Crystal Renn has called for sample sizes to be made bigger.

The 26-year-old former plus-size model believes designers should change from the standard US zero or two (A UK four or six) to an American eight, a UK 12.

She said: ''By having a size eight sample, you are giving freedom to a designer.

''Most of the models are going to be size sixes and eights, and you could have tens. If a really amazing model walked in who was a size zero, you would tailor the dress down to her.''

Crystal also praised Zac Posen for his attempts to add diversity to the catwalk by using a variety of different body shapes in his models.

Speaking at a panel discussion hosted by the National Eating Disorders Awareness organisation and the Model Alliance at Pace University, she said: ''There are some people who lead and Zac Posen is one of those people. Modelling is about beauty, but it's also an energy. That's not a size.''

Modelling agent Chris Gay, president of Marilyn Model Agency, slammed the ''ridiculous'' standards of the fashion industry.

He said: ''The industry standards are ridiculous. They're not standards a woman can keep through her life or her career ... You're replacing good models with new models because of unrealistic standards.''