Since breaking into the modeling industry during May 2021, full-time content creator JJanga Horne has been doing everything from walking New York Fashion Week to co-owning Indy art space Sajin Studio. Horne has racked up a huge social media following in just a little over a year, with 150k on TikTok and another 40k on Instagram. In her spare time, Horne shares her adventures and current favorites on her blog, JJanga Loves. Oh, and did we mention she’s a mother of two? Horne attributes her success to her hustle mentality — she’s got no time to waste when it comes to chasing her dreams. She’s got a vision, too: Horne hopes to represent curve models and work towards a more inclusive future within the modeling industry by offering motivation and spreading body positivity to her followers. PATTERN needed to see Horne’s killer style up close, so we invited her to the studio for an interview and photo sesh!
What is your earliest memory of a noticeable interest in fashion?
Definitely from a very young age. I for sure started in elementary. I have always had an obsession with fashion for all I’ve known. I hated being dressed. I had to dress myself. As soon as we were allowed to have the internet, I was obsessed with sitting there for hours and going on what was style.com at the time. I would go through all the images of the catwalks and models, looking at the outfits and saving them to a file. It was like my form of Pinterest!
Who or what influences your style?
Gwen Stefani, when I was younger. I loved Hilary Duff’s playful style. I feel like I still have part of that, even as an adult. Even if I’m not getting dressed up, I’m wearing, say, a one-piece jumpsuit or something. I always make it more playful. And my favorite designer was Anna Sui. I love the feminine pieces. I have always had a draw to pieces that are feminine but also can be masculine. I love mixing both of those up. I’m a Pisces, and the older I get, the more I realize we all love mixing and matching and wearing weird shit. Especially Rihanna—Rihanna really seals the deal. That was always my inspiration.
What are your favorite Instagram accounts to follow?
@plantkween! Somehow I got really lucky, the universe must have wanted it to happen—I walked New York Fashion Week with Plant Kween. Their energy is so amazing. They give me a lot of inspiration every day. Their name is Christopher. They’re non-binary, based out of Brooklyn. Their Instagram is mainly talking about florals, but it also incorporates flowers, plants and fashion. Also, being who you are; authentically having that energy. Their energy is just as alive online as it is in person, and I love how contagious it is. If there’s ever a time that I’m paralyzed on my bed playing on my phone and I don’t have the motivation to get up, I just go to the Plant Kween. It’s like a “Get your ass up!” kind of motivation.
Describe your personal style in four words or one phrase.
Wear what feels right. I don’t think words can describe it, only because now that I’m 32, if it feels good, I wear it. I’ve always struggled with feeling pressured by society that you need to be one aesthetic or type of person, and I’ve never felt that way. I’ve never felt like I wanted to stick with it. I bounced back and forth. The older I’m getting, I wear whatever feels right. I don’t feel like I need to make my whole personality about an aesthetic or an outfit or a look. I don’t want my outfit to wear me.
What’s your go-to item in your closet?
An oversized white button-down. It’s the best piece. It’s great for whenever you’re traveling; you can turn it into literally everything. You can make it sexy. You can make it cute. If you need to be a bit more modest, you can make it that!
Who are your favorite designers, and what do you like about their designs?
Anna Sui is for sure one of my favorites. I love the bold feminine pieces. There are so many different ways to describe femininity, and oftentimes it’s like it needs to be soft and cute. What I love about Anna Sui is it’s cute, but it’s bold. It stands out more. They make a lot of different textures with classic pieces that you wouldn’t imagine. I love that they did a line with Target and the entire line was absolutely gorgeous. I bought the entire thing. My other one would be Dior. Dior is a designer I’ve loved since I was a kid as well. Going back to women empowerment, Dior is always true to that and creating classic pieces. The designer and the brand in itself has been there to uplift women and create for women since the very beginning.
Did you ever consider leaving the Indy area? If so, what made you stay?
I definitely considered it. My only reason for staying is my children. I want them to have a better education as well as a safer space. As much as I’m not a big fan of Indiana being a red state, I do think the education here is good. It is a slower lifestyle that I want my children to learn. I grew up with a massive hustle mentality. I don’t allow myself to rest because I feel like I’m constantly needing to be working towards something. That is something I want my children to have, but there are also negative parts of it. It’s gotten to the point where I’ve had to learn to try to enjoy life. I want my children to be able to learn how to balance both; to be able to hustle and work but also know when to clock out mentally and enjoy the day. Not thinking about work or the next thing you need to be doing, because that can get so exhausting. It’s not healthy.
What trends are you noticing for (next season’s) fashion?
I think brown is for sure going to become the new black for a while. During New York Fashion Week, I saw so many brown hues, even replacing white with a taupe. The monochromatic style is going to stay. Florals are always in. I hope that the “Little House on the Prairie” style goes away. I’m really hoping those pioneer hats go away. It’s a style that became very trendy. It’s very cute on some people, but it’s not for everybody. And they sold it as if it was for everybody. And I only say that because not everyone can look good dressed up like “The Little House on the Prairie.” I know I would look ridiculous!
What’s next for you? What short and long-term goals are on your list?
Next for me is walking for Miami Swim Week. Also, in the fall, walking for New York Fashion Week again. Those are my short-term fashion goals. Long-term would be doing a shoot for either Nylon or Vogue. I’m more on Nylon’s side, only because Vogue has been a little weird and is getting political. I haven’t followed them on Instagram because they are posting way too many weird things that are also kind of racist. It also just sounds like the Kardashians bought Vogue. If it’s not the cover, it’s like every other post is a Kardashian post. At this point, too, I’ve learned through the fashion industry that a lot of people who make it on most Vogue covers have paid to get on there. Vogue doesn’t pay the models unless it’s Vogue Vogue. Vogue Italia and all those other countries—you only get on those covers if you pay for it. I’ve been offered to be on Vogue Italia, and they’re like, “It’s only $600,” and I’m like, “Oh, I’m good.”
When I think of fashion, I think of evolving style. It could be anything. It’s constantly evolving. My style today is not the same as it was even just a few months ago. I have my basics, but we are constantly being shown so many new things, especially on social media. Everyone’s fashion and style evolves so much faster than ever.
Worst fashion trend?
Low-rise pants. I’m dreading it. Low-rise pants are the only trend that I dread. Obviously, it looks good on anybody who wants to wear it because anybody can wear whatever they want. At the same time, we see it so much on social media that they only push young skinny bodies can wear it. Since we’re so constantly seeing young skinny bodies who haven’t had a baby or matured. As we get older—especially women—our uterus has grown. A lot of the people we see constantly forced on us on the internet have extremely flat stomachs and like the perfect hip ratio. It makes us feel like we can’t wear something like that; like we look ugly if we put something like that on because we have a bump showing, maybe stretch marks. Also, it’s so uncomfortable. I don’t know how you would wear it without constantly pulling them up.
Best fashion trend?
The body positivity movement. My opinion on the low rise pants—sure, that’s my opinion. Do I also think anyone should be able to wear it? Absolutely. We have hindered ourselves for so long as a society to think that only certain body types can wear what is being advertised. When we only see those body types, we feed into that cycle and hinder ourselves from trying something new because we’re in our heads. I have chunkier calves. For the longest time, I didn’t wear skinny jeans or anything like that, because it didn’t look like those people that were being advertised to me. When I finally decided to start wearing them, I realized no one cares. Even I don’t [care] after I wear them and get over the fact I don’t look like other models.
Name your favorite fashion icon.
Rihanna! I forget sometimes that she’s more than a singer. In my head, I grew up listening to her music, but now she’s more than that. She f*cking rocks everything she puts on.