BINTM Final: We Talk To Jade

Jade Thompson from Stoke-On-Trent has done it! She’s been plunged under water, made to swim with sharks, stripped naked, brought to tears and braved 13 weeks in the top model house – and she has emerged as the winner of Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model. The judges loved her and Katie Price thought she was “gorgeousâ€? but what has Jade made of her Top Model journey?

Congratulations Jade!
Yay! Thank you!

Did you ever in your wildest dreams think you would do it?
No. I think if you know you’re good at something it gives you confidence but I really didn’t know if I was or not. They’d all done it before so it was just kind of…I mean I never thought I’d get anywhere near the final, let alone win!

How did it feel going to bed thinking “I’m Britain’s Next top Modelâ€??
It was surreal. It still hasn’t sunk in. I still don’t believe it. Seeing the final tonight has really helped it to sink. I’m the next top model! I can’t really explain how it feels.

Were you nervous about seeing the final episode?
Really nervous and excited. It was such an adrenalin rush during the show that I really needed to sit down and just take it all in.

Do you feel any different in yourself?
100% because you see all these beautiful girls in the show and then…now I feel like I can just do anything! It’s boosted my confidence 100% and it just made me realise that I want to do modelling for the rest of my life now.

How is your boyfriend reacting to all of this?!
It’s a big change. It was a huge thing and I’ve now got to move to London as well which is a huge thing but he’s loving it! He’s like yeah, check it out, that’s my girlfriend!

Thinking back to that of the final showdown – What was your first thought when you saw your picture on that TV screen?
I was just numb, straight away. I thought I heard her wrong and then I think I just screamed! I dunno I was just overwhelmed and in complete shock! Really really shocked to be honest. I just think I thought, god, that’s it. It’s all over and I can actually enjoy it now.

How did the girls react – any bitterness?
All the girls were really supportive.

Even Anastasija?!
Well…Anastasija was actually crying at first, she was so upset that I’d won! But I think that she was just so upset that her friend didn’t win. Her and Juste were obviously very close.

Did she come round to the idea?
Yeah, she did give me a hug and said congratulations but she was just really disappointed that her friend didn’t win. Everyone was really nice about it to be honest.

And you worked with Miss Jay. How was he to work with?
I was really nervous at first because I know he is such a huge name and he’s got so much influence on catwalk, I was nervous because I know that Juste’s done it all before. I was just nervous that it was going to make me look a lot worse than Juste. But I just thought I better trust in him and hope it works!

Is he as fabulous off camera as he is on camera?
Oh yeah definitely. He’s very loud, flamboyant, confident.

What were the guest judges like? Some of them seemed a bit intimidating!
They were really really nice. It’s their job and they do know better than you and if they do say bad things about you just enjoy it and think about how you can improve. That’s what I used to do. All the guest judges were really nice.

Who was your favourite guest judge?
This is hard. It’s between Katie Price and Tyson Beckford (giggles). Katie Price I think.

That’s interesting because a lot of the girls have been quite critical of Katie as a judge. Why did you like her?
I like her anyway so just to see her on the panel was cool. And because I knew that she was going to give an honest opinion, like the way that the public will be thinking. So yeah because she was so honest…and because she was really nice about me! (laughs) I can’t really say anything bad about her!

You were a newcomer to the modelling world – how did you learn to deal with nerves?
I used to just go and sit in the toilet and breathe and just compose myself and tell myself that I can do it. That’s what I always used to do because the other girls try to say of “they’re not good enoughâ€? and “she didn’t get thereâ€? and it all just gets to you sometimes. So I just took myself off and told myself look, you can do it.

You had to get naked quite early in the competition – was that not a bit nerve-racking?
I was too be honest because I knew that my brothers would be watching it! (laughs) That’s one thing that made me nervous. And just the fact that it’s really quiet on set and there are lots of people there watching you. It was really quiet! It’s a hell of a lot of pressure and to be naked as well, it just put a hell of a lot more pressure on.

What were the shoots you really enjoyed?
I really enjoyed the wedding dress shoot.

That looked fabulous..
Yeah, well it was a lot more chilled out and we got to do the shoot all together, all five of us. And wearing those beautiful dresses. It was always nice to do stuff together.
It was just out of this world, where we were. The location and everything was just amazing.

How do you like to unwind after a big, important shoot?
Makeup off, that’s the first thing. Take my makeup off, comfy shoes and I just chill out.

What is your slobbiest guilty pleasure?
Before the show I just used to eat whatever I wanted and I never put weight on. And I just realised that I could carry on doing that but it’s bad for your skin and your hair so I’ve tried to just eat a bit more healthily now; plenty of veg and salad. I go to the gym once or twice a week. But I still like to have the odd Domino’s and things like that!

Watching the series now do you think you made any huge fashion faux pas?
I didn’t really like the tea party shoot – the big red dress was hideous! The dress was like a size 14 so it was hanging off me and that was great. Sometimes I just look back and think “what was I wearing?!â€? about some of my diary room outfits. I’m just like “oh my god!â€? (giggles)…

Are you a fan of the British designer scene?
At the moment I’m loving Victoria Beckham a lot so she’s definitely my one to watch. I went to see an Alice Temperley show as well, last week. Her dresses are always amazing – she doesn’t fail to impress so definitely those two.

You seemed to get on quite well with everyone and you came across very well. Were you nervous about going into a house with that many girls?
I thought it was actually fine. I knew we weren’t all going to get on – I knew there would be a clash of personalities. But I just used to try and get on with everybody and I think that came across. They tried to make us fight by making us all sleep in one room and only giving us one bathroom but we just worked out a rota. It all worked out. I didn’t want to spend my time arguing.

So you didn’t give the producers what they wanted!
No way!

Were you ever worried about how you might come across?
I was very worried about that because I didn’t know how they were editing it and what people would think. But at the same time I knew I was just being myself and to be fair, seeing the show now – the way all the girls were is the way they have come across. But it was scary because some of the girls were complaining last year about the fact that they were nothing like the way they had been portrayed to be.

The judges seemed quite supportive (when they weren’t ripping photos to shreads!). Is Elle really that warm and supportive off camera?
Yeah she just kind of tells you how it is and, she is obviously amazing, so you have to listen to what she says. We know she is giving us the advice we need.

What about Julien – he seems like a bit of a diva…
You know what – Julien is not a diva at all. I think he just puts it on for the cameras because he is such a nice person, SUCH a nice person. It’s just for the cameras.

You got picked for the show after going to last year’s live final. What would you be doing if you weren’t on the show?
God. I think I would be doing social work because I was going back to university this year. But I’d be sitting there just…well basically dreaming about doing this! I daydream all the time so I’m so happy that I got the confidence and now I’ve just done it!

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of applying for this year’s competition?
I’d just say be yourself. You can’t change the way you look so just love how you look and go for it. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t.

You hinted that you had a bit of a tough time as a child, being so different. How do you think that affected you are now?
When I was younger I used to be majorly shy but I got in with a good group of friends and felt able to open up and be a bit more loud and feel more confident. It’s made me feel more confident about being myself and now I can do things like this!

Most importantly, when do you get all your prizes?
Well I’ve done the Miss Selfridge shoot and I think they go into the store in October.

Have you got the car yet?
No but I should be getting it shortly.

What colour did you go for?

Nice choice, very sleek. Well good luck with everything – we’re really glad you won!
Thanks so much. Bye!