Why Cate Blanchett is wearing old outfits to the Cannes Film Festival

cate blanchett
(Image credit: Getty)

Slowly but surely, we are seeing an interesting trend on the red carpet: circular fashion. Earlier this year, the BAFTA committee asked attendees to wear pre-owned outfits where possible, in an effort to become more sustainable ('From travel and food, to branding and materials, Bafta is ensuring the awards are as sustainable as possible').

While this may no seem like a big deal, it kind of is, given that designers fall over themselves to have celebrities wear their latest creations at big events - Nicole Kidman was paid $2m do wear a Dior dress to the Oscars in 1997.

Fast forward a few decades, and Cate Blanchett seems to be at the forefront of the sustainable fashion conversation, thanks to some significant wardrobe choices at the Venice Film Festival, of which she is the jury president this year.

Instead of wearing designs straight off the catwalk, the actor has decided to simply rewear some of her old designer gowns, which she has previously been photographed in at other red carpet events, giving them all the more impact.

These include shimmering navy Esteban Cortazar which she wore on the opening night, which she had previously worn to the 2015 UK premiere of her film Carol.

A photo posted by on

Cate also chose to wear an embroidered Alexander McQueen top, which she first wore to the BAFTAs in 2016. Back then she teamed it with a black skirt, though this time she switched things up with trousers.

Her stylist Elizabeth Steward took to Instagram to explain the choices, saying, 'It's chic to repeat'.

She wrote that Cate 'has decided to rewear some of her most cherished looks at this year’s Venice Film Festival, like this @estebancortazarofficial worn to tonight’s Opening that was first worn to a premiere in 2015. In her words, Beautiful things can come out of sustainability!'

A photo posted by on

She added in a separate post that Cate was 'committed to a sustainable red carpet. One way is re-working past iconic looks!'

Plus both outfits have been donated to the look to the RAD at Venice Auction, which will benefit two charities, Facing History and UN Women.

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at MoneySavingExpert.com, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.