A 20-YEAR-OLD Hervey Bay shop assistant who struggled with self-esteem issues is now the promotional face of the 2014 Couture Fashion Week New York, which starts on Saturday.
Sarah Spain was hand-picked by Couture Fashion Week founder Andres Aquino for the coveted position after she attended a casting call in July.
Sarah's father, Bernard Spain, who is with her in New York, said his daughter was hoping to be featured in the Couture Fashion Week but didn't expect something bigger was coming.
"She is just 5 foot 7 so she does not fulfil the required modelling height but Andres was taken aback by Sarah's laid-back personality and her suitability for photo and media. He decided on the spot that she would be the promotional face," Mr Spain said.
Besides being featured on a huge electronic billboard at the Crowne Plaza Hotel where the event is being held for three days, some of Sarah's glamorous duties include interviewing designers, makeup artists and VIP guests, making red carpet appearances and walking on the runway.
Speaking from New York, the former Xavier College student, who works at Friendlies Pharmacy, is still in a daze and trying to wrap her head around the news.
"If someone told me five weeks ago that I would be in New York working at the Couture Fashion week, I would not have believed it, let alone be the face for the show," she said.
"I cannot wait to see the finished product of a short movie for the show I'm doing and I am so excited to see the billboard which goes up tomorrow."
Growing up Sarah never thought she was anything special.
"I have always had self-esteem issues until in 2011 when I was spotted by an agent in the streets of Melbourne," she said.
"Since then I have had many agencies, photographers and people in general saying I should model and that I would go far in the industry.
"I started getting jobs for different catalogue shoots, bridal shoots and lots of offers and I eventually became a semi-finalist for Miss World Australia in 2012."
Sarah will return to the Bay after the show but is hoping to apply for a permanent working visa early next year to live and work as a model in the Big Apple.