Thoughts of Hollywood immediately conjure up images of glitz and glam, but for some Hollywood stars, the reality couldn’t be further from the truth. For many women, it seems as though getting fashion designers to dress them is a major struggle. From plus-size problems to fashion snobbery, these stars have faced it all. However, they also have another thing in common- they slayed the red carpet (and other events) anyway! You won’t believe which actress from one the top television shows of all time had trouble landing a designer! Find out who it was on slide six.
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“Orange Is the New Blac”k star Dasch Polanco, has found it difficult to get dressed by designers. Dascha is known for speaking her mind and talked to Vogue Magazine about how designers only want to dress “sample sizes.”
“I understand that it’s business, but still, it’s like, really? My industry friends, who are clear and honest with me say, Girl, they don’t have your size, and you’re not at that level yet, so you have to either move that way or just build those relationships so that later in the future maybe it happens.” Either way, Dascha definitely doesn’t hold back on the red carpet and looked amazing in this white lacy number from Michael Costello which she wore at the 2015 SAG awards.
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Stunning supermodel Ashley Graham is considered a plus size model but she hasn’t let that stop her from breaking boundaries like landing the Sports Illustrated cover. Despite her insane beauty and amazing success, she has still found it difficult to get designers to dress her for public events.
Ashley has really pushed the boundaries and continuously speaks out about body positivity and the fight that plus size women face when attempting to be dressed by major designers. Ashley called out the problem on the red carpet for the Oscars, telling E!, “Trying to find a dress for the Oscars — girls my size — I mean, it has been a whole job in itself. So I am happy tonight with my outfit.” Ashley looked super sexy in a stunning red number from designer Bao Tranchi.
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Before Beyoncé was the superstar we all know and love today, she was just a member of the girl group Destiny’s Child. In the early 2000s, fashion politics had some definite racist and classist tendencies. In 2016, Beyoncé received the CFDA Fashion Icon award and in her speech, she acknowledged the difficulty in getting dressed in her early career saying.
“When we were starting out in Destiny’s Child, high-end labels, they didn’t want to dress black, country, curvy girls. And we couldn’t afford designer dresses and couture. My mother was rejected from every showroom in New York. But like my grandmother, she used her talent and her creativity to give her children their dreams.” Beyoncé’s mom started “House of Dereon” and nearly all of the early outfits worn by Destiny’s Child were designed by her.
Jennifer Hudson underwent a major weight loss back in 2010 in which she lost 80 lbs. Since that time, JHud has spoken at length about how her weight directly related to her experiences in getting dressed for the red carpet. “The truth is, so many more opportunities open up when you’re on the other side, as I am now. I had no idea what I was missing out on,” She told The Daily Mail.
“It’s like a whole other world. Suddenly every designer wants to dress you. It’s like, ‘You look amazing! Please, choose a dress. Have a bag. And what about shoes?'”
Leslie Jones – Ghostbusters Premiere
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Stand-up comedian Leslie Jones got her big break when she joined the cast of Saturday Night Live. Jones has often joked about her height as she stands at 6 feet tall and has also spoken out about how hard it has been for her to get dressed for events. For instance, Leslie starred in the remake of Ghostbusters and took to Twitter when she said no designers would dress her for the event.
Christian Siriano of Project Runway responded saying he would love to dress her. Leslie showed up in the most amazing red, off-the-shoulder Christian Siriano design proving that she indeed looks amazing in designer fashion. At the time, Christian tweeted about the positive response to the dress, “Congrats aren’t in order. A change is.”
Bryce Dallas Howard – 2016 Golden Globes
It may come as a surprise that this lovely lady has a hard time getting dressed for red cart events. Bryce Dallas Howard is the daughter of Hollywood legend Ron Howard. Howard is slim, beautiful, and has longtime Hollywood connections, yet she still has a difficult time finding a designer to dress her for the red carpet.
Ultimately, she has resorted to purchasing her own gowns, including her 2016 Golden Globes dress made by Jenny Packham which cost $4,800. Howard has said, “When you’re not ‘sample’ size, or when you don’t have a direct relationship with a designer, or if you don’t have a lot of notice, those types of size 6 dresses just aren’t that available that much.”
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Red-headed beauty, Christina Hendricks, is best known for her role as Joan Holloway on Mad Men. The character was known for pouring her curves into tight wiggle dresses which stole many scenes. However, art did not translate into real life. While her curves garnered praise elsewhere, Christina found it staggeringly hard to get dressed by designers.
Christina went on record with the Daily Record saying, “Not one designer in town will loan me a dress. They only lend out a size 0 or 2. So I’m still struggling for someone to give me a darn dress.” In 2010, she was able to get a stunning purple gown from Zac Posen for the Emmy Awards, and there is no denying that she totally stole the show!
Gabourey Sidibe seemingly burst on the scene after her gut-wrenching role as the titular character in the film Precious. She was even nominated for a Best Actress Oscar for her amazing performance. Gabourey has acknowledged her difficulty in being dressed by designers but she also had a rather positive outlook on the situation.
Gabourey spoke to Harper’s Bazaar saying, “I don’t really care because it gives me more freedom. I don’t just flip through a magazine and say, ‘I want this,’ because I can’t, really.” This creativity has obviously been a good thing because she showed up at the 2017 NAACP Image Awards looking like literal royalty in a colorful African print inspired frock by Ofuure.
Octavia Spencer – 2012 Emmys
In 2012, Octavia Spencer won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for the film The Help, but she struggled to get dressed by a designer for the prestigious award ceremony. She told reporters at the Golden Globes, “I’m just a short, chubby girl. It’s hard for me to find a dress to wear to something like this! It’s a lot of pressure, I’ll tell ya. No designers are coming to me.”
She continued by discussing how hard it was to find a designer who knew how to dress women who don’t fit into designer’s samples sizes. “It’s very difficult to make a woman of different sizes look as chic, as sexy, without making them wear a tent,” she said. “I’m not going to wear a muumuu!”
“Glee” actress Amber Riley took her beef with the fashion industry to social media after responding to a plus-size model turned designer named GabiFresh. GabiFresh echoed the thoughts of stars like Danielle Brooks and Aidy Bryant who have said that because they were plus-sized fashions, their looks are limited.
Amber responded with a Tweet saying, “Risking seeing other plus celebs wearing the same [poop emoji] on the carpet *throws up hands* we can’t win.” Amber was inferring that plus size women only have very few choices and it’s likely that they might end up in the same gown. Amber discovered what looks amazing on her, like this 2012 red-hot Badgley Mischka dress.
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Danielle Brooks is best known for her role as Tastee on the hit Netflix series Orange is the New Black. You would think appearing on one of the hottest TV shows of the last decade would earn her some credibility among fashion designers — but you would be wrong.
Danielle has discussed how attempting to get dressed for events is more of a chore than a “fun” experience. Even when she finds designers to dress her, she says there are only a few options that match her personal style. Danielle told People, “It makes you feel like you’re ‘less than’ when you only have four options… It’s really not fun.” Danielle certainly looked like a queen in this navy gown at the 70th Annual Tony Awards.
Barbie Ferreira Asks, “Am I Gonna Have To Wear Sears When I Win My Oscar?”
Barbie Ferreira is a plus-size model who has had her share of difficult experiences while working in the fashion industry. Barbie came forward with her story after Leslie Jones vented her own frustration at not being able to find a dress despite her rising star.
Barbie said on Twitter, “Every day I’m reminded of my body. Even if I’m excited about an event, finding someone who even wants to help me by styling is impossible. Curvy women are not allowed to be edgy, not allowed to be stylish, or allowed to explore their looks like everyone else in this industry…. And hearing an actress in a huge film having similar struggles… Girl, I feel hopeless. Am I gonna have to wear Sears when I win my Oscar?“
Rebel Wilson – Night At The Museum Premiere
Rebel Wilson is a hilarious Australian actress and comedienne who has faced many struggles in the fashion industry for her plus-sized body. Rebel even played a character called “Fat Amy” in the movie Pitch Perfect. She has discussed how difficult it was to be plus size and still be able to find amazing clothes for the red carpet.
“I was a young woman making money, and there were no clothes to buy. It felt like if you were over a certain size, designers didn’t care about you,” she revealed. Rebel has gone the route of Melissa McCarthy and started her own fashion line called “Rebel Wilson x Angels.” Rebel slayed it on the red carpet for the “Night at the Museum” premiere where she rocked an ASOS dress!
Rachel Bloom – 2017 Emmy Awards
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Actress Rachel Bloom received rave reviews for her hit TV series “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” and was nominated for an Emmy Award in 2017. Unfortunately, Bloom has also fallen victim to the inability to get a fashion designer to dress her despite her celebrity status.
Bloom has gone to some extremes to achieve the look she wants. The actress rocked a Gucci gown that she purchased off the rack for $3,500. Bloom discussed the scenario without any signs of hard feelings, “It is hard to get places to lend to me because I am not a size zero, but also I can afford it, so it’s okay.”
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Saturday Night Live star Aidy Bryant is hilarious on air and has steadily gained star power since nabbing a spot on the legendary show. However, despite her rising success, Aidy still falls victim to the plus-size prejudices of the fashion industry. Aidy has publicly called out companies for offering fashion for women her size but focusing on outfits that seem more appropriate for women twice her age.
Aidy told PeopleStyle, “I am young and I am cool and I want to wear cool clothes! I don’t understand what the resistance is to it. To me, it just feels like a no-brainer that you would want to dress as many people as you could.” Finally, things seemed to be changing for Aidy after Eloquii approached her in 2016 in order to make her a custom dress, and she definitely slayed.
Adele – 2017 Grammys
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Multi-Grammy award winning singer Adele is known to have a great attitude and sense of humor about life, and hopefully, he applied that to comments certain members of the fashion industry have made about her publicly. Karl Lagerfeld, a fashion “elite” (and former plus-size person himself) said that Adele was “too fat” but also said that she has a “beautiful face.”
Adele seems to be unbothered by his comments and has managed to get dressed by other successful designers such as Riccardo Tisci. Adel wore a Tisci original olive green gown to the 2017 Grammy awards. Did we mention she looked absolutely stunning?!
Edie Falco – 2014 Golden Globes
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For the Golden Globe Awards in 2014, Edie Falco was dressed to the nines. The stunning red gown made Falco the bell of the ball that night. It’s just too bad to look that good, she had to pay for the dress herself.
After speaking with Entertainment Weekly, it seems like shopping for her own clothes might be what the Nurse Jackie star prefers. About her journey to fins the dress she said, “I walked into Jeffrey on 14th Street in New York City and a woman named Chantal said, ‘I have just the dress for you,’ and this is it.”
Madonna – 2012 Golden Globes
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Known as much for her music as she is her boundary-pushing fashion taste, Madonna showed up to the Golden Globes in 2012 looking beautifully classy. The dress, a Reem Acra, was purchased off the rack for the show, but you would never guess that looking at the music icon.
The dress must have been good luck for Madonna. She walked away at the end of the winning a statue for Best Original Song for “Masterpiece” from the movie W.E. Hopefully that dazzling green gown is hanging proudly in Madonna’s closet, serving as a classic reminder that magical night.
Jane Fonda – 1972 Academy Awards
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Winning an Academy Award in 1972 for her performance in Khute, Jane Fonda looked absolutely stunning in her pantsuit. The controversial wardrobe choice was questioned a the time, but looking back now there is no question how gorgeous the star looked.
With no designer willing to make her a pantsuit for the show, Fonda took her fate into her own hands and found one off the rack from a department store. There is no question in our minds whether Fonda made the right choice or not. She definitely did!
Drew Barrymore – 2010
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For an awards show in 2010 Drew Barrymore looked absolutely stunning in his gem she found at a thrift store. Shockingly, looking this good only cost the actress $25. We don’t think anyone questioned this fashion choice, although probably questioned the authenticity of the price tag!
Barrymore found the dress at a thrift store in Austin, Texas. The brand is Janine, which sounds very fancy. The look is classic and beautiful, which is all that really matters. No one should have to spend an arm and a leg to look this amazing. Drew Barrymore refused to spend an arm and a leg, and the results were fabulous!
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Plus-sized model Tess Holliday finds it nearly impossible to et designers to make dresses for her. Aside from Kate Spade, she claims most designers don’t even respond to her emails.
As beautiful as they come in this dazzling yellow dress, Holliday is angry about the lack of representation in her industry, “I think that it’s frustrating because I want it to be available for more plus-size women globally. I want to see more representation, I want to see them doing it in a really thought-provoking way and actually understanding how to dress our bodies.”
Taryn Manning – 2018 SAG Awards
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In a strange twist of fate, Taryn Manning had no idea the dress she wore to the SAG Awards cost around $200. Only discovering after the show that her stylist found the dress at a normal department store, Manning is both angry and happy about the odd discovery.
Her big issue is that she wished she knew where her dress came from before the awards so she could embrace that in interviews, “I would have loved to embrace that my dress was affordable at SAG, especially since so much about fashion is unattainable, but I wasn’t given that chance. Every artist dreams of wearing couture on a red carpet if given the opportunity.”
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Jamie Chung wore this dazzling dress for a gala recently and heads turned when it was discovered in only cost $74. The ease, breezy Summer look suits Chung perfectly. The price tag flaunts a modesty that no one can argue with. We doubt anyone looked better than Chung.
The outfit also proves that clothes don’t need to be expensive to make a person look like a million dollars. We bet anyone would have a smile as glowing as Jamie Chung in this perfectly relaxed and classic look. Who knows what other celebrities have paid to look half as good!
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Olivia Palermo should have no trouble getting designers to hand her dresses for free. This drop-dead gorgeous model had no such luck before attending the CDA Fashion Awards in 2017. In fact, she didn’t even give designers the chance to deny her, she chose this burnt orange beauty all on her own.
The price to look this good will make your jaw drop too. The wonderfully ruffled dress cost Palermo a mere $148! Even bolder, this wasn’t even the first time Palermo pulled this look off. This was definitely the best time, though!
Khloe Kardashian – 2016 Angel Ball
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Khloe Kardashian has been outspoken about her weight struggle over the years. The reality star has often been labeled as the “big one”, particularly when being compared to her petite sisters. However, Kardashian later went on a fitness journey of her own, losing quite a bit a weight. She has since called out the fashion industry and her former challenges with getting dressed by designers.
She told Harpers Bazaar, “I definitely think the fashion industry, and people in general, look at me more now that I’ve lost weight. Even on shoots, I would never have options for clothing … I was too much work for [stylists] or they had nothing in my size. I wasn’t even that crazy big!”
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Another model proving good looks don’t have to be expensive, Stella Maxwell looks absolutely stunning in this $61 dress from PrettyLittleThing. Working her magic at a Victoria’s Secret event, Maxwell out-stuns the competition in this low-cut, long-sleeved masterpiece.
The word above Stella Maxwell read “Bombshell” and they might as well be describing her instead of the perfume. We have to guess even if a designer had offered to dress her for this event, they wouldn’t have made her look this good!
Aisha Tyler – King Arthur Premiere
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Movie premieres are usually a prime arena for designers to dress stars from head to toe in lavish clothing. That didn’t happen for Aisha Tyler at the premiere of King Arthur. Nope, instead, the FriendsI alumni dressed herself, choosing this Zara dress for only $129.
She looks plenty happen with her decision to “dress down” if you ask us. The floral pattern and charcoal collar are a perfect match for this classic Hollywood beauty. The only thing more perfect would be to see this dress at a higher profile event, really proving what the cost of looking amazing can be!
Julianne Hough – Dancing With The Stars
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Julianna Hough didn’t have designers storming for her services for the Dancing with the Stars event. She didn’t need them anyway, stunning in this $273 dress from AQ/AQ. She looks like she’s ready to dance or accept an award in this stunning black piece.
This dress proves that formalwear doesn’t have to cost as much as a house. Fashion designers just want you to believe it does! For under $300 it’s hard to deny that Hough found her perfect match, leaving fancy designers in the dust. She’s ready for her ballroom debut!
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After the 2016 Golden Globes, Alexandra Daddario slipped into something a little more comfortable, and affordable. During the show, the actress looked stunning in a gold dress. After the show, she looked even better in this designer free black stunner.
The cost for her after party look was very easy on the wallet — $30.It looks like it cost much more than that if you ask us! Anyone who wants to look this good without the help of designer can find this fashionable dress at Forever 21. Then you’ll look forever amazing!
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Maybe this event wasn’t high publicized enough to warrant a designer dress, or maybe Selena Gomez’s effort to get one were massive failures. Whatever caused her to go to Forever 21 and buy this amazing $22 bodycon dress deserves a massive standing ovation.
Gomez looks stunning in this simple single long sleeved dress. She looks comfortable too! The event was the Fulfillment Funds 2011 Stars Gala, and boy did Gomez fulfill her civic duty to always look beautiful! Maybe she should do her own gala dress shopping more often. No one could have made a better choice than the one she made for herself.
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“Bodak Yellow” rapper Cardi B is a surprising member of this list of stars who have dealt with snooty designers. Her story is extra interesting because her #1 hit song gave a huge shoutout to top shoe designer Christian Louboutin. “Bodak Yellow” has the line “red bottoms, bloody shoes” – a reference to Louboutin’s signature red soles. Business of Fashion even reported that there was a “massive 217 percent spike” in searches for the designer’s name due to the song.
However, Louboutin told the New York Times that he barely knew who Cardi was. “She’s a rapper? This ‘Yellow’ song?”, he asked. “I don’t know much more than that, to be honest.” It didn’t phase Cardi, who told People that “at the end of the day, I know what I can do, and I know for a fact that I put a spike in their sales.”
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Kelly Osbourne, daughter of rocker Ozzy, co-hosted E!’s Fashion Police from 2010 to 2015. She even got to work alongside the legendary style critic and comedian Joan Rivers. But you can count Kelly, who has great taste in fashion, among those celebs who have been on the other side of the red carpet. She was quick to share her story with People in 2015 after being asked whether she was too mean in her critiquing of other stars.
Absolutely not, said Kelly. “I know what it’s like not knowing what to wear and feeling gross because nothing fits. I never was lent clothes until I lost weight.” My, how the tables have turned.
Sarah Jessica Parker – 2015 Met Gala
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You just know that Carrie Bradshaw herself is not going to be intimidated by a bunch of big-name fashion designers! In fact, the Sex and the City icon showed up at one of the fashion world’s biggest events wearing an H & M dress! SJP had even partnered with the affordable clothing line to design the gown.
Granted, she embellished it quite a bit to get the “China: Through the Looking Glass” theme of the evening exactly right. But the fact that Parker is comfortable enough with her own personal tastes to skip dealing with a designer is downright refreshing.
Diane Kruger – 2015 Met Gala
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And here we have another starlet who says that she simply refuses to use a Hollywood stylist. Inglourious Basterds and National Treasure actress Diane Kruger is known for looking like a million bucks on the runway, but it turns out that she does the work herself. And was even named one of InStyle’s 50 best-dressed celebs in 2015.
In response to the honor, she sat down with Pret-A-Porter. “It’s obviously really nice to be singled out — like tonight, to be one of the 50 is great, but it’s like a second nature,” she said. “I’m not sitting at home thinking that I have to top this look or that look. It’s not like that. What you wear is such an expression of who you are. That’s like someone picking out who I’m going to date!”
Did Victoria Beckham Have A Feud With Alexander McQueen?
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Ouch! Is it possible that Victoria Beckham, Posh Spice herself, is not quite as “posh” as she supposes? The late designer Alexander McQueen, who was known to be quite catty when he wanted, has been quoted saying some rather unkind things about Beckham and many other stars. According to McQueen’s fellow fashion stylist and friend Archie Smith, the designer once saw a photo of Posh in a skirt from his collection.
According to Smith, “He exploded in fury and said, ‘David [Beckham, Posh’s husband] can wear my clothes but she can’t.’” Smith continued, “He thought David was hot, but he couldn’t abide Victoria. After he saw her in his tartans he put out the word that she wasn’t allowed to get any freebies any more.” If this account is true, then meee-ow.
Even Kate Middleton Is Not Immune To Designer Criticism
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If this royal ‘dis’ surprises you, then you are not alone. Even the lovely Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton has been the subject of unflattering remarks by some pretty big names in fashion. New wave designer Vivienne Westwood is known for her “out there” styles, so it’s not really shocking that her fashion ideals don’t line up with the royals’ tastes.
But in 2011, Westwood had this to say to Sunday Times Magazine: “It seems to me, that her (Middleton’s] image is ‘ordinary woman.’ Therefore, high street shopper,” she said. “And I just think she should be an extraordinary woman, wherever she gets her clothes from.” Westwood probably won’t be dressing the Duchess anytime soon.
January Jones Is On Her Own
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(Because she chooses to be!) The Mad Men stunner is one of a growing number of starlets who opts to choose their own awards-season ensembles. According to some reports, the trend is becoming more popular because of a combination of studios cutting their budgets and celebrities wishing to personalize their style more.
January once told Elle magazine: “I don’t like the idea of paying people to tell me that something looks good. If I don’t feel it myself, why would I wear it?” With the kind of style she has, why should she pay someone else to do it?
Melissa McCarthy – 2011 Emmys
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Comedienne and actress Melissa McCarthy’s now-notorious recurring role as Sean Spicer on Saturday Night Live helped Americans laugh during a stressful time in politics. Although McCarthy was at the height of her professional career, she still couldn’t get designers to dress her for big red carpet events.
However, McCarthy decided to take her fashion into her own hands. She went so far as to start her own fashion line after being unable to find a dress for the Oscars. In 2011, she designed her own amazing gown for the Emmy’s. McCarthy told Redbook, “I couldn’t find anybody to do a dress for me. I asked five or six designers — very high-level ones who make lots of dresses for people — and they all said no.”
Nashville star Hayden Panetierre is another star that seems unlikely to be on the list and yet here she is. Hayden’s struggle isn’t so much about her size but rather the world of “fashion politics.” Designers often scramble to dress A-list movie stars while ignoring other notable celebrities.
For the 2014 Golden Globes, Hayden had her heart set on being dressed by Tom Ford, however, he only provided a dress to one celebrity. Instead, Hayden decided to buy the design off the rack which was criticized by some fashionistas. Allegedly, Tom Ford later wrote the star a note in order to tell her that she looked beautiful in his design. Hollywood sounds a little bit like a high school popularity contest but either way Hayden rocked the look!
It’s hard to believe that Kim Kardashian ever had a hard time getting dressed by fashion designers. Before she married Kanye West, many designers wouldn’t dress her due to “fashion politics.”
In 2013, Kim even had a hard time getting designers to dress her for a photoshoot spread in Elle Magazine. The stylist on the shoot, Nicola Formichetti, spoke about the matter saying, “People wouldn’t lend me the clothes. But that’s fashion snobbery.” Since Kim married Kanye and he reportedly “threw out” her old wardrobe, Kim is constantly pushing the boundaries of fashion and has even appeared in ads for Balmain.