Once, it was enough for a celebrity to just look good in clothes. The Golden Age of Hollywood began the era of stars endorsing various dresses and suits as well as jewelry in exchange for wearing them as well. That carried to the sports world with so many sports stars flaunting great stuff too. However, as time has gone on, several stars have found it good to create their own clothing lines. It’s an obvious bit, lend your name, get it out there and customers will flock to it. Who doesn’t want to look like some hot movie star or TV celeb? Wearing their clothes is the best way to do it. True, many of them just lend their name and then let others do the work. But most take a hands-on approach not just in business but in designing the lines and making sure they get out okay.
True, it doesn’t always work. Fashion can be a harsh business, as a style that is loved one day can be called passé the next. There’s also how some stars have tastes that don’t always translate to wide use. More than one celebrity has made a huge deal out of their own clothing line only for it to turn into a disaster and soon out of business. But it says a lot that stars who already have a great sense of style are the ones who make their clothing lines work well.
In many cases, they just got tired of having to put up with others trying to fit them with stuff they didn’t like and so decided to just create their own. In a few cases, they did it to make a real point as well. Here are 20 celebrities who decided creating their own clothing line in order to get what they wanted from the fashion world.
20 The Williams Court
On the tennis court, few have been as dominant as Venus and Serena Williams. They have amassed a total of 121 singles titles, 44 doubles titles, 30 grand slams and 8 Olympic Gold medals. While Serena has been the more successful, Venus is right behind her and both have balanced playing with family (Serena famously winning her last Grand Slam while pregnant). There’s long been talk of a rivalry between the duo but they remain close as ever. That includes both making a move from sports to fashion.
Venus actually leads the way there with her EleVen line of sportswear meant to be sleek, stylish and comfortable. From tennis outfits to jogging to tennis shoes, the line also has handbags and purses.
Serena has decided that rather than her own line in major stores like her sister, she sells exclusively on the Home Shopping Network. Aneres (her name spelled backward) also goes for sportswear but a bit more upscale to match Serena’s attitude. She also has a nail collection and enjoys showing her wares off. Both sisters dominate on the court but are also taking the fashion world by storm to prove their power anywhere.
19 Conrad’s Crown
Many derided Laguna Beach and The Hills for basically the nail in the coffin of classic MTV. The reality series focused on rather superficial young people who acted like their lives were hard when they were living it large. But to her credit Lauren Conrad has managed to prove herself far smarter than the dumb blonde she could sometimes come off as.
While others in the cast just had their 15 minutes of fame, Conrad was wise to invest her money and appeared in several fashion magazines and shows like America’s Next Top Model.
She then launched Paper Crown, a contemporary fashion line designed to give women a sleek approach.
An offshoot is LC, sold through Kohl’s, which emphasizes a more feminine style at more affordable prices. From business wise to a full line on wedding outfits, the lines are among the hottest around. Thanks to their success, Conrad is worth about $25 million and rising with more plans for further lines and showing that at least one person from that reality show actually can make it for real.
18 The Bella Birdies
It was easy to see why WWE hired Nikki and Brie Bella. As gorgeous identical twins, they were great for TV with the gimmick of switching places in a match to cheat for a win. They got further fame on Total Divas with Brie partying so much it helped create the line of “Brie Mode.” Both have improved in the ring, Nikki holding the Diva’s title for almost a full year. They’ve gotten more attention with Brie now a mom and Nikki engaged while keeping up the attention with fans.
In late 2017, the twins united to create Birdiebee. Not surprisingly, it focuses on sportswear with sweaters, sweats and shirts, as well as a very large number of intimate garments.
Given both twins are used to flaunting skimpy stuff for WWE, it’s no surprise they model their work off. The line emphasizes empowerment with t-shirts featuring messages like “be a voice, not an echo” and such. The women promise that many of the profits will be given to charity and shows that while they may play heels on TV a lot, the real Bellas are nice gals with this line.
17 Sofia’s Kmart Collection
Sofia Vergara has long been regarded for her beauty. The Columbian-born actress has a knockout body and is proud of her curvaceous form. On her hit sitcom Modern Family, Gloria is always dressed up in amazing outfits, has expensive items, and is more than proud to show it. Thus, her starting her own clothing line made sense and one would expect something high-powered, elite and expensive.
Instead, Vergara has made her line for Kmart and Sears, designed to be amazingly cheap for buyers.
However, she has not skimped on the style and proves it by wearing many of her line’s items in public where they look terrific. A common bit is her coming onto a talk show decked out in an ensemble that you figure has to be at least cost four digits, but instead is only $30. That you can buy stuff so stunning for such a low price makes the line successful as Vergara proves you don’t need to be rich to look as great as her.
16 The Olsen’s Row
From an early age, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen were brilliant at marketing themselves. After coming to fame with their dual portrayal of Michelle on Full House, the duo soon made a fortune with several direct-to-video movies and pushing themselves as teen starlets. From albums to their own toys, the twins had amassed a net worth of $100 million by the time they hit adulthood. Thus, a fashion line was just the icing on the cake. Their company, Dualstar, was already a big deal when they came of age to take it over and making their way into fashion with the Row in 2006.
It started by Ashley challenging herself to create “the perfect t-shirt” and moved on from there. Surprisingly, the duo were low-key and took three years to even comment publicly about their involvement and design work. The results speak for themselves as the Row is available in 164 stores across the world with two physical stores in New York and Los Angeles. The Twins are a constant at fashion shows and highly respected for the minimalist yet great styles. While Fuller House took a shot on the twins not appearing, the fact is they don’t need some sitcom return to dominate in celebrity fashion.
15 Avril’s Abbey
Avril Lavigne has been mocked a lot for not being as huge a rock star as some thought she would be. Only a teenager when she broke out, Lavigne showed her great punk style off in both her music and her clothing. She’s sold more than 40 million albums worldwide, making her one of the biggest Canadian-born artists ever. Yet many have ignored her for not having the same ultra-fame as others, and her last few albums not as successful. But Lavigne doesn’t mind as in 2008, she launched Abbey Dawn (her childhood nickname), a line first sold through Kohl’s.
Levigne personally designed the outfits which focused on hip-hop and punk styles with plenty of articles that had zebra patterns, hot pink and blacks, skull designs and more. True, some felt it was a bit much, but the line has been wildly successful. Thanks to that line, Lavigne is worth about $50 million and thus her fashion line has her getting the last laugh to the bank.
14 SJP’s Style
While she’d had a good career going beforehand, Sarah Jessica Parker rose to fame with her role as Carrie Bradshaw. HBO’s long-running Sex and the City had Carrie in at least three outfits every episode, all rather expensive, stylish and top-end. Thus, creating her own clothing brand was a total non-brainer.
SJP has pushed much of the same styles Parker wore on that iconic show (and two movies) although she has tried to make them a lot more affordable. That there’s an entire shoe division should be no shock as SATC openly joked about Carrie’s massive shoe obsession and offers everything from high-end high heels to sandals. More recently came “Bitten” as well as LBD, as in “Little Black Dress” which offers a variety of outfits in that color. The shoes are the dominant line, of course as so many SATC fans want to dress like their heroine and prove Parker still has a Carrie style to her.
13 McCarthy’s Seven Heaven
Since her rise to fame, Melissa McCarthy has struggled with being a “big” actress in a town where thinner is better. But her fantastic talent was way too much to ignore as she went from an Emmy-winning TV actress to one of the highest-paid and successful movie stars in Hollywood.
McCarthy has expressed her frustration with finding outfits the right size for her and knowing other women face the same struggle. So she decided to just go ahead and make her own brand.
Seven7 focuses on outfits meant to be stylish and chic, all designed at women in a variety of sizes.
McCarthy has long derided the “plus size” label on clothing for helping convince larger women they’re somehow worse off. Thus, the line ignores such labels and even tries to give “one size fits all” clothing to ensure any woman can wear the often fun and yet also chic jeans, skirts, shirts and dresses. It shows how McCarthy is dedicated to making sure any woman is beautiful without having to starve herself to fit into a dress.
12 Hudson’s Fabelitics
As the daughter of Goldie Hawn, Kate Hudson learned early on how good fashion makes you rise up in Hollywood. That led to her success as an actress with an Oscar nomination for Almost Famous before various rom-com films. Her career as an actress does appear to have stalled a bit and she is not as big a star as she probably hoped. But Hudson can’t complain as her Fabelitics brand is doing much better business than her acting career.
The push is her famous yoga pants, the stretchy fabrics a must have for the workout obsessed in Hollywood.
Hudson is always flaunting them in posts of her own workouts to get her toned body. She has been hit with criticism due to how one has to pay a premium to use her website for the full range of items. However, that’s offset by the rather affordable prices for many of the clothes and the top-notch design work to make them stylish and comfortable. They’re pretty much the go-to for high-end workout gear to get Hudson’s name out there more.
11 Simpson’s Collection
For a time in the early 2000s, Jessica Simpson was a huge deal. A bright and happy singer, she stood out with her lush blonde hair, nice Southern accent kept herself looking fantastic. She gained infamy in a reality show with Nick Lachey that made her out to be something of a dimbulb. But Simpson proved she was smarter than she seemed by helping to create Jessica Simpson Collections.
It started just as a line of shoes but expanded to handbags and various beauty items. The outfits tend to be down to earth, a variety of nice t-shirts and other clothes that play into her laid-back style but still looking good. The brand exploded in popularity to the point it was worth a billion dollars. It has slumped a bit but Simpson remains confident of its success as her personal worth is roughly $175 million with her investment and constantly pushing it on Instagram. Thus, the “dumb blonde” proved she was a genius in terms of fashion investment.
10 Elle’s Intimates
In her prime as a supermodel, Elle Macpherson was known as “the Body.” She lived up to the title, her stunning form on full display in slews of magazines, often in revealing styles. She even showed it off on the big screen in the movie Sirens. So if anyone knows how to start a line of successful undergarments, it’s her.
Under the main brand of Elle Macpherson Body is Elle’s Intimates, a line of undergarments and various lingerie for a variety of sizes.
They also include other types of sleepwear like pajamas and what she boasts is “the perfect t-shirt bra.” Showing her Aussie roots, her website openly uses “knickers” for one category. Yes, swimsuits are offered from bikinis to one-pieces and Elle herself can model them off to show she still has it at 53. Overall, “the Body” has shown she learned her lessons on the runway to spice up the bedroom anytime even for the non-model types.
9 Gwyneth’s Goop
This is among the more infamous of any celebrity line but must be mentioned. It’s forgotten how popular Gwyneth Paltrow was when she broke out in the mid-1990s. At first, she was known simply for being the girlfriend of Brad Pitt but soon began breaking out with a variety of great acting roles. She hit her height with her Oscar-winning turn in Shakespeare in Love and among the Hollywood elite. She keeps it up with her various acting roles and championing women’s rights issues as well. But her line has been the source of debate. Calling it Goop just sounds off somehow and not really a great title. It’s inspired by Paltrow’s own items from her closet and should be a good mix of affordable gear.
But while they look nice, the prices have been the source of a lot of anger. To ask up to $700 for what looks like a pair of jeans you can get at Wal-Mart for ten bucks is just insane. Not helping it is Paltrow’s often nutty behavior, and thus the line can be seen as a bit of a joke rather than the success of an Oscar winner.
8 Reese’s Draper
Since her breakout in the late 1990s, Reese Witherspoon has been a great lady for fashion. Few can make a pink dress iconic like she did with Legally Blonde and there’s not a red carpet event where she’s not decked out looking like a perfect 1930s Hollywood queen. But Witherspoon has always had pride in her Southern roots and that shows in her line, Draper James.
Named after her grandparents, the line embraces style and comfort with the elegance Witherspoon knows from her childhood.
Thus, the line promotes skirts, dresses, jeans and other outfits with the same down-home feel Witherspoon loves. She models the line a lot in talk show interviews and is hands-on with its development. It’s not just clothing as there’s also her “Home Accents” line that offers various bits for home décor and kitchen use. As she still looks almost as hot as she did 20 years ago, Witherspoon proves this Southern charm can also work for clothing as well as acting.
7 Rihanna’s Puma
Rihanna’s style has always been rather eye-catching. She often carries her island upbringing in light outfits but can dress it up in furs and a variety of skin-baring ensembles. There’s also her concerts where her costumes can be anything from elaborate to just white wrapping over that body. One would think her Puma clothing line would be for clubwear or some of her chic outfits.
Instead, Fenty x Puma is a sports line, offering rather affordable sportswear for both men and women. A focus is on shoes, mostly tennis shoes with some cool motifs and design as well as jackets, sweats and regular jogging pants. It’s a bit surprising that much of it is affordable and sold through a variety of regular stores rather than high end stuff. But that seems to fit Rihanna, a woman who always does her best to make a laid-back style look stunning and offering a sporting chance for fans to enjoy her great style.
6 Beckham’s Posh
When you use the name “Posh Spice,” you should be expected to look the part. When the Spice Girls burst on the scene in 1997, Victoria Beckham stood out as Posh, always decked out in ultra-hot and chic skirts to flaunt her long legs. She had success as a solo singer but soon became a mainstay of British tabloids with her marriage to soccer star David Beckham. While having kids, Victoria remains a huge star thanks to her staying fashion conscious and her fans responding. While various designers raced to have her model their wares, Victoria decided to start her own line instead.
Surprisingly, she started it off low-key in 2008 so it took until 2011 before it really started to gain steam with a wider release. Rather than just lending her name, Beckham was hands-on with the work to the point she has worn Designer of the Year awards. The line offers some high-end items for fancy events but also some nice stylish wear, a bit expensive but many feel it’s worth it. That includes a variety of high-end handbags. In a surprising move, the brand recently put out a new line exclusively for Target that maintains the excellent style but at a much more affordable cost. Its success solidifies Posh forever as a woman living up to her name majorly.
5 The Kardashian Empire
You can say a lot about the Kardashians but few can argue they know style. Kim showed it with her often stunning looks on the red carpet and outfits that enhance her form. So it only made sense she would get her own makeup line. Sisters Khloe and Kourtney had followed in her footsteps, although they like some different stuff with their own clothing lines.
Khloe’s Good American line often caters to the plus-size form as Khloe herself once was, and focused on jeans, shorts and simple t-shirt wear.
Meanwhile, Kourtney has PrettyLittleThing which is inspired by 1970s fashions. That’s not to mention their combined Kardashian Kollections line which was exclusive to Sears stores for a time.
There’s also Kendall and Kylie, united for their own line which caters more toward teens and 20-somethings. They got in trouble promoting a line bearing the likeness of various rock icons only to have relatives of those icons slam them for not asking permission first. Whether it’s simple summer wear or a look ready for an awards show, the various lines enhance the Kardashian empire into fashion mavens.
4 Zendaya’s Daya
At just 21, Zendaya is already proving herself among the hottest young fashionistas in Hollywood. The actress just wrapped up her role in the Disney Channel series K.C. Undercover and taking off with movie parts like Spider-Man Homecoming. Even before all that, she was a popular figure on some fashion shows thanks to her sleek style showing a grown-up edge early on.
In 2015, she helped launch a clothing line based on her breakout Disney Channel show Shake It Up with the same mix of funky dance clothing and clubwear aimed at young teens.
She then followed it up with Daya by Zendaya, a line designed to be gender-neutral and a good way for fans to get her nice chic style. From gym wear to the type of outfits the actress wears on the red carpet, the line was doing well.
However, in early 2018, Zendaya posted a message noting that several customers had their orders unfilled and their complaints to customer service went unanswered. Thus, she had no choice but to cut ties with the company, effectively shutting it down. But Zendaya insists she will have her line up and running, and cares about her fans, proving herself as taking her business as seriously as her acting career.
3 Beyoncé’s Ivy
From the beginning, Beyoncé has always looked stunning. She showed that off in her days with Destiny’s Child and followed up with it in her massive solo career. In movies, she always looks great but has proven herself a fashion maven with her streamlined outfits and always looks like a million bucks on the red carpet (sometimes literally).
This is a woman whose post showing off her pregnant belly nearly destroyed Instagram. Thus, a clothing line is perfect for her but instead of high-end dresses, Ivy Park is on activewear. Named, obviously, after her first daughter, Beyoncé puts an emphasis on sportswear. Beyoncé said she wanted a throwback to the clothing she would wear for her jogging to calm down from the stress around her growing up.
While one might think it would be expensive, the line is popular for how affordable it is, ranging from $30 to just $200, still looking stylish without being too expensive. True, there was a controversy in 2017 over claims of overseas workers underpaid, but the line still proves Queen Bey dominated in clothing as much as music.
2 Diddy’s Style
Sean Combs has always been ahead of the game. The rapper best known as Puff Daddy, Diddy and other names, has dominated pop culture since the ‘90s as a rapper, actor and producer. But while most of his peers insist on keeping to a “street” style, Combs has embraced being a fashion maven, decked out in terrific clothing.
He said he was tired of the staid suits that were “too white” at times so started his own line.
Sean John began as simply some sportswear advertised exclusively in men’s catalogs. But it has spread out to include an exclusive deal with Macy stores and the company now pulling in profits of $250 million a year. It’s not just clothing as there’s also some a fragrance line called Unforgiveable and has also invested in Zac Posen. It’s given Combs great respect among the business world. He has become more than a musician, he is always pushing his great style to be more dashing than any rapper on the block.
1 Gwen’s LAMB
From her breakout with No Doubt, Gwen Stefani always had a terrific style. It was a great hip-hop way, mixing in low cut pants and tight tops, flaunting her great mid-riff off and perfect for a rocker. She carried that into her solo career with her hit album Love. Angel. Music. Baby. Stefani actually came from a family of seamstresses and thus was used to designing her own outfits. She preferred her own stuff over some of the offerings from other lines and realized she wasn’t alone. In 2003, Stefani decided to get her own style going for her fans with a line also called LAMB.
It pushes Stefani’s own fondness for “ready to wear” outfits you can just toss on but still look fantastic.
It really took off in 2005 with a show at New York’s Fashion Week and Stefani soon had her celebrity friends showing off her items. Also, her sunglasses line was an instant hit when it debuted in 2016. Overall, it showed how Stefani used her own influence to create a line as fantastic as she is.