x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Amber Le Bon on abayas and ambitions in Dubai

We sit down with supermodel Amber Le Bon during her recent visit to Dubai.

Amber Le Bon by Sarah Dea.
Amber Le Bon by Sarah Dea.

As the eldest daughter of Duran Duran frontman Simon Le Bon and his supermodel wife Yasmin, Amber Le Bon has famous and fashionable shoes to fill. Born and raised in London, the 23-year-old embarked upon a career in modelling in recent years, having fronted campaigns for Diesel, Forever 21 & Myla. With names from Moschino, Monsoon and Pantene to her credit, we sat down with the rising star to find out what’s next, upon her recent visit to Dubai to host the Grazia Style Awards 2013.

Welcome to the UAE Amber, is this your first trip to the region?

Thank you, I’ve been to Bahrain before, but never Dubai.


What are your first impressions?

I think it’s fantastic! It’s all shiny, new and exciting. It’s also so nice to get away from the snow in the UK!

What are your plans while in town?

So far, I’ve been to the mall, and wondered around the city a bit, doing some sightseeing. I just fully intend to have a relaxing time for the rest of my trip.

Having had a look around the malls, what do you make of the fashion scene here in the UAE?

I think it’s wonderful; it’s a very polished look. The national dress is so elegant, and is such a nice change from European fashion.

Can you imagine yourself wearing a traditional abaya?

I can actually, I’d love to wear one, they look very comfortable.

What tips has your mother given you for surviving the modelling world?

She instructed me to “be lovely to everybody”. You always make a first impression on people and you never know where they’ll be in five years, or who they know. It’s the easiest thing in the world to be nice to people and it’s always very much appreciated. I actually think that’s the best advice for life in general.

Watching her on the catwalk and being photographed for fashion publications as a child, is that when you decided you wanted to pursue the same career path?

[Laughs!] No, I never thought that honestly. When I was growing up I vowed I’d never be a model, simply because Mum was one! My sister and I were carted around to all of her shows and shoots as children, and we’d sit underneath the hair and make-up tables – being good as gold. We loved playing with the make-up, but I didn’t want to go into it at that stage. Then, when I left school and wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, I did work experience at my mother’s agency as a booker and receptionist. One day, they asked me to try modelling; I gave it a go and fell into it that way really.

Is it something you’ve grown to love and want to continue with?

Yes, I enjoy it, and it has let me travel to some fantastic places and meet amazing people. I get to play dress-up as a job which is fantastic! But I’m always trying to think what comes next, which is terrifying as I’ve no idea by the way.

Having famous parents as you do, are you constantly bombarded with questions about them by fans, journalists, photographers etc?

Yes and a lot of the photographers know Mum, which is very nice. Of course, I always try to get gossip on her! Of which there is absolutely none as she was such a good girl. So annoying! [laughs]

You are an enthusiastic singer and piano player, is that a creative avenue you’d like to fully explore?

It’s true I have a passion for music and I’ve started to teach myself guitar, which I love, but I mainly enjoy it as a hobby at the moment. I DJ occasionally in London at fashion parties, but I see it more of a release, especially piano, guitar and singing, than anything else. I’d quite like to keep that as something just for me right now.

Do you have jamming sessions with your dad?

I do, but he’s not a very good teacher; he’s more of a player. He’ll start by teaching me a song and get really into it and carry on playing to the point where I can’t keep up. “What’s that chord again?” I’ll be asking and he’s already off in his own world.

What’s your ultimate modelling ambition?

Hmmm, I don’t know actually. I don’t know if there’s really a pinnacle but there’s always something better and newer to strive for. The most important thing is to enjoy the journey and the opportunities that come along.

How about a Vogue cover or being the muse for a certain maison?

I think everyone wants to be on the cover of Vogue don’t they? [laughs] So yes, that would be lovely one day, if I’m lucky enough!

rduane@thenational.ae