Under the hot Italian sun we had the pleasure to meet Dido Jakel in Milan this last July. With a constant echo of “ciao bella” and a crowd of spectators growing by the minute we can’t but attest that Italy is still a country of its own. Kudos to Dido for keeping her positive energy all along and sharing this little time with us!
Dido, we met in Porta Genova and had a walk along the Naviglio. You said, you have been living for a short period in this neighborhood. How did you like it and how do you like Milan in general? Do you have any favorite spot in the city?
I really like Milan, Naviglio the most! It just makes you feel very welcome. In Naviglio, you have loads of bakeries, little shops, family businesses and people know each other. It’s not like the center with lots of tourists, this is a place where you can live, and go to when it’s too busy in your own place.
During the little time we spent together I had the feeling literally every guy on the streets was hollering at you. I have being shooting for Models in the Raw in Berlin, Munich and Paris so far and that was definitely a first. I guess all the attention can be flattering but also very annoying in such a heap. Do you need some special strategies to keep the Italian boys in their place? Or are you just cool with it?
Hahaha, it is flattering indeed but not all the time. When I notice someone looking at me I either look down or just straight ahead, not giving them much attention. I think it’s fine when they look at me, but I always get a bit nervous if they start talking to me. If I’m walking on the streets with friends, they get annoyed that I get distracted so easily but I try to act cool. If I ever come up with a really good strategy, I’ll let you know.
At 16 you already made your first steps into modeling. How did you become a model in the first place?
I always wanted to be a model, since I was nine years old my mom took pictures of me so I could send them to agencies but I never did. I tried one time and got turned down so when I became 15 I went to the Model Convention which is like a big get-together with girls and boys that want to be a model and a lot of scouts. You have one chance to show pictures and do a short walk and than the scouts will decide if they like you or not. For me it turned out really good and within a few weeks I signed with OMG model management and flew to Budapest for test shoots.
Your parents agreed about you working as a model as long as you get good grades and don’t loose weight. Do you ever find it hard to keep your promise?
Actually no, I am really motivated to do well in school and I don’t really think about losing weight. In Holland, most schools are really strict about getting days off so I need to show my school that I can do both and still get good grades. It can be difficult sometimes but I think it’s definitely worth it.
Travels are crucial to your job and something you said to really enjoy. What were your favorite destinations so far and which one are you looking forward to?
I loved Milan and I hope I can come back a few times! It’s a really interesting city and you learn more about it every time. I’m really looking forward to Paris, London and New York. These three cities are all in my schedule for the next one/two years. I’ve been in Paris and London already for holidays but never for modeling. So I hope it turns out well!
How do you keep in touch with your friends at home when you are away? Is there something you miss badly about the Netherlands when you are not there?
I try to facetime every few days with my friends and parents. I really miss them when I’m traveling, since I normally see them everyday. I always meet new people so I’m never alone, but the other models are usually older than I am so we talk about other stuff than I do with my friends. And I always miss randomly visiting parks with friends and having lazy days because when I’m traveling I have lots to do.
You come across as an energetic, focused and self-confident young lady. How would you describe yourself? Do you think working as a model has changed you in any way?
Thanks! Yes, it has definitely changed me. I really tried to stay the same but I think some parts of me are different now. For example, when a boy looked at me two years ago, I either thought he was making fun of me or I wouldn’t even notice. Now I feel flattered even though it can be annoying when I’m tired or just got out of bed or something. Luckily, my friends tell me when I’m not being myself anymore or when I show too much confidence!