since starting bunny training, this once-shy miss from the garden state is blooming with new-found poise
When you meet Helena Antonaccio for the first time, she has a charmingly modest habit of lowering her eyelashes -- a persistent holdover from her bashful teens. "I was always a shy type," she admits, "but since becoming a Bunny, I've learned to be more outgoing. Looking back on it, though, I don't know how I ever got up the courage even to apply for the job." Our New Jersey miss had gone to New York to try out for a wig-modeling assignment. "I'd done some face modeling," she says, "so I had a little confidence in myself. But when I didn't get picked for the wig layout, I was really depressed. Not ready to go home and admit defeat, I just started walking around -- and I found myself in front of The Playboy Club. I had often wondered what it was like, so I went in and, on an impulse, asked the Door Bunny what it took to qualify. She directed me to the Bunny Mother, who interviewed me, had me try on a costume, and then -- just like that -- told me I was accepted for training. So instead of being a failure, I went home with an exciting new career. My folks were as happy as I was. And now to be a Playmate, too -- I'm sure glad I didn't get that wig-modeling job." So are we.
Photography by Pompeo Posar