IF WE LEARNED anything about our strengths this year, it's that we know how to make a celebration special. In 2014 for the 50th anniversary issue, SI Swimsuit broke out the big guns with a whopping 12 rookies, and while it was probably the first time you'd heard of some of the girls, it would hardly be the last you'd hear from any of them. We're shimmying on into 2015 with a look back at some of our star first-timers and how they spent their rookie year.

Let's start with the one who made her mark early with a cover, Lily AldridgeLast week, Lily gave us 2014 in her words:

My holy s*** moment: I mean...getting the SI cover! [Ed note: We swear we prompted for something other than the cover, and yet...]

My favorite red carpet look: Juan Carlos Obando for the Vanity Fair Oscars Party was fun and glamorous

Best thing I ate: Joe's Pizza

Best movie I saw: Interstellar

Best book I read: The Alchemist — I re-read it every year

Favorite new musical artist: Hozier

The funniest thing daughter Dixie, age 2, said: "What's the big idea?!"

Something I crossed off my bucket list: Seeing Christ the Redeemer in the hills of Rio via helicopter; it was truly incredible!

My New Year's resolution: I don't make resolutions because I can never keep them, haha

As for the rest of her 2014...
...Lily bowled us over with her dexterity on the Cook Islands.
James Macari/SI

Lily Aldridge's Hottest Outtakes Ever

Fun and sexy outtakes from Cover Model Lily Aldridge's SI Swimsuit 2014 shoot in the Cook Islands

Once she landed the cover...

SI Now: SI swimsuit models surprised by 2014 cover reveal
On Friday's SI Now, SI Swimsuit models Chrissy Teigen, Nina Agdal and Lily Aldridge react to being on the cover of the 50th anniversary Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover.
...the rookie did a veteran's job of selling it.

She received style props from every which way...

...from Modelinia...


WOW!!!! Thank you @Modelinia!!! Such an amazing way to end this incredible year!!! Thank you to everyone who Voted!! 

Una foto publicada por Lily Aldridge (@lilyaldridge) el

...to Harper's Bazaar...

...to US Weekly.

She chilled with one of her BFFs Taylor Swift on one of the biggest nights of the singer's career.


@Target @TaylorSwift Takeover!!!!!!

A video posted by Lily Aldridge (@lilyaldridge) on

She got to wear Michael Kors...


...and Tory Burch...

Cindy Ord/Getty Images

...and Prabal Gurung...

Craig Barritt/Getty Images

...and Thakoon (at a party she hosted, thankyouverymuch)...


...and a few methodically-placed panels of Calvin Klein.

Michael Loccisano/WireImage

As she is wont to do every year, Lily slipped into a few somethings more comfortable, like this...

Antonio de Moraes Barros Filho/WireImage

...and this...

Karwai Tang/WireImage

...and oh, hey, also, this.

Karwai Tang/WireImage

She landed six or so big time covers — but then again, who among us haven't?

She appeared in a handful of modest videos...

Swim Daily, Lily Aldridge Q&A

Swim Daily caught up with model Lily Aldridge and asked her what is her most embarrassing runway story, what song she would listen to on loop and which is her favorite SI Swimsuit cover

Lily's year was so massive, in fact, her mom even got in on the action.

Nadav Kander for New York Magazine

Yes, Lily Aldridge has had quite a year. But allow us to take you back to our favorite Lily moment of 2014, will you?

Swim Daily, Lily Aldridge Intimates
Get close and personal with SI Swimsuit super-model Lily Aldridge.