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Claudia Schiffer: 'I never thought I could make it as a model'

The German supermodel made her breakthrough as a teenager

claudia schiffer
24 November 2017
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Claudia Schiffer was initially convinced fashion bosses had made a "mistake" by scouting her as a model.The German model has been in the business for over 30 years now, making her breakthrough as a teenager by working for the likes of Guess and Chanel with her Brigitte Bardot-esque looks. She's since become one of the biggest supermodels in the world, but Claudia has admitted she never anticipated achieving so much in her career.

"I must have some kind of guardian angel, because I never thought I could be a model," the 47-year-old, who was spotted in a nightclub in Dusseldorf, told The Edit. "Even when I was discovered, I literally thought, 'No, they mean my girlfriend, not me.' For a year, I thought they would realise (their) mistake, and send me home." Further expressing her amazement at the fact she's continuing to land jobs now, she added, “When I started (modelling), they used to say, 'At 30, your career is over.' They used to programme that in. It felt normal.”

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It wasn't long ago that Claudia returned to the catwalk alongside fellow fashion icons including Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford for Versace's Milan Fashion Week show to mark the 20th anniversary of the death of designer Gianni Versace. Looking back on the emotional presentation, the blonde beauty noted it was the "perfect" reason for herself and her friends to step back onto the runway. Gianni, whose sister Donatella runs the brand, founded the successful label before he was murdered at the age of 50.

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"He changed the fashion industry in a massive way, but he was also one of those people who had a massive heart," Claudia sighed. "People would have done anything for him. They loved him, because he was a really nice man as well as an incredibly creative designer – and I can't say that for every designer that I've worked with."

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