Supermodels edged out of the spotlight: Waif-like teenagers are replacing the Amazons of the Eighties among fashion's image-makers. Roger Tredre reports

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IN A WORLD dominated by youth, it makes sense to sort out your pension plans well in advance.

The supermodels, who have dominated fashion since the late Eighties, are on the way out, according to Women's Wear Daily, the US fashion trade newspaper.

The newspaper, which is considered the bible of the international fashion industry, makes explicit what photographers and stylists have been saying privately since last summer.

Names like Linda Evangelista and Naomi Campbell are being edged out by a new generation led by Kate Moss, a British teenager, and Lucie de la Falaise, an Anglo-French 19-year-old. Photographers prefer waif-like teenagers to the Amazonian breed of Eighties supermodels.

The fashion world's enthusiasm for super-young supermodels matches the youthful spirit of the spring collections. Not since Twiggy have fashion's image-makers displayed such delight in thin shoulders and skinny physiques.

Ms Evangelista, thought to be the highest-earning of the millionaire supermodels, has been replaced for the spring advertising campaigns of a number of leading international fashion houses.

Valentino and Alberta Ferretti have sidelined the 28-year-old, replacing her with Patricia Hartmann, a 21-year-old from Germany. Nadja Auermann, a 21-year- old also from Germany, is now the star model in Gianfranco Ferre's new campaign.

For his new advertising campaign, Gianni Versace has introduced three of the new generation of models, including Ms Moss, Shalom and Aya, although he has continued to use Ms Evangelista and Christy Turlington.

Industry sources note, however, that the supermodels are now willing to accept work from less prestigious companies, if the money is right. Kookai, a French high street chain with shops in Britain, paid Ms Evangelista and Cindy Crawford more than pounds 70,000 for a recent advertising campaign.

Ms Evangelista has also worked for Marks & Spencer, modelling for press publicity photographs.

The supermodels are also willing to work for magazines other than Vogue. Nigel Deering, publisher of Supermodel magazine, said: 'What they want to do is win street credibility. I understand they all want to appear in the Face.'

The other alternative for supermodels is to try their hand at acting or singing. Iman, for example, a supermodel of the Seventies, wants to be an actress.

(Photographs omitted)