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Brief Published: 6 Sep 2011

CFDA’s Model Age Restriction Guidelines


The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) has issued stricter guidelines for its members when employing models for shows and campaigns ahead of New York Fashion Week, which starts on Wednesday September 8 2011.

The CFDA has advised that all designers request a valid form of ID before using a model to ensure they are over 16. CFDA member and designer Dian Von Furstenburg supports the recommendation after using American model Hailey Clauson in her Autumn/Winter 2011-12 runway show, only to find out afterwards the model was 15 and below the recommended age limit for catwalk models. Von Furstenburg later apologised for the mistake.

Clauson was recently part of a publicised legal battle after her parents sued a clothing manufacturer and photographer for using her picture on a printed T-shirt. Produced by independent fashion label Blood is the New Black and stocked by Urban Outfitters, Clauson’s parents took legal action after claiming the image was “salacious” and used without consent.

The photograph sees the model straddling a motorbike in leather shorts and was part of a shoot by photographer Jason Lee Parry. The image was posted by numerous fashion blogs before being used for the T-shirts. Clauson’s agent Next Model Management fully supports the legal action taken.

The CFDA’s latest guidelines are the most recent step in preventing under-age models from walking the catwalk.