bal harbour blog

Bavarian Dream

Julia Stegner, shot by Russell James for Bal Harbour Magazine, wearing a Chanel tweed hat, muslin top, pique pants and lambskin bag.

By Sabrina Wirth
Photography by Russell James

Julia Stegner is sitting casually in front of the mirror with her hair in the care of the stylist and her left foot in the hands of the pedicurist. With a big smile and enjoying nonstop conversation with all those around her, it is clear she feels right at home. Since being plucked from Oktoberfest in Munich at the age of 15, Stegner has walked for Valentino, Alexander McQueen and Givenchy, and has been featured on the covers of Vogue Italia, Elle, Italian Flair, i-D and Tush, to name a few. Yet this model is still very much grounded, prioritizing above all time with family, especially her husband and young daughter, Emma.

What have you learned since becoming a mother?
Being a parent puts everything in perspective. Before, I used to worry about everything! It’s exhausting, of course, but it’s also super rewarding.

Would you want your daughter to go into the fashion industry?
I’ll support her in whatever she decides to do in her life.

How has the industry changed?
It’s a lot more about social media now. It’s all about how many followers you have on Instagram. The fashion industry is pretty cutthroat, but I have always managed to stay grounded and not go crazy.

Do you feel pressure to be active on social media?
Oh, yeah! I’m not super active on Instagram. I only started in 2013 and I enjoyed it at first, but now it definitely has become work. Not all clients, but a lot will look at your social media following before deciding to book you. And many include social media in your contract, too.

What’s a country you haven’t been to but would like to visit?
I’ve never been to Japan, which, for someone who has been a model for as long as I have, is pretty weird. There are also so many countries in Africa that I’d love to visit. And India!

You’re also an ambassador for UNICEF. How has this changed your life?
UNICEF is something I grew up with—we always collected money in school and during Christmas time. Years ago with German Vogue, we took a trip to Sierra Leone with UNICEF. It was an incredible experience seeing the excitement of schoolchildren when we brought them notebooks and pens. It was humbling, to say the least.

Check out behind-the-scene video clip from Bal Harbour Magazine cover shoot with fashion model Julia Stegner.


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