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Bravotv.com: In this episode you were dressing Debra Messing for the SAG Awards. How does that award show compare to other award shows?
Rachel Zoe: It's sort of the most casual of all of them, but I think this year because of the writer's strike and the Golden Globes being canceled the SAGs became much more of a red carpet moment waiting to happen. I think, because there were no Globes, people were like, "let's really go there when we have the opportunity." I think because of that the SAGs became the big thing.
You had the flood in your studio beforehand, which led to the Brad and Taylor debacle. How did you deal with that?
It was a disaster. I think of it in the sense that Brad didn't know me as well at that point and I'm sure his immediate reaction was to tell me about it, but Taylor knowing me as long as she has was thinking, "Rachel is literally going to have a nervous breakdown, she's out pulling jewelry and dresses for Debra right now," so she didn't tell me. We had another client for the SAG Awards as well and we didn't show it on tape and I think Taylor knows that I would have gone into a complete head spin and she said not to tell me. In Brad's defense, he was extremely overwhelmed with everything that was going on and we were shorthanded that day. Brad was all by himself and he had to go to another client's house as well, which is probably why he didn't move everything. I think not moving all those dresses was a huge mistake, obviously it was a big disaster and I can't take away from that, but I think it was just that he was really overwhelmed and we were really shorthanded. Had that happened on a normal day, I think he would have reacted much differently. He was really trying to prioritize and unfortunately the dresses suffered.
Debra Messing eventually got the dress you initially wanted though.
It was one of those things that we talk about on the show often. I really do get crazy for certain dresses. We had another one recently with Annie Hathaway at the Venice Film Festival, the Versace Couture short dress that she just wore to her premiere. I saw that dress a month prior during Couture Paris in July and I said, "I'm obsessed with that dress for Annie for then Venice Film Festival." So when those things happen where I fixate on a dress and it actually comes to life on one of my clients, it's always the greatest feeling. It's like you fell in love, you dated, and then you got married.
That's the hero dress?
It was. A hero dress is a term that started on film sets and music videos, which was my original training. Basically, the hero dress is the actual dress that they're wearing if we're shooting an ad campaign or a music video or a commercial. You know, you can fit 25 dresses but it's only going to be that one dress that they wear, so that's the dress you have to preserve and cherish and take care of it. It can't get scratched, it can't get ripped, it can't get wrinkled. None of those. It's the one being worn on the carpet, for the shoot, for the client.
You also dressed your best friend Michelle for her wedding. How was that different from dressing a client?
It's completely different. When you're dressing your friends, there are politics involved. What I do for a living is something I started doing because I was dressing my friends, but at the time I didn't know it was called a stylist. It's something that I enjoy doing just as much even though it's a time issue. My friends, just like everybody else, have insecurities and questions and all of that. It's really fun, but the interesting thing about doing Michelle's dress was that the wedding was in Kansas, so there she was in this beautiful Marchesa gown in a field under a windmill. It was kind of amazing - within an hour after the ceremony she was barefoot.
We also get to see you purchase some new Fendi Casa furniture for your Elle Decor shoot. You and Rodger butt heads on the spending issue, which is something we also see in later episodes.
That's always going to be a point of contention. It's the only thing we actually disagree on. I feel like if you work hard and you donate a lot and you do a lot of charity, you also have time to do the things that you've dreamed about. The biggest problem is I kind of get sick of things very easily. I think furniture is obviously an expensive thing to get sick of, but every once in a while you replace a few things to keep it updated. I feel the Fendi stuff is so well made that one can keep it for a long time. It's also so pretty and luxurious. Rodger was not happy, but I think he was too exhausted to really argue with me.
You just got back from New York Fashion Week. How was that?
I am so tired from that and promoting the show, having three clients in New York we had to fit for the Toronto Film Festival and Venice, as well as a lot of other premieres and things coming up. At the end of the day, I love doing the show. But my real job, my day job, is something close to my life, so I can't ever let that suffer.
Hopefully you'll get to sleep soon!
I won't sleep for a while. I'm off to Milan on Saturday.