This time of year is always packed full of parties, but for some of us, that simply means having dinner at our aunt's house. Kat Graham, however, happened to score an invite to one of the hottest events of the year, the Guggenheim International Gala, which was thrown in collaboration with Dior. And thankfully, she decided to bring InStyle along as she got ready, answering our questions on what, exactly, she was wearing, and who her style icons are.
We were able to snap photos of Graham getting glam and then in her dress — which comes complete with the sweetest story that will definitely give you chills. Plus, the actress shared some info on the projects she has coming out in 2020, as well as the detail we might have missed in her festive Netflix hit, The Holiday Calendar.
How would you describe your style on a normal day?
Honestly, if I could dress like Annie Hall every day I would. I wear a lot of high-waisted pants, oxfords, and hats.
Tell us about what you’re wearing. Any details you’re loving that you’d like to highlight?
I am wearing a piece from Dior’s 2020 Cruise collection. This collection is especially important to me because [creative director] Maria Grazia Chiuri went to Africa and worked with Pathé'O in Abidjan to bring to life some of the most incredible and inspiring patterns out of that region. Funnily enough, back in March when I traveled to the Nakivale settlement camp in Uganda, I had actually purchased different purses made by refugees for Maria Grazia, because I thought that she would be inspired by Congolese fabrics. When I saw that she had already gone and was using African pattern work for the Cruise Collection, I started to cry. I am consistently so unbelievably inspired and blown away by her.
What’s something unexpected that you keep in your bag for an event?
A safety pin, because you never know!
Is there an iconic Dior style moment that stands out in your mind? What and why?
The most iconic moment for me, personally, was the first time that Dior dressed me. I remember walking in with stars in my eyes and looking at every purse and piece of jewelry in absolute awe. When they sent me a gift, I remember crying happy tears on my hotel room bed because my biggest fashion dream was to work with them. Also, my first show was pretty iconic. Maria Grazia had these dancers — all women that were using each other physically to build each other up. It was so symbolic and such a great representation of what it means to be in the Dior family.
Do you have a TV/movie character style icon?
I would say Hillary from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Grace Jones in James Bond, off the top of my head.
Can you put together the ultimate holiday look for us?
The ultimate holiday look for me consists of L’Oreal rouge signature lip stain, black sheer Wolford tights, and a nice velvet pump. Also, an exaggerated headband is never a miss at a holiday dinner.
What’s your New Year’s style resolution?
My New Year’s style resolution is to wear my natural curls more!
Are you excited for people to re-watch The Holiday Calendar on Netflix this year? What’s something from the movie that we may not have noticed the first time around?
I’m so excited that people are going to be watching it again this year. I'm already getting lots of tags about it already and it’s not even Thanksgiving! Netflix and I have another one coming out next year called Operation Christmas Drop, which we are really excited about. We shot it this year at the Anderson Air Force Base in Guam, and it tells the story of the real mission that the Air Force does every year.
Something from The Holiday Calendar that viewers might have not caught the first time around is that when I get home for the first time in the film, I am matching outfits with my niece.
You also have some movies coming out in 2020. Can you share a sentence or two about those?
Cut Throat City is about these kids that commit a heist after hurricane Katrina leaves their neighborhood and families in devastation. Ethan Hawke, Shameik Moore, Eiza González and Wesley Snipes are also in the cast. Emperor tells the true story of runaway slave Shields Green, which helped spark the Civil War. Netflix’s Operation Christmas Drop, as well as a very cool animation project I am doing with Dreamworks are also on the way.
Finish this sentence: my outfit is never complete without _____.