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92-Year-Old Woman Is the World’s Oldest Working Model

Carmen Dell’Orefice is known as the oldest working model in the fashion industry. She was discovered on a bus when she was only 13 years old, and she is still working today, at age 92.

Carmen Dell’Orefice’s first contact with the fashion world was a flop. After being approached by the wife of photographer Herman Landschoff while riding a bus to ballet class when she was only 13 years old, Dell’Orefice saw her test photos go nowhere fast. But she was destined for greatness, and just two years later, at age 15, she graced the cover of Vogue Magazine for the very first time, after becoming a favorite model of photographer Erwin Blumenfeld. Last year, at age 92, Carmen Dell’Orefice was featured on the cover of Vogue Czechoslovakia, this time as the oldest working model in the world.

Carmen Dell’Orefice’s first contact with the fashion world was a flop. After being approached by the wife of photographer Herman Landschoff while riding a bus to ballet class when she was only 13 years old, Dell’Orefice saw her test photos go nowhere fast. But she was destined for greatness, and just two years later, at age 15, she graced the cover of Vogue Magazine for the very first time, after becoming a favorite model of photographer Erwin Blumenfeld. Last year, at age 92, Carmen Dell’Orefice was featured on the cover of Vogue Czechoslovakia, this time as the oldest working model in the world.

Growing up in New York with her mother, Dell’Orefice didn’t have an easy chldhood. She had her amily struggled financially, and she recalls being so malnourished that photographers had to pin back dresses and stuff the curves with tissue. They didn’t even have a telephone in the house, so Vogue had to sen runners to summon her for shoots. Her modeling work was hardly enough to support the family so she and her mother also worked as seamstresses to make ends meet.

Her personal life wasn’t aa fairytale either. She married Bill Miles in the early 1950s, a man who exploited her career by picking up his wife’s modeling agency checks, allowing her only $50 allowance from her earnings. They divorced and Carmen married photographer Richard Heimann, who left her after she decided to retire from modeling in 1958.

A precarious financial situation convinced Carmen Dell’Orefice to return to modeling in 1978, and in just a few years’ time, she was already gracing the covers of fashion magazines again. She has been working hard ever since, appearing in magazines, advertising campaigns and even climbing the catwalk for various fashion brands. She has been doing it all, and despite being well into her pension years, she shows no sign of sstopping.

“Men and women should care for themselves and love themselves. One of the secrets to maintaining beauty is doing what you do for a baby, nurturing and feeding the baby with love,” the 92-year-old said in a recent interview. “That’s what we should do with ourselves: nurture ourselves, love ourselves, and give that kind of energy to ourselves.”

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