"I was in the habit of redesigning and correcting the fit of the clothes I purchased from Bullocks or the May Co. with an old Singer foot-pedal sewing machine," she says. Of course, Mrs. I, as her employees called her, always cut a glamorous figure herself, resembling Tippi Hedren in the "Marni" era.
But as fun as it all was, running the show at a time when women stayed at home strained her marriage to Larry Isreal.
"Very few of my closest friends really knew me because I hid my identity to be a respectful, feminine person," she says. "They knew I had a part in Judy’s, but they had no idea how much of a part. And that was fine with me, because it made my marriage look better."
In 1964, she had a coming out of sorts when The Los Angeles Times named her Woman of the Year. The article began: "Is she the boss’s wife? No, she is the boss."