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She Was Already Famous. Then Came an Idea for Jeans

Gloria Vanderbilt's snug line made her a household name in the 1970s
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 17, 2019 2:10 PM CDT
Gloria Vanderbilt, in 1964.   (AP Photo, File)
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(Newser) – Gloria Vanderbilt, an heiress who went on to have her own remarkable success in multiple fields, is dead at age 95. One common denominator about the obituaries cataloging her life is that they need a lot of room, given that she had been making headlines since she was a child and at the center of a bonkers custody dispute. More recently, she teamed with son Anderson Cooper in 2016 to write a memoir. Some highlights:

  • The jeans: People has the story on how the already famous Vanderbilt made herself a household name in the 1970s with her form-fitting denim jeans. When talking with a business associate in New York City, he mentioned a surplus of denim in Hong Kong. "So I said, 'Why don't we make jeans, a really great fit jean?'" They were a huge success, with Vanderbilt herself appearing in ads and becoming one of the most recognizable women in the nation. The jeans' embroidered swan logo became iconic.
  • The basics: For a good primer on Vanderbilt's life, see this 7-minute video from son Anderson Cooper.

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