Fashion

Student quits job after shop boss says she’s not “model material”

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Charlotte Duck
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It’s the ultimate in discrimination. A US college student, who modelled some clothes on Instagram for the store she worked at, was left reeling when her boss asked that the snaps be removed because she wasn’t “model material”.

Sherene Zarrabi, 21, worked at Dainty Hooligan while she was studying at Oklahoma State University and was shocked to be forwarded an email by Dainty Hooligan's owner, Jessica Issler.

This is an email I was forwarded earlier. I just want to start by saying this: I am fully comfortable with who I am and...

Posted by Sherene Marie Zarrabi on Monday, February 1, 2016

The email stated: “Something I want to make sure you keep in mind. I want size small, the stereotypical 'model' to model our clothes. Please use our pictures of our models if Stillwater store can't find someone who would be considered 'model material.' This is not to put anyone down but to communicate expectations of presenting our brand.

Don't take it personal, all I ask for is really good representation. In exchange for the freedom, I ask you to take down all pictures of anyone that doesn't fit the criteria.”

Sherene quit immediately and posted the email on Facebook, receiving over 3,000 shares and numerous supportive comments. 

"I do not want to represent or support a business that has such archaic values and beliefs," she explained in her Facebook post. "THIS is the reason young girls have body image issues."

The store has since replaced the images of Sherene with those like this below.

Dainty Hooligan's owner, Jessica Issler, has now defended her email, saying: “I am accountable for the email that was sent… I never meant to be mean or attacking, but I’m not apologizing for the unsaid fashion rule.”

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Charlotte Duck

Charlotte Duck is a freelance editor and writer. She's written about everything from David Beckham's pants to luxury prams, and interviewed Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley and Lee from Blue. She's a rubbish cook but very good at tidying. 

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