UPDATE: Dutch model Ananda Marchildon won her case against Elite modelling agency Wednesday. “Elite had no right to demand Marchildon [who is 5'11”]reach a hip size of 90 centimetres (35.4 inches),” the Dutch court ruled.
Talk about a bum deal.
After being named Holland’s Next Top Model in 2008, Ananda Marchildon was allegedly denied €75,000 ($98,500) in assignments because she was too big for a runway model’s britches.
The modelling agency Elite allegedly said she had “a nice face but a fat ass” and gave her a payout of €10,000 ($13,000), the Daily Beast reports.
In hindsight, Elite may regret the decision. On Wednesday, Ms. Marchildon will find out in a Dutch court whether she has won a lawsuit against the modelling agency that denied her the work promised on the show.
The Dutch beauty reportedly had all of two centimetres (three quarters of an inch) of excess junk in the trunk. Allegedly, she was told she would look bottom heavy on runways and wouldn’t squeeze into designers’ clothes.
Ms. Marchildon has invited the public to be the judge (just in time for her day in court). In a cheeky photo shoot with underwear maker Sloggi, her tush looks pert and shapely, though not nearly as ripe as Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian’s star posteriors.
Such ample pears have yet to gain heft on the runway. But surely an intrepid designer could tailor garments to flatter Ms. Marchildon’s more modest assets.
Maartje van Geel, marketing manager of the Sloggi brand for the Triumph Company, said the company jumped at the chance to work with Ms. Marchildon after learning about her case on a Dutch talk show. “We think Ananda is a beautiful woman with a butt that most Dutch women would dream of having.”
Ms. Marchildon is hardly the first thinner-than-average woman to be denied modelling work.
In 2009, after a multiyear contract with Ralph Lauren, Filippa Hamilton received a letter from the company informing her of dismissal because of her “inability to meet the obligations under her contract with us.”
Ralph Lauren allegedly told Ms. Hamilton’s agency that she no longer fit into the sample clothes. But Ms. Hamilton told NBC News that her size – 5 feet 10 and 120 pounds – had not changed.
Models are expected to be thinner than ever, Kate White, editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, told reporters at the time. “It really starts with the sample clothes. They’ve downsized. They’re now like a 2 or a 4.”
Things won’t change unless women start protesting against unrealistic bodies portrayed in fashion media, she said. “Women have to complain and back it up with their pocketbooks.”
But maybe it’s time for those who dictate fashion to get off their butts and starting promoting healthier images of women.
In the search for thin models, is the fashion industry going too far?