Taylor Swift Deletes Video About Ex Joe Alwyn Inspiring "Lavender Haze" From Instagram
On April 8, Entertainment Tonight reported that Taylor Swift and her longtime boyfriend, British actor Joe Alwyn, had split up after six years of dating. People later confirmed the news, which came as a surprise to the "Lavender Haze" singer's fans.
Swift has yet to comment on her reported breakup and is currently performing in her Eras Tour. According to ET's source, the reported split was amicable, and "the relationship had just run its course."
While her past relationships were highly publicized, the singer did everything she could to keep her romance with Alwyn out of the spotlight. Even so, Swift's passionate fans were determined to get to the bottom of her and Alwyn's relationship — specifically when engagement rumors began swirling around the couple.
Engagement (and marriage) speculation around Swift and Alwyn has been circulating online for years, but in an April 2022 interview with WSJ Magazine, the "Conversations With Friends" actor finally addressed the rumors (sort of). "If I had a pound for every time I think I've been told I've been engaged, then I'd have a lot of pound coins," Alwyn said. "I mean, the truth is, if the answer was yes, I wouldn't say, and if the answer was no, I wouldn't say."
Swift and Alwyn remained tight-lipped about their relationship after that, but in October 2022, she did reveal that her "Midnights" song "Lavender Haze" was inspired by her relationship with the actor. "Like my relationship for six years, we've had to dodge weird rumors, tabloid stuff, and we just ignore it," she said in an Instagram video. "And so this song is sort of about the act of ignoring that stuff to protect the real stuff." But, sometime after split news broke in April, Swift deleted that video from her Instagram account.
Aside from referencing Alwyn in her songs, Swift only made a handful of public appearances with the "Catherine Called Birdy" actor while they were dating. The start of the reported exes' relationship is a little fuzzy (she was reportedly still dating Calvin Harris when she and Alwyn first met), and the reported end isn't any clearer.
Read ahead for more details about Swift and Alwyn's six-year relationship.
2016: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Get to Know Each Other
- May 2016: The pair reportedly met at the Met Gala. Swift's song "Dress" — which is rumored to be about Alwyn — notes that when they first met, he had a buzz cut and she had bleached hair, which was around the time of the star-studded gala.
- June 2016: Shortly after the Met Gala, Swift broke up with her boyfriend of over a year, Calvin Harris. Two weeks later, news broke that Swift was dating Tom Hiddleston when they were spotted kissing near her Rhode Island home.
- September 2016: After three months of dating, Swift called it quits with Hiddleston. According to reports, she "was the one to put the brakes on the relationship" because "Tom wanted the relationship to be more public than she was comfortable with."
- November 2016: Two months after her breakup with Hiddleston, a newly single Swift was spotted attending a screening of Alwyn's film "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk" in LA with Este and Alana Haim and her mother, Andrea Swift.
2017: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Keep Their Romance Under Wraps
- May 2017: The following year, news broke that Swift and Alwyn were a couple. According to "The Sun," the singer had been renting a house in Alwyn's hometown of North London for their secret rendezvous. They even wore disguises while out in the city.
- June 2017: A month after the pair went public with their romance, Alwyn was spotted arriving in the UK on Swift's private jet after spending time with her in Nashville.
- July 2017: Shortly after the singer opted not to throw her annual Fourth of July bash, the two were spotted together in NYC. According to E! News, they spent time with Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively while at Swift's Rhode Island home earlier in the month.
- September 2017: The two continued to keep their romance under wraps as they attempted to avoid the paparazzi in NYC.
- December 2017: Swift and Alwyn were spotted cuddling during iHeartRadio's Jingle Bell Ball in New York City.
2018: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Put Their Love in the Spotlight
- May 2018: Alwyn was front and center when Swift kicked off her "Reputation" tour in Glendale, AZ. The English actor tried to go incognito in a black baseball cap and a denim shirt, but fans reported that Taylor pointed and winked at him while she sang "Gorgeous."
- September 2018: During an interview with British Vogue, Alwyn briefly broke his silence on their romance, saying, "I'm aware people want to know about that side of things. I think we have been successfully very private and that has now sunk in for people . . . but I really prefer to talk about work."
- September 2018: Swift showed up to the New York Film Festival premiere of Alwyn's movie "The Favourite." While she didn't walk the red carpet, the couple was spotted entering Swift's NYC apartment together.
- October 2018: Just a month later, while at the 2018 BFI London Film Festival for "The Favourite," People reported that Alwyn was pressed about Swift yet again when a reporter brought up her Instagram post about voting. "I think it's great, and I think it's important," Alwyn said.
- November 2018: Swift made her very first post about Alwyn when she encouraged her fans to see his film "The Favourite."
- December 2018: Swift made a low-key appearance at the London premiere of "The Favourite" and even attended the afterparty.
2019: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Take Their Relationship to the Next Level
- January 2019: After making an impromptu appearance at the Golden Globes, Swift attended a few afterparties with Alwyn.
- February 2019: Swift skipped the Grammys to attend a BAFTAs afterparty with Alwyn.
- February 2019: While Swift skipped the red carpet, she and Alwyn attended "Vanity Fair"'s Oscars afterparty, where they were spotted engaging in some sweet PDA.
- May 2019: Swift and Alwyn made a rare public outing as they held hands in Paris.
- August 2019: Swift sparked engagement rumors with the release of her song "Lover," which included quite a few wedding references.
2020-2022: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Dodge Engagement Rumors
- January 2020: Alwyn supported Swift at the 2020 Golden Globes, where the singer was nominated for best original song for writing "Beautiful Ghosts" in "Cats."
- February 2020: Fans were convinced that Swift and Alwyn were engaged following the release of her song "Lover," which includes references to something "borrowed" and "blue."
- February 2022: Alwyn briefly opened up about his relationship with Swift, saying he's "obviously happy in a monogamous relationship."
- April 2022: Alwyn (kind of) addressed the couple's engagement rumors in an interview with WSJ Magazine. "If I had a pound for every time I think I've been told I've been engaged, then I'd have a lot of pound coins," he said. "I mean, the truth is, if the answer was yes, I wouldn't say, and if the answer was no, I wouldn't say."
- May 2022: Swift showed support for Alwyn's Hulu series, "Conversations With Friends," in an Instagram Story where she shared a review of the show from Time, per People. "Can confirm it's phenomenal," she wrote.
- October 2022: Swift briefly opened up about protecting her relationship with Alwyn in an Instagram post where she discussed her "Midnights" album. "I think a lot of people have to deal with this now, not just like 'public figures,' because we live in the era of social media," she explained of a track titled "Lavender Haze." "And if the world finds out that you're in love with somebody, they're gonna weigh in on it. Like my relationship for six years, we've had to dodge weird rumors, tabloid stuff, and we just ignore it. And so this song is sort of about the act of ignoring that stuff to protect the real stuff."
2023: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Reportedly Split
After what appeared to be a quiet start of the year for the couple, ET reported on April 8 that Swift and Alwyn reportedly went their separate ways sometime in March. Per the outlet's source, their relationship had simply run its course and there was no big dramatic breakup. For her part, Swift is currently performing in her career-spanning Eras Tour, while Alwyn is attached to upcoming adaptations of "Brideshead Revisited" and "Hamlet."
On April 29, fans noticed that Swift had deleted a Reel from her Instagram account about her 2022 "Midnights" track "Lavender Haze," in which she said the song was inspired by their relationship. In the since-deleted video, Swift explained, "I happened upon the phrase lavender haze when I was watching 'Mad Men' and I looked it up because I thought it sounded cool. It turns out that it was a common phrase that was used in the '50s where they would just describe being in love." Lavender haze, she said, meant you were in the "all-encompassing love glow."
She continued about her "relationship of six years," "We've had to dodge weird rumors, tabloid stuff and we just ignore it. And so this song is sort of about the act of ignoring that stuff to protect the real stuff." Deleting the reel seems like the closest thing fans will get to an official confirmation from Swift that the relationship is over.