The Flirtatious Dance
Behind-the-scenes of styling a celebrity before they walk the red carpet
By: Megumi Murphy
There is almost nothing more picture perfect than a red carpet. Celebrities are dressed in expensive clothes and adorned in luxurious accessories, embodying the stereotype of Hollywood.
On the other hand, the week before a celebrity walks the red carpet is not as glamorous for a stylist. Interns are running around picking up jewelry, dresses and shoes (Oh my!). Stylists are talking to public relations professionals trying to figure out what pieces they want the whole world to see.
Before stepping foot into the world of public relations, I thought the stylist got handed a credit card and went on a shopping spree. Little did I know that not only were top designers asking stylists to use their clothes, but they were letting them use it for free.
My boss, a seasoned public relations professional, described celebrity styling in a way I have never forgotten. He said, “everything in public relations is a flirtatious dance.”
The transactions made between stylists and designers are beneficial to both sides, which is why it works. This is what people call a “win-win” situation.
Through this relationship, celebrities:
- get to wear high-end clothes by well-known designers
- get more publicity if their outfit is memorable
Through this relationship, designers:
- get to associate their brand with a well-known celebrity
- get more publicity and attention from the media
Let me give you an example of how this transaction works.
BluPRint PR supports the luxury jewelry brand Gismondi. Gismondi wants to get their jewelry onto the Grammy’s red carpet because they know that it will be featured on Instagram photos and articles. In order to do this, the PR firm will contact their list of stylists to send a catalog and offer their collection of jewelry for the red carpet. If they have already built a relationship with the stylist, the stylist may reach out to the PR firm first, asking for a specific piece of jewelry that they know would complement the celebrity’s outfit. If a stylist is interest, they will have them picked up for a celebrity to try on during a fitting. Stylists pick up multiple pieces from different brands, so Gismondi hopes that their jewelry makes the cut. If it does, then they make it onto the red carpet and have the opportunity to be featured on the “Grammy’s Best Dressed” or “Grammy’s Fashion Review” articles we see the day after.
BluPRint’s PR efforts paid off for Gismondi at this year’s Grammys when Cardi B wore a pair of Gismondi earrings on the red carpet.
All back-and-forth emails, long fittings and planning is part of a meticulous strategy to get screen time in the media. There is so much that goes on before a celebrity steps foot onto a red carpet, but once they do, that delicate dance is picture perfect.
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