If you're reading this, that probably means you read our last post...right? Here's a link to Kayla's piece about childhood trauma, depression, and not being here for anti-depressant stigmas! (Amen amen.)
Below is our interview with Nastasia Scott of ThreadConnection! We'll let her tell you all the goodgood on what ThreadConnection stands for. One reason we love Nastasia and ThreadConnection: they're partners with URIPALS, a domestic violence shelter that welcomes survivors and their pets. We lacked insight about how pets impact domestic violence victims and survivors until meeting Nastasia and learning about URIPALS.
Keep scrolling for Nastasia's 10-question interview! We're digging into her modeling career, her love of creativity, and being a new mother.
talk to us about any challenges you may have faced while growing up in both NYC and Pennsylvania.
Unlike many other people, I didn't face as many cultural challenges. Where I'm from is a pretty accepting place. When I got older and moved back to NYC, I noticed a divide between cultures in some settings. Yet, NYC is a melting pot. It's a great place to be.
You grew up with an interest in singing and writing songs. What inspired this and how has that enthusiasm for communication impacted the work you do today?
I sort of lost that passion for songwriting somewhere along the way. I've picked up writing in different forms intermittently. But I've noticed that I'm happiest when I'm creating something--even physical art like acrylic paintings.
I’m not a TV-watcher, so I’m just realizing you were on ANTM! How did being on the show impact your confidence and your willingness to persevere?
When I was on the show, I was in my late teens and in college. I believe I was 19. I started to build up more confidence during my junior and senior years in high school. By then, I had a strong enough personality to deal with the changes that I endured during the ANTM process. I look back on that experience now as an amazing thing I did in college that I'd always wanted to do since I was a kid.
I love seeing how much I've grown since then, although I'm very impressed with my 19-year-old mediation skills. Lol.
When did you decide to start modeling and what has the industry taught you about self-worth?
I started modeling when I graduated college. After graduating, I moved to New York City. Two days later, I was lucky enough to get scouted by a mother agent. Then, I signed with an amazing agency. (That's God for you.)
I've learned that although the interest rate can be rough at times, as long as you have a sense of peace and confidence within yourself you will be fine. Also, there are amazing people in the industry that really look to support you.
Talk to us about ThreadConnection! I love its connection (woo) to supporting uripals, a domestic violence shelter. What prompted you to start this project?
I was on the train on my way to a thrift store in Brooklyn. I thought about how much I loved thrift shopping but also wished that I knew the stories behind the pieces I was buying.
I am definitely one of those people that will sit on the train and wonder about somebody's life that's sitting next to me. I wanted to find a way to learn these stories while connecting with women. I thought of making this connection during that trip on the train, and I immediately began taking notes.
With ThreadConnection you learn about the person that donated the pieces, a little about the pieces themselves, and about where it's been worn. It's a way of connecting women through clothing while supporting the community of domestic violence shelters in New York City. I think that's so beautiful.
ThreadConnection is rooted in a need to share our stories. Since you’re also a success coach, tell us what you love about storytelling and why it’s so important to keep doing it.
Our stories are how people remember us when we're gone! Without them our children’s children wouldn't know who we were and what we did during our lives.
It's so powerful to not only to tell a story but to also listen to one.
Beyond the obvious bodily changes, how has motherhood altered the way you see yourself?
I am infinitely proud of myself and the relationship that I have with my son. Being his mother is the most beautiful thing that there could be.
My friends used to laugh at me in a loving sort of way because I would go home from somewhere while I was pregnant because I felt I needed to connect with my son--even though he was in my belly.
That's what you do as a mom. You find a space in your heart that you didn't know was there. It expands over and over again every time you look at your child's face.
You’re very protective about the energy you keep around your son, Zhen. What’s influenced this conscious decision and what practices do you follow to maintain it?
Many people--even people that I genuinely love--have not yet met my son. I'm super protective of him and the energy that is around him. His dad and I are his best friends, so we have to be his number one advocates.
He can't control whether or not he's around somebody who is toxic or in an environment that's not good for him--but I can. Sometimes that's gets you labeled as neurotic or over the top or paranoid, but that's OK.
You’re vegan! I’m interested in going vegetarian. Give us a few of your favorite dishes to whip up as a busy mama!
Let me start off by saying that I've only been vegan for five months, but I've been vegetarian for nine years.
Vegetarianism is super easy for me because I don't believe that animals should have to die and be tortured for minutes of our pleasure. In terms of recipes, I'm all about fried rice. I make curry cauliflower fried rice, broccoli stir fried rice, and I also love mashed potatoes. I recently made avocado toast for the first time, and it was actually pretty good. I'm going to be doing that again.
Any words of love and support for other entrepreneurial mamas out there reading?
The biggest thing I can say is that it's OK to lose your way at times in terms of your business. I'm just now getting back to focusing on my business; my son is almost a year old. I have no regrets because I know the people that supported me at my launch will be there to help and support me now.
There's nothing better than faith and having a true belief in yourself that doesn't stem from arrogance but in confidence that you were created to do beautiful things.
Before you go, here's a link to our last Started Small interview with one of our favorite people. Errbody, here's Beatriz: Writer, designer, and community organizer. She's the fiya behind Brooklyn's newest, WOC-centered book club.