When I first read the article Marlo Thomas: That Girl Grows Up in AARP magazine (December 2016) I couldn’t believe it’d taken her so long to create a clothing line. From 1966 to 1971, her sitcom That Girl was like a Vogue magazine come to life. Young and fun, besides Twiggy, she was one of the first women I ever saw wearing “The Carnaby Street Look” popularized by Mary Quant. Now she wants to bring her fabulous eye to fashion and help those who need it-women 40 and over-with contemporary clothing.
To come up with her designs she mined the That Girl archives and updated 15 interchangeable pieces that include a “draped front jacket”, matching pants, a suede moto jacket, a print skirt, and other pieces. Available in five colors to accomodate women of various ethnic groups, they’re also available in size small to 24X. She started selling them on HSN (Home Shopping Network) in January 2017.
The Collection in Action:
Initially I thought when I saw the “draped front jacket” on Colleen Lopez, the host of The List that it overwhelmed her because the dark color of it blended so closely with her pants, but then when she replaced it with the same jacket, in Peony Pink, and Thomas matched it with a keyhole top in the same shade it looked elegant. A model then came out in the same jacket, this time in cream, with matching pants and Thomas said, “You can wear it as sort of a suit,” proving the flexibility of the separates.
After examining the vintage McCall’s Sewing Patterns Thomas promoted, in the past, I saw the similarities between the simplicity of the designs then and what she’s recreated today. Pared down to appeal to a specific target customer, while I loved to way all of the pieces worked together, I wouldn’t have minded a few more design details on the “textured pullover sweater.” A nice row of pearl buttons on the shoulders perhaps? The pants too suffered from under-designing and might’ve been more versatile with a wider leg.
Yet what those items lacked in daring they made up for in versatility. The sweater would work with the pants and they would also work with the keyhole top. For this line, the magic seems to be in the coordination, giving the wearer more freedom and making her a permanent member of the fashion scene.