“It just felt like the right time,” says stylist Penny Lovell. “There’s been a lot of awareness about what’s going on in the world right now, and it felt organically like the right thing to do.”
If you didn’t notice that Anne Hathaway’s style looked a bit different during her press tour for Colossal, which she finished promoting earlier this month, then good — that’s the point.
The 34-year-old actress, who has been through her fair share of press parades over the last decade, decided along with her longtime stylist Penny Lovell to only reach for vintage pieces this time around. The decision was both out of their shared love of vintage clothes as well as their commitment to sustainability — all just in time for Earth Day this past weekend.
“Anne wanted to do something that was sustainable for the tour,” says Lovell. “It was something we discussed right at the beginning — we chose anything that already had a footprint.”
For the big premieres, Lovell searched the archives of Armani Prive, Vivienne Westwood, Luisa Beccaria, Oscar de la Renta, Stella McCartney and Halston, pulling looks from as far back as the 1970s (Oscar de la Renta) and as recent as 2014 (Vivienne Westwood). For daytime appearances, however, Lovell pulled a few pieces from her own personal collection of vintage.
“One of the dresses [Hathaway] wore I bought 10 years ago at the Rose Bowl,” says Lovell of the floral printed dress the actress wore on Good Morning America. “I called it my ‘happy dress’ — I bought it for $15.”
To update the frock for the 21st century, Lovell slashed the long sleeves of the silk number, cinched the waist with a Gucci belt and topped the look with Louboutin pumps. “I love the raw edge of a cut silk sleeve,” she says. “You get that kind of Isabel Marant look.”
Lovell, who frequents the Rose Bowl and Melrose Trading Post flea markets regularly, says that her vintage shopping strategy is all about making snappy decisions and arriving late. “I do opposite of what everyone else does,” she says of showing up toward the end of the day. “I like being there at the end when they say, ‘Just take it.’ And I always go to the back of the Rose Bowl first — I like the shops that aren’t curated.”
Lovell points to the political atmosphere as well as Hathaway’s new position as a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador as reasons why it was important to set an example to women that glamorous looks don’t always have to be hot-off-the-rack. “It just felt like the right time,” she says. “There’s been a lot of awareness about what’s going on in the world right now, and it felt organically like the right thing to do.”
It’s true, the issue of sustainability is one subject that seems to be at the forefront of the conversation about the future of the fashion industry, building on the momentum of projects such as the Green Carpet Challenge, launched by Livia Firth to promote ethical fashion on the red carpet, brands like The Reformation, which emphasize environmentally friendly manufacturing, and Fashion Revolution Week, the global movement being marked by events through April 30 promoting more transparency in the industry.
“Creatively, the project was also very interesting,” Lovell adds. “The designers that we borrowed archival pieces from were very helpful. They said go back to wherever — I wish there were more events!”