Heidi Klum's Daughter Leni, 16, Makes Modeling Debut Alongside Mom on Vogue Germany Cover

The supermodel told her daughter that covering Vogue is the "best first step" in pursuing her dream

Heidi Klum's 16-year-old daughter Leni just made her modeling debut, and from the looks of it, she's definitely one to watch.

Leni's entry into the fashion world was major one, covering Vogue Germany's January/February 2021 issue alongside her mom wearing colorful matching pantsuits, sans shoes.

Heidi Klum Leni Vogue Germany
Chris Colls/Vogue Germany

"So excited for my first cover!! I had so much fun on set with @voguegermany couldn’t dream of a better start!! Thank you for being by my side @heidiklum ❤," Leni wrote on Instagram alongside the cover shot by photographer Chris Colls.

Heidi Klum Leni Vogue Germany
Heidi and Leni Klum on the cover of Vogue Germany. Chris Colls/Vogue Germany

Klum, 47, couldn't contain her excitement and shared the photo and a long, heartfelt message written in German to Leni on Instagram.

"I'm so proud of you. And it's not because you've chosen your own path. I know, that no matter which path you were to go down, you would be your own woman. You always know exactly what you want and what you don't want. You ain't no mini-me and I'm happy for you that you can now show who YOU are," the supermodel began.

Heidi Klum Leni Vogue Germany
Chris Colls/Vogue Germany

Klum admitted that being her daughter "is not always easy" because Leni "never had the possibility to grow up 'normal.'" But despite that, Klum is so proud of the young woman Leni has become.

"But what is normal? Growing up with three different daddies... And I would say: none of it harmed you. On the contrary: you are a self-possessed young woman, works hard for your goals. And even more important... you are a really cool person, with your heart in the right place."

Klum gave birth to Leni in May 2004, right after her split from Italian businessman Flavio Briatore. In December 2009, Leni was adopted by Klum's now-ex-husband Seal. Klum married Tokio Hotel musician Tom Kaulitz in July 2019.

Klum ended the message by telling Leni, "This Vogue [cover] is the best first step [in] the career you dream of. And even when it's a little hard for me to let you go off into the world, I will always do everything for you to be happy and fulfill your dreams. I am so proud to be your mama."

Like other celebrity kids, Leni has had lots of modeling opportunities over the years. But Klum told PEOPLE last week that she always turned them down in order to protect her daughter’s privacy — until recently.

Heidi and Leni Klum
Heidi Klum/Instagram

“She's old enough now,” Klum said. “I always thought she was too young. We always also decided to keep the children out of the public eye. But she's driving a car now, she's 16, so I figured if you can do that, you can also model now if this is what you wish to do.”

She continued: "Obviously, as a mother, [I want my] child to do what she wants to do. The industry is great and I love it and I've been in it for over 20 years but it's also, it's a lot of traveling, it's different. You have to be a strong person, especially as a woman you have to be very strong."

During the accompanying interview for Vogue Germany, Leni said it was "only a matter of time" before she became a model. "The first offer came when I was only 12 or 13, from a brand I liked to wear: Brandy Melville. At that time I begged my mother, but no chance. Now I understand that it would have been too early," the teen explains.

Along with their cover spread, the duo also shot a cute twinning video for the magazine, talking about what connects them and when they seem themselves in one another.

"You're my best friend because I can tell you everything," Leni says in the clip.

Related Articles