Emma Watson: Fashion Gave Me a Life Outside 'Harry Potter'

If there's one thing Emma Watson is known for (other than the Harry Potter movie franchise, of course), it's her amazing sense of style -- and for that, the British actress is quite grateful.

Watson, best known to the world for playing brilliant young witch Hermione Granger, says her sense of fashion helped prove that she had interests -- and a life -- outside of the magical movie saga. But the press' reaction to her fashion-forward style hasn't always been kind.

"The press destroyed me over this Rodarte dress I wore once -- it was bright blue with chains on it," the star told the UK's The Independent about stepping out in the dress in 2009, when she was 19. "I loved it. And I wore a leather Christopher Kane dress [in 2010] with embroidered flowers all over it. It wasn't that crazy, but at the time…"

Still, the 21-year-old Harry Potter star admits she's more than willing to make daring decisions: "I was fully game for 'Throw me in this, throw me in that.'"

One decision that initially divided critics was her post-Potter pixie cut, which is now considered one of the most influential celebrity haircuts in years.

"I had journalists asking me if this meant I was coming out, if I was a lesbian now," Watson admits. "That haircut did make me realize how subjective everyone’s opinion is. Some people were crazy for it and some people just thought I’d lost my [mind]."

But Watson, who landed a lucrative deal with Burberry in 2009 and is currently the face of Lancome, doesn't regret any of her choices, regardless of whether the press agreed with her.

"Fashion gave me a chance to feel like I was something outside of Potter," she said. "I'm a multi-dimensional person and that's the freedom of fashion; that you're able to reinvent yourself through how you dress and how you cut your hair or whatever."

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