North Toronto teen set to strut her stuff on the catwalks

BRIAN BAKER/TOWN CRIER FRESH FACE: North Toronto's Karis Marcil has been picked as the face of Shoppers Drug Mart's summer campaign after only three months of active modelling.
FRESH FACE: North Toronto’s Karis Marcil has been picked as the face of Shoppers Drug Mart’s summer campaign after only three months of active modelling.

New model Karis Marcil grabs Shoppers summer campaign

North Toronto CI’s Karis Marcil has a secret she’s been keeping from her classmates: She’s a model.

The 16-year-old, who started in the business only in April, has already landed her first major gig. A summer campaign for a Shoppers Drug Mart cosmetics line launched June 26. Such early success is a feat Elmer Olsen Model Management, the agency representing her, acknowledges is practically unheard of.

It’s something Marcil says she’s excited about.

“I was flattered because Shoppers is so big, and it’s a big gig to get,” she admits, while seated in a scarlet red chair at the agency’s Queen and Spadina office.

She still hasn’t mentioned it to classmates.

“I guess I haven’t done anything yet that is worth sharing,” she says.

But the agency begs to differ.

The connection with Elmer Olsen was made through Richard Carmichael, a colleague of her father Antony Marcil who also had worked for Elmer Olsen in the past.

“My dad gave some pictures to him, and he showed them to Elmer and [Elmer] asked me to come in,” she relates.

Karis says she has always had an inkling she would one day be getting into fashion modelling. She’s been scouted multiple times while visiting the Eaton Centre, and she admits to following supermodels Cara Delevigne and Gigi Hadid on social media.

At 5-foot-10 she felt awkward about being “taller than all of the boys,” she says, but she eventually embraced her height.

“Now everyone’s catching up,” she adds, with a laugh.

She’s spent the last three months training for the upcoming Elmer Olsen Boot Camp, which takes place later this month, and she’s already setting her sights on walking the runways for Prada, Burberry and even Victoria’s Secret.

“But I think everyone wants to do that,” she remarks, with a shimmer in her eye, at the mention of the latter, one of the few brands that launch their models into pop culture stardom, especially with the recent naming of Kate Grigorieva, Taylor Hill, Elsa Hosk, Martha Hunt, Jac Jagaciak, Stella Maxwell, Lais Ribeiro, Sara Sampaio, Romee Strijd and Jasmine Tookes as the label’s new Angels.

Marcil is on top of all the fashion news, too, and notes that Delevigne, Hadid and Hosk are among the models she looks up to.

As for school, she’s maintaining a fine balance — getting good grades and getting ahead by taking summer courses.

And she can always count on her dad to keep her grounded.

“My dad, every now and again, reminds me that I am still in high school, so I have to do my homework and chores,” she says, with a wide smile.

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