Gold is Good.
Guys, we made it. After a particularly long and not overly exciting awards season (seriously, someone born and raised in Antartica could have predicted the winners this year), we finally got to the grand finale: the Academy Awards.
Let me start out by saying I was pleasantly surprised by the overall showing of fashion on this year’s red carpet. I’m serious. After a kind of lackluster Golden Globes and a rather ridiculous (but also boring) Grammys, I didn’t know what to expect. Don’t get me wrong, there was still a slight degree of fug we need to discuss, but let’s start with the good stuff (literally):
Ding ding ding, ladies – you are the winners. First off, I have to give it to my girl Reese Witherspoon once again for totally knocking it out of the park. Dare I say she looks better than the year she actually won her Oscar? How is it even possible to have a dress that smooth – is the fabric infused with butter or something? Reminder – Tom Ford dresses one woman for the oscars. ONE. I will admit, I’m a little surprised she did the vintage Barbie black and white thing again, and I still think her sparkly number at the Globes is her best yet, but this dress is gorg on her and will never be looked back on as a fashion misstep. I’m kind of wondering how she moved her arms all night, though (I guess that’s what the help is for). I also loved Rosamund Pike‘s vibrant red strapless gown. She’s a tricky one – she’s kind of always hit or miss. Well darling, this is undoubtedly a hit. It’s textured but not tablecloth-y, the slight is just high enough but not offensive, and the hair is just slightly undone but not messy. She’s even making me believe in matchy matchy shoes again. Are Dyeables still a thing? I think Anna Faris looks like a sweet little sparkle fairy in this silver number. I just can’t get over how much her style has evolved, remember, this is the same girl from the Scary Movie films. I’m a believer that a little (good) glitz is always appropriate on the red carpet, and you can’t really go wrong with a dress like this, especially your first time at the Oscars. Finally, I have to bow down to Zoe Saldana. I don’t think she has ever looked better, and she had twins like five months ago. I think her body actually looks better now that she’s got a little curve to her, and with that gorgeous hair and the way the folds of her dress just drape across her, she just looks so soft. And major props for that color, that is not an easy one to wear. I, for example, would look like a walking Band-Aid.
I’m going to consider these ladies my first-runners up, because seriously. I know Anna Kendrick‘s dress is pretty simple, but I think the color is fantastic on her and I appreciate the built in sparkle – no jewelry necessary. I think the cutout is super appropriate because without it, this dress could skew a little Helen Mirren (not that she wouldn’t look amazing, we’ve all seen her bikini photos). Also I’m dying that she’s wearing a shade of peach, which my husband predicted early on would be the “it” color of the night. Another “never looked better” case is Kelly Osborne. Seriously, that dress is per-fect-ion. She reminds me of a really formal flamenco dancer in the best way. I love that she can be kind of zany with patterns and the hair on a regular basis and then girl just turns it out when it matters most. Rita Ora is another one that is normally kinda kooky with her style, and then she shows up looking like a beautiful screen siren (despite the shortest role ever in 50 Shades of Grey… so I’ve heard). I love that she was wearing a color that basically no one else was wearing that night, and the hint of gold brocade added a little something-something to make it more special than your average mermaid dress.
Uh, these dresses. How they conflict me so. I’m usually a more love it/hate it kind of fashion commenter. I tend to know right away whether or not I’m grossly offended by something. But these four are making me think twice, and I find myself totally on the fence still. First, Lupita Nyong’o has redeemed herself from that ridiculous purple bathing cap that she wore at the Golden Globes, but I’m not quite sure about this pearl number. I think from a construction standpoint, of course anyone could appreciate the fact that she is literally wearing 6,000 pearls and hasn’t buckled from the weight of it. There’s something to me almost gimmicky about it – like is it only interesting because of what it’s made out of? I mean, it’s a halter dress. I think if the straps were thinner, it would win me over more. It just seems like a lot on her very thin frame. Another skinny minnie that I’m undecided on is Emma Stone. I love the silhouette of this dress and how it hangs on her. I love that she has a super high slight but her arms are covered. I kind of even love the matching shoe (again!). But that color… damn that is just a hard color to wear. When I first saw her, I thought I had to adjust the coloration on my TV. I figured it was gold and I just wasn’t seeing in the right light. But then I saw that it was chartreuse, or the color that my mother affectionally referred to as “inside out caterpillar guts” when I was a kid. Now that’s all I can think of. Gwyneth Paltrow probably shouldn’t ever return to the Oscar red carpet because from now until eternity, every gown she wears will be compared to that white thing with the cape (which contrary to popular opinion, I’m still like ehhh about but people are obsessed with it). So I don’t even know why I sort of like this pale pink dress she wore that seems to be half Carrie Bradshaw, half Little Shop of Horrors. Like that thing is seriously eating her arm, but for some reason, I kind of like it! It is very hard to pull off that shade as a fair blonde woman, but her tan is on pointe and keeps her from blending into the color too much. Also let’s talk about where I can buy the knockoff version of those earrings, because I have a lot of weddings to go to this year, ‘kay thanks. Finally, Behati Prinsloo (or Mrs. Adam Levine for those who aren’t familiar with her work as a Victoria’s Secret model and all around gorgeous human being) apparently wanted to keep the Valentine spirit going with this black and red two piece. I actually like the color combination, but I would have preferred it it was consistent all the way through, instead of being very concentrated on the top and slightly sheer on the bottom. Actually I think I would have preferred for it not to be a two-piece at all. I don’t like the uneven hem at the waist and the unnecessary netting on the bottom half. Also that hair is a little severe (and those DAMN MIDDLE PARTS. Why are they everywhere?!).
Another round of gowns that I am just not quite sure about. I love the color of Dakota Johnson‘s dress and I think it looks really great on her. I don’t appreciate anything that is happening at the top. I just feel like there could have been something built in there that would give her more of a shape. And I hate that stupid ponytail. I don’t care if she’s giving a nod to Anastasia Steele – she is not a real person nor is she attending the Oscars. Like, just get your hair done! Jennifer Lopez is starting to look the same to me the more I see her at award shows. Does anyone remember a time when we didn’t know the exact shape and curve of her breasts? It’s like, we get it. You and your boobs are perfect. Is that all there is? I think it’s a beautiful dress, but I wish it was a slightly brighter shade of nude (this just looks dirty to me) and the pastel pink lipstick is all wrong with the overall golden goddess tone she’s got going on here. Laura Dern may as well be going into battle with this armor-inspired number, although I do think it looks better in photos than it did on the pre-show, where the severity of the bodice made her chest look like a shelf stolen from the Game of Thrones set. In the biggest color twist of the night, Scarlett Johansson arrived in this deep emerald green dress that kind of knocked me off my seat – I mean, has her body ever looked better? Again, had a baby like five months ago. I still don’t know if I like that necklace, and I’m a huge proponent of statement jewelry. I know for sure that the hair is NOT cute. When I first saw her, I thought that Miley Cyrus had really cleaned herself up for a minute. I’m not hating on ladies with short hair, God knows I could never rock such a look. I just wish it was down instead of slicked back, maybe with a deep side part and some killer highlights.
Neutrals have never really been my cup of tea, for some of these ladies, it’s definitely working in their favor. I think Oprah Winfrey‘s dress is a great fit on her, although I kind of hope for a little something more for something as huge as the Academy Awards. How about a big necklace or an embellishment at the waist or something? You’re Oprah, you have a few connections. Jennifer Aniston is one of those celebrities that I think is kind of overrated in the fashion department. I just don’t consider anyone who wears cargo pants to be a style icon. I think she’s just so beautiful that she can basically wear whatever she wants and people fall all over themselves. This year she “mixed it up” since she was working the awards circuit, which just mean that she wore the same boring things, but cut down to her belly button. I actually really like the detailing and the shape of this gown, and I think it compliments her hair and skin tone very well, but the height of the sheer panel over her crotch is just a little too close for comfort. Viola Davis looks nice in this princess kind of gown, but that’s kind of it. Like is there anything else to say? I prefer when she does a bolder color, because she carries it off so well. Kerry Washington is another one that I just expect so much from, and when she’s not completely on point it’s kind of a let down. Again, this dress is nice, but there’s not exactly a ground-breaking fashion moment happening here. Plus the fabric on that skirt reminds me of the knit bedspreads that seem to be at every New England bed & breakfast. I guess beggars can’t be choosers – anything is better than that Marvin the Martian dress she had on at the Golden Globes.
I love color on the red carpet, I love when people aren’t afraid to take a chance on something out of the ordinary. Teal isn’t easy to wear (does anyone else always think, “teal! The color of gangrene,” a la The Wedding Planner?), but I think it’s a good choice for America Ferrera. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for the top half of this dress, which is unfortunately making her suffer from the dreaded pancake boob. I think it’s an important lesson for the ladies: no matter what size you are, we all need a little support. Jennifer Hudson seems to kill it year after year, and this buttery yellow dream is what Naomi Watts’ Golden Globes dress wanted to be. I do wish it was hemmed a bit, but other than that, there is literally nothing to complain about here. I don’t know what’s in the water that Jessica Chastain is drinking, but is she getting sexier and sexier, or what? Who cares that she wasn’t nominated for anything, she is a total siren as of late. I could maybe do without the extra hammock of fabric that is framing her bosom, as it kind of reminds me of a mother of the bride dress. It just seems unnecessary. Finally, my favorite award show newcomer Gina Rodriguez killed it in cobalt (seriously, that color is perfection on her), but the fabric and fit is definitely leaving something to be desired. Also I loved her hair on the live show but now seeing it in photos, I realized why my best friend/hairdresser always talks me out of a side bun (“it looks like a growth on the side of your head”).
Black and white and black and white. I know it’s a easy way to go, but could we just make like a little more of an effort? Cate Blanchett is one of those celebrities that everyone looks to as a beacon of fashion, wearing the most innovative and exquisitely constructed pieces of wearable art. So imagine my surprise when she arrived at the Oscars in a… sleeveless black dress. That’s it? That’s all we get? Oh wait, you threw on a Tiffany’s chunky turquoise necklace? Please, just climb on up to the best dressed list. I mean, I get it, she wasn’t nominated for anything this year, she was just a presenter, but still. What a snoozefest. I wasn’t overly-impressed with Faith Hill‘s long-sleeved white frock, mainly because it kind of looked like it was wearing her instead of her wearing it. There’s just no particular details about it that wowed me in any way. Another one that I just do not get it Sienna Miller. I’m not usually a fan of her style anyway, but there is nothing really for me to love or hate here. I just can’t believe she showed up in this boring black thing. I didn’t even noticed it before, but now that I’m really staring at it, I see that there are a bunch of random elements that seemed like they were meant to jazz it up, and none of them are working (they especially don’t serve their purpose if you have to look at the picture fourteen times to even notice them). Like there are bows, some sort of eyelet thing going on at the bottom, oddly-placed seams… all ineffectively making this even remotely interesting. Jenna Dewan-Tatum also looks beautiful, but I’m just not blown away by this dress. And another ponytail, gaaaah. Finally, I think one of the ones I was most disappointed with this year is Margot Robbie. This is a girl that is so gorgeous, and so in demand right now that she could probably wear anything from any designer. I’m sure they’re fighting over the opportunity to dress her. And yet here she is, in a shapeless black gown with sheer sleeves. Would you ever look at that dress and say “that’s meant for a twenty-three year old?” She looks like an extra in a party scene in Downtown Abbey. Also the draping in the stomach area is flattering to no one, and is only acceptable if she is still in character from Focus and is planning on smuggling an Oscar statue out of the theater.
Now we’re starting to get into the all over the place category, starting with Patricia Arquette, who I actually think looks the best she’s ever looked at an award show (and if you’re going to do it, it might as well be on the night you win an Oscar, amirite?). I mean, is it the most amazing dress in the history of award show fashion? No, but it’s classic and tailored perfectly to her. And for someone who doesn’t seem super comfortable in this level of glamour, this is kind of a home run for her. I just wish I knew what happened between the red carpet and getting into the theatre, because her hair looked like she gone through a wind tunnel by the time she took the stage to accept her award. I know that Felicity Jones is like the award show darling of the year, but I do not get what the big deal is about her. She is so tiny, and I think she’s always wearing these elaborate gowns that swallow her. I do not like the pleating where the skirt meets the top at all, and the neckline of that dress reminds me of the metal back brace that Lisa Kudrow had to wear in Romy & Michele’s High School Reunion. I have the overwhelming urger to stick magnets on her. Meryl Streep kind of looks like she just gives zero F’s about this whole thing, and I don’t mean like she’s bored with it. I think she’s just run out of things to wear to Academy Awards ceremonies. So she’s just like, “whatever, I guess I’ll throw on a sensible blazer.” And she can do that. Because she’s Meryl (I could do without the belt though). And Lady Gaga, who was probably the least Gaga-est she’s ever been, which is okay for the Oscars, but she just couldn’t let it go all the way. Like you know that saying that before you leave the house, you should remove one thing? I think we can all see loud and clear what that one thing is. The shame about this look is the dress is actually quite beautiful. Sure, it has that kooky sleeve, but it fits her really well everywhere else. If she hadn’t been wearing those damn gloves, I would venture to say this is the best she’s ever looked.
So now it just gets weird. First off, Marion Cotillard, what are you even doing? I get that you’re French and therefore light years ahead of us in the fashion realm, but you could not pay me to wear this shapeless perforated sheet dress. Like what is the point of that thing in the back? And how would anyone know where your waist is? This is what you wear when you’ve already had your moment and you get nominated again and you know that you have no chance of winning. But if anything, that would inspire me to dress even better, so at least they’re talking about you for a good reason the next day. Chrissy Teigen is trying real hard to have some sort of moment, and once again it’s like BOOBS! VAGINA! Keep your eyes on me, because you might catch a peek! Like J.Lo, I’m kind of over the blatant showing of skin. And what is with that deep purple lip and the pale blue dress? There is nothing about these shades that coordinate. I know I’m probably going to get hate mail over this, but I was so not a fan of Julianne Moore‘s beaded Chanel. I just thinks those rows of doodads are so stupid. I don’t care if they are made out of 80,000 hand-painted resin sequins. The one at her hip really kills me – wouldn’t you want that line to be at your waist? Sitting on her hip, it cuts off her body in such a weird way. Finally, Giuliana Rancic, who had a perfectly fine gown that she wore for exactly one hour of the pre-show, changed into this flaming red flamenco thing with embroidery and satin and just… yuck. And I don’t know if you can tell from the photo, but the top is made of red fishnet. I know. I so often find myself watching the red carpet and thinking, “you know what’ missing? The scraps that Hulk Hogan ripped off his body at wrestling matches in the 80s. Let’s bring that back.”
And we’ve made it. You thought some of those were bad? Check out my picks for worst dressed of the evening. I didn’t even see Solange Knowles show up when I was watching the original telecast, but when I saw this photo as I was clicking through the arrivals albums online, I knew she couldn’t be left alone. For someone who could pull off a jumpsuit at her wedding and make it look cool, she certainly isn’t doing this oversized Spandex number any favors, and vice versa. It reminds me of those really bad Color Guard uniforms, you know, the ones with the ginormous pants? She should donate this to the Red Sox and they could use it to cover the field when it rains. I can’t say that I was shocked that Keira Knightley showed up in this prairie gown, given her track record this season. Is she gunning for another part in a Jane Austen movie? I don’t know what the words scrawled on this dress say, but I feel the same way about it as I did Angelina Jolie’s wedding dress – it’s effing stupid and I hate it. Naomi Watts has done and could do so much better than this weird brick print. It actually reminds me of in seventh grade when you learn to use microscopes and you have to analyze a piece of an onion (please tell me someone else sees it). I think the thing I hate most is the bandeau-sports bra thing underneath it. While I appreciate her covering up her side boob, it makes me think she’s going to take off the overlay and go for a run any second. I love the requisite “young people” that the Academy invites every year to get people under the age of twenty to tune in, even though they have no relevance to the Oscars or any of the films nominated. Chloë Grace Moretz could not have picked an old-ladier ensemble than this cream-colored floral gown. Honestly, when I saw it all I could think of was this. I especially hate that she posed with her hands in the pockets all night, as if that was some sort of innovative fashion technology that has never existed before. Finally, Nicole Kidman really did a bang up job on the color combination. Seriously, this gown has all the appeal of a stick of celery. The crazy thing is that if the colors had been different, this actually would’t have been so bad. I’m all for contrasting colors, but this red and pale green together is just hideous.
And we’re done! Are you guys sad it’s over? I kind of feel like the month after my wedding was over. So much build up, and then in one night, BAM! It’s done.
I can’t let go.