A “SupeRoleModel”, Brana Dane recently became one of our Remake Ambassadors. Brana has many passions in her life: she is a model, activist, artist and influencer. For her modeling career, she has appeared in Porter Magazine, Vogue Italia and Harper’s Bazaar. She also has worked for top fashion companies like Maison Margiela and L’Oreal.
With her influence and platform to make her voice heard, Brana is an active member of the fashion community and one of the many leaders in the model activist group, “Model Mafia”. The group now has 200 models working together to make the fashion industry and our world more equitable, just and sustainable. Collaboration and sisterhood are what Remake stands for! Scroll down to learn more about our fabulous new ambassador!
1. Tell us more about yourself. What inspired you to become a model activist in sustainability?
As a model, I have been heavily exposed to the marketing of desire: selling a fantasy or a particular lifestyle instead of a necessity. This type of marketing can be artistic and creative, but it also has the potential to be disastrous for self-esteem and the environment if left unchecked.
This all came to light for me when I attended the premiere of The True Cost.
The documentary confirmed all of my worst fears about what my industry was doing, not only to the environment, but also to the communities across the globe involved in garment manufacturing. That is the time I decided that I must do something to improve the situation. Thankfully, I soon became heavily involved with the Model Mafia.
We are a group of around 200 models who use our combined platforms for social good. As models we are experts at social media marketing. When we choose to turn this skill on its head, the results are staggering. We are now teaming up on different projects. I am one of the models leading the charge with PureEarth, a charity dedicated to cleaning up rural communities from common poisons and pollutants.
2. How would you describe your personal style?
My personal style is sophisticated yet edgy. Rooney Mara is a personal style icon. It can be tough to find environmentally friendly garments that fit the bill, and I hope to see more and more companies make the switch to slow fashion soon.
3. Can you describe your daily routine? What’s your typical day like?
There is no typical day for me! In fact, yesterday I was filming FNL Network, which airs on Amazon Prime across the globe, and today I am happy to be walking the runway for NYFW!
4. How do you believe the fast fashion industry can begin to fix itself?
First of all, consider the human element. Pay your workers a fair wage. Consider employing locals! This alone would considerably cut down the carbon footprint.
Get creative about packaging. Plastic doesn’t do your products any favors. There is ample beauty in simplicity. And ultimately, the demand for change needs to come from the consumers.
We need to start using our dollars as voting ballots for the type of world we would like to live in.
5. What advice do you have for people who want to break up with fast fashion?
Start slow. Be kind to yourself and work within your budget to buy classic items that will last. Don’t be afraid of spending a little bit more than you normally would because the quality is going to be so much better!
Alternatively, buy whatever you want second hand! Shop local. There are some great shops for this in NYC and it’s a great strategy for those of us on a budget.
It’s also important to keep up to date with current trends by reading a variety of slow fashion publications, such as @thefrontlash.
6. And now for some fun stuff. What are some of the things you do for fun?
Art comes to mind. I mostly do figures and abstract art. I’ve also been known to paint live on the human body! I’ve enjoyed showing my work in galleries all over the state, including the Caelum Gallery in Chelsea and at HPAP in the Hamptons.
I combine fashion, art and wellness with my Art Therapy workshops for models, aimed at increasing body-love in an at-risk population. I recently filmed my Art Therapy program for digital wellness platform Caravan Wellness, to be released soon.
In addition to my visual artwork, I published my first poem this January! As a writer for publications such as Bella Magazine and as creator of #modelperspective, I enjoy being able to interview the change-makers of our time. In this way, I can highlight those making the effort to change the fashion industry for the better. This is a very rewarding experience.
7. What is something nobody knows about you?
I’m starting a new trend! It’s called: pesca-vegan (a vegan diet with the exception of seafood). I think it’s both kinder to the environment, and great for women who have difficulty absorbing their vitamin B’s and iron from pills.
I know so many women who care very deeply for animals and the environment but are forced to take breaks from veganism due to various health issues. I hope in sharing this information, more women are able to continue eating with their values!
8. Where do you like to shop?
I’m one of those rare people who literally wear their clothes until they’re falling apart… When I do shop, I want something that lasts. There are so many remarkable ethical brands, it’s hard to choose! Reformation comes to mind as well as L Train Vintage for great second-hand steals.
My favorite shopping experience is coming up again in April, during fashion revolution week! Myself and fellow model activist Renee Peters will be organizing the second annual Model Mafia clothing swap. We hope to not only swap stylish garments but also raise awareness around this important issue.
9. What is your most favorite thing to wear?
I absolutely love my Warp & Weft black jeans. They fit like a glove and are so versatile!
10. How do you wear your values?
I wear my values by using my dollars as a vote for the type of world I want to live in.
Follow Brana on Instagram HERE! ❤️
Photos: Brana Dane