Heidi Klum Reacts to Daughter Leni Going to College and Reflects on Ups and Downs of Modeling (Exclusive)

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Hedi Klum and Daughter Leni
Jacopo M. Raule/Getty Images for Luisaviaroma

Heidi Klum’s daughter is following in her footsteps. The proud mom recently announced that her 18-year-old daughter is making the move to New York City to further her education and career in fashion.  

“I am [so proud].You know, she has her head screwed on right,” Klum, 49, tells ET. “Right now, college is on top of the list. It’s not modeling and she's really excited for that next chapter in her life.” 

Leni’s next chapter means that she will be moving away from home. And although the America's Got Talent judge will still have her other three children with her, having her oldest leave the house is bittersweet. 

“Unfortunately, she is moving away from home,” Klum says about her daughter from a previous relationship.

Leni Klum Heidi Klum
Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images for Luisaviaroma

“Which is obviously sad but at the same time that she's got enough to go for it. She's moving to New York. I started in New York, so she knows New York inside and out because we shot Project Runway there for so many years,” she notes. 

Klum adds, “So, she knows it well because I always move my family to New York when we were still filming. So, I think she's going to have a good time, but my heart will be sad.” 

Klum is also mother to Henry, 16, Johan, 15, and Lola, 12, whom she shares with ex-husband Seal. 

When it comes to supporting her daughter’s Big Apple dreams, it's not only because the city is like a second home, but because she knows exactly what it takes to make it in the industry. 

“I think any industry has positive and negative sides,” she tells ET.  

“This industry, we see the traveling. If you travel too much, it's hard to travel on your own a lot.  I remember my heydays when I was not filming in one spot, like when I was young, I was with two kids with all the stickers from every place I went. And you were alone all the time," she says. "You meet some strange people here and there. But you meet strange people in other jobs too. So, I feel like, you know, everyone learns their lesson as they live and get older and get more experience. You get only experience with learning.” 

Outside of her home, Klum has been giving a lesson in fashion alongside her longtime friend and co-host, Tim Gunn, on Making the Cut. In the upcoming third season, Klum is excited for viewers to see the pieces from the very beginning -- showing the complete creative process behind the garments.  

“We're all about fashion, great fashion,” she says.

“You get to see how it's done. Most people, they just go in the store or they order something online and there it is," she adds. "You don't know the journey that this garment lived through in order to get to your doorstep. From the thought, to the drawing, to the fabric, to the, you know, making it. And then you all of a sudden are wearing it. I love that people can see the process of that. I also always found that interesting. ... Now finally people can actually buy what they've just fallen in love with on TV.” 

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