Her proud Tamworth grandparents have been following her success right from the start and watching as Casey La-Chiusa’s celebrity status grows from the pages and covers of fashion magazines.
She’s living the dream, having worked as a fashion model for the past four years – with her face and figure showing up increasingly in international circles – but you can also see her in downtown Peel St.
The exposure is flattering – and a source of great pride for her grandparents, Charlie and Shirley La-Chiusa of South Tamworth, and John and Julie Michell of Nemingha – who “follow” her around the globe via the family network and the fashion shoots.
Casey’s time spent in Italy last year not only garnered her work modelling Dolce and Gabbana as well as Gucci in Italian Vogue, but also meant that she met her fiance, Fabrice Maccapani.
“I’ve shot for a lot of magazines – Marie Claire, Vogue (Italy), Cosmopolitan, Shop Til You Drop (an ACP magazine) and (women’s lifestyle, fashion, lifestyle and gossip magazine) Grazia,” Ms La-Chiusa, 24, said.
“I’ve been modelling since I was about 19 years old. Last year, I signed with an agency in Milan called Fashion Model Management and lived there for a year.”
You could say fashion’s in the blood for Ms La-Chiusa: her father Mario and mother Wendy, who grew up in Tamworth but moved to Queensland, ran a golfwear label called Turtle Creek from the early 1990s to 2010.
Other campaigns that Ms La-Chiusa has been involved in include fashionwear shoots for Tigerlily, Jeans West (yes, that’s her in the Jeans West ad staring at you in Peel St), Sportsgirl, Diva and Supre.
But she doesn’t really get much work during Australian Fashion Week, as she says she’s not tall enough for runway work.
Nevertheless, her career is going well. Since she returned from Italy at the end of July, she’s shot campaigns for Tigerlily and Lorna Jane.
She has featured on the cover of the May 2012 issue of Just Be magazine and has done a lot of work for online magazine The Iconic.
Online work was far more hectic than print-media work, she said.
“Because it’s online and it’s really fast fashion and they have so much product, so they have really quick photo shoots,” Ms La-Chiusa said.
Although she’s managed to be self-sufficient from modelling alone for at least the past few years, life as a model has an unknown element to it.
“We never know what’s around the corner; everything’s so last-minute; we only get sent our jobs the day before,” she said.
Casey’s uncle, West Lions first-grade rugby league coach Tony La-Chiusa, said the whole family was proud of his niece’s achievements.
“We’re very proud of her. She’s a very bubbly person, too – she doesn’t take herself too seriously, like some models,” he said. “We get the magazines and flick through them and say ‘There’s Casey’. Not only is she a beautiful young girl, she’s very feisty and has a strong set of beliefs.”