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Anne Hathaway’s Climb to Becoming a micro-Fashion Icon

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Only one name comes to mind when I think of an early 2000’s Academy Award, Golden Globe, and Primetime Emmy recipient that ruled over cinema for female audiences:

Anne Hathaway.

She has proven herself to be a fantastic actress that can play a wide range of roles from a peasant, a teenage princess, a monstrous witch, and an unlikely fashionista, all the way to Catwoman. Not only does her performance leave a lasting impression, but her wardrobe inside and outside of her work creates its own timeless image of the artist. 

When one thinks of Hathaway, I don’t assume that fashion is the first thing on everyone’s minds, but when you take a closer look at her fashion journey it’s clear that she is quickly rising to micro-fashion icon status. 

We can first take a look at the styles, compositions, and colors Hathaway gravitates towards that gives her a classy yet effortless look.

Her color palette is deep winter: cool-toned skin, dark eyes, dark hair, and overall high contrast within her features. Her best colors are rich tones like wines, plums, navy tones, and black & white which only complement her complexion. She often sticks with these types of colors which create a very cohesive and complementary look every time. She gravitates towards silhouettes that highlight her height and isn’t afraid of dramatic necklines and details.

Hathaway is also a Flamboyant Natural (FN) body type, according to the Kibbe body types. This defines her as being somewhat angular and defined. She leans into this and wears a lot of clothing that emphasizes her features such as those with adventurous lines and flowing fabrics that radiate sophistication on an FN type like herself. This doesn’t mean that Hathaway doesn’t step outside of these parameters; I personally love seeing her in bold prints and silhouettes.

Hathaway’s movies also play a part in her role within the fashion industry. 

Within her many film roles over the years, each of her characters embodies a different style, and she is able to pull each of them off flawlessly. For a large portion of her acting career in the early 2000s, she embodies fairly young teenage/early professionals. These wardrobes had an almost innocent girl-next-door aesthetic which coincided with her entry into Hollywood as a fresh new face. As she continued to make a more notable name for herself, her style within herself and her characters grew by playing more mature characters with more mature themes.

Most notably, The Devil Wears Prada (my all-time favorite movie) created the most change in her climb throughout the film industry symbolically as the character, Andy, and as her career as an actress. The environment of the film places her within the world of fashion and subconsciously makes audiences correlate Hathaway with high fashion simply from seeing her sport the best styles of the 2000s in a professional corporate setting. In this way, Anne Hathaway is synonymous with fashion and I believe that she has only continued to take this societal notion of her correlation with style in order to further develop her own personal mark.

Credit has to also be given to Hathaway’s stylist, Erin Walsh, who has been helping give us some amazing looks since they began working together in 2019.

Some notable fashion moments for her are definitely:

  • The 29th Annual ELLE “Women in Hollywood” Celebration, a navy blue dazzling halter dress by Ralph Lauren
  • The 2022 Cannes Film Festival, a strapless straight neckline white gown with a shawl of the same fabric by Giorgio Armani
  • And I just have to mention the 2003 Golden Globes, a flowy pink high-slit gown with flower motifs at the bust by Elie Saab

In my opinion, mainstream media became much more aware of Hathaway’s impact on fashion at the 2022 Valentino A/W collection debut. Her most iconic look from this event that was plastered all over magazines and news outlets was her hot pink sequin turtleneck and mini skirt, paired with towering block heels. She became part of the “Valentino Girls” that were also dawning their own hot pink ensembles to match the collection’s Barbie vibe for this season. This idea of an It-Girl Group associated with a certain designer can be traced back to Versace’s Girls or Muses (think Naomi Campbell). 

Currently, her style has been deemed to be very reminiscent of the Bombshell look, which I think compliments her greatly as she ages. I can only predict that she will lean more sophisticated in her colors (navy, white, black) but keep up with fun silhouettes as our current trends further develop (shorter hemlines, daring prints). As Hathaway collaborates more with Walsh, her standing in the fashion industry will only continue to grow.

Mel Wohl

TCNJ '25

Mel is a sophomore Marketing major with an interest in pursuing a career in fashion and beauty. She loves studying runway, eating copious amounts of sugar, and can always be seen rewatching Gilmore Girls for the upteenth time. She is currently HCTCNJ's Editor in Chief <3