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The Secrets Behind Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen's "Perfect" Designs

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Jeffrey Mayer/Wireimage

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen may have achieved childhood superstardom by acting, but the 23-year-old twins are now making headlines for their fashion business — specifically in an in-depth article in the New York Times about the success of their Elizabeth and James and The Row clothing lines. “I decided at 18 that I don’t really want to do this anymore,” Ashley told the New York Times of acting. ” I wanted to explore other things, and with that came The Row.” A high-end line of basics, The Row is described in the article as “perfect” by both Julie Gilhart of Barneys and Jim Gold of Bergdorf Goodman. “I think the way to think about The Row is that it offers the perfect blank — the perfect schoolboy blazer, the perfect leather leggings, the perfect peacoat,” enthuses Gold. And it’s not selling based on the star’s names. Ashley admits, “The customer who buys the clothes almost never knows we’re involved.” But both Ashley and Mary-Kate are very hands-on with the lines, with Ashley explaining, “for us this experience in fashion has been amazing.” Read more on Mary-Kate and Ashley’s budding fashion at