Modeling: Then and Now

The new and the old about the modeling world today


History has shown over the ages that the fashion industry changes about every twenty years. In some cases, it has not been a radical change, but instead, a new version of what went before. However, this time around it is difficult to grasp what some designers were thinking or “feeling” when they contemplated their collection. Case in point, one revered designer covered his runway in mud during Paris Fashion Week. Some in the audience said it was an experiment gone very wrong. Another wag claimed it was the designer’s vision of getting back to earth, which he did, literally.

Another marked trend is the return of the super model from another era. Who would ever have thought this would happen? Years ago, when people asked what the lifespan of a model’s career was, the answer was five years. This is not necessarily so anymore. The oldest working supermodel is Carmen Dell’Orifice, who did a shoot a few months ago. Carmen was one of the youngest models to appear on the cover of Vogue in October 1947 at the age of 16. Apart from a twenty-year retirement period, she has been at the top of her profession. She was always absolutely stunning, but never more so than she is today with her 5’11 willowy frame and glistening silver hair. Her fine bone structure and fluid movements are breathtaking.

There were several Ooh Là Là moments when France’s former First Lady Carla Bruni, who is also an Italian actress and model, walked the runway with 52-year-old Naomi Campbell. They certainly proved age can be just a number if you take care of your looks and talent.

It is also interesting to note age and experience do not diminish the anxiety or joy of appearing on the runways of the world for these seasoned professionals. Beautiful Beverly Johnson, aged 69, returned to New York for Spring/Summer 2022 Fashion Week. Beverly, who is the grandmother of four, drew delighted applause. Ever the professional, she brushed up on her walk and technique ahead of time and her stunning figure proved she is an advocate for balanced nutrition. She described the whole experience as “magical.” Nothing blasé about Beverly!


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