BILL TICE, INNOVATIVE DESIGNER OF LOUNGEWEAR, DEAD AT 52
NEW YORK — Services for innerwear designer Bill Tice were held March 18 in Glendale, Ariz.
Tice, 52, died of complications from lung cancer at the Heather Glen care center in Glendale March 9, said his sister Dianne Cochran.
One of the handful of name designers in the innerwear industry, Tice was a 30-year veteran of the apparel business and was known for his glamorous, dual-purpose robes and loungewear, which gained widespread appeal.
In a WWD interview, Tice once described at-homewear as “originally aimed at rich ladies, but I thought women’s lifestyles were changing, and time was on my side.”
His trademarks included rich colors and silks, giving at-homewear a look of eveningwear. He also possessed a lot of showmanship that he used to advantage in personal appearances and trunk shows. At one time, he had his own boutiques at the Bonwit Teller stores.
In 1971 and again in 1988, Tice received Tommy Awards from the American Printed Fabrics Council. He also wrote a book published in 1985, entitled “Enticements: How to Look Fabulous in Lingerie.”
Born in Tipton, Ind., Tice began his career on Seventh Avenue in the mid-Sixties at several ready-to-wear houses. In 1968, he landed a staff job with Royal Robes, where, after a year, he became vice president. By 1973, he had created his first line of dual-purpose at-homewear, ESP, a division of the Elias Sayour Co.
In the mid-Seventies, he had a brief stint as a rtw designer for Malcolm Starr, and later had a long association with Swirl, which made his signature robes and loungewear. In more recent years, he did freelance design work, retiring in 1992 and moving to Glendale, his sister said.
Also surviving are his father, Earl Tice, and a brother, Robert Tice.