Robert Verdi (born August 28, 1968 in Maplewood, New Jersey) is an American TV personality and style expert. He is most noted for hosting a variety of TV programs featuring fashion and interior design.
Robert was born and raised in suburban Maplewood, New Jersey. His mother, a Portuguese immigrant, was a skilled dressmaker, and his father was a chef. Verdi developed his sensibilities in suburban New Jersey where he defied the norm to set-out on a career as a trained goldsmith. Verdi’s dogged persistence, a degree from New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology and an intuitive eye for design soon led to jewelry showcases in Manhattan’s fabulous four Bs—Barney’s, Bendel's, Bloomingdales and Bergdorf Goodman.
In the early '90s, Robert redirected his pursuits towards a career in television. Troubled by the fact that the fashion reporter on Gay Entertainment Television was a straight woman, Robert contacted the network, which led to his first job in television.
A 1998 article in The New York Times is quoted as saying about Robert, “In the style universe, where fashion, decorating and the media are usually on different planets, Mr. Verdi travels comfortably between them. He is a jack-of-all-trades in a world where good taste and an instinct for the Now can be a passport across boundaries.” Robert’s notoriety as a style expert led him to work with many celebrities. He planned the 1996 wedding of fashion designer Cynthia Rowley to sculptor Bill Keenan. He also designed the New York apartments of Sandra Bernhard, Hugh Jackman, Mariska Hargitay and Bobby Flay.
In 2000, Robert co-created and co-hosted Full Frontal Fashion on the now-defunct network Metro TV. The show was the first of its kind to air complete coverage of runway fashion shows, bringing the exclusive events into American living rooms.
In 2002, Robert began co-hosting Surprise by Design. On the show, Robert or his co-host, Rebecca Cole, would redesign a room or exterior space at someone’s home in order to surprise a loved one. The homeowner would assist in the re-design, which would happen on a $2,500 budget, in one day, typically while their loved one was away at work. The show became the Discovery Channel’s highest rated daytime show.
Robert hosted Fashion Police, a weekly series about celebrity fashion, when it was on the Style Network. He is frequently a guest on a variety of talk and news programs such as The View, Live with Regis & Kelly, The Today Show and VH1’s The Fabulous Life Of. Additionally, Robert is a stylist for Desperate Housewives star Eva Longoria, and has designed two of her Los Angeles, California homes. He was the designer for her July 7, 2007 wedding in Paris, France to basketball star Tony Parker.
In 2010, Robert starred in his self-titled show, The Robert Verdi Show, in which he styled celebrities and ran amok with bizarre ideas he threw at his crew of personal assistants. The show aired for one season on the LGBT TV channel Logo.
In Feb 2012, Robert Verdi launched an affordable sunglasses collection under his name which sold exclusively on HSN. In an interview with eyewear blog eyestylebook, Robert Verdi was quoted as saying " Everyone should have their own wardrobe of eyewear. You need a bowl of them like you need a bowl of jelly beans on Easter". A pair of sunglasses perched on his head form a part of Robert Verdi's signature look.
- Rohrlich, Marianne "His Job Title is Elusive, But His Taste is Impeccable", The New York Times, March 15, 1998