Heidi Klum's 16-year-old daughter Leni is ready to follow in her supermodel mother's footsteps. Although the teen, whom Klum shares with ex-husband Seal, has lived much of her life out of the spotlight, she has a growing interest in modeling, something that Klum says she is ready to let her daughter explore.
Klum opened up about her daughter’s interest during a Thursday appearance on PEOPLE episode (the TV show!). The former Victoria's Secret Angel – who is also mom to sons Henry, 15, Johan, 14, and daughter Lou, 11 – said that Leni had received numerous modeling opportunities throughout the years. However, she always turned them down to protect her daughter’s privacy. However, that has begun to change as Leni grows older, with Klum stating that "she's old enough now." The mom of four explained that she "always thought" her daughter was "too young" to enter into the fashion industry and she had declined past offers because she "decided to keep the children out of the public eye." But now that Leni is 16 and driving a car, Klum has had a shift in mindset, stating that "I figured if you can do that, you can also model now if this is what you wish to do."
Leni, however, is following in her mother's footsteps in more ways than just one. Speaking to the outlet, Klum also revealed that her daughter has a budding interest in TV and enjoys spending time on the set of Germany's Next Top Model, the America's Next Top Model spin-off Klum has been hosting since 2006. Klum said that her daughter "comes [on set] and looks and learns not just what I do but also what all the different people are doing on a TV set." Noting that her daughter "does want to do what I do," she credited Leni's curiosity to her age, explaining, "when you're that age you're still trying to figure out who you are, what you want to be and kind of see for the first time what are all these different jobs to make a TV show happen."
"Who knows, maybe in five years when I'm not hosting the show anymore, maybe it's going to be like Germany's Next Top Model by Leni Klum instead of Heidi Klum. Who knows," she teased. "She's kind of playing with this idea."
Whatever career route Leni chooses, Klum will support her, though she is making sure that she doesn't put pressure on her daughter to pursue a career in the fashion industry. Klum acknowledged that while the "industry is great and I love it and I've been in it for over 20 years," it involves "a lot of traveling," and you "have to be a strong person, especially as a woman you have to be very strong." Regardless, she said that "as a mother, [I want my] child to do what she wants to do."