Linda Evangelista used to cry when she "needed" more outfits.

Linda Evangelista

Linda Evangelista

The 51-year-old supermodel - who signed to Elite modelling agency in 1984 - has admitted she "always" had to own the latest fashion trend when she was 11 years old, which would see her pleading with her mother, Marisa, to buy her new clothes.

Speaking about her obsession with fashion, which started at a young age, she said: "I think I was like 11 or 12 when I sat my mom down in tears, and I said, 'I need more outfits. It's so important.' It sounds silly, but there was no other way to express myself. I needed that blouse with a little ruffle Peter Pan collar to go with the corduroy pants with a wedge. And she was like, 'I'm on it.' She did it."

"I always had my next outfit picked out, and it was always, like, a suit. A blazer, a skirt with a blouse, the earrings, and the shoes. It was from the mall or we'd go over the river to Niagara Falls, New York, or to Buffalo, where our currency at that time went further.

"You'd have to wear the outfit in the car home not to pay the duty."

And the catwalk icon - who has starred in campaigns for luxury fashion houses including Versace, Chanel and Yves Saint Laurent - has revealed she plans to donate pieces from her wardrobe to feature in an archive collection in Canada, which is filled with designer masterpieces.

She explained: "They will get donated sooner rather than later," she says. "What am I going to do with it? I can't hold on to this stuff anymore."

Meanwhile Linda - who received a star on the Walk of Fame in Toronto, Canada, in 2003 - has admitted she struggled for three years to make her breakthrough as a model.

She told "I did eight to 10 go-sees a day for a month, learned to take the subway.

"My mom sent me $100 here, $100 there.

"It was for Jean Louis David, an ad in Mademoiselle. I made a few hundred dollars. And Elite [her agency] told me, 'Don't get disillusioned. We're going to send you to Paris.' "

"[But] It took me three years before I got to work with great photographers like Arthur Elgort, Peter Lindbergh, Steven Meisel. It all fell into place, but it was not quick. It was a very slow climb up the ladder."

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