Lorraine Courtney: Toddler heels, baby scents. . . when did just letting children be children fall out of vogue?
'VOGUE' has just announced that it is to launch 'Miss Vogue', a UK edition that will join its American counterpart, 'Teen Vogue', and the Italian 'Vogue Bambini' in Conde Nast's international line-up. Editor Alexandra Shulman said: "We are really excited at the opportunity to create a slightly different 'Vogue' for this readership. I wanted to produce something that would have bespoke content for a younger audience."
The launch has stirred excitement in the fashion industry, but naturally, news of this 124-page glossy has been received with caution by campaigners for body image issues. The British edition of the iconic fashion publication has a strict policy that states it will not use models under the age of 16 on its pages, though whether or not this policy will also be attributed to the new magazine is unknown.
Once upon a time, kids were kids. They wore Startrite shoes and clothes that would withstand the rough and tumble of the sandpit. Now, fashion-fixated five-year-olds have their role model in Suri Cruise with her painted nails, faux-fur jackets and high heels. It's claimed Suri has a wardrobe that's worth more than $3m (€2.2m) that includes designer handbags and one-off commissions. And she has been voted the most influential celebrity child in the world. She has also fuelled a whole trend for high-heeled shoes, with versions for girls as young as three being sold in GapKids, Asda and Next.