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Stella Tennant

Regina Campbell

March 11, 2015

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Stella Tennant launched her career in the heyday of the supermodel—the early 1990s. But two decades later, in this new golden age of the model, the sinewy Scottish aristocrat clearly holds her own with Instagramming ingénues like Cara and Karlie.

“At this point, I’m either working with people I’ve worked with for a long time and who are at the top of their games, or working with young photographers who give me a new perspective,” says Tennant, who starred in our March issue’s The Art of Fashion® campaign shot by rising stars Luigi Murenu and Iango Henzi. “It’s very flattering to still be relevant.”

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Tennant (whose late grandmother was the Dowager Duchess of Devonshire and the youngest of England’s famous Mitford sisters) was first cast by photographer Steven Meisel for a British Vogue real-girls-of-London concept in 1993. “Nothing was expected of me. I felt no particular pressure,” Tennant recalls. But after the shoot wrapped, Meisel invited the fledgling art student—mop-topped, nose-ringed, kohl-lined—to star in a Versace campaign, working the camera alongside über-mannequins like Linda Evangelista and Shalom Harlow. “I
was in Paris the next week,” says Tennant. And Milan soon after, entwined with Evangelista in the pages of Italian Vogue.

“She is aristocratic and cool, expressive, assertive. Probably because of all the years shooting with Meisel, David Sims, and Irving Penn,” says Murenu. “A 16-year-old will never give that feeling of enduring beauty.”
—Amy Perry

True Beauty: Tennant as cover girl for the March 2O15 issue of the book (above), and on the set of the AOF campaign photo shoot (right).
True Beauty: Tennant as cover girl for the March 2O15 issue of the book (above), and on the set of the AOF campaign photo shoot (right).

19 Things to Know About Stella

HOME An 18th-century estate in the medieval town of Duns, Scotland

NEVER TRAVEL WITHOUT “My knickers!”

NETFLIX QUEUE “I’m educating the kids about Elvis through a little at-home film festival, starting with Jailhouse Rock.”

SIGNATURE SCENT Anything with gardenias

GO-TO COCKTAIL Monkey 47 gin and tonic

HIDDEN TALENT “I make really good pancakes. The trick is to let the batter rest. It’s even better the next day.”

SECRET VICE “Monkey 47 gin, but it’s no secret.”

COMFORT FOOD Porridge and buttery toast

WORKOUT Walking the family dogs, a Whippet named Freud and a black Labrador named Quill

RECENT SPLURGE Diamond hoop earrings

DESERT ISLAND MAKEUP ITEM Lip balm

HIDEAWAY “The hills of anywhere.”

FAVORITE HOTEL “I like the pool at the Hôtel Le Bristol Paris and the breakfast at Manhattan’s Crosby Street Hotel.”

iPHONE® APPs “The maps; I don’t do any of the other stuff.”

NIGHTSTAND READING “For something for pleasure, a travel book by Patrick Leigh Fermor called A Time to Keep Silence or for bedtime reading with my girls, Anne of Green Gables, Little Women, and A Dream of Sadlers Wells.”

SUNDAY ROUTINE An English breakfast at home

COFFEE ORDER Milky tea

CAUSE WORTH MAKING NOISE ABOUT Climate change. Tennant supports OurVoices.net, a movement to unite people of all faiths and bring governments together to reach meaningful agreement on how to tackle climate change.

GIFTED AT “Organizing children”—Marcel (16), Cecily (14), Jasmine (12), and Iris (1O). “I like it when they’re on the evens.”

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