The Style To Emulate: The Olsen Twins
The Style To Emulate: The Olsen Twins

The Style To Emulate: The Olsen Twins

In our social media age, the term ‘style icon’ can sometimes be overused. To truly be one, it’s about more than just clothes – it’s about creating an aura or persona that transcends individual looks, pieces, trends and seasons. Here’s why Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are so deserving of the label…
By Bibby Sowray

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Their Look Then

As child stars in sitcoms like Full House and So Little Time, the Olsens were usually dressed in near-identical outfits in different colourways – one with straight hair, one with wavy hair – playing on their twin status. In line with the trends of the early Noughties, they were like young Rachel Greens in strappy crop tops, choker necklaces, bias-cut skirts and platform flip-flops.

As they got older, they embodied the ‘boho chic’ era while studying at NYU – Mary-Kate perfecting the oversized, tatty ‘bag lady’ aesthetic, while Ashley took a more refined approach. But they weren’t following trends, they were leading the industry – even if it was unintentional. They also helped create the ‘It bag’ phenomenon, regularly toting Balenciaga’s cult Motorcycle Le Dix bag.

Their Look Now

Today, Mary-Kate and Ashley are the queens of minimalist luxury, embracing a ‘stealth wealth’ aesthetic they’ve managed to perfect via their coveted brand, The Row. They rarely make public appearances, but when they do, they’re often spotted outside their New York studio or occasionally at a red carpet event. Usually dressed in head-to-toe black, oversized tailoring and shirting, and loose silhouettes, their aesthetic is simple but beautiful, polished yet very relaxed. They also favour vintage accessories, like the Hermès Kelly bag, and artisanal jewellery.

Today, Mary-Kate and Ashley are the queens of MINIMALIST LUXURY, embracing a ‘stealth wealth’ aesthetic they’ve managed to perfect via their coveted brand, THE ROW.

Style Signatures

Sharp but oversized tailoring, luxurious fabrics like silk, cashmere, nappa leather, alpaca and virgin wool, and clean, simple silhouettes are all signatures of the Olsen’s modern style. As for colour, they mainly stick to a neutral palette of black, white, ivory, navy and camel with occasional pops of bold colour and little to no embellishment. The beauty of their style is its quiet simplicity and lack of fuss.

Brands To Know

The Row is, of course, an instant way to get the Olsen’s signature style, although for many it remains financially out of reach. Scandi brand Totême offers a similar aesthetic, with beautifully cut pieces that transcend trends and seasons. Likewise Raey is the master of oversized silhouettes, while more accessible brands with a similar look include MARCÉLA LONDON, The Frankie Shop, Massimo Dutti, COS and H&M’s premium line.

Get The Look

Getting the look is all about finding classic pieces that transcend trends but still look contemporary. Think wear-forever basics like poplin shirts, oversized blazers and tailored trousers, luxurious knits and sleek slip dresses – key pieces that can be mixed and matched to create different outfits. The colour palette is essential: build a base of neutrals including black, navy, white, cream and camel, before adding in statement pieces in bolder colours.


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