Jamie Lee Curtis gets deep about friendship on her podcast Good Friend, exploring how friendships are built, how they thrive, and how they wither with some of her own good friends. On this episode, she sits down with model and activist Amber Valletta and they talk about everything from the fashion industry to the friendships built between coworkers and colleagues to religion and spirituality and more. Amber says that for her, friendships are built when “you’re vulnerable and honest, and also holding space for them to do the same.” If that’s the case, we’re all friends with both these powerhouse women by the end of the conversation.
Though she isn’t much of a church-goer these days, Amber says she grew up in both the Catholic and Pentecostal churches due to the various faiths of her family members, and was always yearning to connect to something “larger than myself.” Which has turned out to be her family and friendships. She grew up in a big, rambling family (rather than a family tree, they call it their “family bramble,” she jokes), but her collaborators and colleagues in her work have also become something of a family. Unlike the film industry, where you can build a close relationship that simply stops once the film is over, the fashion industry is a small world; she’s been working with some of her collaborators for 25 years.
Amber has always been very outspoken, always ready to speak up against injustices she sees. “Ask anyone from my childhood,” she laughs. That impulse, combined with her deep spirituality, has led her to environmental activism. But she’s also taking part in changing the fashion industry, too. She started modeling at 15 years old, but even though she was underage, she was allowed to work whatever hours were demanded, often with no chaperon. That would never be allowed in any other industry, she points out, but fashion is totally unregulated. “We’re like the wild west,” she says. Just like she did in childhood, she’s speaking up and working for change. Hear Jamie’s whole conversation with Amber on this episode of Good Friend.
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