President Bush’s niece Lauren Bush made her Spanish catwalk debut on Thursday, sporting a strapless black gown for designer Toypes during Barcelona Fashion Week.

The Spanish label’s summer 2003 collection at the event known locally as Pasarela Gaudi was an array of silk and linen, with a distinctive Middle Eastern feel with embroidery, turbans and robes.

However, the 17-year-old beauty, who appeared only once, made her way down the runway in a simple non-ethnic dress to avoid political undertones, said a spokeswoman for the label – despite having initially signed on to participate more. Her brief appearance, watched by her mum Sharon, who was in the audience, was attributed to the fact she felt ill on Thursday, added the rep.

Lauren, the daughter of George Bush’s brother Neil Bush, was chosen for the catwalk show because she is an “international personality who had never modelled in Spain”, says Jorge Galinanes of Toypes. The Spanish designer, who walked hand-in-hand with Lauren to close the Barcelona show, has selected the Tommy Hilfiger model to help launch next year’s collection. “This is fashion, not politics,” he says. “You can’t politicise fashion.”

The pretty brunette had been slated to make her debut at last year’s Barcelona fashion week, but was unable to travel to Spain due to the September 11 terrorist attacks. Lauren was replaced in the TCN swimwear show with Spanish Sex And Lucia actress Paz Vega.

Photo: ©
Though the Toypes collection had a distinctive Middle Eastern feel, Lauren modelled a simple non-ethnic dress to avoid political undertones, said a spokeswoman for the label Click on images to enlarge
Photo: ©
The 17-year-old beauty planned to make her Spanish debut last year, but was replaced by Sex And Lucia actress Paz Vega (above) when she was unable to travel after the September 11 terrorist attacks

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