Red carpet season is heating up! And last night's Critic's Choice Awards brought out the A-List from the film and TV world, who appeared in head turning gowns. We chatted with 3 stylists about the process of getting their clients ready for the festivities--and the cyber critics. From dressing for one's body type, to feeling confident and conveying a particular message, there's a lot more that goes into a look than what meets the eye.
Jessica Paster (aka @HighHellePrncess), whose clients include Jennifer Aniston, Cate Blanchett, and Miranda Kerr, dressed Kelly Hu, Chrissy Metz, Shantel VanSanten, and Maria Bakalova last night. She said, "I’m so hopeful and excited that red carpets are coming back because they are joyful, even if there are some people who have something negative to say."
She offers, " The most important thing for any client, [is to] know the body type that you’re working with. It’s celebrating the best things of your body and that is what I do."
Paster received a bit of criticism for the custom red Greta Constantine dress she styled on client Chrissy Metz. She explains, "For Chrissy in particular, I met with her a couple times, we talked about it...and she wanted to celebrate herself. She is so comfortable with her skin, and she knows she’s absolutely beautiful. We could have gone with a gorgeous black dress, but no, we wanted to celebrate and have fun and just do something beautiful. I did come up with a beautiful red dress--I wanted to be bold. One of the silhouettes that does look beautiful on Chrissy is an empire waist. It's easy for someone not in the business to say, 'this is what I would put someone in." I wanted to go bold, I wanted to do something fun, and I think I did achieve it. If some people did not like it. I’m going to say what Kim Kardashian said in her post yesterday, “F*ck you.”
Burns said, "This was a team effort with Creative Direction by Seannita. Dominique Kernice found the dress and the look was tailored by Jolleson. I completed the look with shoes, accessories, and undergarments. The goal for us was to cross her over. The stigma on her was a girlfriend, [someone who] might be there for the moment. Everyone would attach her to Love and Hip Hop, even when we were getting items for her for the project. For us, [we wanted] to break her out of that stigma. Get her a look that would transition her from the Love and Hip Hop space to the top tier red carpet space. Someone who can walk hand in hand with Taye Diggs. We wanted to create a new imagery for her."
It seems that with red carpets, in addition to dressing for one's body type, the ideal choice also conveys a message that the stylist and client look to convey.
Lastly, Ashley Sean Thomas (@ashleyseanthomas), whose clients include Brandy, Ari Lennox, and Niecy Nash, styled Amber Ruffin and Ava Duvernay for the festivities.
He said, "Styling can be pretty brutal. You’re fighting against other stylists going for the same designers. You have to account for the time in New York, the time in Paris, and the time in Milan. [Since I'm based in LA], I have to be up at dern near 3am so I can correspond at the right time. I can lose a day if I don’t. It comes down to getting all the looks in, and getting what you finally like. "
He continues, "Most of my clients are black women. Their shapes don’t go with runway looks. Everything has to be tailored. That could be anywhere from the waist to the bustline to the hips, something’s gonna need to be tailored. It's about timing and doing that as well. Nothing comes off the runway and you pop it on and zip it up. "
The mark that a look is a keeper? Sean Thomas says, "Whenever you zip the dress up and the client starts dancing, you won."
At the end of the day, confidence is key.
What was your favorite look from the Critic's Choice Awards?