How Stylist Kate Young Picks the Perfect Premiere Dress
When attending runway shows, stylist Kate Young keeps her eyes peeled for premiere dresses—gowns to be worn by actresses to openings and press events when they have a movie coming out. The moment Young sees one that could work for a client, she reserves it, sometimes by texting a photo of the look directly to the designer. That’s because there’s a constant, inconspicuous competition among stylists for gowns, which aren’t particularly common in collections. “There are only so few to go around,” Young says of the garments. “You need to claim the while you can.” On the sixth episode of her YouTube show, Hello Fashion, created with The Slowdown, Young talks about her process for selecting and securing premiere dresses, and highlights four of her favorites worn by her clients.
The tone of a given movie, and an event’s format and location, informs the dresses Young chooses. Actress Sienna Miller wore a pale-blue tulle, yellow-embroidered Gucci gown, designed by Alessandro Michele for the house’s spring 2017 collection, to the London premiere of Live by Night. Over FaceTime, Miller and Young reminisce about the dress’s transparent panels, contrasting colors, and big, jewel-covered bow. Young then describes a red satin outfit, designed by Raf Simons for Dior, worn by actress and singer Selena Gomez to the premiere of Rudderless. The dress, Young says, was originally conceived as a top, but cast Gomez in a new light. It was their first collaboration. “Before I worked with [Selena], I always felt like there was a lot of hair, and a lot of dress, and you didn’t really see how extraordinary she is,” Young says. “I wanted an important dress, but I also wanted you to see her. And I feel like this dress accomplished that.”
Young also details a black Dior couture collection dress, marked by its corset’s exposed architectural boning, worn by actress Dakota Johnson to the Toronto premiere of Our Friend. After that, she highlights an orange chiffon dress from Oscar de la Renta’s fall 2019 collection, worn by actress Margot Robbie to the London premiere of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The distinctive color, Young learns on a FaceTime call with the brand’s creative director, Fernando Garcia, was inspired by the terra-cotta found inside Spanish mosques.
Since such dresses typically have just a single fitting, Young focuses on refining every detail from the start. She takes photos, and constantly references them, meticulously checking alterations. That she can’t always travel with her clients, Young says, makes her scrupulousness all the more essential. “I need to make sure the dress is perfect,” she says, “and that everything is set before they go.”
Watch new and previous episodes of Kate Young’sYouTube show Hello Fashion at youtube.com/kateyoung.