"There Is Something Extremely Motivating About Knowing That People Are Underestimating You."

by Rachelle Hruska · January 26, 2009

    Which heiress/nyc socialite said the following in response to her hard working ethics? Find out after the jump...

    It was none other than Ivanka Trump in her latest interview for ASMALLMAGAZINE by Sabine Heller. Other things we learn about in the interview, posted below, is her love of cheesy 80s movies, mozzarella sticks, and why she would have no qualms about showing up to the office in a pink suit:

    "The first fashion show I attended was Valentino in Paris when I was six or seven," says the exceptionally poised Ivanka Trump, who sits across from me in her spacious Trump Tower corner office with a mega view, wearing Prada culottes, Asprey loafers, and a casual knit top. Her office walls are adorned with articles about herself and her family. "As long as I can remember I've always appreciated the finer things—whether they be jewellery or architecture." It is evident that if anyone has a keen eye for aesthetics it should be Ivanka, who undoubtedly learned about fashion and jewellery from her mother Ivana Trump. She says, "From a young age, I was exposed to a really amazing collection of fine jewellery, and I took my love of that from her."

    Now 27 and very much a confident woman in her own right, Ivanka has launched a diamond jewellery line that bears her name and is housed in a feminine, boudoir-inspired shop on Madison Avenue in New York. The line, which seeks to reinvent older Hollywood glamour by offering modern day interpretations of collections from the 1920s to the 1960s, includes engagement rings, earrings, necklaces and bracelets. A delicate diamond oval, accented with coral detail, is the signifying emblem of the collection and is discreetly designed into each style. Her favourite piece from the collection is a pair of diamond briolette tassel earrings.

    Already bullish about the success of her line, the Wharton grad has high hopes for the future, with plans to open shops in Las Vegas and Japan. All the while, she continues her rapid ascension in her father Donald Trump's empire: She was named director of the Trump Gaming Company, serves as the vice president of development and acquisitions for the Trump Organization, and is a boardroom advisor on The Apprentice.

    I can't help but wonder how she does it all, and what her average day entails. "There is no typical day. I don't think I'd be as excited about what I do in life if there were." She does, however, admit that she doesn't sleep much and works long hours, often with periods of lengthy travel. On weekends, she comes into the office to attend to "non time-sensitive initiatives."

    It's clear that Ivanka is a hard worker. About those who have judged for her being spoiled, she says, "I think that I used the prejudgment or condescension of others to motivate me to push myself harder to do more. It made me more defiantly ambitious, if you will. I expect a lot from myself but there is something extremely motivating about knowing that people are underestimating you."

    On the flip side, being born a Trump does have its privileges. "I never really wanted for much growing up. I didn't have to worry if I could afford to attend the college I was accepted to, or if I had a roof over my head. These are things we should not take lightly."

    Ivanka is not just beautiful; she is decidedly sexy—and not shy about it. Case in point, her story in Harper's Bazaar in which she appears on a construction site as a "Drill Sergeant" in Dior by Galliano heels, and a low cut Eres bathing suit. What's more—in the photo, she's pumping a drill. "I think you walk a thin line," says Ivanka. "The Harper's Bazaar [piece] was certainly the furthest I've ever crossed it in terms of what I would consider appropriate but I have to think about the fact that I'm young. There is a time and a place to do that type of stuff and have a little fun and laugh about the duality of the young girl/business individual. I'm much more self confident in my abilities and skills now so I don't think that stuff undermines me."

    To me, Ivanka demonstrates the qualities a post-feminist icon—feminine and powerful while visibly dominating a man's world. Not scared by the F word, she takes my observation as a compliment and remembers how hard it was for her mother's generation to break into "the club." She also laments how "80s powersuits with big shoulder pads" made women appear masculine. Today, Ivanka tells me that she would have no qualms about showing up to the office in a pink suit.

    When she's not busy being a Trump, I see glimmers of the softer, private Ivanka. In recalling a time when she felt true embarrassment, she shares an amusing story of her first day at boarding school when her wrap skirt fell off. "I walked half way across campus before realizing my skirt was half a mile back – that was awkward." Describing herself as "pretty mellow," she enjoys spending time with school pals she's known her whole life, watching cheesy 80s movies and eating mozzarella sticks. Of her personal convictions she's passionate, and speaks freely of her disdain for the Iraq war. "A great social injustice is that we are in Iraq – I spend a lot of my time thinking about that."

    When asked what Ivanka would change about herself, she confesses, "I'd probably take more time to reflect—it's easy to get consumed with everything that's going on." And then, without missing a beat, she was off to a board meeting.