If Sarah Paulson didn't have a stylist, she would only wear sweatpants.
The silvery Marc Jacobs sheath she wore to the Golden Globes and the dazzling emerald dress she donned at the Emmys were picked out by a professional.
"My green Prada dress that I wore to the Emmys was so heavy that at one point I thought I was going to throw my neck out," Paulson said. "But it did not matter to me because it was the best dress I've ever had on my body."
Fresh off her SAG, Golden Globe and Emmy Award wins for playing Marcia Clark in American Crime Story, Paulson is celebrating the woman who put together all those red carpet looks: Karla Welch, whom the Hollywood Reporter just named the industry's most powerful stylist.
Welch, along with Paulson and fellow red carpet standout Ruth Negga, appears on the cover of the magazine's special "Stylists & Stars" issue, which ranks Tinseltown's 25 top stylists.
"Good clothes open doors," Welch quipped when asked the best bit of style advice she ever received.
"I need her to push me out of my sweatpants and my sneakers," Paulson said Tuesday night at a Jimmy Choo-sponsored dinner honoring the magazine's sartorial stars. John Legend, Justin Timberlake, Dakota Johnson, Jonah Hill, Mary J. Blige and Mahershala Ali were among the well-dressed guests at the private party at The Ponte restaurant.
Though Paulson prefers leisurewear, she loves the ritual of getting ready for the red carpet. Having a spectacular dress to wear helps her achieve the right mindset for a million flashbulbs and screaming fans.
"A lot of people talk about it as being a kind of armor, and it is," she said.
Even with the help of Hollywood's top stylist, the actress said her love of sweatpants has led to some fashion regrets.
"It's not that I regret them. It's just that I know if I get photographed in them at the grocery store, I'll think, 'Oh (expletive). This is when I'm supposed to wear that jacket she told me to wear,'" Paulson said. "Then 800 people on Instagram are like, 'She's such a bum on her night off.' Really? I'm supposed to look fashionable when I'm going out to get half-and-half [milk]?"