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NEW YORK — In over four decades, Twiggy has been an iconic fashion model, actress, dancer, singer and author. Next month, she will boost her résumé once more when she launches Twiggy London, a new lifestyle collection on HSN featuring clothing, accessories and footwear centered around the model and her life.
This story first appeared in the March 9, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“Before I was discovered, I wanted to be a dress designer,” Twiggy recalled. “I never planned to be a model. It was like a distant dream, but I thought I was much too thin, and much too small and too shy. Then fate took a hand and changed all that, but the obsession with designing and making clothes was always within me.”
Twiggy isn’t a complete stranger to design. In 1966, shortly after being discovered, she created the Twiggy Dresses line for teenagers. More recently, she has been dabbling in design for U.K. online and mail order company Littlewoods.
“The interesting thing to me about HSN, having seen it through the turnaround since [HSN chief executive officer] Mindy Grossman took over, is that it’s become very fashion-oriented,” Twiggy, whose real name in Lesley Lawson, said, adding she hoped to bring “all the sort of things I love and love to wear” to the network’s viewers. “I think all clothes should be gorgeous, affordable, comfortable and fun. So many times the fashion industry gets a bit serious, and I think fashion should be fun, especially affordable fashion. Most women love to wear things and they love to get new things. We like to buy.”
Twiggy London ranges from blouses to jackets, handbags, pumps and sneakers — all filtered through Twiggy’s irreverent British lens. The scope is diverse enough, Lawson said, to appeal to a wide range of consumers.
Grossman was introduced to Lawson through a mutual friend and, after a lunch meeting, the two started to brainstorm ideas. “She was accessible, she was aspirational, she had this unique and individual style,” Grossman recalled.
“If you go into Twiggy’s closet, you can immediately see she is not shy about being who she is,” she added. “I think that is very relevant to women today. She was a recognized symbol of the Mod Sixties, but she has continued to demonstrate relevancy, because she has such a defined sense of style. And she was a judge on ‘America’s Next Top Model,’ which exposed her to a whole other generation that didn’t grow up with her in the original iteration but responded to who she was today.”
Twiggy joins a growing roster of high-profile names to design for HSN, ranging from Badgley Mischka to Naeem Khan, Iman, Eva Jeanbart Lorenzotti, Stefani Greenfield and, most recently, Michael Vollbracht. Twiggy will go on the air on April 3, and the line will be available on the Saint Petersburg, Fla.-based network as well as hsn.com.
“This is a brand that we feel we are going to be able to develop and broaden, and we think it is a long-term sustainable business,” said Grossman, who declined to disclose sales projections.
Twiggy already has a personal favorite: a patent leather Union Jack tote for $79.90. “You have a little bit of England on your shoulder,” she said.