You may know Phoebe Tonkin for her turn as Hayley in The Originals and The Vampire Diaries, or earlier as Cleo in H2O: Just Add Water, but the Australian actress has made a special exception to model for Matteau, the swimwear line designed by her close friend Ilona Hamer and her sister Peta Heinsen.
“Ilona and I actually met at a Sydney event in Sydney about five and a half years ago,” remembers Tonkin, who celebrated her campaign appearance with an intimate and chic dinner held at China Heights Gallery days before Australian Fashion Week. “When she started working on Matteau I’d worn a couple of early models, and when she asked me to be in the first campaign, I was obviously very excited. and now I’ve told her no one else can be in the campaign!” she says playfully with a laugh.
“I’m probably the worst model because I like to have breaks, and snacks, and get out of the sun and do all the things that models aren’t really allowed to do – I’d want to have some guacamole and a margarita, so I’m not a particularly well behaved modelled,” jokes Tonkin, who had modelled younger but ultimately focused on her acting career.
On working with her close friends, designer Hamer and Alexandra Nataf, who photographed the campaign, “it is very effortless for them. They had such a clear idea of what they wanted so it was a very easy shoot. Sometimes it gets frustrating when a person doesn’t really know what they want. Ilona has such a succinct style that is very classic and beautiful and not complicated.”