Kaone Kario is the face of a whole new generation of models who are not only doing big things on the runway but also off it. Her personal interests include modelling, TV and film production, so you can imagine how excited we were to be able to interview this Botswana beauty to talk about her modelling life between New York, Capetown and Botswana, and to find out more about the women who continue to inspire her to achieve even greater things.
Q: How did you get started as a model?
A: I won a continent wide model search called NOKIA MNET Face of Africa in 2005. That was the beginning of my modelling career.
Q: What do you love the most about modelling?
A: I love the travelling the most. It’s exposed me to places and people I may have never known otherwise.
Q: How did you feel when you did your first ever fashion shoot?
A: My first shoot was for one of the best fashion editor’s at the time. We were shooting in Namibia for Elle SA, it was a beautiful hot summer day and I was nervous as hell. So I opened a bottle of what turned out to be sparkling water and spilled it all over the editor. I was convinced she was going to fire me, I had failed at all my training. I knew better than to be a sloppy model ..(hahaha).
Q: Do you get tensed during shoots or on the runway?
A: Yes I always do.
Q: How does one stay relaxed and calm during shoots or on the runway?
A: You just do it. A pep talk in the mirror helps to. Embrace the nerves, it mean’s you still care.
Q: Who were your fashion role models while growing up?
A: I didn’t have fashion role models growing up. I didn’t even know there was such a thing as fashion.
Q: What has been your favourite shoot or your most memorable moment so far as a model?
A: My most memorable would have to be winning FOA (FACE OF AFRICA) because it changed my life. After having been a contestant, I had the opportunity to co-host the FOA TV show which is also one moment I could relive all over again.
Q: Who has inspired you in your life and why?
A: I am inspired by a lot of people though it depends sometimes on the season in life. At the moment Khanyi Ndlomo, Maya Angelou, Andiswa Manxiwa, my mum, Liya Kabede, Cameron Russel, Flavianna Matata and many more continue to inspire me. They show up, they are doing things for others I admire.
Q: What do you love the most about modelling in South Africa and in New York and What makes modelling between the 2 continents so exciting?
A: The travel, access to a wider range of clients. New York always asks for your very best so it’s forced me to come out of my shell in so many ways. Cape town on the other hand just knows how to nourish my spirit. I love modelling in SA. It’s always so fun and lively.
Q: How would you describe your personal style?
A: Funny, I am in the process of defining that. Busy cleaning out my closet now.
Q: Who are a few of your favourite African designers across the world?
A: I dig Thula Sindi, Lion Cloth and Ashes, Koketso Chiepe, Andrea Iyamah, Laduma, Taibo Bacar, and Deola Segoe. I could go on.
Q: Do you get to travel a lot for your work? If so what is/are your favourite cities that you have visited?
A: Yes I do get to travel a lot because of my work. Some of my favourite cities in the world include Singapore, San Francisco, LA, Bucharest, Nairobi, and ST Tropez. I had some epic times there.
Q: What are the 5 things you can’t live without?
A: Air, water, love, food and freedom
Q: If you could work with 1 designer in the entire world, who would it be and why?
A: It would either be between Tom Ford or YSL. Why? Because why not!! Dreams (Laughs)
Q: What’s next for Kaone?
A: I am currently working on The Kaone Kario Foundation. It’s time to make it about others. I am still pursuing my interests in farming, film, TV and design. Nervous but exciting times. With the help of incredible sponsors and an amazing support system, I held a run\walk to benefit different charities in Botswana on the 17th September last year. It was such a privilege to be able to do that for others and so I am busy plotting the next one. Please look us up on Facebook and Twitter @KaoneKarioRun and support my mission to heal hearts.
Q: Any inspirational words for aspiring models?
A: For all you aspiring models .. call me…..hehehe ..no seriously… you need to have a plan. Surround yourself with folks who will cover you. Get a lawyer and get an accountant if you have to because you need to manage your finances well.
Wanna chat with Kaone on social media? Follow her handles below!