Born in Sweden, Hedvig Palm was discovered in 2010 at the age of 15, whilst eating at a local restaurant. Signing with Next Models the same year, Hedvig kicked off her modelling career in January 2011.
January 2011: Valentino Haute Couture
September 2011: Alexander Wang, Celine, Jil Sander, Jonathan Saunders and Valentino
February 2012: Balenciaga, Cacharel, Chanel, House of Holland, Louis Vuitton, Mulberry and Topshop Unique.
September 2012: Miu Miu, Roland Mouret, Giambattista Valli, Alexander McQueen, Vanessa Bruno, Givenchy and Prada.
January 2013: Valentino Haute Couture
EDITORIALS / CAMPAIGNS
March 2012: Love S/S issue. ‘A Chorus Line’, photographed by Solve Sundsbo, this exquisitely choreographed editorial (based on 1930’s Hollywood musicals), also featured other new models including Caitlin Lomax, Ajak Deng, Lida Fox and Josephine Skriver.
June 2012: Prada Resort look book.
July 2012: Italian Vogue. ‘Collections’, photographed by Steven Meisel, featured groups of models wearing the headline-making pieces from the A/W collections, including Prada’s printed trouser-suits and Jil Sander’s cocoon coats.
January 2013: Look books for Christopher Kane (Pre-Fall 2012) and COS (Spring / Summer 2013).
Traditionally used as a means of allowing wealthy clients to view haute couture collections, the look book’s purpose is being extended far beyond its high-society origins, and is now being deployed by high street titans.
The look book is joining the digital revolution, transforming into a smartly-produced video. The COS look book sits somewhere between catalogue and campaign, pausing on details in the clothing, showing both how the clothes move and sit on the body.
Campaigns have already made the leap to video, with the video acting as a companion piece to the more traditional print ad, and the concept brings together one of fashion’s oldest means of self-promotion and the latest technology to make a look book that’s about functionality and purpose.
Hedvig enters the fashion industry at a tipping point heralding enormous change: how we buy and how we wear fashion has changed radically in the past five years and fashion has adapted accordingly.
Even in a climate of change, there are still constants and faces like Hedvig are destined to thrive because they are an ‘easy sell’. Proving equally productive modelling haute couture as the best of the high street, Hedvig’s appeal puts her ahead of the pack.
The easy sell is becoming increasingly important, but selling a product in the first place has created a unique set of challenges especially for online fashion retailers. Selling fashion is rarely about combinations of fabric and fastenings, but selling an idea. For retailers, this means hiring models who are not only good all-rounders, but confident communicators, as they need to convey, in a matter of seconds, not only how an outfit looks but how it can make you feel.
The models then have to apply those skills across disciplines. A walk that would normally be employed for runway is now needed for a webpage (eg: ASOS, Net a Porter who both use moving images to show a garment). Editorial skills are no longer the preserve of high fashion: they are readily used for high street campaigns. Production values have increased because our raised expectations demand more. There are still easy sells, but they are hard won. Everyone has had to raise their game.
The good news for Hedvig is that she is already meeting the new requirements of the fashion industry. Strong in individual skills, she is already able to draw from runway and editorial experience and translate that into something that works on the screen as well as the page. It is the equivalent of a theatre actor learning how to act on film. Details become larger on the screen, movement seems more exaggerated. Making the performance more nuanced, but not making it smaller, is now part and parcel of the model’s job. The performance still has to have impact, and Hedvig’s role in the COS look book convinces. It is in the tiniest choices of movement that Hedvig communicates the feel of the collection.
As the presentation of fashion becomes an increasingly virtual experience, making that emotional ‘must-have-it’ connection becomes ever more important. Access to fashion may be at an all-time high but seeing a dress on a screen will never be the same as walking into a shop, and seeing the dress in real time and real life. Technology can only give us so much information - the rest is inferred. To decide how we feel about the garment, and how it feels to wear it, only works on a non-virtual level. Therefore, the model becomes the intermediary. Communicating how the garment feels on the body, in both a physical and psychological way, has become the most crucial aspect of a model’s armoury.
Two years into her career, Hedvig is already shaping up to be one of the industry’s go-to girls. Equally adept at haute couture, ready-to-wear and the best of the high street, Palm’s multi-platform CV is the calling card of a 21st-century model. Hedvig’s classic beauty and modern skills-set makes her one of 2013’s brightest prospects. She is a face to watch.