Margot Robbie’s status as one of Hollywood’s most fashionable leading ladies has been as meteoric as her rise to film fame. Though the actress got her start in the Australian soap opera Neighbours in 2008, she was largely unknown in the United States until 2013, when she starred alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese’s Academy Award-nominated film, The Wolf of Wall Street. More leading roles quickly followed, as did standout red carpet looks as well as a few fashion partnerships.
After first signing with Calvin Klein as the face of their Deep Euphoria fragrance in 2016, Robbie landed her first major fashion contract in 2018, when she was named a Chanel ambassador. Her relationship with the French fashion house has continued through the years, and remains a rather contentious subject among style watchers, some of whom love her Chanel looks, and others who are, well, less convinced.
Still, Robbie was the last Chanel ambassador to be personally chosen by longtime creative director Karl Lagerfeld, prior to the German designer’s death in 2019. Ever since Robbie’s Chanel contract was announced, many of her major red carpet looks have been courtesy of the French fashion house, though she has occasionally strayed to other big name brands.
Ahead of the release of her highly-anticipated starring role in Barbie, we’re taking a look at Robbie’s style evolution, from her early days in Australia, to her Hollywood takeover in custom creations from the likes of Gucci, Prada, Saint Laurent and Tom Ford—and yes, lots of Chanel.
Subscribe to Observer’s Lifestyle Newsletter
1. 2009, Australia’s Logie Awards
Robbie made one of her first red carpet appearances at Australia’s annual Logie Awards in 2009, while starring in the soap opera Neighbours. Wearing a strapless black-and-orange high-low dress, the actress had a bit of a rocky start in the style department.
2. 2011, Disney ABC Television Group’s TCA 2011 Summer Press Tour
After three years on Neighbours, Robbie left Australia and headed to Los Angeles. She quickly landed a part on ABC’s short-lived series Pan Am; she promoted the show at the 2011 Summer Television Critics Association Press Tour at The Beverly Hilton Hotel, in a floral print mini dress.
3. 2013, About Time World Premiere
For the world premiere of About Time in London, Robbie opted for a more grown-up aesthetic, with a white lace look from Ermanno Scervino’s Spring 2013 collection. She kept a few youthful elements, as she paired the floor-length dress with neon platforms and a gold clutch, and kept her hair and makeup simple for the summertime premiere, with a loose braid and glossy lips.
4. 2013, The Wolf of Wall Street Premiere
For the film premiere of her breakout role, Robbie also had a breakout style moment, wearing a custom gown by Armani Privé. The one-shoulder white dress featured a sequined black panel at the waist and an open back. Robbie channeled her The Wolf of Wall Street alter ego when it came to her beauty look, opting for smokey eye makeup and tousled waves.
5. 2014, Golden Globe Awards
Robbie was all about grown-up sophisticated as she once again chose to wear white—this time, it was a custom, crystal-embellished Gucci gown—for the Golden Globe Awards in January 2014.
6. 2014, Academy Awards
Even though The Wolf of Wall Street didn’t come away with a win at the 2014 Oscars, Robbie scored a spot on the best dressed list, thanks to her chic, minimalist strapless black gown by Saint Laurent’s then-creative director, Hedi Slimane. Robbie also debuted a fresh hair color on the red carpet, showing off brunette locks that had been newly dyed for her role in Z for Zachariah. She styled her new tresses in retro waves, and added a plum lip.
7. 2014, Met Gala
Robbie had one more major fashion moment in 2014, as she attended her very first Met Gala, “Charles James: Beyond Fashion.” For fashion’s biggest night, Robbie wore a custom Prada gown, with daring sheer paneling over a satin bralette. Given all of the embellishments and the high ruffle neckline, Robbie opted for minimal jewelry, satin heels, a black clutch and a high ponytail.
8. 2015, Academy Awards
Robbie began to showcase her taste for classic glamour at the 2015 Academy Awards, when she was back to blonde (and back to Saint Laurent). Robbie, who was a presenter at the awards show, wore a drapey black gown with a plunging neckline, which highlighted her Van Cleef & Arpels necklace.
9. 2015, Givenchy Spring 2016 Fashion Show
Robbie has attended countless fashion shows in couture over the years, but it’s hard to beat the white lace suit she wore for the Givenchy Spring 2016 presentation in New York, which remains one of her best looks yet.
10. 2016, Academy Awards
It seems Robbie took a cue from the golden Oscar statues when it came to getting dressed for the 88th Academy Awards. The actress wore custom Tom Ford; according to stylist Kate Young, the glittering gown was inspired by Lauren Bacall. The event also marked the start of Robbie’s longtime working relationship with Young.
11. May 2016, Met Gala
Mere days before Robbie was announced as the face of Calvin Klein’s women’s fragrance, Deep Euphoria, she attended the Met Gala in a dress by the designer. For the “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology” theme, Robbie went for another white number, this one a strapless look with cutouts, and accessorized with several pieces from late Tiffany & Co. jeweler Elsa Peretti, including gold bone cuffs on her wrists.
12. 2016, The Legend of Tarzan U.K. Premiere
At the London premiere of The Legend of Tarzan, Robbie wore a bold Miu Miu gown with geometric embroidery and sheer paneling.
13. 2016, Suicide Squad World Premiere
Robbie took a cue from her Suicide Squad character, Harley Quinn, when it came to dressing for the film’s world premiere, with an Alexander McQueen dress that combined edginess with a touch of fantasy. From the sheer dotted sleeves to the gold sequin unicorn, this was a total standout, and showed Robbie’s ongoing fondness for sheer paneling.
14. 2016, Suicide Squad European Premiere
A few days later, Robbie kept up her fashionable stretch in London, at the European premiere of Suicide Squad. Robbie went for a lighter color palette, but continued in a similar vein when it came to bold touches; the Gucci gown featured tiger and floral embroidering, with vine detailing on the straps.
15. 2017, ‘Good Morning America’
Robbie was a lady in red in New York, in a monochromatic Versace ensemble (from the label’s Spring 2018 collection honoring brand founder Gianni Versace) comprised of an ankle-length skirt, cropped shirt and jacket.
16. 2017, Goodbye Christopher Robin New York Screening
Robbie kept up her Versace streak on the Goodbye Christopher Robin press tour; the actress wore a whimsical dress featuring the brand’s iconic ’90s butterfly print, which was part of the fashion house’s Spring 2018 Tribute collection.
17. 2017, Governors Awards
Robbie proved black is anything but basic in an embroidered Altuzarra dress, with an unexpected pink feather shrug by Prada.
18. 2018, Screen Actors Guild Awards
Nominated for her starring role in I, Tonya (which also marked her first producer credit through her production company, LuckyChap Entertainment), Robbie looked every inch the Hollywood star in custom Miu Miu at the Screen Actors Guild Awards.
19. 2018, G’Day USA Black Tie Gala
Robbie embraced her Aussie roots and went for a full floral look in a coordinating skirt and blouse combo by Australian designer Zimmermann.
20. 2018, BAFTAs
It was back to black at the 2018 BAFTAs, for which Robbie donned a dramatic gown from Clare Waight Keller’s debut couture collection for Givenchy.
21. 2018, Academy Awards
Robbie received her first Best Actress nomination (for I, Tonya) at the 2018 Academy Awards, and fittingly used the occasion to debut her biggest red carpet moment. The very same day, Chanel announced Robbie as its newest ambassador, and the actress fittingly wore custom Chanel Haute Couture; the intricate white gown reportedly took over 550 hours to create.
22. 2018, Mary Queen of Scots European Premiere
At the European premiere of Mary Queen of Scots in London, Robbie chose a romantic polka dot gown from Rodarte’s Spring 2019 collection, and matched her makeup, including her red lip and shimmering red eyeshadow, to the sequined red roses on her dress.
23. 2019, BAFTAs
This dress from Chanel’s Spring 2019 Couture collection is surely one of Robbie’s more daring—and perhaps controversial—looks from the designer; the embellished tulle frock divided critics, but it was undoubtedly a bold choice, as Robbie proved she’s not afraid to take risks.
24. 2019, Cannes Film Festival
Instead of the traditional evening gown, Robbie went for a sequined top and pants at the Cannes Film Festival premiere of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The Chanel look, from the Spring 2011 Couture collection, was a unique choice for the glamorous event, and ensured she stood out in the crowd. When paired with cut-crease eyeshadow and a bouncy blowout, Robbie seemed to be paying homage to the late actress Sharon Tate, whom she portrayed in the film.
25. 2019, Chanel Fall 2020 Couture Show
Robbie sat alongside Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour at Chanel’s Fall 2020 Couture show in Paris, and naturally, dressed in head-to-toe Chanel, sporting a suit from the 2020 Resort collection and accessorizing with ankle boots and a Chanel 19 handbag.
26. 2019, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood Los Angeles Premiere
Robbie embraced a carefree ’70s aesthetic at the Los Angeles premiere of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. It was all Chanel everything for the event; Robbie wore an ethereal, floaty ivory gown from Virginie Viard’s debut Chanel couture show (the original runway dress was in navy), which she complemented with retro curls and matching glossy lips and lids.
27. 2019, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood U.K. Premiere
In a rare departure from Chanel, Robbie kept up the ’70s vibes in a flowing burnt orange chiffon gown, courtesy of Oscar de la Renta.
28. 2019, Bombshell Special Screening
Robbie’s feminine lilac gown from Giambattista Valli’s Fall 2019 Couture collection featured floral detailing and rather polarizing draped peplum at the waist.
29. 2020, Birds of Prey World Premiere
Love it or hate it, this black Dries Van Noten gown, complete with an asymmetrical feathered sash, was certainly one of Robbie’s most memorable red carpet moments, largely thanks to the hot pink opera gloves and neon glitter eyeshadow.
30. 2020, Academy Awards
It was back to Chanel at the 2020 Academy Awards, for which Robbie went into the designer’s archives with a vintage look; the frock was actually a custom take on a look from the Chanel Spring 1994 Couture collection. In addition to a matte red lip, the circular lapis, adorned with gold and pearls, at the bustier of the dress made the real statement.
21. 2021, Academy Awards
Robbie continued her Chanel streak in a shining gown from the Fall 2019 Couture collection. The classic, slim-fitting silhouette was a more straightforward and simple design, but the silver-foiled floral pattern promised Robbie stood out. Still, it was Robbie’s new bangs that really stole the show.
32. 2022, Amsterdam European Premiere
Robbie took a dramatic sartorial turn at the premiere of Amsterdam in London, in a Celine gown with a matching cape.
33. 2022, WSJ Magazine’s Innovator Awards
To celebrate her entertainment innovator award from the Wall Street Journal Magazine, Robbie took a more unexpected fashion turn and wore a white tuxedo jacket and flared-leg pants set from Proenza Schouler, with a black lace shirt peeking out underneath.
34. 2022, Governors Awards
This ab-baring green Bottega Veneta dress is what led so many to speculate (and celebrate, in some cases) that Robbie’s Chanel contract had finally come to an end. Robbie let the slinky dress take center stage, and accessorized with simple gold bracelets and earrings, a sleek blowout and a wash of shimmering gold eyeshadow.
35. 2022, Babylon World Premiere
Robbie showed that she’s a true fashion risk-taker in this elevated approach to the classic LBD, as she once again showcased her abs in an asymmetrical hooded minidress with a dramatic cutout from the Alaïa Winter/Spring 2023 collection.
36. 2023, Golden Globe Awards
Robbie’s performance as Nellie LaRoy in Babylon earned her a Best Actress nomination at the Golden Globes, and the actress returned to Chanel for the occasion. This custom pink lace and tulle gown was inspired by a look from the French fashion house’s Fall 2022 Couture collection, and reportedly took more than 750 hours to make, thanks to the sequin, bugle bead and feather embroidery. The bubblegum pink hue was also perfect for Robbie’s upcoming role in a rather anticipated film.
37. 2023, Babylon U.K. Premiere
Robbie really brought the drama on the Babylon press tour, including this sweeping Valentino gown from the Spring 2023 collection. Featuring a modest front, the dress left a major impression with its open-back design and reverse cape effect.
38. 2023, Academy Awards
Robbie was a presenter at the 2023 Academy Awards, and looked the Hollywood part in an off-the-shoulder gown from Armani Privé’s Spring 2019 Couture collection. The glitzy gown was covered in sequins, and Robbie accessorized with matching black jade and emerald-cut diamond earrings as well as a ring by Lorraine Schwartz. This also marked a big change for Robbie, as for the first time since 2016, the actress began working with a new stylist, Andrew Mukamal.
39. 2023, CinemaCon
To kick off the promo for Barbie, Robbie dressed the part in a pink gingham checked bralette and mini skirt from Prada, with on-point pink heels from Christian Louboutin, as well as a Chanel anklet.
40. 2023, Met Gala
The 2023 Met Gala, “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty,” honored Karl Lagerfeld, who served as Chanel creative director from 1983 until his death in 2019. Fittingly, Robbie paid homage to the late designer in a remake of a gown from his Chanel Spring 1993 Couture collection, which was first worn by supermodel Cindy Crawford.