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Sale Rack: Charlotte Ronson hearts JCPenney

April 3, 2009 |  2:17 pm

I heart ronsonJCPenney, the quintessential American department store, has enlisted Charlotte Ronson to inject its staid racks with a dose of downtown New York cool.

Ronson, 31, sister of music producer Mark and DJ Samantha (her twin), has been designing clothes for nearly a decade, beginning with her 2000 C. Ronson collection, which introduced her trademark "tushies" (a lingerie-inspired romper), wedge heels and iPod "hoodie" scratch protectors.

By 2005, Ronson had partnered with giant Japanese apparel company Sanei International and given her line the more mature-sounding Charlotte Ronson name. Her fall/winter 2009 show during New York Fashion Week featured tough looks such as black one-shoulder knit tops and cropped leather pants.

The I Heart Ronson collection, which targets women 21 to 35, had a soft launch for spring, and its summer looks land in stores this month. The new offerings include $30 blouses with a 1980s-inspired print, $36 high-waist pink shorts, $36 "tushies" and $58 prairie-style maxi-dresses. (Ronson was scheduled to toast the collaboration here in Los Angeles with a soiree at the Chateau Marmont on April 3.)

JCPenney may have been overshadowed recently by competitor Target's forays into fashion with its Go International collection, but the Plano, Texas-based department store pioneered designer collaborations back in 1982 when it signed on the late designer Halston. And with its affordable Ronson collection, the retailer is clearly reaching for some buzz.

-- Max Padilla

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Monocle shop to open in Brentwood on April 6 | Photos

Photos: Charlotte Ronson's fall 2009 New York Fashion Week show

Photos: Designers with discount lines

Photo: I Heart Ronson collection for JCPenney,