FASHION

40 and Fabulous: Model Moments

In celebration of W’s 40th anniversary, a look back at some of the striking beauties who have graced our pages.


Photographer: Tim Walker
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Photographer: Tim Walker

The six-foot-one beauty from St. Louis credits ballet training for her successful modeling career, which began when Arthur Elgort photographed her doing splits at age 14.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

In a veritable rags-to-riches story, Vodianova went from selling fruit on the street in the former U.S.S.R. to—well, this.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Dubbed Le Freak by the media for her shaved eyebrows and flame-color hair, the Mancunian’s eccentric look turned her into a modeling star and a muse to such designers as Karl Lagerfeld and Stefano Pilati (above).

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The Danish dish, who starred in arguably the sexiest music video ever made (Chris Isaak’s 1989 “Wicked Game”), shows off her trademark smolder.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The tawny-skinned Brazilian with the hourglass figure is the highest-paid model in the world.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Famous for her bikini-clad Sports Illustrated spreads in the seventies, Tiegs proved she was still a babe when Juergen Teller shot her in a bathing suit for us three decades later.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

We cast the Puerto Rican newcomer as Prince for our 2011 music issue. A year later, we crowned her (along with Karlie Kloss) “the new face of fashion.”

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The Lone Star State stunner with classic looks became one of the 10 top-earning supermodels by the time she turned 18, in 1995.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Drawn to modeling for its theatrical aspects, the girl with the feline eyes rose to the top of the game in the mid-nineties.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The golden goddess from Gonzales, Texas, knew how to turn heads—including Mick Jagger’s.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The granddaughter of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire had both the looks and the lineage to become a top model.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Everyone’s favorite English waif popularized the heroin-chic look and spawned a global debate on eating disorders before becoming a fashion icon.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Her chiseled features landed the California native many a lucrative contract, but Mrs. Ed Burns is also a health crusader and humanitarian.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Spotted at a disco in Düsseldorf, the Bardot look- alike shot to fame when she starred, at the age of 19, in a Guess? campaign—a role she recently reprised for the company’s 30th anniversary.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The Polish-born Canadian tomboy was on the verge of giving up modeling to attend art school when she was chosen by Steven Meisel for Prada’s fall 2003 ad campaign. Today she’s the record holder for opening and closing the most runway shows.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

This gap-tooth Dutch beauty made her debut in Givenchy’s fall 2006 couture show and became a smash almost overnight.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Before flying from her native Netherlands to New York for a Victoria’s Secret casting call, Kroes hadn’t heard of the brand; now she’s among its most famous Angels.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Her platinum-blonde hair and impossibly long legs turned the Berlin-born model into one of the most striking figures of the nineties.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Famously discovered in Nairobi by Peter Beard in the mid-seventies, the Somalian beauty became an inspiration to many designers—particularly Yves Saint Laurent, who made her the muse for his 1985 African Queen couture collection.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

With her boyish frame and tattooed bod, Danish-born Erichsen is making a name for herself as a tough chick with swagger.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

With a face that can go from goth to girlish, Van Seenus—whose first cover was for our March 1996 issue—is beloved by fashion photographers.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Since ruling the catwalk in the eighties alongside Linda Evangelista and Christy Turlington, the model-author-singer-TV host is unstoppable.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

With her arched eyebrows and chic bob, courtesy of Julien d’Ys, the Canadian was one of the original supermodels.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The Brazilian’s ability to morph from avant-garde oddball to haute bourgeoise has served her well.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Her fresh-face look led to numerous magazine covers, including this one. For W’s September 2011 issue, Steven Klein subverted that youthful image by depicting the golden girl at age 120.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

With her lioness mane, traffic-stopping body, and trademark mole, the Midwestern stunner ushered in the age of the bodacious babe.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

The Czech model—the first Central European woman on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, in 1983—says she was never comfortable being a bombshell. Could have fooled us.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Her easygoing, approachable glamour turned her into a seventies sensation—though Mrs. Keith Richards is still rocking it here, at age 42.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

By cropping her hair short and shaving off her eyebrows, McMenamy became the poster child for nineties androgyny. Two decades later, the American model is still challenging beauty standards with her full head of gray hair.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Known equally for her race-car curves and her tryst with Axl Rose, Seymour was the ultimate glamazon of the early nineties. These days, the brunette—married to media magnate Peter Brant—still sizzles.

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Photographer: Tim Walker

Sun-kissed and sporty, Murphy has been America’s golden girl since the mid-nineties. For the past decade-plus, she’s served as the face of Estée Lauder.