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Marlo Thomas: 'That Girl' Grows Up

1960s fashion plate brings her signature style to here and now

My Style: Marlo Thomas

Courtesy of Lifetime

Marlo Thomas from her home in New York, courtesy of Erin Patrice O'Brien.

When I launched my television series That Girl in 1966, I never expected to set fashion trends. I was just excited to be bringing something groundbreaking to viewers: TV’s first independent working woman. Still, my character’s colorful, mod outfits resonated with That Girls everywhere. Her wardrobe announced that a new kind of woman—and a new age—had arrived.

As I grew from girl to woman, I believed that clothes can and should express who we are. But these days, I get so discouraged trying on outfits that don’t say a thing about me. Bare midriffs — are you kidding?

Slits up to my inner thigh — really? I prefer flippy skirts and peplum tops designed to soften the silhouette — a look that is covered but not covered up.

But it’s hard for me to find clothes like that, which tells me it’s hard for other women, too. So I’ve made some. In January, I will launch a line of apparel called That Woman, a collection of flattering clothes to make us feel vibrant and confident. My thought is: We don’t have to give up on style and fit because we’ve reached a certain age. Part of the proceeds will support the work of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

They say clothes make the man, but in this case, That Woman made the clothes!

Award-winning actor, author, and activist Marlo Thomas is a regular contributor to AARP