“I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.” …
A Pageant Story: a Woman’s Sparkle is Enhanced by Lights, Cameras and Love
Growing up, many girls dream of winning a crown because we understand that pageants are not just about inherent beauty, but also confidence, intelligence, and celebrating a woman’s power. We met with Miss Barbados UK 2015, the stunning Victoria J.P. Small to learn more about her journey into the pageant world, along with self- discovery and confidence.
Victoria Small met Azuka Wayfora for an interview, to talk about her dream of walking up the ramp and cameras flashing. As we discovered, however, it wasn’t a dream she had grown up with and held on to, but a dream that reached out to her — over twitter.
When the pageant’s representatives reached out to Victoria, she wasn’t initially on board. Having gone through sexual abuse, she recalls herself as being intimidated and shy in front of cameras and eyes pointed at her. “My mum asked me to pray over it” Victoria shared her decision making process. “I had a dream of looking at a girl walk the ramp, confidently towards the stage, and within the dream I realised, I was looking at myself in a beautiful yellow dress.”
It’s easy to see what she saw, looking at her nail this photoshoot with our photographer, Alina Agarkova. As I sat down to pen this article about Victoria’s (so tempted to say victorious, but I’ll resist) journey, I realised how easy must have been for someone to see her profile and think ‘that is a pageant queen’. Looking at her look towards the camera with extreme confidence and yet exude warmth, it is hard to believe that she did not consciously bring herself where she is today. In fact, a former coworker had begun calling her “Miss Barbados” before all of this realised.
Our make-up artist Pamela Hernandez got the beauty ready for the shoot. Victoria’s ability to carry off the bold-yet-wearable golden smokey eye to match her dress, designed by the talented, DIANA PIATEK (look her up! she’s amazing) and regal attitude goes to show exactly why she is where she is today.
Victoria’s kindness is felt by those working on this shoot as well as the camera. So it is no surprise when she tells us that she was inspired by the motivation to set up a good example for the younger girls at her church. “I wanted to regain my confidence and prove myself again”, she references her tough experiences.
Born to immigrant parents in England, Victoria exemplifies beauty, grace and compassion along with unity. After winning the Miss Barbados UK, she is all set to partake in the upcoming Miss England pageant this April — she told us exclusively, the winner of which competes in Miss World. Her resilience and strength, accompanied by her beauty shines through. It shows us the power of believing in women, and the power of a women’s beauty pageant that gave one her confidence back.
Victoria also runs a youtube channel to inspire other women to feel powerful and feel like “the queens they are”. Follow her for more and here is to wishing Victoria all the luck for her future endeavours! VICTORIA’S CHANNEL
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Inspiration, Beauty, Fashion.
Written by: Puneet Dhaliwal