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Interview with Miss Voluptuous UK 2020 Finalist Anthi Giannopoulou

So firstly thank you for agreeing to the interview. It’s great to learn about everyone’s journeys and platforms so let’s get started !

Can you tell us a why you entered pageants in the first place ?

I have entered my first ever pageant in 2018 as a market research project . I am a fashion designer and wanted to see how other curvy women feel about evening wear . After that I got hooked!

So tell us abit about your previous pageants ?

I have been previously competing for miss Voluptuous pageants in 2018 , I didn’t place and again in 2019 where I got awarded People’s choice.

So you have already competed for the same title twice now, is that right ?

Yes as you realised I have competed for the same system at Miss Voluptuous pageants for the past two years.

What makes you want to be part of the Miss Voluptuous system ?

Miss Voluptuous pageants is a platform based system that caters for curvier girls ! The first time I competed I joined 5 months before finals unaware of what pageants mean in a deeper sensebut the love and friendships I gained priceless.

Pageants really are amazing and you do make friendships that last a lifetime ! So what has pageants taught you ?

The best thing that pageants taught me is to see beauty in everything . I came into contact with so many wonderful women not only on my system but also other systems, I got to learn new things, everything and gain new found confidence to do stuff I would never have done otherwise.

So all pageant girls seem to have a platform or charity that they support. What’s your platform ?

Jokes aside my platform is about fashion. I am part of the Fashion Revolution on the greek team. Fashion Revolution is an NGO( non governmental organisation) that was established in 2013 after the Rana Plaza collapsed vin Bangladesh. When the garment factories building collapsed it killed 1134 garment workers and injured severely more than 2000. The purpose of the organisation and our work in it , is to educate designers in more sustainable ways of creating producing garments, advocate for fairer wages , be against human trafficking, empower women and men that are immigrants by educating them to be tailors and gain access to the work force and many more. We don’t advocate against any brand but instead we invite them to collaborate with us and get educated for a better more sustainable future #whomademyclothes #whatsinmyclothes . Through my platform I learned a lot on my profession as a fashion designer but also got to know the power of how big changes small actions can produce.

What’s your dream pageant title ?

My dream title would be off course winning at Miss Voluptuous pageants either the U.K. tittle or even get the chance to represent my home country Greece in next years Internationals.

What would winning Miss Voluptuous mean to you ?

Winning it be firstly an honour to serve the title to the best of my abilities. It would mean the world to me cause I would get the chance represent a system with high values and be able to advocate about my platform to a bigger audience as the queens get to go compete internationally.

Do you have any advice for girls and women who are new to pageants or even ones that have competed for years ?

Best advice I would have for someone is ‘don’t be afraid reach for the stars’ put hard work in and win or not know you have touched people’s souls on your journey . The journey sometimes is the actual destination.

What have you been doing in the run up to the final ? I know it’s very difficult at the moment due to COVID-19 in regards to appearances.

I did start the year with appearances at pageant events, award shows , fundraising events but due to covid 19 every physical appearance I had planned is either postponed or cancelled. But I got the #stayathome time to actually help the Greek team of Fashion Revolution, my platform , transform a physical festival to a digital one . I get educated every day even more on causes surrounding my platform and I try put my skills into good use by actually sewing and donating fabric face masks to my neighbours. Hopefully earth and the world will soon heal and I can continue contributing to causes physically and spreading ‘unicorn dust from Anthi’ to people who would care listen about my pageant journey.

For more information regarding Fashion Revolution Greece please see the link https://www.fashionrevolution.org/

What do you believe makes a good role model ?

Have you heard what Cinderella‘s mum told her? The exact word we’re: ‘ be kind, have courage and always believe in a little magic’. Following that quote actually makes not only a good pageant role model but a good human being in general. There is great power in every form of kindness.

Your pageant system has a unique round can you tell us more about that ?

In my pageant system instead of swimwear round we have an eco round. Basically we have to create an outfit of eco materials with a budget of 5£ . And yes you heard right 5£ only. You can material donated but you can only spend the above amount for new material. It is a round that you have to show creativity but it is also a good chance to represent your platform through your eco wear on stage.

This is a question I ask all the Queens I Interview ! How do you deal with pageant nerves ?

Ah pageant nerves? What is that, remind me! To be honest I get nervous but I try to remind my self I am there to represent my cause and platform with the added bonus of having my pagenat sisters with me there. In the end we all already wearing our invisible crowns. So go up there walk with a smile and have fun.

Thank you so much for taking the time to speak to me, I’ve never spoken to anyone with a ‘fashion platform’ it was interesting to learn about it ! I wish you every success in the final and please keep me posted !! Much love Charlotte, Ms Diamond South Yorkshire.

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