Fifty-Plus Fashion

Women aged 50 and over have long been an untapped market segment for licensing programs. But a growing number of direct-to-retail initiatives with etailers, retailers, and home shopping networks have focused on this demographic over the past few years, all involving celebrities who are in that age group themselves:

  • Most recently, Jane Fonda paired with home shopping network Evine in November 2018 for a lifestyle brand encompassing active and athleisure wear, fitness equipment, and health and nutrition for 50-plus women, to launch this spring. The actress is known, in part, for her Jane Fonda Workout video series in the 1980s, which sold 17 million copies.
  • In May 2018, actress and model Brooke Shields introduced Brooke Shields Timeless with QVC. The apparel assortment includes items ranging from skirts and sweaters to blouses and blazers; accessories are part of the array as well.
  • In January 2017, actress Marlo Thomas launched a 15-piece clothing capsule, plus a tote bag, with HSN under the That Woman label, playing on her starring role in the TV series That Girl in the late 1960s. The effort marked the first-ever product line for Thomas.
  • Fashion icon Iris Apfel inspired a signature collection for Macy’s I.N.C. private label in 2016. Known for her big glasses and colorful style, Apfel put her name on a line of 40 apparel and accessories items that was meant to cross generations. It featured products that would feel comfortable to more mature women and stayed away from things like mini-skirts or sleeveless tops, while being fashionable enough to appeal to the young women who are big fans of Apfel. Apfel has collaborated with other fashion brands as well.
  • In the U.K., daytime TV presenter Lorraine Kelly created a range of clothing with JD Williams, an online retailer specializing in well-fitting, stylish fashion for women 45 and up. The line debuted in 2015; dresses and shoes can still be found on the site.

In some cases, signature product lines may include 50-plus women in addition to other ages. Jaclyn Smith, who began her still-ongoing private label with Kmart (and later Sears) in 1985, has long incorporated designs for all ages, with a current sweet spot of women 35 to 60.

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