Durham Student Lives the American Girl Dream
Dec 08, 2015 08:57AM ● Published by Audrey Sellers
For fifth grader Brooklyn Schroeder, modeling comes naturally. She’s been a model since she was six years old, and she’s represented by the Kim Dawson Agency, one of the oldest and most prestigious agencies in the country. Recently, Brooklyn had a modeling opportunity that was the most exciting yet: She landed a spot in the pages of the American Girl catalog.
Like many other girls her age, Brooklyn is a big-time fan of American Girl dolls. She got her first doll, Bitty Baby, for Christmas when she was a preschooler. She then received a Just Like You doll, bringing her current collection to three dolls along with an assortment of clothes and accessories.
“She likes getting outfits for her dolls that go along with her interests and activities, like ballet and softball,” says Brooklyn’s mom, Amy. “She likes dressing them up and playing with them when her friends come over.”
Last July, Brooklyn was invited to a photo shoot at the American Girl store in Dallas. Her agent told Amy that this was the “crème de la crème of jobs; it’s the job that all the little girls hope for.”
Representatives didn’t specify how the photos would be used; they simply mentioned the photos could appear in playbills, on social media, in-store signage or the catalog.
“The shoot took place in their café. They closed off half of the restaurant and had temporary walls up so customers couldn’t see what was going on,” Brooklyn recalls. “We wore holiday dresses that were coming out in a future catalog so we had to wear robes to and from the hair and makeup room to the café; they didn’t want the customers to see the new line of clothes.”
Driving home from the photo shoot, Brooklyn declared to her mom: “This was the best day of my life! It was a dream come true.”
In October, Amy started noticing that some of the American Girl emails had a different look to them. So she started browsing around. When she did, she happily discovered some of Brooklyn’s photos.
“We thought that was fabulous and that was how they were going to use them,” says Amy. “Then, that same day, a friend in Oklahoma received a catalog and told me that Brooklyn was in it and posted a picture on Facebook. Our own catalog didn’t come for another week or so.”
When Brooklyn saw her photos on the American Girl site and in the catalog, she reacted like any girl would: with sheer excitement. “When my mom showed me the pictures, I screamed my heart out! I feel like I’m standing on top of the world right now,” she says. “And my family, grandparents, aunts and uncles tell me they are proud of me.”
Amy adds that the experience has been so fun and memorable for her daughter. “She had such a great time at the shoot,” she says, “and now she gets to relive that day now that the photos are coming out.”