Why Elizabeth Olsen Wore Her Sisters' Line for Her First Big Red Carpet: 'I Didn't Know What to Do!'
Elizabeth Olsen is no stranger to the spotlight. After a string of cameos alongside older sisters Mary-Kate and Ashley in the ’90s, she made her dramatic début in the 2011 thriller Martha Marcy May Marlene. She’s been steadily landing roles ever since, most recently starring in indie hits Ingrid Goes West and Wind River. Next spring, she’ll be back in action as the Scarlet Witch in Avengers: Infinity War.
Over the past few years, we’ve watched Olsen find her style groove both on the red carpet and off. And much like her fashion-focused sisters (who run contemporary label Elizabeth and James and high-end The Row), she’s turning heads wherever she goes.
For Olsen, making standout style choices is simply instinctive. “Red is my go-to color when I’m not wearing black, white, gray, or navy,” she said in an interview for InStyle’s November issue. “But I definitely feel like there's a moment to do it on the red carpet. If I were in a movie with an ensemble of 12 people, I don't know if I'd go walking out in a red look. I think it's important to be in line with the other people that you're working with.” Keep clicking for 12 things we learned about Olsen during the chat, and for more stories like this, pick up a copy of InStyle's November issue, now on newsstands and available for digital download.
“Early on in my career, I tried to wear the hottest brands and whatever was assumed to be ‘the right thing’ for a young actress,” Olsen said. “Now I just want to feel like me. If that means wearing a shirt and skirt from my own closet to an event, then great.”
“I’m not interested in trying to show off my shape in something body-con. I like to think outside the box. Pants are definitely in my comfort zone right now. I’ll also go for anything that’s secretly a romper.”
“I was obsessed with one of Rosie Assoulin’s pieces at a recent shoot, so I sent a picture to my stylist, Sarah Slutsky, and asked her to pull whatever she could from the line. The red look I ended up wearing to the New York première of Ingrid Goes West was so dope.”
“I get excited anytime someone wears or mentions anything about Elizabeth and James or The Row. Whenever anyone I love has something that penetrates beyond their inner circle of friends or supportive community, I get excited. So I love that both of my sisters' brands are doing well. I think it's cool that Elizabeth and James has expanded into perfumes and hair products, too. But I literally never even think of myself as an association with the brand, [even though it's named after me].”
“I grew up wearing my sisters’ clothes, so it’s easy for me to say they’re my style icons. They’ve taught me that classic pieces are an amazing investment. But in terms of someone I’ve never shared a house with? I genuinely look forward to seeing what Diane Kruger wears. If I could switch wardrobes with anyone, it would be her.”
“I create Pinterest boards with all my favorite runway looks, and this year I got to wear one from the Dior Haute Couture show. I didn’t even care that I was in a wool onesie in the middle of summer—I just felt so lucky when I put it on.”
OVERSIZE WHITE BLOUSE OBSESSION
“I can never resist buying white blouses. I like silky ones that are slightly sheer and not too stiff. My favorite is a vintage button-down that I bought at a thrift shop, but I also love styles from The Row. I have so much fun deciding which one to pair with my jeans.”
“I like a classic silhouette, and heels don't work that well for me because I always have foot cramps. I wear Louboutin kitten heels a lot, which are sweet. My black Manolo Blahnik pumps are the most comfortable heels I own. I really like a simple shoe, so sometimes it’s hard to convince me to be more playful.”
“My stylist and I go into a room, and we each have a rack filled with the looks we've tagged on Pinterest. Before choosing a final look for an event, I feel like I try on an entire room full of racks.”
KEEP THE CLASSICS
“I like trends from afar, but I don't like applying them to my life. Every time that I've tried to get something that seems a little cooler than what I'm used to, I never wear it and end up giving it to Goodwill because I just don't know what to do with it.”
FIRST MAJOR FASHION MOMENT
“I was in Cannes to promote Martha Marcy May Marlene, and it was only my second film festival ever. For the photo call, I wore a white lace top and a skirt from my sisters. I didn’t have a stylist or anything yet, and I didn’t know what to do. So I was just like, ‘Can you give me something?’ I didn’t understand Cannes or the fact that it was a special fashion event where designers would be happy to dress you. It was my first movie that ever came out. So I just wore a white look from The Row for the photo call, and that's the first fashion moment I remember having while working.”