Linda Rodin photographed by Jeffrey Miller
One of my career highlights happened in New York in 2017. Crossing the street in Chelsea on my way to the subway, I heard, ‘Hi Alyson.’ And there on the opposite sidewalk was Linda Rodin, taking her dog Winky for a walk. Waving. At me. Whoop! Greeted by one of the coolest women on the planet, far from home and in a fashion capital, I felt like I’d won first prize.
Linda Rodin is one of my fashion heroines. We’ve met a couple of times, and I interviewed her for my books: Style Forever and Know Your Style. She is a role model for women of all ages and a super-stylish, serial entrepreneur.
In the late 1970s, Linda ran a groovy boutique in SoHo, then worked as a fashion stylist for 35 years, in her late 60s she modelled for J.Crew, The Row and Matchesfashion and went on to launch a face oil Rodin Olio Lusso, followed by a range of signature, brightly coloured lipsticks. At the age of 74, her latest venture is Linda Hopp, a small denim line made in New York from organic and eco-conscious materials. It features four trouser styles and two skirts, including the gorgeous maxi pictured below. All in dark denim. The gingham and bandana print cuffs and turn-ups on jackets and jeans give the debut collection a western feel, while her only accessory – a bucket hat – is a little bit 1990s. In a good way, of course.
When I asked her about Linda Hopp and where her love of denim stems from, she said, ‘My mother dressed me in denim jeans from five years onward. So I guess it was a childhood thing that always stuck with me. I love the fabric, the comfort, how it can be dressed up or down—just always makes me feel great and comfortable and stylish in an undercover kind of way.’ On her boundless entrepreneurial ideas and energy she added, ‘My mother was always making things, taking art classes, had an antique shop, and was an interior decorator. So I was surrounded by creativity my whole life. I love creating. If I’m not making something, I don’t know what to do with myself!’
Linda Hopp maxi skirt. Photographer: Willy Somma
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Publisher: Alyson Walsh