TravelGuides – Insiders reveal truth of Julia Haart and ‘My Unorthodox Life’
On the buzzy Netflix actuality collection “My Unorthodox Life,” attractive, glamorous Julia Haart has fairly a narrative to inform. It’s a fairy story of how she fled her Orthodox Jewish group in Monsey, NY, to make her way in the fashion world: launching her personal personal shoe line, turning into artistic director on the luxurious trend model La Perla and, now, serving because the CEO of Elite World Group — a expertise company which incorporates Elite Model Management and represents the likes of Kendall Jenner, Iman and Helena Christensen.
But insiders say that she is portray an unpleasant, unfair image of life in her former group — as uneducated and so restrictive it left her suicidal.
“Julia’s hanging on to this word ‘fundamentalism’ — and sensationalism sells,” stated a former good friend of Haart’s from Monsey. “She says she was held captive, but that’s not true.”
The present follows Haart, 50, her 4 children and her second husband, Elite proprietor Silvio Scaglia, and consists of heaps of scenes of her railing towards her previous life in an “extreme” group” — a characterization that one other previous good friend, Roselyn Feinsod, disputes.
(Haart didn’t want to remark.)
Meanwhile, model insiders say Haart’s position within the trend world can be distorted on the collection.
“The show is so misleading. It is a house of mirrors,” stated an Elite supply. “When she came in, it was all about her self-promotion … She is really good at making it seem like she is an agent of change and she is good at pretending to be all about empowerment. But it’s all publicity for her.”
Julia Haart freely admits that she modified each her identify and her persona — greater than as soon as.
Born Julia Leibov, she moved as a baby from Russia to Texas and, ultimately, to Monsey, NY — a middle for Orthodox Jews. That’s the place Feinsod first met her, at yeshiva.
“Julia and her family were welcomed by the community,” Feinsod, 50, recalled. “We’ve been friends since elementary school.”
She disagreed with Haart’s claims on the present that girls have been oppressed in the neighborhood.
“Far from being fundamentalists, we have all been brought up in a very open Orthodox type of life: We watched TV and movies, we traveled, — and we were all educated.”
Feinsod, now a principal on the world accounting agency of Ernst & Young, recalled how Haart wished to suit into the group much more: “Julia wanted a more Jewish name and she changed it to Talia when she was in high school. We even made a naming ceremony for her.”
Haart advised the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in July: “What I would love to see is that [Orthodox] women have an opportunity to have a real education, can go to college, to not get married off at 19 on [an arranged match].”
Haart herself attended the Beth Jacob Jerusalem ladies seminary, described as a “Harvard of Jerusalem” and one of the highest seminaries on the planet, after highschool. She didn’t have any secular schooling.
She married Wharton grad Yosef Hendler — in an organized union — at age 19, shifting with him to Atlanta, Ga., earlier than returning to Monsey.
The couple raised their 4 kids — daughters Batsheva, now 28, and Miriam, 21, and sons Shlomo, 25, and Aron, 15. Far from uneducated, Miriam is now a pupil at Stanford University, whereas Shlomo studied regulation at Columbia.
“We did so many fun trips with the kids. Went biking. We spent the Fourth of July and Thanksgiving together,” Feinsod stated. “Far from this repressed fundamentalist person, Julia was a fun person.”
Haart has stated that she was depressing in Monsey — however has not publicly mentioned the monetary woes that befell her.
Between 1997 and 2017, in accordance with public data, Talia Hendler (as Haart was then identified) and her then husband racked up $425,510 in debt, accruing 13 tax liens and judgments.
Haart has been extra forthcoming in regards to the bodily and emotional pressure of her unhappiness. One previous good friend stated Haart advised her she wished to starve herself to demise as a result of she didn’t assume that anyone beloved her. Haart has revealed that she weighed simply 73 kilos on the day she left her Orthodox life.
But even how and when she left the group is murky. On her present, Haart dramatically recounts how she left Monsey the day after Batsheva, then 19, wed — fleeing with daughter Miriam in tow to arrange her personal shoe line.
“They were doing to her what they had done to me — trying to push her down and mold her into that flat person that they could disappear,” Haart advised the New York Times of Miriam.
The “day after” timeline has turn into a touchstone in Haart’s mythology. “Here’s the crazy thing — the way that Julia portrays it, she just left after Batsheva’s wedding and disappeared,” stated a Haart pal from Monsey, who insists no less than seven months handed earlier than Haart formally left, and that she nonetheless got here again for visits. “There was no immediate dramatic thing that happened.”
Haart’s previous Monsey buddies have been disheartened by her new narrative. “We were shocked as we read interview after interview … with Julia ‘taking a stand against fundamentalism’ and describing a fictitious transition from a life with no radio, television, newspapers, magazines or bars,’” Feinsod wrote in a LinkedIn essay.
“Between Julia’s eating issues and the financial strain, I think something snapped and she somehow blames religion for everything,” the unnamed Haart pal advised The Post.
Despite having no trend coaching and having beforehand labored as a spiritual-college trainer, in 2013 Haart launched her personal shoe line below her newly adopted identify of Julia Haart.
“She started her shoe line with this Orthodox financier who was [also] Ivanka Trump’s funder,” the pal stated.
Haart and Yosef divorced in 2019, however have remained buddies and he has appeared on the present.
Her shoe line took off and she collaborated with the posh trend home La Perla in 2016 — shortly being named the model’s artistic director. It was the last word outsider transfer and one which shocked the business.
A former La Perla worker advised The Post that Haart was “in over her head” when she began and stated that many individuals gossiped about her relationship with then-proprietor Silvio Scaglia. A Haart insider stated the 2 met after she began her job.
Scaglia, who has since modified his identify to Silvio Scaglia Haart, divorced his first spouse Monica Aschei in 2018, marrying Haart in 2019 — the identical yr he appointed her CEO of Elite, which he owns. (He bought La Perla in 2018.) The couple now stay in a $55 million condominium in Tribeca.
In 2019, Haart was caught up in a lawsuit between Women Management, which is owned by Elite World Group, and rival mannequin company Elite USA. The swimsuit claimed that Elite USA poached stars, together with Behati Prinsloo, from Women.
Elite USA, nevertheless, stated the fashions have been determined to flee Women, which they declare was racked by “gross mismanagement” — alleging that Scaglia had put his “dangerously incompetent” then-girlfriend, Haart, in cost, the submitting stated. The Haart insider stated that the state of affairs in query befell earlier than Haart arrived at Elite World Group. The case remains to be ongoing.
Meanwhile, in accordance with a former Elite worker, “Haart was obsessed with having a show and wanted to be the Jewish Kardashian.” The former worker added that it didn’t look good when the corporate was additionally “laying [people] off during the pandemic.”
The Haart insider stated that extra of her enterprise backstory will likely be revealed in her memoir “Brazen,” to be revealed by Penguin in March 2022.
Haart’s former Monsey good friend stated that she was “in awe” of the designer when she was youthful however now could be simply confused.
“I last saw Julia at Yosef’s engagement party, I had not seen her for years,” the previous good friend recalled. “She known as me within the automobile on the best way residence and stated, ‘You don’t have to be in the neighborhood anymore, you don’t have to be in a field.’ I stated, ‘What are you talking about? I went to college, I worked!’
“I do believe that she believes her own hype,” stated the previous good friend. “She has to do everything to perfection, there’s something ingrained in her. She had to be the best Jew until she left the community.”
Additional reporting by Kirsten Fleming
TravelGuides – Insiders reveal truth of Julia Haart and ‘My Unorthodox Life’