Skip to content

"What Not to Wear" Hosts Stacy and Clinton Reveal What Started 10-Year Feud

The pair hosted the makeover show for 10 years before having a very public falling out.

From 2003 to 2013, viewers tuned in to watch Stacy London and Clinton Kelly give wardrobe makeovers to usually cooperative participants on the TLC show What Not to Wear. The hosts were a package deal on the show and seemed to have such a good time together that it was hard to imagine that they weren't friends in real life. But, after hosting What Not to Wear for 10 years, Kelly and London fell into a nearly 10-year feud that was only recently resolved.

The pair appeared on Today on Thursday, Sept. 28, marking their first public appearance together in a decade. On the show, the former co-hosts explained what led to their falling out and how they got back in touch. Read on to find out the details of London and Kelly's feud and how they managed to bury the hatchet.

RELATED: Kathleen Turner Says Burt Reynolds' Sexist Comment Started 30-Year Feud.

Kelly wrote about London is his book.

Four years after What Not to Wear went off the air, Kelly released a book of essays titled I Hate Everyone, Except You in January 2017. In one essay, he shared his complicated feelings toward London.

"For the first five years we worked together, I either adored her or despised her, and never anything in between, probably because we spent nearly 60 hours a week in captivity, rarely more than an arm's length away from each other," Kelly wrote (via Today). He said that he and London had "great chemistry" and that she was "charming as hell," but that he sometimes felt she was "jockeying" for attention. "There's a part of me that will love Stacy forever, and a part of me that would be just fine if I never saw her again for the rest of my life," he wrote.

RELATED: Cher Called Madonna a "Spoiled Brat" After Hosting Her at Her House.

London subsequently blocked Kelly on social media.

Stacy London and Clinton Kelly at an "Entertainment Weekly" event in 2006
Jamie McCarthy/WireImage for Entertainment Weekly Magazine via Getty Images

As reported by People, in November 2017, Kelly wrote on Twitter (now X) that he discovered that London had blocked him on the social media platform. Alongside a screenshot showing that he was blocked, he wrote, "Alllll righty then."

At the time, Kelly was one of the hosts of The Chew. He addressed the conflict on the show, including his realization that people were more invested in their relationship than he would have thought. "The tea is, there ain't no tea," he said. "I literally don't know if she blocked me yesterday, or a year ago, a month ago … But I've got no beef with Stacy at all."

London seemed to hint that she'd forgiven Kelly.

Clinton Kelly and Stacy London at the 2010 Television Critics Association Press Tour
Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

In a lengthy post on Instagram in January 2018, London wrote about blocking people on social media without mentioning Kelly by name. In the post, she reflected on forgiveness and that she knows she "can hold a grudge."

"The problem is the more I hold on to my anger, the more I hurt, not them," she wrote. "And while feeling pain and sadness sucks, it's necessary, NOT damaging, and certainly unavoidable." She added, "Forgiveness is something you give yourself to move on, to find peace, to let go. So I unblocked a bunch of people today."

RELATED: Anjelica Huston Says Oprah Winfrey Has Been Giving Her the Silent Treatment Since the '80s.

London and Kelly reflected on their falling out in a new interview.

During their Today show appearance, London and Kelly opened up about their feud and the misunderstandings they'd had about each other. They both said that there was one particularly bad season of What Not to Wear during the middle of the show's run that led London to write a letter apologizing to Kelly for what she realized came off as "diva behavior" but was actually anxiety.

They kept working with each other from there, but the bigger falling out came when Kelly addressed their complex working relationship in his book. "I think there was justification for what Clinton said. I think we both grew up on What Not to Wear," London said. She added that they "handled fame a little bit differently" and admitted that Kelly was "more mature about it" than her. She said she wasn't upset so much about what Clinton said in the book, but rather that he made their issues public. She also said that she had "read the clickbait" rather than the book itself. Kelly also noted that quotes from his book were taken out of context in news stories.

Kelly reached out to London during lockdown.

Stacy London and Clinton Kelly on "Today" in September 2023
TODAY with Hoda & Jenna / YouTube

Kelly shared that he reached out to his former co-host during the COVID-19 pandemic to hash things out.

"After seeing the same clickbait story over and over and over on Instagram about how much we hated each other, I was like, 'I can't take this anymore.' Because we don't really hate each other. We love each other, as a matter of fact," Kelly said. "We have very strong feelings toward each other, so I reached out to Stacy and I was like, 'Can we put this behind us? Let's talk it out' … And we just talked through it all."

London said that she "sobbed [her] eyes out" while she and Kelly worked through their issues. "I let it all hang out. I told Clinton everything that made me sad, everything that hurt me, every way I thought I hurt him. All the petty grudges, all the stupid crap." She added that previously, "[T]here was a lot of points of pride that I don't think either of us were willing to cop to."

They're happy to have let the bad blood go.

Stacy London and Clinton Kelly on "Today" in September 2023
TODAY with Hoda & Jenna / YouTube

On Today, Kelly and London discussed forgiveness, and she echoed some of the words from her 2018 Instagram post.

"One thing I'll say about forgiveness is if you don't let go of it, the famous line is, it's like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die," London said. "So do not hold onto grudges. Don't do it. Find a way through."

Kelly said of the topic, "If you don't forgive, you're only hurting yourself," Kelly said. "It's the only way to be in the moment. If you're always holding onto a grudge, you're not living in the present."

They're working together again.

Kelly and London's reunion wasn't a one-time-only thing—the two are going on tour together. The pair will be traveling to nine cities with The Stacy & Clinton Show.

"Now, we've decided, we have this great chemistry, we make each other laugh, we finish each other's sentences, why aren't we sharing this with the world? So we're going on tour," Kelly said on Today. "We're going to stand up and we're going to talk about the behind-the-scenes stories of What Not to Wear."

London added that there will be "lots of goss!" Kelly explained, "The big feud, we'll go through that. We'll do lots of audience participation, like if people want style advice, our updated style advice."

London and Kelly also announced the news in a video posted to Instagram of them appearing upset to have run into each other on the street before miming making out. The tour will take place in October and November. More information can be found on the tour website.

For more celebrity news delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
Filed Under