Vittoria Ceretti Is the Ultimate Supermodel

Fashion & Style
vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Bodysuit, $1,250, skirt, $2,200, belt, $540, earrings, $1,090, necklace, $1,090, cuff, $950, Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello.

The living room of Casa Cipriani is suffused with a fireside glow. It’s the moment before sunset, when light bounces off the Hudson River at such an angle, you might think you’re alongside a Venetian canal. Inside, the haute private members club is packed with beautiful people, the surroundings cozy and art-filled.

But Vittoria Ceretti has something else on her mind: teeth.

“I don’t think I’ve ever told anyone this in an interview, but I have this obsession,” the 25-year-old supermodel confides. She harbors dreams of becoming a dentist, “which is completely, fully random, but for some reason it’s something that fascinates me so much. I love going to the dentist. It’s freaky. It’s weird, but I love it.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Dress, Gucci. Ring, Schlumberger by Tiffany & Co.

She must not be prone to cavities, I say, with no small amount of jealousy. “It’s not like I enjoy going to the dentist, like, ‘Oh my God, I’m going to sit in the chair for three hours!’ ” she clarifies. “But I’m so fascinated to hear what’s going on. I wish I could watch it when other people go to the dentist.”

These are not the musings you might expect to hear from someone who regularly walks the runway in Milan, Paris, London, New York, and the various far-flung outposts of cruise shows; whose face adorns billboards and glossy pages; and who’s dating Leonardo DiCaprio. But Ceretti is sui generis, from her interests (snakes and, apparently, dentistry) to her fears (ants, seaweed) to her casual-cool uniform of an oversize gray hoodie and flat boots. (Her one fashion rule is “no heels during the day.”) Her demeanor is just as casual as her off-duty attire, her affect pleasantly quirky—more like that of a thoughtful college student than a jet-setting member of the fashion pack.

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Left: Coat, $5,245, silk rose necktie, $625, lingerie top, $745, garter belt, $625, panty, $275, stretch tulle boots, $1,225, Dolce & Gabbana. Elsa Peretti earrings, Tiffany & Co., $3,500. Right: Top, $1,770, shorts, $980, belt, $1,380, Khaite.

Maybe it’s her down-to-earth Italian upbringing in the small city of Brescia. Her mother, Francesca Ceretti, traveled everywhere with her in her early modeling days, and Ceretti still talks to her family daily. “My mom was a housewife. She only always took care of me and my brother growing up. She never worked, so she had the time and the chance to do that, which was amazing,” Ceretti says. Having her there was essential in “keeping my head on my shoulders and my feet on the ground.” Francesca calls that time “an adventure for both of us,” one that “consolidated a bond that is sometimes difficult to maintain during teenage years. We experienced many moments—the joy of successes, and sometimes a few disappointments—many journeys, many planes, many suitcases.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Dress, scarf, Marc Jacobs. Bra, Agent Provocateur, $155. Mules, Mugler.

From the moment she was born, her mother recalls, Vittoria was striking. (“At the hospital nursery, the doctor on her first visit said, ‘How beautiful is that baby?!’ ”) But Ceretti insists she only entered the Elite Model Look competition as a joke. “I didn’t even know what modeling was like; I had no clue. It’s not something that I was fascinated by or interested in. It was not my dream.” Still, at only 14, she won anyway, on the strength of photos her cousin had snapped of her posing on a car in their neighbor’s garage. When she arrived at the contest, “there were all these tall, gorgeous girls, and my mom and I were in line. We were like, ‘Maybe we should just leave, because this is never going to work.’ Then my [now] agent [Elena Mansueto, of Elite] ended up walking up to us to make sure that we weren’t going to leave.”

That escalated quickly from a joke to something serious, I observe. “Super serious, and it’s funny because it’s been an adventure ever since, and an amazing adventure,” she says. “I can’t believe I took it as a joke, but I think that’s also what made it so special, that I never took it seriously at first.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Slip dress, Gucci, $4,300. Mules, Mugler.

What followed is best described by Francesca Ceretti: “a succession of unexpected doors opening.” Though Vittoria started out shy (and says, “I was shy up until four years ago”), she quickly became one of the most in-demand models working, booking haute couture shows only two years after winning the competition and racking up marathon-level step counts on the catwalk. There’s something of the old-school “super” about her. Maximilian Davis, the creative director of Ferragamo, says he considers her “the supermodel of today’s generation.” Sabato De Sarno, the creative director of Gucci, calls her “Sophisticated. Contemporary. Surprising. Vittoria is the Italian who defines our era, between already iconic photographs and a social presence as a true entertainer.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Blazer, $1,990, flower brooch, $480, Willy Chavarria. Bra, $120, panty, $70, Araks.



Her strong features, piercing gaze, and dynamic presence have attracted the attention of several prominent, nay, iconic designers, one of them being the late Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel. Ceretti was the final couture “bride” Lagerfeld created a look for—a sparkling swimsuit with a matching veil—which she wore in the spring 2019 couture show. “He showed me pictures before they started designing it, six months beforehand. He was like, ‘I had this dream a few nights ago. I woke up in the middle of the night, started drawing this dress, and called in to the studio the next morning and said, ‘No one is wearing it unless Vittoria can wear it to walk the show.’ ”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Left: Bra top, skirt, $7,700, slingbacks, $1,100, Gucci. Elsa Peretti cuff, Tiffany & Co. Right: Bralette, skirt, $7,500, hat, $1,280, gloves, Alaïa.

“There’s no one that I will miss more than Karl in the fashion industry,” she says. “He was such a strong personality, such a welcoming human being. I remember him showing up to the studio at 4 p.m. because he always used to take his time, but we were so happy to just sit there and wait for him. Because he made sure that everyone was comfortable, and he would come in and grab my and the other girls’ hands and start chatting on the couch. He cared so much about his personal relationship with the models. Work came second. You [build] the relationship first, and then afterward you can make amazing pictures.”

She’s ascended to the point of palling around with Miuccia Prada, who she says used to come to last-minute fittings “with a tray full of pizza, and shared the pizza with us.” She’s on a first-name basis with another Italian fashion mainstay, too. “Oh, Donatella, she’s hilarious. I love her. We just sit there and we laugh and we share, and we drink and gossip, and we look at people and we love it.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Dress, Ferragamo, $2,800. Pumps, Alaïa, $1,250.

By now, Ceretti has worked with every big-name photographer you can think of, including Mario Sorrenti, who shot this cover story. The last time she worked with him, she says, “The story was all based on earth and earthy things,” so she was covered in dirt. “I ended up having to shower in a studio with the clothes on. We had to cut the clothes off. We couldn’t take them off once they got wet.” These kinds of challenges hardly faze her. A different shoot, with a different photographer, culminated with her posing in a water tank, its temperature freezing due to a malfunction. “Don’t get me wrong; some shoots are literally just standing there and you’re not doing anything,” she says now, laughing. “I’d rather have some action and some panic and freezing moments. I’d rather have the adrenaline of that. I think it’s one of the best things that we get from our job.”

A decade-plus into modeling, she’s also learned to set firm boundaries and say no to things, admittedly a privilege afforded by her success. Now when someone tells her she needs to jump on a plane for an eleventh-hour shoot, she says, “ ‘What do you mean? I have a life. I have a dog, I have my family, I have friends, I have plans.’ Now I take it a little bit slower.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Left: Dress, skirt, $4,900, shorts, $975, belt, $650, pumps, $1,150, Prada. Right: Jacket, Schiaparelli.



There’s one time when that doesn’t apply, though: fashion week, when work-life balance, as she says, “goes out the window.” Ceretti tries to take a month off beforehand so she’s ready for the runway marathon. “Don’t get me wrong, I love fashion week. Some girls really don’t like it. Some girls can’t take it. I love it,” she says. “The excitement, seeing different people every day. I love hanging out with the other girls, the designers, the casting directors. There’s something about the energy that you can create when you’re with the designers after they’ve worked on a collection for so many months and you’re finally the one to be able to show it to the world. It’s just a month. Then you go back to normal life.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Top, $5,300, skirt, $3,150, Celine by Hedi Slimane. Tights, Wolford, $55. Pumps, Balenciaga, $1,375.

For Ceretti, normal life means hiking, hanging out with her dog, and spending the whole morning lazing around in bed—which, she says, “I don’t feel guilty [about for] one second.” She’s also catching up with her fellow models: The day we speak, she’s getting ready to head to dinner with Jordan Daniels. “Everyone thinks that models have things against [each other]. But it’s so not true. I’ve made so many amazing friendships that have lasted throughout this entire time. And it’s easier during fashion week, when you’re both in pain, you’re both a little miserable, [running on] two hours of sleep in the past two days. If you have each other’s shoulder to cry on, it makes it less bad.” (Says Daniels: “She’s consistent, supportive, and a sweetheart. She’s always down to have fun and equally always down to chill. She’s never changed since the day I met her, and I love that about her.”)

Speaking of shoulders to cry on, Ceretti has said that she acts as a de facto therapist to her friends. (“Still am,” she notes.) Dental fascinations aside, psychology is the career route that most interests her outside of her current one. She’s also talked about acting, but unlike some of her fellow models, she’s not jumping in anytime soon. “Modeling opens up a lot of doors, and it’s like—it’s there. It could be a plan B one day. It’s not something that I’m actively looking into. It’s not a priority of mine right now.” Something she is prioritizing right now is the environment; for her past three birthdays, she’s held big parties and asked guests to plant a tree through the certified B corp Treedom. Given that her celebrations include 100 to 200 people, she says, “We’re planting a lot of trees.”

vittoria ceretti

Mario Sorrenti

Dress, Ferragamo, $2,800.

And despite her substantial platform—1.6 million Instagram followers at press time—she mainly uses it as a professional portfolio. “I’ll show a glimpse of my life here and there, but I like to keep that to myself.” No perks can compete with her need for privacy. “Sometimes hotels are like, ‘You can stay here for free, but then you are going to have to post.’ And I’m like, ‘You know what? I’ll pay.’ I feel safer. I don’t want people to know where I go. I value that privacy a lot.”

Hair by Tomo Jidai at Home Agency; makeup by Diane Kendal at Art Partner; manicure by Alicia Torello for Chanel; set design by Philipp Haemmerle; produced by Mario Sorrenti Studio.

This article appears in the March 2024 issue of ELLE.

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