Sex Education star Gillian Anderson made quite a fashion statement when she stepped out on the red carpet at the 2024 Golden Globes wearing a stunning ivory, strapless, floor-grazing Gabriela Hearst gown, but today her sartorial choices are prompting debate on social media.
At a glance the chic wool and silk creation that Anderson wore epitomizes old Hollywood glamour, but a closer look reveals a more subversive twist: The custom gown features tens of embroidered vulvas sewn onto the skirt.
“My dress was designed by Gabriela Hearst and it has vaginas on it,” Anderson told Deadline on the red carpet. She explained that she chose the dress “for so many reasons,” adding: “It’s brand appropriate.”
Paired with a silver metallic handbag by Aquazzura and gems by Chopard, the vulva dress prompted debate on social media with some users on X (formerly Twitter) speculating that Anderson’s choice — billed as a “collaboration” between the actor and New York-based fashion designer Gabriela Hearst — was a tacit statement in support of women’s reproductive rights.
Anderson herself explained to British Vogue that, “Since my Instagram presence has been highlighting yonis (the Sanskrit word for womb or vagina) since Sex Education landed on Netflix and with the mantra of my (wellness soft drinks) brand G-Spot being to ‘prioritize pleasure’, I wanted to bring this element into the design… I’m so pleased Gabriela was up for the challenge!”
And a challenge it was. According to the actor, each motif took craftspeople 3.5 hours to embroider, totalling around 150 hours.
While she didn’t go into further detail about why she chose the dress, it comes 18 months after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, which has had a domino effect in the United States. Women and girls are facing increasing restrictions on their rights as the Supreme Court and multiple states have moved to ban or heavily restrict access to legal abortions.
Anatomical statements aside, Anderson’s gown had another revolutionary red carpet addition which left her singing its praises while she walked the 2024 Golden Globe red carpet. Pockets. “It’s so comfortable,” she told Extra TV outside the Beverly Hilton hotel in Los Angeles, where the ceremony was held. “There are pockets on both sides to keep my hands warm.”