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Kendall Jenner Dazed cover
Kendall Jenner in Tom Ford for Dazed Winter 2014Photography Ben Toms, styling Robbie Spencer

Kendall Jenner: people in fashion ‘outright laughed at me’

Life's tough when you're a Kardashian, but the Calvin Klein girl is having the last laugh

In fashion years, it feels like Kendall Jenner's been around forever – she's already landed high-profile campaigns for Marc Jacobs, Givenchy, Estee Lauder and most recently Calvin Klein – but the Dazed cover star still feels the sting of rejection. 

"You have no idea how many doors closed on me and how many adults were either initially reluctant to take a chance working with me or who outright laughed at me behind my back," Jenner said in her interview with V magazine. "It was kind of hard because all I was doing was going on go-sees, trying my best to break into this business as a teenager."

She added: "My parents taught me that work ethic is one of the most important keys in life, and I believe it."

Jenner shot to fame as part of Keeping Up With The Kardashians, but she was adamant that her first inroads in the fashion industry stayed off-camera – which is why we were sadly never treated to the televised sight of Kris Jenner screeching at her wayward daughter backstage at Chanel or Khloe rolling her eyes at Kendall from the front row at Paris Fashion Week. 

Even her first champions in the industry were reluctant to push someone whose family was more reality show royalty, less runway material. “All I knew about them was from reading trash magazines,” stylist Katie Grand told us. She didn't even realise who Kendall was when they first met. “Marc was like, ‘That was a Kardashian girl’, and I was like, ‘Oh, whatever.’”

“And Nick, who looks after Marc’s dog (Neville), was like, ‘Oh my God, that was Kendall Jenner! Can we get her back in to do Neville’s Instagram?’ She came back in and she was game and really sweet. Nick and I were completely won over.”

Grand ended up casting her for the Marc Jacobs AW14 show, which Kendall walked in a severe bob and bleached eyebrows. The rest, as they say, is history. Guess who's laughing now, suckers? 

Read our cover story with Kendall Jenner here