They started their career as infants whereby they were tasted in the single role of Michelle Tanner -the cute baby of the Full House
family. They were hired at the age of six months and filming began when they were nine months old.
Everyone loved Michelle Tanner, the wisecracking baby and little girls around the world went berserk over Michelle. With this, the Olsen twins’ parents saw this as an opportunity to promote their little twin girls’ image.
At the age of 7, Mary-Kate and Ashley with their then-manager, co-founded Dualstar Entertainment – a global brand management company with the specific goal of leveraging the popularity of these little twin girls.
Mary-Kate and Ashley made several straight-to-video movies as well as TV shows and even licensed their names to furniture and clothing lines for preteens — girls age 5 to 12. As they matured, their fashion sense bloomed. Mary-Kate and Ashley then moved on to start a clothing line in Wal-Mart stores for girls age 4-14 as well together with a beauty line called “Mary-Kate and Ashley: Real fashion for real girls”.
With increased popularity of their association with Wal-Mart, the Olsen twins gained great credibility in the fashion industry. It is intriguing to see the Olsens have personal style. Seeking to establish independent identities for themselves, Mary-Kate has asked the public and the media to refer to them not as “the Olsen twins” but as Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen respectively. That is when the sisters left behind the cutesy, co-ordinate outfits that were part of the drill and developed subtle differences in style while maintaining mirror images of one another.
Mary-Kate initially embraced the slightly bohemian style, moved on to the grudge-inspired side whereas Ashley was always known for a more refined and elegant look. Nowadays, both of them are seen with more polished and classic pieces. However, with their mixture of vintage and new, labels and none, fashion to them has been raised a notch and today, their style have become a form of stunning, glamorous art.
As passionate fashion lovers, Mary-Kate and Ashley went ahead and launched their own couture fashion label “The Row” — a line to reflect their personalities as they become adults. Unlike with their licensed collections, the twins are involved in-depth with the Row’s design process working closely with a designer from start to end. The Row consists of mostly expensive t-shirts, sophisticated blazers, oversized but luscious fur coats that are minimalistic. The clothing is sold at high-end retailers such as Barneys, Maxfield, Harvey Nichols, Brown’s and others around the world.
Shortly thereafter, the twins started a new line for The Row, named after their siblings: “Elizabeth & James”. Ashley and Mary-Kate collaborate closely on Elizabeth and James (named after their siblings), a line that combines softness and toughness. For example, slouchy boyfriend jackets and shirts with a flirty ruffle. The concept of their designs was taken from a boy and girl relationship which tells the story through the clothing.
Mary-Kate and Ashley will also be adding sunglasses to their high-end luxury label The Row next season. They have signed an agreement with Linda Farrow Eyewear to produce the sunglasses that will be designed by Mary-Kate and Ashley. Their first collection would include 4 different styles — classic metal aviator; oversized square frame; vintage inspired brown rimmed frame and a pair of the 6os inspired round shape. With this first collection, they will be testing the market in order to offer more ranges in the near future. Mary Kate and Ashley are careful about the designs to ensure that each pair will suit more than one common face.
The Olsen twins have since become icons of teens today. To grow up with two of the best creative and fashionable people is the one inspiration of many teens.
Today, that is further made possible with the Olsen twins’ new launch of their affordable brand, Olsenboye.
Olsenboye, which is the Olsen’s ancestral name, suits the young, chic and trendy junior market and their line is exclusively sold at JCPenney (one of America’s leading retailers) stores alongside other affordable ranges.
Olsenboye suits the fun, spirited and edgy teens with casual sportswear and accessories that include denim, bottoms, tops, dresses, skirts, shorts, jackets, handbags and shoes retailing from $2o-$5o. Items can be mixed together to create an assortment of distinctive looks that allow teens to express their styles & personalities fashionably.
The launch of Olsenboye definitely brings sophistication to the juniors department. While it is targeted at a younger age group, the line still has a broad appeal.
The sisters are already at their forefront of acquiring the market share from the teen customer. Olsenboye is the 4th collection the sisters have come up with. Mary-Kate and Ashley are not only looked at as fashion designers but style icons of their target demographic group. Leveraging on this, the sisters have executed relevant marketing strategies to promote & create awareness of Olsenboye to their key targeted customers effectively.
Dualstar Entertainment Group and JCPenney have come up with innovative initiatives including limited time offerings of Olsenboye products on jcp.com and at 5o high-profile JCPenney stores.
The sisters’ dedication to this line is shown by the time, energy and imagination put into guerilla marketing tactics with a customized truck, called the “Olsenboye Treat Truck”, which cruised through the streets of New York City.
At the “Treat Truck, consumers can preview the collection and pick up Olsenboy pins, balloons, bracelets and even cupcakes. To find out more information on the “Treat Trucks”, appearances can be found at Olsenboye.com.
As fashion entrepreneurs, Mary-Kate and Ashley were recently admitted to the Council of Fashion Designers (CFDA). As 2 out of the 31 new designers being admitted this year, Mary-Kate and Ashley were recognized for their luxury collection of The Row and their mid-range contemporary line, Elizabeth & James.
At 23 years of age, Mary-Kate and Ashley are estimated to be worth some $300 million combined, reports Usmagazine.com. Who knows what Mary-Kate and Ashley might surprise us with next. In the few years to come, they’d want to do something else, apart from fashion and Mary-Kate and Ashley will probably not shy away from that.