Sixties fashion queen Twiggy held court at the Bryant Park Hotel on Tuesday, debuting her new fashion line for HSN. The former model, who is widely credited with popularizing the waif look, talked to the Huffington Post about the current size of runway girls.
"I was a very, very skinny model in the '60s, but naturally...that's what I looked like." Twiggy explained. "I ate. I always said I ate, and I looked like my dad who was very skinny, so I think that's genetic. I think most models fall into that category: if you are 17 years old and you are 5-foot-11, the chances are you're going to be thin. But we do know that there are girls pushed to not eating and to losing weight and that is not good because you have tragedies with girls being ill or even worse."
"[Such actions] have to come from the industry because if the designers push for very skinny girls, the agencies make the girls try to be too thin. And there's no doubt that there are some models who are too thin."
And what about the models who are arguably too young?
"Well it's hard for me because I was 16 when I was discovered, but I had a chaperone," Twiggy said. "So I think 16 should be the youngest and [the modeling should be] done on school holidays...although I have to say I left school."
Twiggy believes that, overall, people are becoming much more aware of issues like size and age in the fashion industry. And she maintains that modeling is still a great career for a young girl, if she has the talent:
"Even if it's not a long term career, in two or three years you can make enough money to set yourself up and go into another profession, so I encourage it if they want to do it."
And what about Twiggy's new profession as fashion designer? Her collection is set to hit HSN on April 3. Full of colorful patterns, ruffles, striped trousers and even a Union Jack tote bag, the line is perfect for hip but slightly older women.
"I've reached the ripe old age of sixty," Twiggy mused. "Now I love nice fabrics, good cut and stylishness, but not in a fashion victim way. I think sometimes people try too hard."
Her favorite items from the collection are the satin sneakers, which come with velvet shoe laces.
"I think they're sensational!" she gushed.