Stars Sans Stylists: What It Really Means

Lately, the cool thing, if you're famous, is to claim that you don't have a stylist. (Cough, Blake Lively, cough cough.) Sometimes, that's true. But most of the time, chances are someone is likely helping the starlet make clothing decisions, even if it's not a Rachel Zoe/Nicole Richie-type relationship. There are some stylists who make celebrities look like they've done it themselves. Leslie Fremar, who styles Julianne Moore, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jennifer Connelly, and several other perfect specimens, makes her clients feel so comfortable on the red carpet that for years I fully believed Gyllenhaal did it solo. But alas, what celebrity has time to go it alone, especially when it's a big event like the Oscars? As one publicist told me, "I don't think they have time to find PR contacts, you know?" Even Chloe Sevigny, whose style is innately her own--probably more than any other celebrity--uses a stylist for big events. Ezra Woods, her sometimes-stylist, also works with Michelle Williams, who looks as effortless on the street as she does on the red carpet. (And there's no way Woods is picking out her outfits every morning.) Perfect person Gwyneth Paltrow even started using someone after her too loose Ralph Lauren dress at the 1999 Oscars. (Although I loved it regardless.) So what about Blake? And Diane? And January? What's truth and what's fiction? Here are the real stories behind these stars without stylists:
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Lately, the cool thing, if you're famous, is to claim that you don't have a stylist. (Cough, Blake Lively, cough cough.) Sometimes, that's true. But most of the time, chances are someone is likely helping the starlet make clothing decisions, even if it's not a Rachel Zoe/Nicole Richie-type relationship. There are some stylists who make celebrities look like they've done it themselves. Leslie Fremar, who styles Julianne Moore, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jennifer Connelly, and several other perfect specimens, makes her clients feel so comfortable on the red carpet that for years I fully believed Gyllenhaal did it solo. But alas, what celebrity has time to go it alone, especially when it's a big event like the Oscars? As one publicist told me, "I don't think they have time to find PR contacts, you know?" Even Chloe Sevigny, whose style is innately her own--probably more than any other celebrity--uses a stylist for big events. Ezra Woods, her sometimes-stylist, also works with Michelle Williams, who looks as effortless on the street as she does on the red carpet. (And there's no way Woods is picking out her outfits every morning.) Perfect person Gwyneth Paltrow even started using someone after her too loose Ralph Lauren dress at the 1999 Oscars. (Although I loved it regardless.) So what about Blake? And Diane? And January? What's truth and what's fiction? Here are the real stories behind these stars without stylists:
This awesome look has Eric Daman written all over it.

This awesome look has Eric Daman written all over it.

Lately, the cool thing, if you're famous, is to claim that you don't have a stylist. (Cough, Blake Lively, cough cough.) Sometimes, that's true. But most of the time, chances are someone is likely helping the starlet make clothing decisions, even if it's not a Rachel Zoe/Nicole Richie-type relationship.

There are some stylists who make celebrities look like they've done it themselves. Leslie Fremar, who styles Julianne Moore, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jennifer Connelly, and several other perfect specimens, makes her clients feel so comfortable on the red carpet that for years I fully believed Gyllenhaal did it solo.

But alas, what celebrity has time to go it alone, especially when it's a big event like the Oscars? As one publicist told me, "I don't think they have time to find PR contacts, you know?"

Even Chloe Sevigny, whose style is innately her own--probably more than any other celebrity--uses a stylist for big events. Ezra Woods, her sometimes-stylist, also works with Michelle Williams, who looks as effortless on the street as she does on the red carpet. (And there's no way Woods is picking out her outfits every morning.) Perfect person Gwyneth Paltrow even started using someone after her too loose Ralph Lauren dress at the 1999 Oscars. (Although I loved it regardless.)

So what about Blake? And Diane? And January? What's truth and what's fiction? Here are the real stories behind these stars without stylists:

AW so picked this one out.

AW so picked this one out.

Who: Blake Lively Says: She doesn't need a stylist. Reality: No, it doesn't seem that Blake needs a stylist, because she has Eric Daman, Gossip Girl's costume designer, who clearly "helps her out" for big events. Eric thinks Blake is the next Jackie O, so I'm sure they collaborate quite often off-the-set.

This is one of my all-time favorite red carpet looks.

This is one of my all-time favorite red carpet looks.

Who: January Jones Says: She loves fashion so much that she doesn't want a stylist. Reality: This, for the most part, is true. Jones is an avid vintage collector--which was evident long before she appeared on Mad Men--and she works with the same designers again and again, like Versace and Lanvin. While an assistant of some sort--whether it's her own or someone at the network--surely traffics the samples, we're confident Jones is making the decisions.

Kind of can\'t handle vintage Lacroix.

Kind of can\'t handle vintage Lacroix.

Who: Diane Kruger Says: Fashion is her second language. Reality: Kruger, who frequently lands atop our weekly best dressed list, was a model. Models have great style because they watch stylists and designers work for hours at a time. So yes, Kruger likely styles herself. When Karl is personally sending you items, it's hard to go wrong.

Met Ball 2008: Doesn\'t get better than this.

Met Ball 2008: Doesn\'t get better than this.

Who: Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen Say: Nothing. But it's assumed. Reality: Despite the fact that everyone thinks this dynamic design duo does it alone, they actually have worked with several stylists over the years, including Annabel Tollman and Estee Stanley.