Gigi Hadid dropped jaws last November when she revealed on Twitter that she would not be walking in the 2017 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in Shanghai. The announcement was especially surprising considering that the show was only a few weeks away and that Hadid confirmed that she was walking in it three months earlier. The surprise also led to many theories—the main being that Hadid was banned from China for a racially insensitive video of her slanting her eyes to mimic a Buddha doll—though none of them were confirmed. Now months later, the dust seems to have settled and Hadid is back in Victoria’s Secret’s good graces.
On Thursday night, seven months after the 23-year-old mysterious disappearance from last year’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, Hadid attended a Victoria’s Secret party for photographer Russell James who recently released a book, Backstage Secrets by Russell James, with never-before-seen, behind-the-scenes pictures from his time as a V.S. photographer.
Hadid, who wore a high-neck white silk dress by Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood, was joined by several other Victoria’s Secret models, including Sara Sampaio, Lais Ribeiro, Martha Hunt, Ming Xi, and Josephine Skriver.
On her Instagram story, Hadid also gave a shoutout to Victoria’s Secret, which she had a dream of walking for since her childhood, and James, whom she had a dream of shooting with. The model also name-dropped Victoria’s Secret angel Candice Swanepoel as someone who inspired her to want to walk with Victoria’s Secret. Hadid also revealed the adorable fact that she used to practice her runway walk during commercial breaks for the show growing up.
“My childhood dream was always to be in a VS show and have RJ shoot me backstage,” Hadid wrote. “Cuz we all know I’ve BEEN obsessed with @angelcandices. I grew up w some of the pics in this book!!!! They made me dream! And I used to do practice runway walks during VSFS commercial breaks.”
As fans might remember, Hadid walked in her first and only (so far) Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in 2016, where she wore two looks. The model was joined by her younger sister, Bella Hadid, who, unlike her older sister, was able to walk in the 2017 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.
Since Hadid’s sudden dropout, there have been many rumors as to why she wasn’t at the 2017 show. Some thought that she landed a campaign with another lingerie brand forcing her to cut professional ties with V.S. (that’s what happened to Kendall Jenner), while others were confident that Hadid’s racially insensitive video landed her in hot water with the Chinese government.
There were also some noise that Hadid had beef with Victoria’s Secret itself. However, that rumor seems to be dispelled judging from her recent praise for the brand and her appearance at James’s book party. Could this mean that Hadid’s drama with Victoria’s Secret is under the bridge? All signs look good so far, so we expect to see her at the 2018 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show—unless another controversy happens.