NEW YORK – She’s graced the pages of Vogue and walked in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show but now Frederique Van Der Wal’s sights are set on ... flowers? The super model turned entrepreneur spoke with FOX411 about her career transition, and how body standards in the fashion industry are always changing.
FOX411: You have a flower show on the FYI network, “Homegrown Makeover.” Tell us about that.
Frederique Van Der Wal: It’s really about a makeover of an apartment. We did mostly New York City area. A little bit of Queens and Brooklyn, and we come in and my co-host Carter Oosterhaust, my very handsome Carter Oosterhaust…
FOX411: Make sure you put that in there for his ego.
Van Der Wal: And we would come in and we would re-do an apartment but really the idea is, yes, is changing your color, changing the furniture but what is so key and what a lot of people don’t think about is bringing the outdoors in, and by bringing in flowers and plants you really change your environment. You make it much happier, much more peaceful and serene.
FOX411: Well, our crew actually lit up when you brought the flowers in. Everyone just seemed happier with one little touch so it does make sense. A lot of times, you look at models and their careers, their second careers, are usually fashion industry or restaurants so why flowers for you?
Van Der Wal: Well, I grew up in Holland which is the country of flowers so the seed was planted there and when I came to America to embark on my career as a model the one thing I always did when I came back from a trip, I would buy flowers to make my apartment come alive so it’s always played a role, and then fast forward the Dutch government in recognition of my career named a lily after me.
FOX411: That’s so cool.
Van Der Wal: Very. I mean amazing actually and such an honor, very humbling and then I did a documentary about how flowers come to you, and I said how funny it is that there’s not a brand around flowers where like you know I’ve been endorsing brands and different things, also in a way of how you package it like a fashion brand would do.
Van Der Wal: So that’s actually what we do with "Frederique’s Choice." It’s where it comes in a biodegradable vase in a bag so this is also how you get it at home. So, now when you say you’re taking it home, you’re actually taking it home.
FOX411: Literally, you can carry it along.
Van Der Wal: Yeah, you can carry it along.
FOX411: In the press I’ve been seeing that they’re referring to your entrepreneurship and flower shop as a second act. Do you think a lot of models or most models need a “second act?”
Van Der Wal: I don’t think anybody needs anything in that sense. I mean it depends on the career. For me, it was a natural extension and I love it’s sort of using my whole fashion background lifestyle, style, the whole industry has taught me so much, opened so many doors and using my Dutch heritage it kind of felt like a natural, but it’s wonderful again to have a moment in the limelight.
FOX411: The Victoria’s Secret fashion show just happened and the models are beautiful but they’re very, very thin where when you were doing it everyone was very much in shape, athletic bombshell bodies. Do you think the fashion industry is having less realistic standards for models now?
Van Der Wal: It’s such a big thing that one.
FOX411: I know.
Van Der Wal: It always goes up and down as you see. So, for a moment it’s endorsing the real women and the next moment it’s the thin one. I think what is nice about what you see today is a huge mixture so you really look at older, younger, dark, blonde, every color so that’s wonderful that they endorse it. I think definitely there could be a little bit less body build - that’s not really womanly. Personally, that’s my own point of view and I see that with my daughter, “Look at my…I have this very tight stomach.” And I go, “You don’t have to have such a tight stomach.”
FOX411: It’s just be you, be healthy, whatever that might be.
Van Der Wal: Being healthy is a part of living life. It’s not about starving yourself. It’s about eating well, having a drink, have flowers around. I mean it’s enjoying life.