The Road to Rachel Brosnahan's Blue 2019 Emmys Dress

Here's the story of the Marvelous Mrs. Maisel star's dazzling award show look.

By Samantha Schnurr Sep 23, 2019 12:09 AMTags
Rachel Brosnahan, 2019 Emmy Awards, 2019 Emmys, Red Carpet FashionChristopher Polk/Variety/Shutterstock

When the 2019 Emmy nominations were announced on July 16, stylists Jill Lincoln and Jordan Johnson could officially spring into action. 

After all, that's the day one of their clients, Rachel Brosnahan, learned of her third Emmy nomination for her performance as the titular character in Amazon Prime Video's hit series, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. While the stylists had a feeling the actress was going to be inside the Microsoft Theater come Sept. 22, they waited for the official word to really get the ball rolling. 

"Rachel is very superstitious as are we," Lincoln told E! News. So, after her name had been called, the two reached out to the star to offer their congratulations and then hone in on a list of potential designers. 

While that list remains a secret to E! News, we can assume it included brands Brosnahan had not donned on the red carpet at last year's ceremony. "We generally know we'd like to switch it up if we can designer-wise every year," Johnson noted. 

All the Times Rachel Brosnahan Was More Stylish Than Midge Maisel

For last year's Emmys, the final result was red Oscar de la Renta. It also marked the first major event for Lincoln, Johnson and their new client.

"Last year, we went pretty classic with the look and this year she wanted to do something a little more out of the box and something slightly more sexy," Johnson described. Through it all, communication is key. 

"It's very much a collaboration," Lincoln said of their working dynamic. "Rachel has a very clear idea of what she's comfortable in and what she would like to see herself in, but as well, Jordan and I have a very clear vision of how we see her from a fashion perspective, from a stylist's perspective...we kind of cover all the bases in that regard." As Johnson described, it was "a lot of sending photos back and forth" to narrow down the ideal look for the Emmys. 

As a plus, "I think Rachel has a lot of fun with it," Lincoln told E! News. "I think that's always nice when we have a client who cares about the process and cares about fashion."


While the vision was clear, which dress it would end up being was more of a mystery. Just three days before the main event, the duo avoided sharing any specifics while the final choice between two options remained up in the air. "We just don't like to jinx it," Johnson said, explaining a curveball can always be thrown.

"It's a gamble. Until you have these final fittings and all of the necessary adjustments have been made, it's impossible to tell, because the minute you think you know what she's wearing—'she' being several shes that we've worked with over the years—then everything changes," Lincoln said. 

But, with years of styling experience under their belts, it sounds like there are few last-minute snafus these pros aren't prepared for.  

"We have an arsenal of tools," Lincoln said. "We literally come in with a suitcase full of Spanx and tape and pins and deodorant and powder. You name it—we're prepared for everything." Considering their memories of spills and zippers splitting in half, who can blame them? 

Two months, four fittings and one day of glam later, Brosnahan stepped out on the purple carpet in an Elie Saab blue column gown from the spring-summer 2019 haute couture collection, covered in sequins with a ruffle at the waist, an open back and asymmetrical wrap neckline. The look was completed with Jimmy Choo shoes, Ana Khouri jewelry, a blond ponytail by hairstylist Owen Gould and complementary blue eye makeup by Lisa Aharon.

"We made a selection from the couture collections and was actually quite surprised that it didn't get worn at the Venice Film Festival," Lincoln told E! News. "It's a magnificent gown."

Lincoln further described the dress as "very sleek and modern and cool" and noted the shape was different from Brosnahan's previously fuller-skirted looks. It "checked all the boxes of our criteria for what we were looking for for this occasion," she said. 

While the dress fit "almost perfectly," in the name of caution, they had the zipper on the dress replaced. "We were being hyper-careful," Lincoln shared. "It was too easy. It was too perfect."

Now, with the look officially complete, Lincoln and Johnson will join industry friends to watch their work come to life on the carpet. Plus, through their new initiative, Red Carpet Gives, Johnson and Lincoln have added a philanthropic element to the process by encouraging designers to make a donation, this time to Save the Children's U.S. Border Crisis Children's Relief Fund, in lieu of bouquets typically sent as a thank you. 

As for Brosnahan, in a matter of hours, she may go home a two-time Emmy winner—in quite the marvelous dress. 

Latest News