City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

A talk with Jill Zarin, former ‘Real Housewives of New York’ cast member, promoting her new Skweez Couture line at North Point Mall Nov. 5

Jill Zarin was dropped from "Real Housewives of New York" in September after four seasons. CREDIT: AP

Jill Zarin was dropped from "Real Housewives of New York" in September after four seasons. CREDIT: AP

Jill Zarin was often portrayed as a villainess on “The Real Housewives of New York” after sharp disagreements with various cast members over four seasons, most famously former BFF Bethenny Frankel.

Now Zarin’s free of the Bravo show, let go in September, and focused on her other businesses, including a new line of shapewear called Skweez Couture. She’ll spend two hours at North Point Mall’s new Von Maur store this Saturday starting at noon if you’d like to talk to her and get a photo taken.

“I would have liked to earn the money to stay on the show,” she said in a phone interview Thursday while her closet was getting reorganized in her 2,000-square-foot New York City apartment. “On the other hand, now that I’m off the show, I can see my reputation getting better. Things improved season four after it was damaged season three. People are starting to realize, watching other reality shows, that maybe they were too harsh on me.”

She cited an example from season three of her getting heat for placing Bethenny’s call on speakerphone without telling her LuAnn De Lesseps was in the room, closing the door on her friendship with Bethenny and then snickering about it with LuAnn.  (You can refresh your memory from this recap.) Zarin said she didn’t do that to be catty and uncaring but to accommodate the producers of the show since she didn’t realize Bethenny had a camera crew with her. (Often on shows when the other side is not being taped, a speakerphone is a way to ensure listeners can hear what’s going on.) A similar incident happened another time when she put Ramona on speakerphone and Ramona said something bad about LuAnn, unaware LuAnn could hear her.

“I think people are going to miss me,” Zarin said, once season five starts without her.

She said her contract on Bravo limited her ability to make appearances on shows on rival networks, but Frankel, who she dubbed “The Golden Child,” was able to get on ABC’s “Skating With the Stars,” no problem. Now, Zarin said, she is able to go elsewhere and is in talks to do another show on another network. She just won’t detail who or what since nothing has been signed.

Zarin was hurt by comments fellow ousted castmate Alex McCord and her husband Simon van Kampen said on “Good Morning America” about her a few days after Bravo cut them loose. McCord said Zarin had been trying to get her off the show for years. Van Kampen said Zarin was still stuck in junior high 30 years later.

“I was disappointed by what they said,” Zarin said. “After we were let go that Saturday night, I reached out to all the girls, including Alex and Simon. I said if you need me for anything, I get booked for appearances and if they need other people, I can suggest you. Now I don’t want to work with them.”

“It hurt my feelings,” she added. “I was trying to be nice. For good or bad, we made great television. We had fun together. Season four, I didn’t have one fight with Alex. We got along in Morocco. Don’t go after me. Go after another housewife that did something to you, not me.”

When it comes to the show itself, Zarin said she enjoyed her experience with Bravo. “Four years was much longer than I ever thought the show would last,” she said. “I’m grateful And the show lives on. Plus, repeats are now being rolled out in other countries so I get emails all over the world asking me if I’m still best friends with Bethenny.”

Zarin, who has been in the hosiery business for 25 years, said she wanted her Skweez Couture shapewear to address issues she has had over the years. She wanted more color choices than nude or black. She’s added lace and improved the waistband so it won’t roll down. “Mine is developed to make you look more feminine,” she said. She said the line, which ranges in cost from $20 to $75, is cheaper than comparable products from Atlanta-based Spanx and she believes Skweez is more comfortable to boot.

(A Daily News reporter tried both on and felt Skweeze worked better than Spanx but was not all that comfortable.)

She premiered the line at Lord & Taylors, with Macy’s adding Skweez by February. She will also be hawking her product line on HSN Feb. 10, 2012.

And given her background, Zarin said this is a natural brand extension for her. “It’s not like I’m a celebrity who woke up and said, ‘Oh, let me do a line of this or that.’ What I’m doing makes sense based on what I already know. I feel like I’m filling a void.”

She invited NeNe Leakes and Kandi Burruss to her appearance Saturday so you might get bonus “Real Housewives” if you stop by.


Jill Zarin, to promote her shapewear line Skweez Couture

Von Maur (grand opening), North Point Mall, Alpharetta

Noon to 2 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 5

Join my Facebook fan page and Twitter.

By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk

24 comments Add your comment


November 3rd, 2011
1:17 pm

I never understood the animosity between the Housewives. I think the network encouraged fighting and catty comments. They are just people with flaws like anyone. Imagine someone walking around filming everything you say and do – you wouldn’t look so good either.

I wish Jill all the luck in the worth. I admired her relationship with her husband. I thought she was lovely.

Just Me

November 3rd, 2011
1:58 pm

I agree about her relationship with Bobby…. top notch. But I think the competitiveness between people with money are always going to cause issues involving cattiness.

[...] more A talk with Jill Zarin, former ‘Real Housewives of New York’ cast member, promoting her new Skwe… at Radio & TV Talk… You Might Also Like…New ‘Real Housewives of [...]


November 3rd, 2011
2:36 pm

I agree that Bravo scripted much of the show. In order for them to film this heartless behavior the actor has to do it. If you have decency you don’t do it. The scenes mentioned here also reflect on Luann who should have objected. They are both sleezy.


November 3rd, 2011
2:56 pm


November 3rd, 2011
3:11 pm

Just another gum chewing girl from one of the 5 towns of Long Island. Few will miss her cattiness and abrasiveness. People like Zarin are why I moved from NY to Atlanta to get away from. “Good riddens to bad rubbish” She got the publicity she wanted for herself and her husbands store, I’m not feeling sorry for her.


November 3rd, 2011
3:12 pm

I am so looking forward to trying her shapewear and she has hit on the issues with Spanx – not enough color selection and the roll down problem. I hope she gets filthy rich. And I always liked the way her husband treated her. He seemed to let her be herself in all her womanly glory and not make her feel bad about it. I love men who love women.


November 3rd, 2011
3:19 pm

She didn’t have a fight with Alex but she started Season 4 calling her a f***ing bitch and ended the season at the reunion reiterating the remark. LOL! Jill is a bit deluded and completely unable to take responsibility for any of her own words or actions. RHONY is well rid of her.


November 3rd, 2011
3:35 pm

Glad she’s gone from RHONY. She’s two-faced at best. Just wish they’d sent “the countess” with her.

seemore's mom

November 3rd, 2011
3:43 pm

I wanted to go see her, but not if NeNe is going. no way i will be in the same room with her.


November 3rd, 2011
3:46 pm

Awww cut her some slack. She seems like an OK egg.

Te Greenfield

November 3rd, 2011
4:31 pm

Can you please leave now and get back to your housewife duties in NJ? Please?? Pretty Please??

Mrs. R

November 3rd, 2011
5:15 pm

Does this mean she is no longer friends with LuAnn? Shame but glad Jill is moving on and good luck to her.


November 3rd, 2011
6:10 pm

OMG-I have no life and I am a loser, Where can I go and see her!!!

Atlanta Deb

November 3rd, 2011
8:10 pm

Dela flight attendent

November 3rd, 2011
8:33 pm

I had the disgust of serving this horrid woman. I have worked the air for 20 years and never encountered such an arrogant condesending demanding “Don’t you know who I am” horror. Please do not support anything she is associated with. I guarantee all her efforts will fail. She will never be an Atlanta lady !


November 3rd, 2011
10:43 pm

Spanx is a nice brand of shapewear but there are better ones out there.


November 4th, 2011
12:15 am

I love you Jill. I’m glad to see you doing big things and not stooping to “lost at sea” tactics to stay relevent like other people. I will not watch the Housewives of New York without you. I can’t imagine watching Ramona and Sonja get drunk every episode and The Countess Luann desprite efforts to be in Ramona and Sonja’s circle. I will not watch and a few of my co-workers said they won’t watch without you either.
I love you. I’m also glad to see you not give a crap about being let go. The show was so toxic for you. Jill you made the show interesting for me.


November 4th, 2011
12:15 am

Crazy Eights

November 4th, 2011
12:17 am

Jill gets my respect.Jill will be missed greatly!


November 4th, 2011
12:34 am

Wow.. What reality does Jill live in. She thinks her image is improving? All anyone needs to do is take one look at her Twitter account to see how down right mean this woman really is. She is constantly blocking people who have never said anything about her! The way she treated an employee with an airline she recently used is appalling. You can also see this on her Twitter time line. Jill acts as if the world owes her something but she owes nothing to this world in return. She calls people Antii-Semitic and says she has proof. When asked to produce the proof, she blocks them and acts like she didnt do anything. Jill is so self-righteous. She is rude, arrogant and self absorbed. Take a trip over to her Twitter time line and see for yourself. Wake up and smell the hate Jill.


November 4th, 2011
8:01 pm

Right Jill, blame it on the producers and editing…This woman is a beast….an arrogant, obnoxious moron. Any endeavor of hers will fail because she is an idiot…she was too stupid to see the writing on the wall on rhony and behaved like a teenybopper..she is delusional and so sad.


November 4th, 2011
8:36 pm

Jill was the best n made the shw exciting and enjoyable to watch!!! me an a bunch of my friends meet up to watch this everyday but that wont be happening anymore. We believe that the show wil not be worth watching without this people………simples.


November 7th, 2011
12:47 pm

Thats just like Alex N Simon to go on a show n cry with her net work at 400 thousand lowest of the new york housewives lol mayb she could get a refund on all that remodeling of that apt or mayb her modeling career could pic up imagine thinkin she would b a supermodel over 40