Olivia Anakwe is a busy bee. Having had very strong seasons working for Miu Miu, Off-White and Jacquemus, she now magically finds time to study Psychology and teach a food programme at the local elementary school next to her modelling career. In her spare time she cooks dishes from heaven, runs an underground restaurant and is a strong role model for young girls. Olivia sure has a lot more to her than her out-of-this-world looks. Whilst the fashion industry admires her in beautiful editorials for Vogue, Odda, and V Magazine, this woman is unstoppable on so many other levels. We at 5’ELEVEN”Magazine sat down with her to find out all about her.
Words by Simone Doreleijers.
Photos by Edwin S Freyer. Styled by Marian Nachmia.
What is it about your job that excites you the most?
Meeting new people from all over the world and being able to travel.
What do you miss most when you are travelling?
I miss my bedroom at times. I have my candles, diffusers, and have just created a sacred space centred around sleep so it is hard to replicate that when I am overseas. Oh and I most definitely also miss my family!
If you could educate the fashion industry on inclusivity, what would you teach them?
There is beauty in diversity.
As a role model for young girls, what would you want them to know?
You are powerful and you will always have time to go for your goals. I think it is important for young girls to know their self-worth and how they are capable of achieving greatness. I also always philosophize about time because life never goes according to plan but that is no reason to give up.
From your instagram, you seem quite the foodie! What’s your specialty in the kitchen?
Yes, many relationships of mine have blossomed over food! My specialty in the kitchen has to be my Vegan Sweet Potato Mac & Cheese or my Vegetable “Fried” Rice that are my go-to specialities around the holidays.
What is the most unexpected thing about you?
That I am studying Psychology Pre-Med with a minor in History.
What other aspirations do you have in life, besides modeling?
I am an assistant teacher for a food education program at my local elementary school. We have classes of kids from pre-kindergarten to 5th grade and teach them about the garden, seasonal fruits, vegetables, tastings, and cook with them. It’s important to instill healthy routines in our future generation and to create an exciting environment for them when it comes to eating healthy.
I am also part of the management team of my best friend’s underground restaurant, ÓLaVie. Every month we host a dinner in secret locations around New York City and feature a different chef. ÓLaVie was created in order to foster a community of old and new friends around the dinner table.
When do you feel like the best version of yourself?
I feel the best version of myself when I am in 90F (32°C) weather and on a remote island by the sea.
MakeUp by Linda Johansson @One Represent using Shiro Cosmetics.
Hair by Cher Savery using Moroccanoil. Photo assistant, Martina Lahore.
Fashion assistants, Victoria Fiorina & Gestine Bondad.
Olivia appears courtesy of Models1.
Find 'Express Yourself' Story inside the Fall Winter 2019 - Issue 3. Get your copy here.