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In Praise Of Choosing Your Own Clothes

The filmmaker Sofia Coppola on the golden ageof the red carpet and how stylists are killing style.

Sara Cwynar

Looking at some photos from a recent red-carpet event the other night with a friend, I couldn’t help but think what a bummer it has all become. You can’t tell the women apart—there’s a stream of bland red-carpet editions of them. That same night, after my friend had browsed through these images, showing me the highlights, we watched some old episodes of Cher together. Dressed in Bob Mackie, Cher moved in a golden hue of dazzling, formfitting style unique to her.

I miss the days before actresses hired stylists, when women dressed themselves for formal events. There was personality, style— and mistakes. I loved Cannes in the ’70s, when there was a mix of European glamour, Hollywood, and hippies: Nastassja Kinski in a cotton dress with flowers in her hair. Wearing a kimono jacket could pass as black tie.

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