NYC socialite Mortimer launches reality TV show

Television personality Tinsley Mortimer attends Samsung's new High-Def 3D LED TV celebration at the Samsung Experience - Time Warner Center on Wednesday, March 10, 2010 in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Agostini)

March 11, 2010 7:41:32 PM PST
Red carpet regular Tinsley Mortimer is jumping from the social circuit to the national spotlight with her own reality television show.

Cameras follow Mortimer and a few of her friends on the party circuit as they live their fabulous lives in New York City. But it's not all champagne and velvet ropes.

The show, "High Society," which premiered Wednesday and will air weekly on The CW network, comes as Mortimer is newly single after splitting from her investment banker husband, Robert "Topper" Mortimer, whom she met in high school.

It will feature Tinsley Mortimer, 34, moving out on her own, going on dates and dealing with a mother who's unhappy about her impending divorce.

In one episode, Mortimer's friends throw her what they call a single shower to mark her bachelorette status. They each show a photo of an eligible man they think she could date. There's a lot of giggling until her mother pulls out one of the photos from her wedding to Robert Mortimer and says he's the perfect guy for her.

Tinsley Mortimer says she understands where her mom is coming from.

"No mother wants to see her daughter get divorced," she says. "It's hard when you grow apart. It's scary and exciting. I feel like I've come out stronger from all this ... filming this TV show was almost like therapy."

It also could be lucrative. The master plan is for "High Society" to expand the Tinsley Mortimer brand.

Mortimer already designs a line of handbags for Samantha Thavasa and wants to branch out into clothing, home care and other items.

"I'm a smart girl, and I work hard," she says. "I'm very focused, and I want to build a business here. That's really the larger goal, and that's the reason I did a television show and all those risks that come along with that."

Plus, it could help her reputation. Mortimer says she hopes people will realize she's more normal than they think.

"I do not go out every night," she says. "I do love to wear sweat pants and veg out."