Marc Jacobs is to become the first major fashion house to make a clothing line catering for women larger than size 14.

The label's president, Robert Duffy, suggested that the clothing line could be available in a year's time. Mr Duffy said: "We are in the very beginning stages of talking to a partner about plus sizes."

The announcement is expected to reignite the size debate, as many fashion designers have said it is harder to create clothes for larger women because they gain different amounts of weight on different areas of their body.

Karl Lagerfeld and Julien Macdonald have condemned moves by the fashion industry to use larger models as "absurd" and "a joke".