Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen retires from the catwalk with one final show for Colcci at Sao Paulo Fashion Week.
SAO PAULO, BRAZIL (APRIL 15, 2015) (REUTERS) – The world’s highest-paid model, Gisele Bundchen, walked her runway finale at the Sao Paulo Fashion Week on Wednesday (April 15), retiring from the catwalk after almost a decade in the fashion spotlight.
Her retirement comes with Bundchen widely recognised for still being at the top of her fashion game. Forbes reported last year that the Brazilian model took home estimated earnings of $47 million during the past year from lucrative contracts and other business ventures, making her the world’s highest paid model for the eighth consecutive year.
The model has contracts with fashion retailer H&M, the French fashion house Chanel and designer Carolina Herrera, among others, and has design deals for lingerie and sandals.
Bundchen’s stepped out for the last time in a juxtaposition of fine white lace and leather gladiator boots as part of Colcci’s Spring/Summer 2016 collection, which appropriately reflected her trademark balance of grace and power on the runway.
In the audience was Bundchen’s husband New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, with whom she has two children, who she says she plans to focus her time on from now on, alongside working on print campaigns.
Spectators at the show marked the loss to the fashion world.
“It is very sad because Gisele is the best model in the world. I understand, everyone understands that it is the right time for her to have a moment for herself and for her family, but for the fashion world it is awful, very sad,” shop owner Luciana Malavasi said.
The blonde beauty was born in Rio do Grande do Sul, in southern Brazil, where many people descend from German immigrants who moved there in the 19th century.
Bundchen signed a deal to be a Victoria’s Secret angel in 2000 but decided to end her relationship with the American lingerie company in 2007.
She was also remembered at her show for paving the way forward for many in the fashion world.
“Gisele opened up a lot for other models. She simply killed it once again in this catwalk. It was very emotional to see her last catwalk, I loved it,” added model, Nicola Martins.
Bundchen is also well known for being an environmental activist. In 2008 she launched the Clean Water Project in her hometown to promote sustainable environmental management, including the preservation and protection of potable water and replanting native vegetation in Brazil.
Just one year after founding Clean Water Project, in 2009, Bundchen was designated a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Environment Progamme and in 2014 she became a board member of the Rainforest Alliance, a non-governmental organization that promotes the conservation of the world’s biodiversity.
For those in the audience at Sao Paulo Fashion Week, the final show was very moving.
“It seemed to be more of a show that a catwalk. It really was a leaving event for her. The ending was incredible, she came out with so much emotion, everyone was shouting and calling her name. Gisele is Gisele, there is not much more you can say than that. She is Gisele!” style consultant, Ilmar Marinho, told Reuters after the show.
Bundchen has said she plans to focus more time on her family while also working on print campaigns.