Reese Witherspoon in Stella McCartney: ask her more, like why does her style suck?

Home Again Special Screening

For-real question: did Stella McCartney witness Reese Witherspoon murdering a hobo with her bare hands? Because that’s the only explanation I can come up with for why Reese continues to wear Stella’s terrible designs. Reese wore a ridiculous Stella McCartney tuxedo-jacket-dress to the Emmys (and Reese looked like ten kinds of hell), and here are photos of Reese once again wearing a Stella design at the London screening of Home Again. Look at this mess! She looks like an extra from Mystic Pizza. Did Stella make her pair that BOW SLEEVE DRESS with white heels on purpose? What kind of revenge-extortion plot is being used against Reese to get her in these awful clothes?

Anyway, if you watched the E! Emmys Red Carpet show, you probably know that as soon as Reese and Nicole Kidman hit up the red carpet, a hush fell across the reporters. No one would be allowed to ask any fun fashion questions anymore. A few years back, Reese was one of the celebrities making a cause du jour out of #AskHerMore, as in, people needed to stop asking celebrity women to ID their dresses and jewelry on red carpets. I’ve tried to break down in past posts why that’s stupid and why most celebrities probably don’t want to be asked “deep” questions on the red carpet anyway. It’s also particularly rich coming from the same celebrity women who are literally being paid hundreds of thousands of dollars just to wear free clothing and jewelry on the red carpet. Speaking of, here’s an interesting addendum:

Two days before New York City’s Met Gala in May, a jewelry publicist assumed that she was all set with product placements on several A-listers. Then her phone started ringing. “Agents told me that their clients were being offered payment to wear another house’s jewels, and they wanted to know if I could match it,” she recalls. “Until that moment, I didn’t even know I was in a bidding war.” With no budget, she lost most of the stars she’d already confirmed to other jewelers. And for one jewelry client, “we’ve shifted about 5 percent in the marketing budget for red carpet placements,” she says. “That will change again in 2018. We are adjusting to what the landscape has become.”

Under-the-radar contracts and one-time payments are becoming increasingly commonplace when it comes to stars wearing gems on the carpet. “It is the worst-kept secret,” says Michelle Graff of trade publication National Jeweler. (Several major jewelry houses declined comment.) Talk of six-figure checks is bandied about (Anne Hathaway reportedly received $750,000 from Tiffany & Co. for six jewelry looks worn while co-hosting the 2011 Oscars, and Gwyneth Paltrow allegedly was paid $500,000 by Louis Vuitton to wear the house’s jewels that same evening). Payment goes to actresses, their stylists and sometimes their agents. Reps have been known to demand more money from jewelry houses, competing over who has greater influence with stars.

Graff points out that any trepidation over discussing the fees and politics of jewelry placement on the red carpet may be due to fears that the Federal Trade Commission will come calling. “Remember that social-media influencers are dealing with this issue now,” she says, referring to an April FTC disclosure that the agency had sent “Endorsement Guide” letters to 90 of the most high-profile Instagram personalities, including, reportedly, Kim Kardashian.

Such fees come with strings: A jeweler might dictate a gown neckline to ideally frame a statement choker or pendant. Such necklaces are the best opportunities to get the most exposure from traditional and social media. Brands prefer black gowns, as they’re often the best choice of color to make a piece pop on the red carpet. Spelling on social media is even being scrutinized by jewelry houses: A jeweler’s spokesperson relayed how a star refused to fix an error in the brand name on her Instagram, arguing that correct spelling wasn’t part of her contract, and the house initially refused to pay (but eventually did).

Stylists also can be blindsided when a jeweler switches out a selected piece to highlight an item it wants to sell. During the Monday-morning quarterbacking of a red carpet, pundits increasingly should wonder whether a look that’s screaming for a necklace or earrings was truly the result of a conscious choice — or because the game changed at the last minute. (Though never assume. As one stylist, who asked not to be named, says: “I’m a jewelry minimalist.”)

Ultimately, how much does it really matter to the viewer or consumer if a star has been paid to wear one house’s jewels versus another’s? “I’m not sure people care whether someone was paid,” says Graff. The decision to buy isn’t affected “because they find out Lady Gaga was paid to wear it versus it being an organic choice.” And don’t look for transparency anytime soon, she adds: “For people in marketing, if they can maintain the illusion that something worn on a red carpet was an organic choice, they’re going to do that.”

[From THR]

Basically, #AskHerMore could be seen as way to create the illusion that celebrities aren’t just walking advertisements. They’re true artists, who just happen to want half a million dollars to wear borrowed jewelry for a night.

Note Reese’s Cartier jewels in these photos.

Home Again Special Screening

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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69 Responses to “Reese Witherspoon in Stella McCartney: ask her more, like why does her style suck?”

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  1. Agapanthus says:

    Kaiser, thank you for a fab post, your wit and insight entertains me no end.

    Btw that isn’t Reese, she has a different face 😉

  2. ell says:

    i want to like her, because i’m impressed by the fact she isn’t apologetic about her ambition and the fact she’s rather controlling. but she also acts like the typical entitled celebrity and askformore is bullshit. of course these actors are paid for what they wear, so mentioning briefly who they’re wearing and complimenting the designers should 100% be expected.

  3. Fiorucci says:

    I normally don’t like how Reese dresses or the aesthetic of draper James too much but I like both of these, they are at least an improvement on how she dresses if not the most amazing designs. She looks better with long hair too. And the blue was great with her blonde hair and medium skin

    • Dr_Snark says:

      At first glance, I thought the top and bottom of the dress were the same material. I think that would have looked a little better, but I do like this dress and she does look good here.

  4. Seraphina says:

    An extra from Mystic Pizza 🤣 Hilarious. I think Stella’s style sucks and not sure what voodoo she has done to some women in Hollywood to make them such blind followers.

    • smcollins says:

      Her last name is McCartney.

      • PIa says:

        This! Stella got Kate Moss and Naomi to walk at her student fashion show at Central St. Martins to the chagrin of the other students. Nepotism in fashion is more than just the models.

      • HurryWait says:

        The shoe should have been either nude or strappy – as is distracted from bow game.

    • LadyMTL says:

      I feel the same way about Marchesa…overwrought, overworked, too much tulle and etc. But the designer is married to Harvey Weinstein so bam! It’s a hit, celebs wear it, and so on. Nepotism: it gets sh*t done.

    • Sliceo'pie says:

      I can’t stand Stella’s designs and her $1.500 -$3,000 vegan handbags. Especially those Falabella bags that people STILL sport.

  5. I'm getting a root canal on Monday says:

    I wonder if magazines etc. stopped mentioning what designer people were wearing whether that would lead to designers boycotting celebs who took this stance of never ask me about designers? Or started making it a contractual requirement for wearing their clothes etc that you say “this shoe is…”
    Cause now that the free press is gone surely the free clothes should too?

    I don’t know the answer I’m just thinking out aloud.

    • Who ARE these people? says:

      The magazines would lose ad revenue from the designers.

    • ell says:

      what i’m wondering though, if it’s only ‘older’ celebs (so to speak, not older in anagraphic age, just people who have been famous for 10+ years) doing this. because younger celebs never seem to fail to mention who they’re wearing and thanking their stylists on ig and the likes.

    • Silent Star says:

      Well, Reese always dresses like a granny, so surprise here.

      Love the quoted article! Very insightful! I’d love to raff more of this kind of thing.

    • Silent Star says:

      Well, Reese often dresses like a granny, so no surprise here.

      Love the quoted article! Very insightful! I’d love to read more of this kind of thing.

  6. Mara says:

    So RW sells clothes through Draper James but isn’t willing talk about them in general – how does that logic work?

    • homeslice says:

      She does daily pap walks in her awful clothes and hawks them all the time on instagram. Hypocrite! I don’t understand why women can’t talk about the fabulous clothes and jewelry they were lucky enough to be lent…and talk about other things too? Or just wear a pair of jeans and be done with it. These actresses are the ultimate in hypocrisy.

  7. Jenna says:

    Reese looks the best she’s ever looked, when wearing Stella. She’s always had terribe style. Remember that awful ponytail wiglet she rocked at the Oscar’s a few years back? Her style has always been influenced by Dynasty. At least she owns it now.

  8. poorlittlerichgirl says:

    If Hollywood awards shows, premieres and parties were not about fashion then everyone would wear jeans and a t-shirt.

    Her Draper James clothing is like a caricature of southern women and it’s kind of insulting. No one in the south wears stuff like that. I’ve certainly never seen it. I can’t believe people pay for that ridiculously over-priced stuff.

  9. Charmed says:

    I think the dress is kinda cool! The white heels are so dated though. I agree with your stance on ask me more, they should be able to talk about the free stuff they are wearing AND answer good questions. Its about balance I think

  10. Kate says:

    Ask Her More wasn’t about not asking celebrities to id their dresses and so on. That’s why it’s called Ask Her More and not Don’t Ask.

    The issue was the female celebrities were asked about nothing else. The men got asked about their tux and then got to talk about their work, share a funny anecdote etc. but the women just got questions about how long it took to get ready, how much spanx they were wearing, whether they’d been dieting etc. Ask Her More changed that fast.

    I don’t get the big deal anyway. Designers send out press releases to the media about who’s wearing what, and the people who actually buy these designers regularly are getting their coverage online, not from E! It really makes no difference if the celebrity says it on the red carpet or not, we’ll still find out who they’re wearing.

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      TV audiences are not necessarily the same as online readers.

      I have been a strong advocate of #askthemless because we’ve seen what comes out of their mouths when you ask about social or political issues. I want them to entertain me. For my serious topics I don’t go to Reese Witherspoon, what is her qualification? If it’s about the difference between the men and the women, I get that. But is a guy going to get paid a quarter of a million to wear a diamond necklace? I think not. So there is that.

      • Kate says:

        That was my point. The TV audience is different from, say, the people getting their red carpet coverage from Vogue.com. The main difference being the former isn’t actually the market for high end designer clothes.

        The designers and fashion focused media outlets don’t actually care about Ask Her More. The designers really aren’t trying to advertise on the Kardashians channel, and the fashion media get their info direct from the designers. It’s just gossip bloggers used to getting the id’s from E! who get all worked up about this. In terms of advertising the brand it really makes no difference.

      • littlemissnaughty says:

        I think you may be underestimating the impact of blogs and social media. “Fashion people” are not only reading Vogue.com these days. And it’s not just about high end clothes, it’s about the brand. Of course it makes a difference how many people they reach, whether that translates to an uptick in clothing sales or not is not the point. It may have an impact on the sale of perfumes, cosmetics, all that small stuff that makes money.

      • magnoliarose says:

        Fashion people have never been a monolith, but this practice makes it harder for an up and coming designer who has not broken through to have their dresses seen and discussed in front of millions like they used to. Most viewers aren’t going to research the look, so it isn’t as beneficial for them.
        Frankly, I think it compromised the quality of the looks being shown. I don’t bother watching the red carpet entrance and instead look online now since it is pointless now.
        I think it is silly.
        Actresses were the focus for their looks and got more screen time.

    • lucy2 says:

      Kate, I have made that same argument every single time AskHerMore is brought up. It’s very frustrating to me that people ignore the intent of it, which is really good, and it’s exactly as you said – not to ignore the designers and fashion, but to ask about MORE than just that. It’s right in the title! Some stupid news organization went overboard and shut down all fashion talk when the campaign first gained traction, so therefore it’s no longer a valid cause?

      lmn, the reporters don’t have to ask them serious social/political stuff – they can ask them about the work they did (the very reason for being on the red carpet), who inspires them, what they like to do after a big event like this. The first few times it was tried out, the women they talked to were DELIGHTED to have other fun questions to answer in addition to discussing on their gowns.

      • littlemissnaughty says:

        You do know they have a minute max usually, right? Per outlet. If their publicists stopped pushing them down the line, maybe there would be time for a more interesting interview. But if you have 30 seconds, sometimes you have to choose. And again, do the men get paid as much to wear suits? If not, maybe it’s a case of having your cake and eating it too.

      • lucy2 says:

        I do know they have limited time, and most of the smaller news outlets very limited. Like I said, I’ve seen red carpet clips where they do it, and it works just fine in about a minute or less, identifying the fashions, and then maybe something about who else they’re looking forward to seeing, what movie they are working on next, what their favorite film of the year was. It doesn’t haven’t to be an in depth interview, just a question or two about something other than appearance.
        I also think this whole campaign was really a push back against something like E!, which would ask women about Spanx, exercise, diet, their manicure, and all other appearance stuff, not so much the smaller outlets that only get brief moments.

        I assume some men get paid to wear certain designers, but little in comparison to the women with gowns and jewelry. But as I’ve said, there’s room for both fashion and a little something else for the women, it doesn’t have to be either/or 100% of the time.

  11. A Croatian says:

    I like the dress :D
    I have to say. I know chances are she is not so nice as she wants us to believe. But I LOVE her, because it’s so refreshing to see a woman with an enormous ambition and being unapologetic about it. And she’s getting things done!
    I recognize she’s really privileged, though. As for this Askhermore thing, I think she talked about it in an interview I saw on youtube with Kerry Washington, Eli Banks and… some other, and the way she explained was ok to me.
    I think I actually don’t like her as a person, but I love her as a business woman.

    • Carol says:

      I like her and I like the dress, and I hate how people twisted the “ask her more” campaign to make the women the villains. They ask women how they balance family life and work or what they are that day or some stereotypical “girly” question while the men are asked about upcoming projects or societal themes being explored in film today. The campaign was meant to level the field, but of course it is now being used to bludgeon women for daring to want more. Smh

    • Sarah says:

      I have really dislike RW snce she yelled at a cop arresting her drunk husband who was driving and could have killed someone. She yelled, Do you know who I am? And some other really entitled, rude stuff. I have refused to watch anything she is in since then.
      But I watched Big Little Lies and I thought she was awesome in it: funny, biting, heartbreakingky sad. Better than Kidman, who annoyed me in it, I know, unpopular opinion. So I’m torn between disliking her as a person and thinking she is hilarious, sad, etc. – very talented. And I dont like being confused abiut people. :)

  12. littlemissnaughty says:

    They are hyporites, what else is new.

    I think there’s a difference between jewelry and clothes. With clothes, the exposure of the brand might actually be successful advertising because most brands these days sell something for almost every budget and actually make most of their profit that way. Tom Ford doesn’t get richer through bespoke pieces. Even if it’s just a key chain or small purse, scarf, etc. To my knowledge, that does not apply to Cartier et al. Tiffany may have a few items that are somewhat affordable (although their cheapest earrings are now at €150 over here and then it goes up quickly, their prices have gone up a LOT) but overall, jewelry is not “aspirational”. You don’t make a statement by wearing unidentifiable silver studs.

    So if I were a jewelry designer, I wouldn’t play. Why??? As if the ladies who can afford it will be swayed by Anne Hathaway.

    • I agree with you on this point.I cannot fathom purchasing Cartier,most Tiffany,et al.It matters nothing to me what they wear on the red carpet,and if I was wealthy enough to make extremely high end jewelry purchases I would use my own judgement as what to buy-I would never buy an expensive piece because a celeb was wearing it on the carpet.

      • Chinoiserie says:

        Well if the celebs were never wearing jewelry it might loose some shine and you would not think about it as much. But I agree the brands and what jewelry is worn does not really matter to the public. But maybe it does in celeb and industry circles?

  13. midigo says:

    This explains why certain celebs often look like crap on the red carpet.
    You wonder: “Why, oh why?”. the answer is: “they paid me half a million. What am I supposed to do? refuse the money only because it’s a shitty outfit and I know it?”
    I don’t blame them for this. I blame all the folks that buy the same item only because it has been worn by a celeb.

  14. phaedra says:

    Who is paying Reese to pose for every photo with her legs crossed like she has to pee?

  15. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    They should sign something. If they’re being PAID to wear such-and-such then part of that transaction is full disclosure of who the frak they’re representing. And complaining about it should disqualify them from further business transactions with the house who designed the ensemble during the non-compliance. I swear money is wasted on these people.

  16. Karen says:

    They’re on the red carpet to sell. It’s free promotion time, it’s not time to discuss just politics or if your kids are watching you or not at home:

    If you’re wearing free clothes/ jewels (or being paid to) the agreement is you advertise on the red carpet. So if you don’t want to be asked, offer the information or buy your own outfit.

    If you’re there promoting a movie you talk about said movie: the award project, your future project(s), whatever. You’re an actor, I’m confident you can work the project your there for into the conversation.

    Im sure your stylists, agents, managers, production companies would be more pleased if you didn’t talk about if you have snacks in your purse and stayed on topic.

    Don’t come off as a hypocrite. Being paid to advertise then publicly crying out it’s offensive to be asked about what your advertising is ridiculous.

  17. Reef says:

    Back in the 00′s, Stella McCarthy used make fantastic powers suits. I used to dream about being able to get one of her suits. She was never great at dresses, but she could tailor the hell out of a suit.
    The crossed legged pose is to make her look taller. She’s 5’3.

    • lucy2 says:

      I think it’s taller/narrower. It’s definitely a common stance, along with the hand on hip and slight turn.
      I don’t really remember Stella suits, but I really dislike most of the stuff she does now. That’s a shame, if she used to be better.

  18. serena says:

    I like her hair and make-up but that dress is so unfortunate..

  19. Barrett says:

    Reese was not meant for the suit dress at the emmys . Imagine it in a better color on a leggy model type.

    She is short and curvier than most Hollywood stars so it made her look stubby.

  20. Who ARE These People? says:

    If my ex-husband and father of 2 of my kids were accused of violence against women, and had mistreated me in any way during my young first marriage, I’d want to look fierce too.

  21. nica says:

    Oddly I don’t dislike this. I’m not sure if I like it either. I mean it has that big bow, for one. But somehow I think this works for RW, and she looks great. I also liked the jacket dress from the Emmy’s (and loved its midnight blue colour). The white shoes here help make the look, making it reminiscent of a black and white tuxedo wear.

  22. Marianne says:

    Ive always thought that it shouldn’t be a problem asking what designer they are wearing. Afterall, they are usually wearing the dress and jewellery for free. So they might as well get some PR for it. However, I don’t think that she be the sole focus of the interview (unless perhaps the journalist work for a fashion mag/blog/TV show etc). At the end of the day what they are really their for is their TV show, movie, or album and therefore the main questions should be around that.

  23. Penelope says:

    Her face was so lovely and quirky in its original state. Now she looks stretched, pulled, and unnaturally wide-eyed.

    What a shame.

    • lucy2 says:

      She does look a bit different here. Funnily enough I rewatched BLL after the Emmys, and was thinking about how nice it was she was letting herself age naturally. Even at the Emmys I didn’t notice anything.

  24. koko says:

    Too much dress but love the “nail” bracelet.

  25. Kelly says:

    Well, Reese is totally right as women should be asked more on the red carpet. Fashion is kinda boring, at least to me. I have liked her outfits ok, maybe she is trying not to be super flashy. I’m a big Reese fan :)

  26. Jo says:

    The ‘ask her more’ movement is ridiculous. You’re a celebrity, you have a microphone pointed at your face with people waiting for you to say something they can broadcast to the world. If you can’t control that conversation, should you even be there at all? As a tip, how about wearing a designer with more of a story, more ethics or morals rather than just an old Beatles’ daughter?

  27. Henry Barnill says:

    She definitely got some work done. There’s no denying it there.

  28. BorkBorkBork says:

    I’m so tired of seeing that I-Have-To-Pee pose.

  29. wolfpup says:

    “Such fees come with strings: A jeweler might dictate a gown neckline to ideally frame a statement choker or pendant. Such necklaces are the best opportunities to get the most exposure from traditional and social media. Brands prefer black gowns, as they’re often the best choice of color to make a piece pop on the red carpet.”

    Why hasn’t someone given this advice to the D of C?

    I believe that some of these girls grow up going to church and believe that it is there that the finest of fashion is displayed in their lives. I don’t know of any other excuse for their very simple, yet significant faux paux’s. They are country bumpkin’s (Reese and Kate) after all, believing in a fabric without the accessories needed. It took Diana a few years to put it all together – and then there was no one who could outdo her choices.

  30. bella says:

    I love Reese’s look and I also liked her ’80′s inspired dress at the Emmy’s. Everything comes back again with just a few tweeks.

  31. SM says:

    Jezz. I was reading this at lunch and I lost my appetite. A lot of people would pay a lot if they had money for any nice piece of jewelry and the group of people that actually can affort it are running after another payment just to put in on their precious, all natural bodies.