The Clermont Twins are booked and busy. Their schedule is so packed with photo shoots, interviews, and a mysterious forthcoming TV show (that promises to highlight the levels to their hustle), that they had to cancel our first shoot, 48 hours before we were set to go.
Their publicist assured me they wouldn’t miss this go round, and was personally on hand an hour before the duo showed up, surveying the scene, looking over the clothes, and making sure their one refreshment request– champagne and water–was on chill. As she sifted through the racks, she offered, “They’ll wear this. They won’t wear that.” The Twins wanted to be in control.
When the pair arrived–strikingly tall and curvaceous caramel hued glamazons, topped off by blonde hair and puckered lips–stylist Amiraa Vee showed them a few selections: furs by Bijoux Furs, scintillating dresses by Becca Apparel, a zebra two piece by Ashhsa Collection, Nroda Sunglasses, and heels by Sole Lavish. Shannon looked pleased while Shannade seemed skeptical, nixing some pieces with the cut of an eye. After sipping champagne from Tiffany flutes, they, without hesitation, peeled off their clothes and stood there, naked, ready to try pieces on. The room full of people was shocked at first, but almost couldn’t help but glance at their rotund backsides and perky breasts. Their bodies were works of art.
As we chatted, the sisters revealed that they had moved to New York from Dallas, Georgia to attend Parsons and FIT–fashion had been in their blood since they attended their first fashion show with their aunt, who was a designer. When it comes to style and their image, the pair are surprisingly particular. “We put a lot of effort to make sure that we keep our brand integrity.” They added, “People see the final product, but they don’t see what goes behind it.”
And what goes behind it? The sisters basically manage themselves and their packed-to-the-brim schedule, with the help of a lone publicist, a friend from their hometown. That internet breaking Yeezy campaign? It came about partly because one of their friends worked in the Yeezy creative department. During the shoot, they were consummate professionals, moving quickly from one look to another. They even took kohl eyeshadow and did their own makeup, and smoothed down each other’s hair in between takes.
Growing up with a Haitian father and Jamaican mother, the siblings were taught not to limit themselves and their ambition. They said, “Our Dad is not that strict. He’s gotten so used to us being ourselves. Our Dad approves everything before we post.”
When the sisters moved to New York, they would walk in Times Square, see models on Billboards, and say to themselves, “Why not us?” For them, their risqué Terry Richardson photo shoot was a watershed career moment. Shannon says, “ I always wanted to shoot with him. He doesn’t shoot many African American women.” Shannade added, “We try to broaden what we do. With black women, people try to put us in a box. They say, ‘You can only be a ghetto black girl.’ No! We want to do everything. We want to do high fashion, walk the runway, be in music videos, be on the cover of magazines. If everyone else does it, then why can’t we? “
This ‘do whatever your heart desires’ spirit is great–within limits. Shannade was recently apprehended with allegations of foul play. According to the Washington Post, “The 24-year-old was arrested after allegedly stealing a dead man’s debit card information after meeting him for a $400 “prostitution date” and racking up tens of thousands in fraudulent charges, according to a complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.” According to many reports, she is heading to jail on June 4th, which might explain the frenetic nature of their schedule. Though she wouldn’t speak on the subject, she offered, “Everything is a learning lesson. Everything that happens is supposed to be happen. GOD always has a plan. “
As for what’s next, the sky has remained the limit for the seemingly unstoppable pair. They plan to relaunch their clothing line, Mon Boudoir, and continue to pursue their careers even with the bumps in the road. Keep an eye peeled for the twins on the runway–or on the small screen.
Editor in Chief: Claire Sulmers
Stylist Assistant: @simplicityxstyle
Creative Direction: @illmisterhill
Pink & Green Look: Dresses: Becca Apparel
Furs: Bijoux Furs
Zebra set: Ashhsa Collection
Leather Set: @Maria_Escote
Orange Shoe: @dsquared2
Lime Shoe: Sole Lavish
Shades: Nroda from FashionBombDailyShop.com
Bra & Tulle Look: Bralettes: @MAOpr
Chokers + bangles: @Sterlingkingny
Tulle Shorts + Pants: @9to5socialite
Denim Cowboy Look: (Denim corsets + Hats) Wardrobe: @flyingsolonyc
Masks Look: Wardrobe @chenghuaichuang
**To hear Claire Sulmers talk more about the shoot, come to Convos with Claire Atlanta, taking place June 15th at the Bailey Room!
To RSVP, visit CWCATL.eventbrite.com.