Condé Nast International, which is responsible for all 19 international editions of Vogue, released a statement this morning that's potentially pretty ground-breaking: from the June issues forward, no edition of Vogue will work with any model under the age of 16. This won't mean much of a change in the pages of American Vogue, which tends to work with slightly older, more established models, but for Vogue Paris, Vogue Japan, and particularly, Vogue Italia — regarded as prestigious launching pads for new face models, some of whom are as young as 13 or 14 — it is kind of a game-changer. (For context, see our nifty lineup of historical and recent Vogue covers above — each of which features a model under 16. From left: Amy Lemons, Vogue Italia, age 14. Brooke Shields, American Vogue, age 14. Daphne Groeneveld, Vogue Paris, age 15. Carmen Dell'Orefice, American Vogue, age 15.) Vogue Italia has a 14-year-old — Brazilian model Thairine García — on its April cover, which is still on newsstands. And then there are all the other, lesser-known Vogues that nonetheless sometimes book very young models: the Vogue Brazils, Vogue Koreas, Vogue Australias, and Vogue Latin Americas of this world. They'll have to stop that right quick. Jonathan Newhouse, the head of Condé Nast International, said in a statement:
"Vogue editors around the world want the magazines to reflect their commitment to the health of the models who appear on the pages and the well-being of their readers."
Every editor of Vogue also agreed to the following six-point pact:
1. We will not knowingly work with models under the age of 16 or who appear to have an eating disorder. We will work with models who, in our view, are healthy and help to promote a healthy body image.
2. We will ask agents not to knowingly send us underage girls and casting directors to check IDs when casting shoots, shows and campaigns.
3. We will help to structure mentoring programs where more mature models are able to give advice and guidance to younger girls, and we will help to raise industry-wide awareness through education, as has been integral to the Council of Fashion Designers of America Health Initiative.
4. We will encourage producers to create healthy backstage working conditions, including healthy food options and a respect for privacy. We will encourage casting agents not to keep models unreasonably late.
5. We encourage designers to consider the consequences of unrealistically small sample sizes of their clothing, which limits the range of women who can be photographed in their clothes, and encourages the use of extremely thin models.
6. We will be ambassadors for the message of healthy body image.
That actually seems fairly comprehensive and eminently reasonable. The modeling industry's reliance on child labor has been linked to everything from financial exploitation of models, to interrupted or abandoned educations, to eating disorders that stem from the pressure to maintain the measurements of girlhood well past puberty. Not to mention to setting up an unrealistic ideal for the adult women who are the main consumers of fashion's imagery. We'll see if they stick to it. [NYTimes]
- Miuccia Prada is allegedly being a "control freak" about the Met Costume Institute ball, requiring approval of everything from the beverage sponsor (Italian prosecco, thanks) to the location of the after-party. Most of all, Prada is interested in limiting the number of people who will wear its clothes on the big night. [Alexa]
- In other Met Ball gossip, Kate Upton reportedly snagged an invite to the 'do the old-fashioned way — by opening her checkbook. One $25,000 donation to the Met later, she'll be sitting at Michael Kors' table. [P6]
- Model Elza Luijendijk says her identical twin sister, who also models, could well have landed this season's Prada exclusive instead of her: "It was all very secretive. We met in a hotel. My mother agency called me and said the casting director of Prada wanted to meet me and my sister, but she couldn't miss school because she had a test that day." When she was confirmed for the exclusive, Luijendijk says she couldn't even tell her family. [WWD]
- Remember when Oprah gave away all those cars? One audience member, a Chicago-based makeup artist, sold hers and used the proceeds to launch herself as a cosmetics entrepreneur. Big Girl Cosmetics is now stocked by Macy's. [Allure]
- Bloomingdale's 59th Street flagship has resolved its union contract dispute. The store's unionized workers will get a raise of $3.05 per hour, doled out progressively over the course of the five-year contract, and for the first time ever, all employees will be able to choose one weekend per month to have off work and which late nights they want to work. Irregular scheduling has long been a complaint of retail workers. [WWD]
- Speaking of the hellish working lives of retail drones, Fashionista has a new anonymous columnist who works at a high-end department store. She's pretty entertaining, and more than anything she just wants you to please stop shopping and leave her store when the day ends and the doors lock and the music gets turned off, mmkay? [Fashionista]
- Toms Shoes has hired the designer Tracy Feith — whose label went out of business 2010, despite earning the approval of Michelle Obama and other high-profile people — to design Toms+, a new higher-end brand of Toms. They'll be priced at $104-$140, and like regular Toms, one pair will be donated to needy folks overseas for every pair sold. [WWD]
- Donna Karan failed draping as a fashion student. How is that even possible? [The Cut]
- Chinese company YGM Trading has indeed bought the bankrupt U.K. heritage brand Aquascutum. YGM already owns Guy Laroche. [WWD]
- Kenneth Cole lost slightly less money during the quarter just ended than it did during the same period one year ago: $1.9 million, versus $17.2 million. Revenues were still slightly down, 0.5%, and same-store sales fell 2%. [WWD]
- Hermès says its sales rose by 21.9% during the first quarter. [WWD]
- And Elizabeth Arden reported a $2 million profit for the quarter. [WWD]
- American Eagle Outfitters hasn't yet reported its first quarter results, but says preliminary figures indicate net sales rose by 18% year-on-year, to $719 million. So the company raised its guidance. [WWD]