Twiggy (born Lesley Hornby; 19 September 1949) is an English supermodel, actress, and singer, now also known by her married name of Twiggy Lawson. A 1960s model known for her large eyes, long eyelashes, and thin build, she is regarded as one of the most famous models of all time. Twiggy went on to star in movies, and appeared as a judge on the reality show America's Next Top Model. She now models for Marks and Spencer to promote their recent rebranding, and appears in seasonal TV adverts with others such as Myleene Klass, as well as other forms of media for the campaigns.''
In 1966, Nigel Davies noticed the young Lesley Hornby and offered her a modeling contract. She was only 16 and weighed 6½ stone (41 kg, 90 lbs). Davies advised her to go by her childhood nickname, Twiggy, and renamed himself Justin de Villeneuve. After sweeping England as "The Face of '66" when her modelling pictures, taken by Barry Lategan, were made public, Twiggy arrived in New York in March 1967. It was believed that the Twiggy craze would die down within a month; however, she became an icon and a supermodel. Known for the high fashion mod look created by Mary Quant, Twiggy changed the world of fashion with her short-haired androgynous look. She was also famous for drawing long, fake eyelashes under her bottom lashes.
Twiggy was regarded as one of the faces of 1960s Swinging London, along with other models, such as Jean Shrimpton and Celia Hammond. On 16 June 1967, Capitol Records released Twiggy's first single for the label "When I Think Of You" with "Over And Over" on the B-side. In early 1968, she toured Japan and filmed advertisements for Toyota Motors and Choco Flakes breakfast cereal. In 1969 she did advertising work in the United States for Diet Pepsi Cola.
She married the American actor Michael Witney in 1977. They had one daughter, Carly, born in 1978. That marriage ended with his sudden death in 1983 from a heart attack. She met Leigh Lawson on the film Madame Sousatzka, and married him in 1988. They reside in London. In 2003, she released another album, Midnight Blue, featuring previously unreleased material she had recorded from 1982–1990; the CD received glowing reviews and had duets on it with Leo Sayer and Carly Simon. Her other recordings from 1985 failed to make the charts. Feel Emotion and Diamond have both been released onto CD format since.
In 2005, she joined the cast of the TV show America's Next Top Model as one of four judges. She also returned to modelling, fronting a major new TV, press and billboard campaign for Marks & Spencer, a British department store chain. In 2006, she portrayed herself as a nineteen-year-old in the radio play Elevenses with Twiggy for BBC Radio 4's Afternoon Play series. She did not return to America's Next Top Model in its 10th season due to scheduling conflicts, since the show was moving to New York. She was instead replaced with model Paulina Porizkova.
Also in 2007, Sepia records released a previously shelved album that Twiggy recorded in 1979, Produced by Donna Summer and Jurgen Koppers. "Heaven In My Eyes ['Discotheque'] contains the 8 original tracks due to be released, plus 4 remixes by The Outpsider. The album was also made available on iTunes. She is signed to London agency Models 1. In 2008, she supported the Fashion Targets Breast Cancer campaign in support of Breakthrough Breast Cancer, alongside fellow celebrities: comedian Alan Carr, singer Natalie Imbruglia, actress Anna Friel and DJ & presenter Edith Bowman. Still cool!!!
Welsh band Manic Street Preachers released the song "4st 7lb" on their 1994 album The Holy Bible. Written from the perspective of a girl with anorexia, it includes the following lines "Legs bend, stockinged I am Twiggy / And I don't mind the horror that surrounds me". In the Onion's news-compendium parody Our Dumb Century there is a story entitled "Twiggy Popularizing Eating Disorders".
In 1981, she starred as Eliza Doolittle opposite Robert Powell in Yorkshire TV production of Pygmalion and in 1983, she made her Broadway debut in the musical, My One and Only, starring and co-staged by Tune; earned a Tony nomination. In 1987, she played a vaudeville performer in the British TV special The Little Match Girl and in 1988, she garnered a supporting role in Madame Sousatzka, opposite second husband Leigh Lawson. In 1989, she was cast as Hannah Chaplin, mother to Charles, in the British TV-movie Young Charlie Chaplin; aired in US on PBS' Wonderworks. In 1991, she co-starred in the ill-fated CBS sitcom Princesses.
In 1997, she acted in London stage revival of Noel Coward's Blithe Spirit and a year later, she played Gertrude Lawrence in the biographical stage musical Noel and Gertie at the Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor, Long Island. In 1999, she returned to New York stage as Lawrence in an off-Broadway production If Love Were All, a revised version of Noel and Gertie, directed by Lawson; what set this edition apart were its tap numbers in period style; starred opposite Harry Groener's Coward. In 2001, she co-hosted the British magazine programme This Morning. In 2005, she served as a judge on America's Next Top Model for Cycles 5-9 and a year later, she appeared on the cover of the Icons issue of SWINDLE magazine.
Fashion Exclusive: Twiggy Swinging Back; 40 Years after She Took the Swinging 60s by Storm, the World's First Supermodel Makes Her Comeback as a Fashion Designer at 55
Aug 07, 2005; Byline: By NATASHA WEALE Twiggy is still remembered as the world's first supermodel - four decades on from being dubbed...