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The Bad Guy singer told Vogue that “big dresses” were her favourite fashion choice, but a loss of confidence in the way her body looked made her stop wearing them.
In a short film about the process of creating Eilish’s Met Gala ballgown, the 19-year-old said: “Big dresses were my favourite thing when I was a kid. I had so many dresses, I would wear a dress every single day.
“It’s really body image that tore that s*** down. [It’s] why I think I’ve been dressing the way I have for years.”
Eilish wore a voluminous Oscar de la Renta gown to the event on Monday, with no fewer than 30 pieces of Cartier jewellery, the most ever worn by a star on the red carpet.
The pop star was due to attend the Met Gala for the first time in 2020, but the event was cancelled due to the pandemic.
According to British Vogue’s style director, Dena Giannini, Eilish had “always dreamed of wearing a proper ball gown, particularly something corseted, thanks to her love of Barbies growing up”.
Speaking about her original plans for a Met Gala outfit, Eilish said: “I was planning on thinking of something for the Met of 2020, and I was like, it should be bright green and it’s going to be some stupid print on it. I don’t know. But I knew that I wanted something big with a corset.”
Eilish is known for her signature streetwear style, and is usually seen wearing baggy clothes in bright acid colours. However, she turned away from loose-fitting T-shirts and shorts in her 2021 Vogue cover story, in which she was photographed wearing classic lingerie, corsets, stockings and gloves.
Since then, Giannini said the star’s sartorial choices “began to evolve”. Together, they settled on Oscar de la Renta to design Eilish’s Met Gala gown, on the condition that the designer stops using animal fur in their garments.
Eilish said: “I find it shocking that wearing fur isn’t completely outlawed at this point in 2021. I am so beyond thrilled that [creative directors] Fernando [Garcia] and Laura [Kim] and the rest of the Oscar de la Renta team heard me on this issue and have made a change that not only makes an impact for the greater good for animals but also for our planet and environment too.
“I’m honoured to have been a catalyst and to have been heard on this matter. I urge all designers to do the same.”