Blake Lively makes first red carpet appearance since welcoming fourth baby

Actor presented an award at Barnard College’s Annual Gala

Amber Raiken
New York
Tuesday 25 April 2023 22:50 BST
Related: Blake Lively Shows Off Toned Body Two Months After Birth!

Blake Lively has returned to the red carpet for the first time since welcoming her and husband Ryan Reynolds’ fourth baby earlier this year.

The 35-year-old actor was spotted in New York City on Monday 24 April as she attended Barnard College’s Annual Gala, which was held in honour of three families that “truly exemplify” what it means to be a part of the college’s community, according to Barnard’s official website.

For the occasion, Lively wore a white, off-the-shoulder gown with a floral pattern, which she completed with a multi-coloured jacket. She paired the look with neon pink heels, a pink sequined purse, and long, silver earrings. The Age of Adaline star also wore her curled hair in a half ponytail.

During the event, she appeared on stage to present the three families with the Frederick AP Barnard Award. In her speech, she spoke about the early days of her career and recalled how, after receiving “zero acting jobs,” she’d decided to go back to college. However, shortly after that, she ended up get hired for one of her now-signature acting roles.

“Two weeks after that, the producers of Gossip Girl called me like an ex-boyfriend,”  she explained in the speech, shared via Barnard College’s Instagram Story.  “And they said: ‘Listen, will you please do this show? And if you do, we promise you can go to Columbia [University] one day a week, as long as it doesn’t interfere with our seven-day-a-week shooting schedule.’ Who doesn’t want to earn a bachelor’s degree in 77 years?”

Lively playfully acknowledged that she didn’t end up going to college, adding: “So needless to say, I think I have to accept that tonight is the closest I’m going to get. So I’m just going to pretend that this is me graduating tonight. So thank you, thank you. I made it.”

This isn’t the first time that Lively has discussed how she first got the role of Serena van der Woodsen in Gossip Girl, and how it interferred with her schooling. During an interview withVanity Fair in 2017, she said that she initially wanted to turn down the role so she could focus on school. She explained that she changed her mind when producers assured her that things would “quiet down” after the first year of the show and that she would then be able to focus on school. However, this didn’t end up happening.

“We can’t put it in writing, but we promise you can go [to Columbia]’ So that’s why I said: ‘Okay. You know what? I’ll do this,’” she recalled. “This is advice to anyone: when they say: ‘We promise, but we can’t put it in writing,’ there’s a reason they can’t put it in writing. But no, the show didn’t slow down. It just got more and more.

Lively’s appearance at Barnard’s Gala on Monday marked her first red carpet event since welcoming her fourth child in February. Along with their newborn, Lively and Reynolds, who have been married since 2012, share three daughters: James, eight, Inez, six, and Betty, three.

(barnardcollege / Instagram)

Earlier this month, Reynolds opened up about how he and his wife were adjusting to becoming a family of six during an interview with ET Canada. “You know, two to three was a huge jump…three to four less so,” he said. “I cannot speak for my wife, but it’s just from what I’ve observed. But, we love it. You know, we would be idiots to do this again if we didn’t love it.”

He also joked about his relationship with his three daughters, as he quipped: “I haven’t met any of them yet, but they seem great. They have a private Instagram account that I follow.”

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