Can’t stop, won’t stop. Ahead of the genius press tour for Greta Gerwig’s Barbie—a stunt of marketing triumph that will long be studied in universities—netizens had only one question on their mind: What will Margot Robbie wear?
Her previous red carpet uniform came courtesy of Chanel, but it was the masterful recreations of the doll’s most memorable and glitzy looks from Vivienne Westwood and Schiaparelli that proved most effective in translating the plastic prototype to real girl narrative.
Then, came the SAG-AFTRA strike, and the theatrical opulence of sartorially embodying the qualities of your character quelled entirely. The reprieve from the barrage of red carpet dressing was an arduous 118 days. A duration that was compounded by the release of delicious films like Bottoms, the postponement of slated titles like Dune 2 and Challengers and no delectable red carpet moments to show for it.
In this time, it’s clear that actors like Robbie weren’t just sitting idle. Indeed, both stylists and celebrity style savants were doing their homework, deciding what the next era of their career would entail from an aesthetic point of view. In Robbie’s case, it involved a complete departure from everything we knew her red carpet style to be.
Throughout her career, and some of her biggest roles, Robbie’s style remained reserved. Fitting as the burgeoning leading lady role she pandered to, rather than the Hollywood heavyweight she’s come to be. Her looks were feminine, yet demure, with vintage silhouettes and Chanel motifs rife throughout. Now, in the first week post-strike, Robbie delivered five divergent takes on “character” dressing, cementing her status as a fashion ‘It’ girl in her own right.
Her first look came courtesy of the Saltburn premiere in Los Angeles—the Barry Keoghan and Jacob Elordi-helmed thriller she executive produced. With the movie set in an English chateau in 2006, Robbie could’ve easily leaned into the classist glamour that saturated the film. Rather, she took a different take in couture Schiaparelli, pandering to the worst styles of Y2K attire—ultra baggy pants, exposed belly button rings and boudoir bodysuits.
Though meticulously crafted, the look started Robbie’s no-frills and nonchalant approach to her public outings. A mode that culminated in her wearing Bottega Veneta’s leather-disguised-as-denim jeans during a recreation of the 2015 “Cherry Pie Picnic” Barbie doll for a special screening of the film.
Elsewhere, Robbie once again opted for the deep chocolate hue in another couture gown—specifically a bandeau-style dress from Fendi’s Fall/Winter 2023 haute couture collection for her appearance at Variety’s “Power Of Women” event.
If anything, these looks feel like the antithesis of the diligently curated and front page-inducing ensembles Robbie stepped out in the past. Perhaps Robbie is aware that her outfits will stoke the press irrespective of whatever she wears. A realisation that has freed her up to be more liberal and unfussy with her outfits. Robbie has entered her carefree era of dressing; we hope it’s here for a long time, not just a good time.