she already took a short course coding class about programming drones at the Flatiron School. She attended her classes alongside her boyfriend. She is also very passionate about baking and has baked side by side with the famous Martha Stewart.

Relationships

The only known boyfriend of Karlie is the businessman Joshua Kushner. The first time they met, she admitted that she “was definitely not planning on falling in love” however, she had come to realize that “the thing about it, you can’t anticipate or plan it.” They have been together since 2012.

Joshua was born on June 12, 1985, to a Jewish family from New Jersey. His family’s wealth mostly comes from the real estate development business of his father, Charles Kushner. He is a graduate of Harvard University and Harvard Business School just like his brother, Jared Kushner. Also, he is the brother in-law of Ivanka Trump, the eldest daughter of current United States President, Donald Trump. Personally, he is the founder and serves as the managing partner of Thrive Capital and is the co-founder of Oscar Health.

Back in June 2016, Karlie has posted a loving message for him on their anniversary. She has posted on Instagram and Twitter a sweet photo of them together, with the caption “four years ago today I met my best friend ⭐️🌙 I love you more everyday.”

Modeling Career

Karlie was making her appearance in a local benefit runway show when she was first discovered. From then on, she has continued to work as a young model. When she was 14, she posed for Scene Magazine’s June issue in 2006. She modeled for Elite Chicago but later on signed with NEXT Model Management that allowed her to walk the runway for New York Fashion Week. She was a model for Marc Jacobs, Carolina Herrera, and Doo.Ro. She then walked in Milan and Paris for the 2008 fall collections. She then moved to another agency and signed with IMG Models after four years of being in the same agency.

She also signed for Christian Dior the third time in 2011, the year in which she has first walked as a Victoria Secret Angel. Throughout her career, she has appeared in different magazines and fashion shows. She hosted shows for MTV while appearing in Victoria Secret’s swimwear video. Karlie quit being a Victoria Secret model when she had decided to pursue her tertiary education.

Friendship With Taylor Swift

Their friendship started in 2012 when Taylor posed for Vogue’s February 2012 cover and answered an interview for the magazine. After seeing a picture of Karlie, Taylor said “I love Karlie Kloss…I want to bake cookies with her!” to which Karlie replied on Twitter with “love the vogue magazine cover! Your kitchen or mine?” However, they only met in December 2013 when Taylor sang for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. From then on, Karlie and Taylor had been inseparable to which people have dubbed as “Kaylor.” They road tripped together and went on different vacation trips.

When Taylor was interviewed for Rolling Stone, she had pointed out a room where Karlie usually stays and the magazine has mentioned that in the place “There’s a basket of Kloss’s favorite Whole Foods treats next to the bed, and multiple photos of her on the walls.” They then went to watch a New York Knicks game and went together on the American Music Awards. They then took their friendship on the runway when they both walked together for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in December 2014.

Karlie and Taylor then posed for Vogue in a road trip-themed shoot before Karlie made an appearance on Taylor’s Bad Blood music video. Also, on August 2016, Taylor had posted a selfie of them with the caption “I LOVE YOU KARLIE! You’re such an exquisite person, always trying to make things better for others. Every day I’m inspired by how giving, loving, and thoughtful you are. Happy 24th Birthday!!!” which was for Karlie’s birthday. In return, Karlie also posted a cute polaroid image of her receiving a kiss on the cheek from Taylor with the caption “Happiest of Birthdays to my ride or die @taylorswift ❤️🎂👯❤️ I feel blessed to count you as my friend, sister and partner in crime. Can’t wait to celebrate together very soon ❤️🍪🍾”

Other Projects

Karlie has started her own YouTube channel where she shares about her life and some makeup tutorials. She also has her weekly Q&A. Aside from that, she has also become the new face of Swarovski and will be in the position for the next two years. She also made a quick appearance in Bill Nye Saves the World on Netflix.

Advocacy

She has been a long time advocate of computer programming. She had fallen in love with coding ever since she took the class with her boyfriend. She then made ties with Flatiron School and Code.org so she could offer a scholarship called Kode with Klossy. She has been very vocal about her support for Girls Who Code that is why her program is designed for females who are interested in computer science and software engineering.

On the web page of her Kode with Klossy, a message from her says:

Before my first coding class, the idea that I could build something with code seemed nearly impossible, but after only a couple of courses, I was working with my classmates to program a small drone. I realized that, just like art and fashion, code is about creativity, and that women who have these skills have the power to shape our future – and often have. Women are essential in forging digital progress and knowing how to code is the key to exploring and creating the newest frontier.

Her philanthropic work roots from her upbringing. She stated once in an interview that “I like helping people, it’s like something that drives me and makes me happy. I grew up in a small town where everybody just helps everybody. Nobody was particularly well off, but you figure out how to get everybody what they need.” She created “Karlie’s Kookies” which were sold at the Fashion Night Out in New York for the benefit of the hungry children supported by FEED Projects.

Net Worth

Karlie has a total net worth of $15 million dollars.