Models Direct review whether it is ever really too late to model on the catwalk after catching up with the world’s oldest supermodel Carmern Dell’Orefice…
With many assuming that a model’s career is short lived, restricted to their teens and early twenties, we know this is simply untrue – some models are lucky enough to have a timeless look that guarantees them work year after year.
One such lady is the incredibly chic mature model Carmen Dell’Orefice. Now 81-years-old she has been steadily employed as a model since she was 13 and first came into the public eye in 1946 when she covered Vogue. This was the first of a total of six appearances on the famous magazine’s front cover to date and she is still gracing Paris’s couture catwalks 66 years later. You may also recognise her from campaigns for Rolex and various cosmetic companies, including Chanel, and she is still commanding the runway now – take a look at her in action in the video below….
Dell’Orefice is without doubt an elegant woman who still turns heads and captivates audiences and photographers with ease but she is surprisingly down to earth. When recently questioned by reporter Pip Cummings on her life as the world’s oldest supermodel it seems time may be finally catching up with her. Her knees are a source of such “searing discomfort” that she is now moving with some difficulty and also wears hearing aids – “These are about three months old on me and both batteries are f…ing dead,” she says, with some residual Queens sassiness. She also has no qualms about cosmetic surgery -“I fix everything I possibly can”.
It doesn’t look like she will be giving up modelling any time soon with her motivation to keep modelling remaining simple: she likes what she does and appreciates the collegiality. “It brings me in touch, as a single person, living on my own.”
Her resilience can partly be attributed to her early years as a dancer, and to modelling, each of which taught her to be “too good at overlooking discomfort – a dangerous thing”.
“I’m just fascinated, all the band-aids I’ve had to use in my life work. I should have been dead long ago, starting from the feet up and the ovaries and a hysterectomy …”, she says, referring to her long list of injuries and operations over the years.
This woman seems unstoppable and is soon to undergo surgery for simultaneous knee implants, “so that I can toe dance again, you see … We’re living so long – I’m planning over 100. And to live as pain-free as possible physically and as whole as possible.” It doesn’t look like she has any plans for retirement!
Models Direct thinks she is doing a brilliant job. What do you think of mature models like Carmen Dell’Orefice and Valerie Pain?