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New York Fashion Week: Marc Jacobs hires underage models for catwalk show

Marc Jacobs latest: Enters underage models debate by hiring two 14 year-olds to walk in his fall/winter 2012 show, which is against industry guidelines.

Story BY Alicia Waite |

Ondira Hardin and Thairina Garcia: two 14-year-old models who walked in the Marc Jacobs autumn/winter 2012 show. Photo: Vladimir Potop

Pre-New York Fashion Week, chairman of the CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America), Diane von Furstenberg, released an exhaustive list of guidelines aimed at keeping models fit. Supplying healthy meals on fittings, professional help for those struggling with eating disorders and checking IDs to ensure models are over 16 pre-shows were just some of the items on the modelling check list. But it seems this last one has already been forgotten. Less than two weeks after the list was released, top designer Marc Jacobs has sent two underage models down his autumn/winter 2012 catwalk on Monday, February 13. Brazilian model Thairina Garcia and star of the winter 2011 Prada campaign, Ondira Hardin, both took to the catwalk despite the fact that they are both, reportedly, 14 years-old. Far from being apologetic, Jacobs has defended his choice of models, insisting that the CFDA’s Health Initiative cannot influence his shows: “I do the show the way I think it should be and not the way somebody tells me it should be,” he told the New York Times. “If their parents are willing to let them do a show, I don’t see any reason that it should be me who tells them that they can’t,” he continued. “There are children actors and children models for catalogues and stuff, so I guess if a parent thinks it’s ok and a kid wants to do it, it’s fine.” The comments are the latest in a debate that began when a group of female MPs, led by Liberal Democrat MP Jo Swinson, announced that they wanted young models to have similar rights to child actors and actresses, namely chaperones to take them to shoots and shows. You can blog fashion Haute couture runway shows from fashion designers like Elie Saab, Marc Jacobs, Prabal Gurung, Donna Karan, Calvin Klein, Oscar de La Renta by independent fashion eMagazines. Fashion journalism of these fashion events are well documented now because of the Online Live shows, Fashion Magazines, TV coverage and lots and lots of Independent fashion bloggers willing to share their personal experiences. So stay tuned in February 2012 to not only New York Fashion Week but also Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week as well as Milan Fashion Week, these are the real Big ones. Blogs, blogs, blogs are coming to the likes of Christian Dior, Karl Lagerfeld for CHANEL, Marc Jacobs, Tom Ford and so many more – – Catch up with more of the New York Fashion Week action.

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