Which celebrity stylists take cash-for-frock?

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Rachel Zoe with some past and present clients….

While we're having a frock frenzy day, there's a great story here about the behind-the-scenes activity of celebrity stylists during awards season…

The battle to dress an A-list actress for the Oscars makes the contest for a gold statuette look positively bloodless.

If producers, directors, and Hollywood celebs are only as big as
their last big hit, celebrity stylists are only as big as the last tiny
dress their biggest A-list client squeezed into. This year's top Oscar
stylists—Cristina Ehrlich, Jen Rade, Rachel Zoe, and Estee Stanley—
have all paid their dues and beyond. Yes, each has the so-called "eye,"
but they also have smarts, loyalty to their clients, and some even know
when to keep their mouths shut and shun the limelight. More
importantly, they have access to the best dresses in the world—and can
get them, pronto.

But these days, celebrity stylists are replaced more frequently than
cabinet secretaries. The job "celebrity stylist" was only invented in
the mid-‘90s, and seniority is far from security in this high-stress,
high-earning sect. If you dress Cate Blanchett and she's not nominated
you can sit out a whole awards season to the tune of fifty grand or
more. Luckily, Blanchett’s stylist, Elizabeth Stewart, scored Best
Supporting Actress nominee Viola Davis (Doubt) this season while Blanchett sat on the bleachers.

The so-called "names" who invented the job—Philip Bloch, who dressed
Halle Berry, and Jessica Paster, who styled Minnie Driver, Kim Basinger
and Blanchett—have a better chance of landing on a reality show these
days than landing a big name. (Bloch is actually on VH1's Glam Gods.)
You can credit Paster and Bloch with starting the Great Stylist Wars of
the 1990s. Each would call in the best of Dior, Valentino, Versace, and
Oscar de la Renta just to make sure the other stylists couldn't get
their greedy hands on them. Then they would casually bestow them on
C-listers who paid them more than their A-listers did, while the
A-listers got paid real money to wear a different designer. Or got
flown to Paris for Couture with their whole family. Or both. Designers
wised up, and contracts are required now.

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Read the rest here….

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