Upon first listen, you may think that most tracks on Taylor Swift's new album are about her current boyfriend, Joe Alwyn. And sure, that seems to be the case. But when you look closer, Swift's song "Dress" may be about Tom Hiddleston. There's one major clue about her ex nestled within the song's lyrics.
The track clearly is about a romantic partner, who she's spending time alone with, as she sings, "Say my name and everything just stops / I don't want you like a best friend / Only bought this dress so you could take it off / Take it off." But later in the song, she references their meeting:
"Nights back when you met me
Your buzzcut and my hair bleached
Even in my worst times, you could see the best of me
Flash back to my mistakes
My rebounds, my earthquakes"
If you'll recall, Swift and Hiddleston first met at the 2016 Met Gala, where they stole the spotlight dancing together. And it was at that same event where the singer garnered attention for her edgier look, which included bleached hair.
Of course, Hiddleston doesn't have a buzzcut, so that part of the lyric is questionable. But the rest of it sure does seem to work. The two were so reportedly wrapped up in their romance, they didn't care who knew it — whether posing on rocks in Rhode Island or sporting attire with each other's initials. While they later broke up, the two traveled the world together and even met each other's parents. That's a major step.
The line "Everyone thinks that they know us / But they know nothing about" could easily be a reference to their relationship as a whole. If she wrote it back when they were together, this could sum up the feeling where everyone was so quick to judge them, without ever hearing their side of the story. Remember when Hiddleston wore a "I <3 T.S." tanktop and everyone freaked out? Fans made assumptions, for sure. Even Hiddleston later explained to GQ that everyone got that wardrobe choice wrong. He told the publication,
“The truth is, it was the Fourth of July and a public holiday and we were playing a game and I slipped and hurt my back. And I wanted to protect the graze from the sun and said, ’Does anyone have a T-shirt?’ And one of her friends said, ’I’ve got this' and we all laughed about it. It was a joke.”
It wasn't some over-the-top love declaration by any means. He also told GQ, "Taylor is an amazing woman ... She’s generous and kind and lovely, and we had the best time ... Of course it was real." That statement can also reflect another "Dress" lyric: "Even in my worst light, you saw the truth in me." See that past tense in the world "saw"? That could be another clue this is about a past love.
For what it's worth, this isn't the only song from the album that seems like it could be about her former boyfriend. The track "Gorgeous" sparked Hiddleston rumors too, since she sings about a guy with blue eyes and an accent. While there seems to be some internet debate over the British Hiddleston's actual eye color, the line "Ocean blue eyes looking in mine / I feel like I might sink and drown and die" feels applicable enough. As does her lyric, "You should take it as a compliment / That I got drunk and made fun of the way you talk." But again, the mystery remains unsolved, and many do think that one's about Alwyn.
At the end of the day, only Swift knows who each song is truly about. But if "Dress" gives Hiddleswift shippers something to smile about, then at least there's that.