LOS ANGELES – Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones’ recent online lament about having trouble finding a designer to dress her for the film’s premiere points to the challenges actresses face when it comes to walking red carpets in style.
While one nice tux might carry a male actor through many a premiere, it’s customary for female stars to show up in new attire for every photo opportunity, which makes finding fresh, fashion-forward outfits for such occasions a time-consuming task, especially for women larger than a size 2.
“It’s so funny how there are no designers wanting to help me with a premiere dress for movie,” wrote Jones on 桑拿会所, who is 6 feet tall. “Hmmm that will change and I remember everything.”
It’s so funny how there are no designers wanting to help me with a premiere dress for movie. Hmmm that will change and I remember everything
— Leslie Jones (@Lesdoggg) June 28, 2016
READ MORE: Rebel Wilson says she gained weight to get famous
But for designers, it’s not just about their star clients fitting into smaller sizes, said celebrity stylist Nina Hallworth. It also has to do with creating a mutually beneficial partnership between the clothier and the star.
“It is about how a designer wants to be represented as an artist,” Hallworth said in an interview. “We have worked with women who are sample sizes and incredibly well known and a designer will say no to that collaboration as creatively it is not a fit — even if we think it is.”
As it turned out, designer Christian Siriano responded to Jones’ call on 桑拿会所 last week and agreed to make her gown. He said in a statement that he’s a fan of the actress and her work.
Hmm what a difference a tweet makes. Should I name the designers that didn’t look out?Put y’all ass on blast. You will not get my love later
— Leslie Jones (@Lesdoggg) June 29, 2016
“I can’t wait to create something special for her to wear,” the statement said. “I support all women no matter age or size!”
“It shouldn’t be exceptional to work with brilliant people just because they’re not sample size,” Siriano wrote on 桑拿会所. “Congrats aren’t in order, a change is.”
It shouldn’t be exceptional to work with brilliant people just because they’re not sample size. Congrats aren’t in order, a change is.
— Christian Siriano (@CSiriano) June 29, 2016
He followed up later in the week with photos of Jones visiting his studio.
Up to no good. 👋🏻 @Lesdoggg pic.twitter长沙桑拿/bolRUZE2Cq
— Christian Siriano (@CSiriano) June 30, 2016
It’s not clear how long Jones had been seeking a dress for the premiere, but she hasn’t been alone.
Other actresses outside the size-2 landscape have said it can be hard to find designers to work with, even for high-profile events. Melissa McCarthy said that when she was invited to the Oscars after the success of Bridesmaids, she couldn’t find anyone to make her a dress.
“I asked five or six designers — very high-level ones who make lots of dresses for people— and they all said no,” she told Redbook magazine in 2014.
READ MORE: Social media reacts to Melissa McCarthy on cover of ELLE
McCarthy has since launched her own clothing line and she helped design the dress she wore to this year’s Golden Globes.
Bryce Dallas Howard, who wears a size 6, said she bought her own gown off the rack for the Golden Globes, as she does for most Hollywood appearances.
“I like having lots of options for a size 6, as opposed to maybe one option,” she told E! News on the red carpet. “So I always go to department stores for this kind of stuff.”
Hallworth notes that designers who loan their dresses might have specific demands for how they’re worn.
“Free clothes can come at a cost to your own authentic style,” she said. “If you own those pieces, you own your image and can wear things in a way that speaks your narrative, not the designer’s.”
It comes down to an actress establishing a personal, individual look, she said, which then becomes a magnet for designers.
“Collaboration between designers and actors is symbiotic,” Hallworth said. “A great image can last a lifetime; a bad one longer.”
Whether you agree with Hallworth or not, one thing is certain – the conversation on the subject will likely continue on 桑拿会所. Here are just some of the tweets that have popped up amid the debate.
About @Lesdoggg and @CSiriano and clueless people saying she’s acting “entitled”… pic.twitter长沙桑拿/vdgMk0ZKhS
— Brad Walsh (@BradWalsh) July 1, 2016
Class and smart. Thanks @CSiriano for takin’ care of my homegirl @Lesdoggg! 👊🏾💯 https://t.co/fIGOzZfW4d
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) June 30, 2016
@Lesdoggg WOW – can’t believe these idiots won’t design anything for u. Proof that their skills are limited 2 ordinary and boring. #TooGood
— Christy (@thechristylove) June 29, 2016
@Lesdoggg Ill make your dress lesdoggg. I’m a baker so we can make it out of cookies and hamburger buns #eatitwhenyourdone
— Sean Clark (@alwaysbob33) June 28, 2016
Visualization by Graphiq