Thursday, July 29

Happy 35th Birthday, Mary-Kate and Ashley! See Them Through the Years


Everywhere you look — it’s the Olsens! Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen got their start as child actresses before taking the fashion world by storm.

The sisters famously took turns starring as Michelle Tanner on Full House from 1987 to 1995. While winning over fans on the beloved sitcom, the fraternal twins began appearing in their own films, including Double, Double, Toil and Trouble and How the West Was Fun.

As their following grew, their careers did too, with roles in It Takes Two, Passport to Paris, Our Lips Are Sealed, Holiday in the Sun and So Little Time. Their final joint movie, New York Minute, debuted in 2004.

Mary-Kate and Ashley ultimately retired from acting to pursue fashion design. They founded The Row in 2006 and Elizabeth and James in 2007, simultaneously retreating from the spotlight to gain more privacy.

The siblings rarely make public appearances or give interviews, but they made an exception in 2018 when they opened up to WSJ. Magazine about their partnership.

“It’s been 32 years of learning how to communicate,” Ashley explained at the time, comparing their bond to “a marriage and a partnership. We have had ups and downs.”

While she added that the two “do everything together,” Mary-Kate chimed in, “We came out of the womb doing that.”

Ashley also revealed why the pair opt to let their work speak for itself. “We’re not product pushers,” she said. “I don’t know if it’s because of the way we grew up — we just don’t like talking about ourselves or talking about what we’re doing. … It’s not really our approach.”

Mary-Kate, for her part, tied the knot with Olivier Sarkozy in November 2015, allowing her to settle into a quiet personal life. “I think we’re lucky. [Working hard] comes quite naturally for us. We don’t need so much time to sit and think and ponder,” she told Net-a-Porter’s The Edit of herself and Ashley in 2017. “But then I have a husband, two stepkids and a life; I have to go home and cook dinner. I ride horses on the weekends. You find the thing that helps you relax, and if you don’t have it, you have to look for it. Or you get burned out, and then you’re not productive.”

News of the Beastly star’s split from the banker broke in May 2020. Us Weekly exclusively reported at the time that Mary-Kate had an “ironclad prenup” to protect “her business interests and fortune.” The exes finalized their divorce in January 2021.

From TV to the red carpet, scroll through the gallery below to see photos of the twins over the years.

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September 22, 1987

Playing Michelle Tanner, the twins began their eight-season run on Full House opposite Bob Saget, Jodie Sweetin, Candace Cameron Bure, John Stamos and Dave Coulier.

ABC PHOTO ARCHIVES

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June 19, 1991

The two posed together in a promo shoot for Full House.

ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty

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January 1, 1992

As kids, the twins starred in a series of successful direct-to-video films, including To Grandmother’s House We Go, Double, Double, Toil and Trouble, How the West Was Fun, Billboard Dad, Passport to Paris, Winning London, Holiday in the Sun and When in Rome.

ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images

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March 31, 1993

“Just as we’ve had great working lives, we have also had good personal lives,” Mary-Kate has said. “For instance, we have made school our No. 1 priority. We have been in school our entire lives with kids our own age.”

ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images

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April 25, 1997

Dressed in matching outfits, the Olsens attended the Audrey Hepburn Hollywood for Children Family Film Festival.

Jim Spellman/WireImage

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July 14, 2001

After Full House ended, the twins returned to the small screen with the Fox Family Channel series So Little Time; it lasted just one season.

Barbara Binstein/NGI/Getty

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October 9, 2003

Mary-Kate and Ashley played — what else? — twin sisters in New York Minute, which premiered the following year. It was their first theatrical release since 1995’s It Takes Two.

James Devaney/WireImage

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April 3, 2004

The former child stars got slimed on stage during Nickelodeon’s 17th Annual Kids’ Choice Awards in Westwood, California.

Chris Polk/FilmMagic

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April 29, 2004

After more than a decade in show business, the twins were honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Later that year, Mary-Kate entered treatment for anorexia.

Gregg DeGuire/WireImage

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June 11, 2004

The twins — who skipped their prom to host Saturday Night Live — graduated from Campbell Hall in North Hollywood, California. Months later, they began classes at New York University.

ImageActive/WireImage

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February 19, 2006

The twins emceed the Total Girl Fashion Launch at Luna Park in Sydney, Australia. As designers themselves, the twins have launched several lines: The Row, Elizabeth and James and Olsenboye.

Dani Abramowicz/FilmMagic

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February 7, 2007

Blonde beauties! The twins looked glam as they sat front row during the Fall 2007 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York City.

Jason Kempin/FilmMagic

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February 29, 2008

Wearing their trademark oversized sunglasses, Mary-Kate and Ashley attended the Chanel fashion show during Paris Fashion Week.

Tony Barson/WireImage

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November 12, 2008

The sisters co-authored Influence, which features interviews with designers like Diane von Furstenberg and Karl Lagerfeld, as well as other high-profile photographers, celebrities and businesspeople.

Jim Spellman/WireImage

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June 6, 2011

Mary-Kate and Ashley were nominated for the Swarovski Award for Womenswear at the prestigious CFDA Awards; they lost out to designer Prabal Gurung.

Larry Busacca/Getty Images

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October 5, 2011

Sisterly love! The twins attended the NYLON & AX Armani Exchange Private Dinner in New York City with their other famous sibling, Avengers: Age of Ultron actress Elizabeth Olsen.

Jamie McCarthy/WireImage

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November 15, 2011

Killing it. The gorgeous twosome were named Vogue‘s Most Stylish siblings, beating out other famous sisters such as Kate and Pippa Middleton (No. 9) and Beyoncé and Solange Knowles (No. 7). In April 2012, they also made TIME‘s Fashion Icons List.


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May 7, 2012

Making a statement, as always! Mary-Kate turned heads at New York City’s Met Gala when she wore her platinum blonde hair in a messy bun and donned an oversized black satin gown.

Kevin Mazur/WireImage

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June 4, 2012

Ch-ch-changings! Mary-Kate traded in her famous blonde locks for a darker ‘do while attending the CFDA Awards in New York City. The sisters coordinated in black and wore their locks down.

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images; Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

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May 6, 2013

Spring has sprung! The ladies shined on the red carpet at the Chaos to Couture-themed Met Gala. Ashley wore an orange Christian Dior Haute Couture gown while Mary-Kate stood out in a vintage Balmain jacket.

Larry Busacca/Getty Images; Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

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May 16, 2013

These two! The gals (with shades on!) attended the New York Knicks vs. Indiana Pacers game at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The following month, they debuted their pricey $16,900 fur backpack in conjunction with their fashion line The Row.

James Devaney/WireImage

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April 25, 2014

Back on TV! The sisters answered fun facts about each other during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Turns out, Mary-Kate was the first to kiss a boy and is the better dancer. Just two months earlier, Us broke news that Mary-Kate got engaged to Sarkozy.


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May 5, 2014

Another glamorous night! The gals hit up Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Gala and were spotted mingling with David and Victoria Beckham once inside.

Kevin Mazur/WireImage

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May 5, 2015

The two coordinated in black for the star-studded Met Gala. That same month, it was confirmed that they would not be joining Netflix’s Full House reboot, Fuller House. “Heartbroken,” former costar Stamos tweeted amid the news. “I understand they’re in a different place and I wish them the best. I promise you will not be disappointed with our reunion and spinoff!!”

Taylor Hill/FilmMagic

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June 6, 2016

The famous twins coordinated in black as they attended the CFDA Fashion Awards at Lincoln Center in New York City. On June 13, they celebrated their 30th birthday.

Neil Rasmus/BFA/REX/Shutterstock

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February 25, 2017

Chicest bridesmaids ever! The twins served as bridesmaids at their friends Maggie Kayne and Travis Hayden’s wedding in Mangawhai, New Zealand, on February 25, 2017. 

Stephen d'Antal/MEGA

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May 1, 2017

The Olsen twins attended the Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between-themed Met Gala in New York City on May 1, 2017, displaying their love and appreciation for fashion.

Kevin Mazur/WireImage.com

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June 5, 2017

Ashley and Mary-Kate posed together at the 2017 CFDA Fashion Awards in their brand The Row on June 5, 2017. The sisters were nominated for the Accessories Designer of the Year Award, which they won in 2014.

Taylor Hill/FilmMagic

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May 7, 2018

The twins attended the Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination-themed Met Gala. Mary-Kate donned an all-black, off-the-shoulder ensemble while Ashley wore a red, black and bronze gown.

Frazer Harrison/FilmMagic

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May 6, 2019

Mary-Kate and Ashley twinned in vintage Chanel black leather dresses at the Camp: Notes on Fashion-themed Met Gala.

Neilson Barnard/Getty Images



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