“Bradley Cooper? Sign me up!” – We chat to celeb stylist Alexandra Mandelkorn

Posted by: on May 30, 2013 | One Comment

Gossipdrip chats to the lovely Alexandra Mandelkorn about styling Hollywood stars, getting her hands on Bradley Cooper and how to make it as a celebrity stylist.

That dress and that train...

At the Cannes premiere of ‘The Bling Ring’ you styled Claire Julien in an amazing, bespoke EMILIO PUCCI dress. How did you manage to bag such a special dress for her?

After a lot of hard work! The search began about a two months before hand, so it was certainly a long process! I spent countless hours perusing the runways on style.com and flipping through look books from designers all over the world looking for that one special dress. I wanted something that was youthful, elegant, a little sexy and with a bit of drama. When I was presented with the blush colored Emilio Pucci dress, I had a feeling that it would be incredible. Initially, the dress was designed to hang as more of a column throughout the body, but I wanted it to fit her body like a glove, so we did some pretty major alterations. Claire has such an incredible figure—we had to show it off!

Was it an accident that she was only the member of the lead cast NOT in monochrome? We think it was genius at Gossipdrip!

I’d like to say it was all part of the plan, but it was just a coincidence! A happy one, though! While I loved the other girls’ gowns, and of course the handsome Mr. Broussard in his Prada tux, whom I also styled, I secretly did a little jump for joy back here in Los Angeles when I saw all the pictures from the red carpet. While blush isn’t the brightest color (and thank goodness it isn’t—could you imagine her in a green gown against all that black and white?!) I think it set her apart just enough that everyone was asking, “who is that girl?”. Plus that train. I still dream about that train.

You’ve styled Claire numerous times, what is she like to work with?

I’ve been working with Claire for over a year now and she is absolutely lovely! She is such a little bubble of energy. We’ve had some really fun fittings together. I mean, when you get to work with such awesome clothes, its hard not to! I really try and make it a point to only work with clients I really get along with. Otherwise, it can cause an uncomfortable work environment. Trust is a huge part of a stylist/client relationship so you want to build that first and foremost.

Alexandra styled Kate Nash for her latest music video

Who would you love to style and who do you think could do with a bit of your magic touch?!

Oh wow! There are so many people! I’d love to work with Diane Kruger, Blake Lively and Zoe Saldana. They all have such fantastic, innovative and exciting style. I also love styling men and I love a man who takes a risk with his wardrobe. Bradley Cooper? Sign me up. In terms of people who I think could use a little fashion direction, I would really love to start working with more musicians—DJs in particular. I think that with the rise of electronic music in America, DJs are seen more and more in the media and I’d love to be at the forefront of creating a style surrounding the genre. Brodinski has some fantastic style. Id love to work with him.

Have you ever had any difficult clients? Any bratty celebs…?!

Like in any profession, you’re always going to come across clients who… well, lets just say you don’t quite ‘mesh’ with. I find it really difficult to work with people who have a very specific idea of what they want to look like, but then can’t and won’t communicate those desires. I like to pride myself on the fact that I can work with pretty much any style, and I’ll do the research to find the best clothes within that style, but if you don’t communicate with me, I can’t help you!!

As well as red carpet styling, you also style for commercial shoots, music videos and movies – what is your fave out of these and why?

I started out working in the wardrobe department of feature films when I was 18, so working on a film set will always hold a soft spot for me. Eventually, I would like to get back to my roots and start costume designing some high fashion films. The last film I worked on, I was the assistant costume designer and it was an incredible, high fashion film based in NYC, starring Amber Heard, Shiloh Fernandez and Kellan Lutz. It’s called Syrup and it was just released! Im also such a huge music person- when I’m not styling, I’m dancing!- so working on more music videos would be great. It seems that my time is mostly booked with editorial and red carpet work these days, but I’m sure I’ll get to do some filmed work soon!

What are the highlights of your job?

Oh man! What a question! There really are so many highlights. First of all, I get to make my own schedule and be my own boss, which, at 24 years old, is pretty awesome. I also get to meet some really incredible, hard working people—both artists and those on the business end of things. Celebrities are so fun to work with, but let me tell you, the people behind the scenes are just as amazing, sometimes even more so. I also get the opportunity to work with some of the most incredible clothing in the world. When the box of Balmain arrived at my house for Claire’s fitting, I swear I was like a little kid on Christmas opening my big present! The craftsmanship of these pieces are seriously unbelievable. For years, I sewed my own clothes and costumes, so the sewing nerd in me gets so giddy over all the hand stitched embroidery and design that goes into these couture pieces.

Alexandra says you can never look cute rushing around but we think she rocks this jacket!

…and any lowlights?

The manual labor of this job rivals that of a construction worker, I swear!! I can never look cute because I’m always running around, lugging bags of clothes, carrying racks, on my knees pinning a dress, etc. But, even that has an upside: I’m always getting a little work out in!

What advice would you give to any budding stylists?

I have two pieces of advice:

1) Be prepared to work harder than anyone and everyone else. It’s the only way you will stand out.

2) Be kind to everyone you meet. This job is one of the most stressful and everyone involved is usually always exhausted and underfed.

A little recognition can go a long way!


See more of Alexandra’s work at www.alexandramandelkorn.com and follow her on Twitter @amandelkorn