An increasingly strict 16-year age limit has been placed on runway shows and it’s even gotten to the point that designers and casting directors are being told to card models to verify their age.
Interestingly, Weir would almost always refer to the models as “kids” or “babies.” Out of all the models I witnessed over the course of an hour only one said she was under 16. When the extremely young-looking girl told us she was only 15, Weir quickly asked, “Where’s your mom?” “She’s back there!” the model replied. Weir quickly wrote “She’s 15″ on her scorecard and that was that. However, things were not always this way.
One model, now 19, approached the table, whom Weir had worked with six years prior. He told me, “Back before age was such a scandalous issue, she and I worked together when she was 13, but she was never without her father ever, so if I wanted to book her, we had to fly dad and book two hotel rooms…I’ve always felt okay to do it if a parent was coming and the parent’s cool with it and I’m paying for the parent to be there with the kid, then I’m fine with it, but now…”
Another model approaches. “Allison was 15, which is so politically incorrect now,” he says sarcastically. “True,” she responds, “But, I think they all just lie about their age now. I think they’re all still 14!” Hmm…
Click through for more pictures from the casting!
**All photos by TK Stuart-Deely