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Rachel Zoe's career-making moments

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The third season of her series "The Rachel Zoe Project" will premiere August 3 on Bravo
  • "This was probably my career-making moment," Zoe said of Garner's couture gown
  • Zoe has gone from dressing young pop stars to award-winning actresses
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(InStyle.com) -- In less than a decade, Rachel Zoe has gone from dressing young, up-and-coming pop stars like Britney Spears and Jessica Simpson to styling award-winning actresses like Jennifer Garner and Anne Hathaway. Now a celebrity in her own right, Zoe's added designer and reality TV star to her impressive resume. The third season of her series "The Rachel Zoe Project" will premiere August 3 on Bravo, and to celebrate, Zoe sat down with InStyle to discuss the looks -- and ladies -- that made her a star.

Jennifer Garner in Valentino, 2004

"This was probably my career-making moment," Zoe said of the vintage Valentino couture gown Jennifer Garner wore to the Oscars in 2004. "This was when I crossed over from the pop stars -- I realized that it was much more my style, creatively, to do the incredibly glamorous red-carpet thing. Not in a million years did I think Jen would ever wear this dress. She tends to really like simplicity. But she put it on and we literally froze. We just knew. She said, 'This is the most beautiful thing I've ever had on my body.' The fashion press and the commercial media loved her that night -- she was a superstar."

See all of Zoe's career-making moments

Nicole Richie in Costume National, 2005

It's hard to remember now, but Nicole Richie was once best known as Paris Hilton's "Simple" Life sidekick. Thanks in part to a multi-year collaboration with Zoe, she's now considered one of Hollywood's most stylish. Of this printed, halter-necked Costume National gown, Zoe said, "This was just incredible with Nicole's skin and hair -- it was almost unexpected glamour, which is what I am very attracted to."

Anne Hathaway in Atelier Versace, 2008

"LOVE! This goes down as one of my favorite moments in history," Zoe exclaimed, when asked about the Atelier Versace gown Anne Hathaway chose for the Venice Film Festival premiere of "Rachel Getting Married." "I couldn't breathe when I saw her go out on that carpet. She just looked so regal. Annie has this tendency to stand like this very graceful swan, and the way that her hair and makeup came together, just so simply, with that beautiful vintage Bulgari necklace...Every time I'm with Annie now we say, 'How do we outdo that?' We're still trying."

InStyle.com: Rachel Zoe's top 10 fashion must-haves

Cameron Diaz in Chanel Haute Couture, 2009

Cameron Diaz is known for her easygoing style. "This is just a perfect example of how Cameron does couture," Zoe explained of the hot pink Chanel gown Diaz wore to the Golden Globes. "She keeps it cool and youthful and really fun; it's never going to be too serious or too formal. There's a lighthearted, casual feel -- an effortlessness to it. This is just totally Cameron."

InStyle.com: Cameron Diaz's transformation

Demi Moore in Atelier Versace, 2010

Sometimes, success lies in subverting the audience's expectations. "We're very used to seeing Demi in black and gray, things that might be a bit more edgy," Zoe said. Together, she and Moore chose this fluttery peach Atelier Versace gown for the Academy Awards ceremony this year. "I loved it because it was so soft, so ethereal, so elegant, and the jewelry made it all work. It's nice to see her in a really pretty dress."

To see all of Zoe's top moments, from her pop-star start to now, click on InStyle.com!

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