A costume designer’s job is to use clothes to tell a story. Though aesthetics play a pivotal role in choosing outfits for a film, their choices also have to support the project’s time period, location, and overall theme and mood. It’s no wonder, then, that many costume designers approach their own personal style with a more thoughtful lens, too. Thinking creatively about fashion comes with the territory.
This has certainly been the case at the Oscars throughout the years. On the red carpet, many costumers have shown up in looks that either nod to the film they are nominated for, or make a bold statement in general (remember Lizzy Gardiner’s golden Amex dress?). These artists are innate red carpet rebels, in that they have consistently eschewed traditional glamour in favor of frocks that have a bigger narrative or backstory. And in honor of the upcoming Academy Awards, which occur on April 25, Vogue is looking back at some of these rule-breaking moments.
Below, 8 costume designers who were breakout red carpet stars at the Oscars.