L’Wren Scott, a towering 6-foot-4 fashion figure who started modeling in her teens, styled many of Hollywood’s leading ladies for the red carpet and went on to create her own high-end clothing line that’s been worn by everyone from Nicole Kidman to First Lady Michelle Obama, was found dead in her New York apartment Monday, her publicist said. She was in her late 40s.
New York police officials told the Los Angeles Times that an investigation into Scott’s death was ongoing.
Scott was romantically linked to Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger and helped style the band’s stage looks. She helped forge a new role for celebrity stylists in the fashion world, parlaying her tastemaker status (and access to celebrities) into a clothing and accessory brand.
Her fascination with fashion began when, at age 12 and already 6 feet tall, she began scouring her local Utah thrift stores for vintage clothing that she could rework at her sewing machine to fit her unusual proportions. In her teens, Scott moved to Paris, where she modeled for Chanel and is said to have inspired many of designer Thierry Mugler’s creations.
She came to Los Angeles in the 1990s, where, in addition to her work on a variety of commercials (Pepsi, Calvin Klein, Revlon), music videos (Jennifer Lopez, Tina Turner) and fashion shoots (Vogue, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone), she was photographer Herb Ritts’ creative stylist.
As the first-ever style director for the Academy Awards, Scott was responsible in 2000 for dressing everyone who appeared on the stage, from the performers to the presenters. She also designed original red-carpet gowns for Kidman, Sarah Jessica Parker, Penelope Cruz, Rene Zellweger and others.
Christina Hendricks played up her assets in Scott’s belted, black-sequin tuxedo robe at the 2011 SAG Awards, and Cruz showed off her post-baby bod in Scott’s low-cut, sleeveless, firecracker-red sequin gown at the 2011 Oscars. In 2013, Kidman’s all-over black-and-gold beaded Scott gown brought to mind a modern art piece.
Scott launched her clothing collection in 2006, which was sold at Barneys New York, Maxfield and other high-end stores. In December, she brought her fiercely feminine aesthetic to the masses, with a collection for Banana Republic that included a lip pattern that Scott said was not a tongue-in-cheek reference to the Rolling Stones’ famous logo.
In recent years, she split her time between New York and London, where she had been showing her collections at London Fashion Week. In February, the showing of her fall 2014 collection was canceled.