Design & Style

Celebrity Styling Case Studies: Tracee Ellis Ross, Justin Bieber & a Le Smoking Suit

Karla Welch

Lesson time 15:24 min

Karla details working with Tracee Ellis Ross and Justin Bieber, and takes you through the history and cultural relevance of one of her staple looks: Le Smoking Suit.

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Topics include: Celebrity Styling Case Studies: Tracee Ellis Ross, Justin Bieber & a Le Smoking Suit * Tracee Ellis Ross and the Pink Valentino Dress * The Valentino Dress * Taking Risks * Collaborating With Justin Bieber * Working on an Album Cycle * The Justice Tour Cycle * Your Take on a Le Smoking Suit


[MUSIC PLAYING] I've been working with Tracee Ellis Ross for the last five years. Tracee is one of the most stylish women in the world. She comes from one of the most stylish women in the world, with her mother Diana Ross. And she, wanted to, yeah, work together. And it's an amazing, collaborative relationship because we both love fashion so much. She breathes fashion. We're going to talk about one of my fondest styling memories, and it's the big pink Valentino she wore to the Emmys when she was nominated for Best Actress for "Black-ish". That was a pretty special moment. It was this moment that redefined a silhouette on a red carpet. Now you see tons of big dresses. But at that moment in time, you really didn't. And Tracee and I both were very fortunate that we were at the Couture Show in Paris, and Pierpaolo has become a very dear friend of mine. And these dresses came out, and it was a shift in energy, and it was a shift in a way of dressing. All of a sudden there was these voluminous, huge dresses. We Both ran upstairs after, and Tracee was like, I've got to wear something to the Emmys. And I was like, 100%. And I don't think a lot of people were requesting this dress, because it was so extreme at the time. It was bigger than anything I've ever seen. And what I love about Tracee too, in very similar ways to Justin, she's quite fearless. She loves fashion so much. So I got word, hey, we are getting that dress, so come in and try it on. And it was-- it's huge. And Tracee put it on, and we were, like, yeah, let's wear it. But we did have like a few back and forth, is this dress crazy, or like? But she was, nope, it's amazing. And I was, yeah, it's amazing. It was one of the very first times we did a real narrative to a story of we imagined this girl who was a surfer off the coast of South Africa, and that she'd just come out of the water, and she's going to put this huge ball gown on and just go to dinner. Which taps into a little the philosophy of just wear your clothes like they're jeans. That was this kind of thinking as well. And we came up with an orange eye, and a slicked back bun, and just beautiful skin, and this big dress as the statement piece. Everybody just kind of got it. And it was from telling the story and then and then giving everybody the freedom to work a little bit. We had to adjust a couple of things, but overall it was the synergy of everybody in the room coming together to create something. And that comes from having the vision, talking through, the trust of the relationship, and then applying it. And I think it can work on any field. It's that preparation and then the little bit of freedom to go for it. The day was amazing, and we took pictures. And I remember, we posted it before she hit the red carpet. And my phone went wild of every stylist and every comment of whoa. And in that moment, we'd shifted something. And it was like, yeah, she was the best dressed. It was...

About the Instructor

From styling stars like Justin Bieber and Tracee Ellis Ross to creating her own clothing line, Karla Welch has spent almost 20 years honing her creative process while pushing the boundaries of fashion. Now she’s teaching how you can let your individuality shine through your wardrobe. Learn to identify your personal style, bring it to life, and make a statement without saying a word.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Karla Welch

Renowned celebrity stylist Karla Welch teaches you how to find your personal style and create a strong, versatile wardrobe that’s uniquely you.

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