Julianne Hough Talks Personal Style, ‘DWTS’ Return at 2023 ACE Awards

Julianne Hough hit the red carpet on Wednesday night in New York for the 2023 Ace Awards. The Accessories Council hosted its annual event, honoring individuals and companies who have furthered the awareness and use of accessories, with Hough taking home the award for Style Ambassador of the Year.

“My style goal is more about being elevated and effortless at the same time,” she told FN. For the occasion, Hough wore a flowing red Emilio Pucci dress and Jimmy Choo heels.

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When she’s not on the carpet, the dancer said she’s been leaning into suiting for her day-to-day looks. “Black trousers, a blouse, a cool jacket or a crop underneath with some slouchy jeans and a blazer. It’s kind of androgynous but still always with a feminine hint to it,” she added.

And while Hough is getting used to wearing flats and sneakers more than ever after moving to New York City for her broadway debut in “POTUS” last year, high heels will always be her go-to.

“My foot has actually molded into this shape,” she explained. “I started wearing heels at 9 years old. Like in a pair of 3.5 inch heels, my foot just kind of feels better.”

Next up for Hough is her return to ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.” It was announced in March that she’d be joining as co-host for Season 32. It’s a full circle moment for the actress who first appeared on “DWTS” as a pro dancer in 2007.

“It’s where I started. It’s like where one decision can shift the trajectory of your entire life. And that show has been a staple for the trajectory of my career,” said Hough. “It feels like a new energy almost like a nostalgic energy of what ‘Dancing With the Stars’ used to be.”

Along with Hough, Dee Ocleppo Hilfiger took the stage to accept the Emerging Designer honor from friend Kris Jenner, who presented her the trophy at the ACE Awards. The three were spotted on the carpet taking photos.

Kris Jenner, Dee Ocleppo and Julianne Hough attend the 27th Annual ACE Awards. - Credit: Getty Images
Kris Jenner, Dee Ocleppo and Julianne Hough attend the 27th Annual ACE Awards. - Credit: Getty Images

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Ocleppo, who runs her namesake company and is the creative director at Judith Leiber, said, “It’s a very tough industry. I just think it’s great to be thought of that way from your colleagues. It feels good [to win this award]. I just love challenging myself. Actually, if this was easy I probably wouldn’t want to do it.”

Other honorees included  Mickey Drexler, who took home the Visionary Award; Hall of Fame honoree Judith Leiber Couture; Alexis Bittar for Brand Innovation, Brand of the Year winner Wolverine; Von Maur for Retailer of the Year; Fashionphile for Retail Innovation; House of LR&C for Sustainability; and the Legacy Award went to Echo New York.

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