Saturday, September 09, 2006

Madrid bans low-fat models

Organizers of Madrid Fashion Week are boldly stepping where no fashion officials have gone before, by banning from their catwalks models considered too skinny. A third of the models who had been booked to appear at the Pasarela Cibeles event have been rejected on the grounds that their body mass index, a measure of weight in relation to height, is too low. Organizers took the unprecedented step after coming under fire in the past for allegedly promoting eating disorders among young Spanish women. Australian designer Leesa Fogarty this week took a similar stand, sending out real women instead of models to promote her MaraJoara swimwear brand at Australian Fashion Week.

"Someone said this week is anorexia week on the runway," she told the Herald Sun newspaper. "You need to set real examples and what a woman should look like." I don't know about you, but these women don't look fat to me. Nonetheless, the show drew a mixed response, with some applauding Fogarty and others saying the amateur catwalkers looked clumsy. At any rate, I wouldn't expect top designers to follow this trend any time soon. As it stands, they don't even manufacture clothes for women bigger than a US size 8, let alone have models that big.

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