Roslyn Harte Spotlight
Above: Roslyn Harte with the FEMMY’s special President’s Award.
“Don’t Call Me Before Noon.” – Roslyn Harte.
by Jean Criss, Contributing Writer and Designer/Founder of the CRISSCROSS™ collection.
Sometimes we learn our dearest friends in life can be new acquaintances, business friends or colleagues. For me this real plum of a doll, an icon to many in the Intimate Apparel industry, admired by peers, mentors and leaders across various disciples has been the powerhouse woman who continues to thrive – Roslyn Harte of Lances Harte, Inc.
“Ros’ support to industry members and organizations is legendary.” Victor Vega, Wacoal Americas.
Ros and I connected last fall when we met through Victor Vega, SVP/Executive and Corporate Services at Wacoal Americas & President of The Underfashion Club, and she took me under her wings. I didn’t have to ask her. She just did it. That’s her style — a true leader and mentor. When she believes in you as a person, a businesswoman, a leader, a new designer, it just made sense and was the natural thing for her to do. We have had a common thread being cancer survivors with multiple surgeries, similar upbringing and family values and I of course, was thrilled with her interest and expertise. Ros is a one-of-a kind woman of stature; an icon in her industry. Victor Vega also agrees with that and adds, “Ros’ support to industry members and organizations is legendary. I admire her for her passion, dedication and positive attitude which has remained constant through the years. Her willingness to guide and support those that seek her help is a unique example of who she is. We all can and have learned from Ros.”
I like to think of her as a knowledgeable “Queen” – resourceful, smart, witty, funny, sarcastic and energetic. If you take offense to her then you might not best be paired to collaborate with the Queen Bee. Thick-skin needs to be in your demeanor. She will tell it like it is – dishes it out – and you must take it – or leave it. After all, Ros is the Queen of the Intimate Apparel industry and is approaching a few years shy of 9.5 decades on Halloween and while that may be Spooky to some, she is fearless!
“Don’t lose your sense of humor and you’ll get through life!” – Roslyn Harte.
I endear all the knowledge that I’ve absorbed and learned from Ros in such a short time and cherish our laughs together over cocktails, at events, dinners and during meetings. Her insights and ideas never cease to inspire other entrepreneurs. Her spirit for philanthropy is equally strong.
As way of brief background, Roslyn graduated in 1941, and worked at Vogue magazine until 1946, when she answered an ad in WWD and came into the industry as a designer of Lady Duff Trousseau Lingerie. In 1954, she then opened her own contract studio and had as her clients: Maidenform, Vanity Fair, Barad and Weldon. She did the designs for the Pajama Game show and movie. From 1968 – 1978, she sold one-of-a-kind silk loungewear to Bergdorf’s, Saks and others under the Roslyn Harte New York label.
She has been a past Officer and presently serves on the Board of The Underfashion Club since joining in 1969 when it was an organization for women only. Now it serves as a non-profit organization dedicated to support education of new talent and offers scholarships in Intimate Apparel. In 1997, she earned a Lifetime Achievement Femmy Award and The Underfashion Club also saluted Roslyn Harte with special President’s Award at the 2014 Femmy Gala. She has served as Co-Chair of the program committee and an active participant of the SAIG committee. She was born on the Lower East side, as were both of her parents, and grew up studying design at a Brooklyn high school (a tough Brooklyn girl).
Above: Roslyn Harte, Clelia Parisi and Norma Mascarotti at a past H.U.G. Awards.
Ros has helped me tremendously as an Advisor on CRISSCROSS™ feel confident, look beautiful post-surgical undergarments for breast cancer survivors as a new designer and founder providing guidance and support. She continues to play a major role acting as a key influencer and as a gateway to influential trends that fashion plays in the marketplace. Ros has been a dedicated mentor to hundreds and impacted the careers of thousands professionals.
One of her dearest charities includes serving on the Intimate Apparel Square Club’s H.U.G Gala Award, an annual gala which supports pediatric division of Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine and Tisch Hospital at NYC Langone Medical Center.
The next H.U.G. Gala is scheduled on Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015 at 5:30 pm cocktails; 6:30 dinner at 230 Fifth Avenue Penthouse. For more information please contact IASC@frontiernet.net, 845-758-5752, www.thehugaward.org.
Roslyn continues to take NYC transit to work daily to her Madison Avenue office and sees her colleagues – she doesn’t miss a beat and is one amazing woman. You can always call upon Ros but she will say, “just don’t call me before noon! I prefer to work afternoons and into the late evenings. I’m nocturnal! I’ve learned my balance with work and life and I’ll call the shots at age 91. I’ve earned it!”