Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen have solidified their reputation as fashion icons, and now the twins have revealed how their early days as Michelle Tanner on Full House shaped their minds for design.
The Olsen twins got their big break on the fan-favorite sitcom Full House, and although Mary-Kate and Ashley were only 9 months old when they landed the shared part, they were quickly immersed into the world of high fashion. Their television character was known for her playful and girlish style, and now the Olsens say that their overalls and floral dresses were actually designed by fashion greats.
“[On Full House] we’d be in six-hour fittings three times a week, because we had to wear 12 different outfits,” Ashley told Net-A-Porter. She said that designers like Chanel and Marc Jacobs were commissioned to design for the twins’ character, Michelle, and cut to fit their bite-sized bodies. “We were designing clothes for ourselves, as we were so petite.”
Mary-Kate said it was this experience that led them to hone in on the tailoring of high-fashion designs, and that philosophy has transcended into their hugely successful line, The Row. “I think that is when we became obsessed with fit,” Mary-Kate explained. “And now the obsession has become a profession.” In fact, the Olsens are so heavily focused on tailoring that they’ve made it the focal point of the brand.
“We saw a space in the market,” Ashley said. “We knew there wasn’t another brand offering basics in a luxurious and contemporary way. If I wear certain designer brands, or too much of something, I look crazy, and I need something to break it up. If you are wearing a Chanel jacket and you need an anonymous piece that will show just how special that jacket is, I hope that is what The Row gives you,” the older Olsen said.
Anonymity has become increasingly important to the 27-year-old twins as they put their acting careers on hold to focus on fashion. A readily welcomed byproduct of their latest gig, however, is earning recognition as bona fide New Yorkers despite their California upbringing. “There is a threshold in New York, and once you pass that and are considered a New Yorker, they leave you alone,” Ashley explained, referring to the paparazzi.
“We’re at the office every day, then home or out for dinner, so there aren’t the opportunities for them to take pictures,” Ashley added. “For the most part you try and avoid it.”