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Model matters -- French teen Audrey Marnay is a fashionable favorite

French model Audrey Marnay decided to start modeling when she was 14  
October 23, 1998
Web posted at: 5:46 p.m. EDT (2146 GMT)

From Style Correspondent Elsa Klensch

PARIS (CNN) -- Fresh-faced, freckled and French -- three features that make Audrey Marnay, 18, one of modeling's new sensations.

Last season, she did 60 shows in just 24 days, and her face has smiled, seduced and smoldered from the pages of major fashion magazines.

Marnay says she got the idea to be a model when she was 14 years old. But her parents weren't happy about letting their only child into the world of modeling.

"They let me go to the agency because they thought I'd never get any jobs, and they said, 'Go ahead my girl, you'll see, it's not gonna work,'" Marnay said.

Marnay did find work but says her parents are not pleased she has left school to pursue it.

Marnay and Gaultier
Marnay models in Jean Paul Gaultier's 1999 spring/summer collection show  

"You are not going to have any school; you are not going to have any diplomas; and it's not going to stay forever this way," she said her parents have told her.

"I said, 'So, we'll see, and maybe if it's one year, I don't care.' I just want to try something else, like discover, 'cause I am really into discovering people."

The gamble is paying off for Marnay, who has apartments in both Paris and New York and works constantly day after day.

She said she divides her time between magazine editorials and designer runways.

"I'm doing Vogue, American Vogue, French Vogue, German Vogue, British Vogue, Italian Vogue and W," Marnay said. "I did once a beautiful story about a mermaid."

"She has the unique ability to show clothes and has a good sense of fashions," said Vogue bookings editor Trudi Tapscott. "And I think that's what makes editors and photographers so excited."

Marnay said traveling and meeting new people is the best part of modeling.

"I love it, and I want to learn as well every language of the world," she said. "In school I've learned German, and in the business I've learned English, and I am starting to get Italian better and better.

"Now I don't know why, but I am starting a bit of Spanish. So it's like one, two, three, four, five with my languages. It's already a lot."

The teen model said she's fascinated with India and hopes to vacation there. She loves the cuisine and often eats with friends at Indian restaurants in New York.

She says weight is not a problem, and she doesn't really exercise.

"Exercise? No. I'm not very sportíf. My exercise is eating biscuits in front of the television."

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