Jill Zarin heads back to ‘Housewives’ after building business empire: ‘It was like I never left’.
Jill Zarin has always had business on her brain, and it comes as no surprise she’s almost completely evaded camera crews through the years despite being an original Real Housewife of New York.
She agreed that being back on the Bravo network as the star of Peacock’s “The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: Ex-Wives Club” after nearly a decade away from TV screens felt like “home” – in a wild and twisted way.
“It’s like I never left,” Zarin told FOX Business before joking that the cameras weren’t completely shut off over the last few years. “I have been around, you know. I did BravoCon a few years ago.”
Zarin became one of the franchise’s most beloved cast members after starring as an original housewife on “The Real Housewives of New York City” from its inception in 2008.
Cameras followed Zarin for four seasons as she maintained a grueling schedule working with her late husband Bobby at their Zarin Fabrics Warehouse and Home Furnishing store, a Lower East Side institution established in 1936, while also raising daughter Allyson and actively participating in a host of charitable causes.
“It’s like I never left,” Zarin said of Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: Ex-Wives Club, before joking that the cameras weren’t completely shut off over the last few years. “I have been around, you know. I did BravoCon a few years ago.” (Jill Zarin)
With years of work in the apparel industry and an exploding Rolodex of high-end contacts, Zarin was a natural fit for “Housewives” and had the tagline “I run with a fabulous circle of people.”
A major cast shakeup after season four in 2011 gave Zarin the opportunity to refocus on her career and expand the Zarin brand, which she did to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars in sales through multiple endeavors.
The thriving entrepreneur first launched her affordable, self-titled collection of luxury rugs in 2016 and saw her first home collection land in nearly every major home furnishing retailer, including Macy’s, Kohl’s, Home Depot and Bed, Bath & Beyond.
She added furniture, cabinetry and bar carts, each with the goal of providing luxury living with an economical price tag. Interior design was only a piece of the puzzle, as she also maintained her Skweez Couture Shapewear and Hosiery label.
A major cast shakeup after RHONY season four in 2011 gave Zarin the opportunity to refocus on her career and expand the Zarin affordable luxury brand. (Jill Zarin)
The pandemic provided Zarin time at home with her family, and she collaborated with her daughter, Creative Director Allyson Shapiro, to launch the Jill & Ally brand based on tie-dyed face masks Ally created for herself that immediately went viral online.