Nicole Warne is one of the most sought after creatives in the digital world. The grounded, self-made Australian star talks to us about the importance of giving every child a permanent home, her ongoing eco-anxiety, and how being kind to everyone you meet is crucial when it comes to success.
She is empowering without being overpowering; strong yet kind; intelligent and beautiful—she is everything a role model should be.
Nicole Warne exudes an inner strength that has always been at the core of her identity and stellar career in the digital sphere. Her stellar ascent over the past 10 years started after she opened up her own vintage e-commerce empire, Gary Pepper Vintage, and she built that name up to become more than just a vintage clothing enterprise. Nicole built a whole persona around Gary Pepper Girl and continued to capitalise on her soaring popularity. “I am not a competitive person with anyone but myself, especially when I was younger,” she confides after we wrapped up our cover photoshoot. “I was very, very driven and ambitious, and definitely didn’t have room to fail because I don’t come from money, and my parents lived in a different state, so if it didn’t work out, I had no security blanket to fall back on. I am grateful for that because those nerves and that fear pushed me to keep going.”
Warne bagged the honour of becoming the first blogger in the world to be signed to IMG. “I was the first digital influencer to be signed globally with IMG, so to have a huge powerhouse agency like that invest in me, and believe in me validated not only my work but an entire industry that was so new,” she tells me. Since then, there’s been no stopping Nicole’s continuous ascent to prominence. That is the Nicole we all see and love, but how does she see herself? She pauses for a moment. “That’s a good question,” she begins, “I am adventurous, outgoing, yet I’m still very much introverted.
“I think people assume that if you are on social media, you must be outgoing and an extrovert, but I really get my energy from being grounded in one place. I think that’s a luxury for me.”
“I love spending time at home with my husband, cooking food, yet I still am spontaneous and I love going on an adventure and going hiking. I’m very sentimental and thoughtful—I am an Aquarius, so my mind is always racing on to how I can change the world and make it a better place!” She laughs. I could relate to Nicole, being an introvert in an extroverted industry myself.
” I am still learning to celebrate my success – it is not easy because you always want to be doing more, always want to be doing better, so it is kind of hard to stop and celebrate. You will always think that you can be more successful!”
But at what point did Nicole stop to acknowledge her success, and celebrate her hard work? “It’s funny, as I’m still learning to celebrate those moments. And luckily my husband and my friends at home are the ones who love to celebrate (my success),” she laughs. “As I said, I’m introverted, so I hate attention. I remember when I hit one million followers on Instagram, my husband organized a surprise party with all of my girlfriends. There were like 30 of us and they made this huge banner and it was really sweet. I would say the people I surround myself with have made me stop to appreciate every moment because it is all so fast-paced. I am still learning—it is not easy because you always want to be doing more, always want to be doing better, so it is kind of hard to stop and celebrate your successes, I guess. You will always think that you can be more successful!” She laughs. “That’s the downfall. I think if I loved that kind of attention, it would come easier, but I still find it uncomfortable.”
For the full article purchase a copy of Marie Claire October 2019 issue. For a digital copy click here.
Editor & Styling: Azza Arif
Photography: Mitchell McCormack
Videography: Jonathan D’Ambrosio
Makeup: Surapre Achirakul
Cover Outfits: Bottega Veneta
Location: Park Hyatt Bangkok