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  • Mary-Kate wears blazer by The Row

    over a green salad in New York, “in life and in clothes.” It is strange to hear two of the most recognizable faces in the world talk about blending in, but it rings true when referring to their collections. The Row (named in homage to London’s famous bespoke tailoring street, Savile Row) was borne from the hunt for the perfect T-shirt in 2006, with both girls obsessed with great fabric and fit. That criteria was then applied to a tank top, then a dress, a blazer, leather leggings and shirting – the quiet foundations of any outfit.

    “We saw a space in the market,” says Ashley. “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.” They are now 23 collections on from that initial T-shirt and employ 60 people in their

    “We saw a space. There wasn’t another BRAND offering basics in a LUXURIOUS way”

    Manhattan atelier. And while they still offer luxury basics, the irony is that now customers want to wear The Row from top to toe and nothing else.

    Critically acclaimed by fashion’s toughest editors from the outset, the Olsens managed to dodge the merciless bullets so often fired at “celebrity designers” (although they claim that some people will never see them as “proper” designers). Originally the sisters wanted to have someone else pretend to be the designer, but friends reminded them that they needed to show the collection to US Vogue editor Anna Wintour. It is hard to imagine anyone selling the collection with more conviction than the twins. For they aren’t playing at fashion,

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