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Oscar Fashion Roundup: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Wow, were you as under-inspired by last night’s Oscar fashions as I was? The only people I could get excited about were Cate Blanchett (I love that she never plays it safe; of course, she could look great in a paper bag), Helen Mirren (love the heavy satin, color, sweep of the skirt, diamond “shrug” accent, elbow-length sleeves), and Marion Cotillard (when I first saw it, I didn’t like it, but it quickly grew on me after the snooze fest of all the rest of the gowns). I might have been able to get excited about Hilary Swank if she had opted for a color other than black (zzzzzzz).

Everything else was boring, boring, boring! Nothing to dislike, even! Total snooze-fest.

I’m happy, although not hugely excited, about Alexandra Byrne’s win for The Golden Age (could have been equally excited about Sweeney Todd or Atonement – just not super excited about any of the options this year). Hopefully next year will be far more exciting!

award shows

Academy Awards

SO excited that Marie Antoinette won for costume design! Nyah nyah to all the naysayers! I literally did a little dance on my couch. Yay!

And in the one non-costume, but vaguely related, thing I post here, my Academy Awards fashion commentary!

Anne Hathaway – the bow was horrible — it basically made an upside down V, which made her look shlumpy. But I will say that I hate it a bit less now that I’ve seen the coordinating back bow — maybe if it had just had the back bow? I think it’s because it’s reminding me of a natural form dress. Anyway.

Beyonce – at least she wasn’t wearing gold lame for ONCE! It wasn’t my favorite, but I’ll take it. I would have liked it better if it didn’t have the dumb thigh slit. When is that woman going to realize that she’s perfectly attractive without needing to dress like a hoochie mama?

Cameron Diaz – Go Fug Yourself said it best when they said it looked like she was wearing a big napkin. The fit through the waist is bad — it got all wrinkly. She should have transported herself to the Oscars lying down! The brown hair looks better on her, the super dark fake tan does NOT.

Cate Blanchett – everything the woman wears is divine, but this extremely so. I was originally wondering if it was a little too severe, until I saw the jewels at the shoulder and hemline. Gorgeous!

Eva Green – who is she? No idea. I actually quite like the dress — the bodice reminds me of an early 1900s evening gown, although I wouldn’t have wrapped the organdy over the flowers (like it over the midriff and arms, but over the flowers just makes her look like she’s choking).

Gwyneth Paltrow – hands down my best dressed. She’s back, after like 5 years in the land of Hideous! LOVE the color, love the sheerness of the fabric, love the pin tucking and the design placement of the tucks (especially across the collar bone), love the sleeve length. Gawgeous.

Jada Pinkett Smith – I like what the dress is doing from the knees down — beautiful pleats there and the fabric has a gorgeous weight. Knees up – not so much. Despite the seaming/decoration on the bodice, this accentuates the fact that she has no waist definition. She should really try a V waistline with a fuller (A line maybe?) skirt.

Jennifer Hudson – I don’t even have to say it, do I? Apparently she was talked into wearing this by some stylist after having picked another dress — assuming that dress is the one pictured at the bottom of this page, REALLY bad move. The gold dress is stunning!

Jennifer Lopez – love it! Many of the commentators I’ve read have said something like “Love the Grecian dress, hate the 1960s hair.” Um, do they not realize that the whole thing is 1960s-esque? I thought she looked great and retro in an interesting way. The jewels built into the dress are lovely.

Jessical Biel – Malibu Barbie! Nipple alert! The color does work on her, and she certainly has the figure for it, but it just felt too stretch-jersey-comfortable for me.

Jodie Foster — very pretty, matches her eyes beautifully.

Kate Winslet – the girl can do no wrong in my opinion. I love the style and fit of the dress, and the ruching and hanging drape are beautiful. I tend to like her in stronger colors, but this looks very pretty.

Kirsten Dunst – another one everyone’s picking on, but I LOVE it! Yes it combines a lot of different elements, but it works on her in an I’m-young-and-pixie-ish sort of way. I love the collar and sleeves, the color is great, and her lipstick is FABULOUS.

Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts – Nicole: too harsh of a color, I miss her with really red hair, the bow is stupid. Charlize couldn’t pull it off, neither can you. Naomi: good color, pretty hair, the sleeves look stupid and make her look like her bust is very droopy.

Penelope Cruz – not my favorite on its own, but she can really pull it off.

Queen Latifah – not my favorite! She usually dresses really nicely for her figure. I just feel like this isn’t doing anything great for her (it’s not doing anything bad for her, either, but…)

Rachel Weisz – I ADORE this dress. Gorgeous fabric, gorgeous color, love the jewelling in the bodice. The dress (again) reminds me of one of those 1898-1902 champagne satin evening dresses. The hair and lipstick are great – the only thing I would lose is the necklace (competes too much with the jewelling in the dress). My second favorite, after Gwynnie.

Helen Mirren — lovely. I love the style of the bodice and the length of the sleeves (THIS is the kind of thing Meryl Streep should wear!). Very pretty.

award shows, costume in cinema

Going Beyond the Academy Awards

The following are the winners of the Costume Designers Guild awards:

Excellence in Contemporary Film: Transamerica (Danny Glicker)
Excellence in Period Film: Memoirs of a Geisha (Colleen Atwood)
Excellence in Fantasy Film: The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Isis Mussenden)

Outstanding Made for TV Movie/Mini-Series: Elvis (Eduardo Castro)
Outstanding Period/Fantasy TV Series: Rome (April Ferry)

There’s more tv awards — see details at the Costume Designers Guild website.

award shows

Oscar Post-Mortem

Yay for Memoirs of a Geisha winning for best costume design! Cross posted from jenlemus’s LJ: an article/slideshow on why period films always win for costume design.

But, more importantly — fashion report!

Can you guess who wins my best dressed award? Amy Adams — chocolate silk! Stripey ribbon! Red hair! Pockets!

In the “also fab” category: Reese Witherspoon (great color – loved the silver sparky bits, great cut and beautiful sweeping skirt, beautiful hair); Keira Knightley (great hair color, loved the smoky eyes and vintage 1960s Bulgari necklace, her dress was a beautiful color and fit, altho I’m not 100% about the mermaid look); Sandra Bullock (great color on her, beautiful cut & fit plus I love the full skirt, I thought the sheer layer added a nice bit of visual interest); Jessica Alba (very suitable to her); Nicole Kidman (did her usual very pale thing, but this time it worked and she looked elegant); Salma Hayek (gorgeous color, perfect fit, loved the hair); Deborah Rennard (wife of Paul Haggis, in the stunning fiery orange dress); Uma Thurman (lovely pale peach color, gorgeous makeup & hair, dress very flattering to her).

In the “nice but not thrilling” category: Rachel Weisz (beautiful hair, dress very flattering to her pregnant figure but not stunning); Jennifer Lopez (liked the dress cut & color, not sure it worked 100% on her).

In the “boring” category: Jennifer Aniston (basic black, zzzzzzzzz); Hilary Swank (ditto).

In the WTF? category: Michelle Williams (the yellow dress with the red lipstick! aaaaaaaaaa!); Charlize Theron (the bow! the bow!); Felicity Huffman (I’m sorry, I don’t want to see your bony sternum); Naomi Watts (that dress made her look weirdly lumpy, plus the deconstructed foofa bodice looked like she’d just got back from swinging in the jungle with King Kong); Helena Bonham Carter (I adore her, but… the hair! the dress! the WHITE SHOES!).

award shows, costume in cinema

Academy Award Nominations

Costume Design: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (eh), Memoirs of a Geisha (beautiful, but no idea how accurate it was), Mrs. Henderson Presents (heard this is great), Pride & Prejudice (OH PLEASE GOD LET IT BE PRIDE&PREJUDICE&PIGS!!!), Walk the Line (Fabulous).

Art Direction: Good Night, and Good Luck (haven’t seen it yet); Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (yay!), King Kong (fabulous), Memoirs of a Geisha (beautiful), Pride & Prejudice (OH PLEASE GOD LET IT BE P&P&PIGS!!!).

award shows


Yay to Sandy Powell for winning Best Costume Design for The Aviator! Loved the second-class citizen “everyone get on stage so we can shoot the losers” presentation, but hey, at least they let her on stage!

And the fashion report!

Hands down, Cate Blanchett won my best dressed award. Loved the cut, loved the fabric (silk taffeta!), LOVED the color combo. She’s fabulous.

Although I’m not terribly into blue, Kate Winslet looked great in it and I liked the glinty bits.

Charlize Theron looked like what she is: boring! Also Annette Bening (you couldn’t even see any detail [if she had any] on her boring black dress).

Beautiful color, beautiful fit: Salma Hayek. Same on Virginia Madsen (MUCH better than that clinging-in-all-the-wrong-places Golden Globes dress).

Straight outta 1988, and not in a good way: Melanie Griffith.

Emmy Rossum and Renee Zellweger both looked fabulous in my favorite shade of garnet red. I loved the tulle/organza/whatever on Zellweger’s neckline and train. Of course, both of them needed some protein, stat.

Penelope Cruz — good color, nice fabric, hair overwhelmed her… BUTT BOW!

Imelda Staunton looked just beautiful. Loved the very 1950s cut of the dress, great neckline, beautiful color. Perfect for her. See Melanie Griffith? You don’t HAVE to look like Dynasty!

Gwynnie wore a satin drawstring bag.

I liked Scarlett Johansson‘s glinty hair thingies. Thought the dress should have fitted a bit better on top.

Natalie Portman was 50/50 for me. I liked the Grecian look, very simple and elly-gant. But the color was a bit of a washout on her, and no one wants to see that much bony sternum.

Laura Linney: great cut, loved the fabric and the ruffles etc. Color was a bit of a washout, weird hair.

I’m torn on Hilar ySwank. The color worked well on her, I liked the fit, and I liked the dramatic backless-ness with the covered up in front. But the neckline was just a bit too stranglehold-y, and the fabric seemed very bike-shorts-y.

All of Beyonce’s dresses were either ugly or boring, but they were better than some of her usual stuff.

award shows

Oscar Noms!

Achievement in costume design: The Aviator (Sandy Powell — Orlando, Wings of the Dove, Shakespeare in Love, Far From Heaven), Finding Neverland (Alexandra Byrne — Phantom of the Opera, Elizabeth, Persuasion), A Series of Unfortunate Events (Colleen Atwood — Sleepy Hollow, Little Women), Ray (Sharen Davis — Devil in a Blue Dress), Troy (Bob Ringwood — Alien 3 & Resurrection, AI, Star Trek Nemesis, Dune). ooooo, tough call for me between The Aviator and Finding Neverland (with Series of Unfortunate Events coming in third). Troy?

Also of interest! Art direction: The Aviator, Finding Neverland, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Phantom of the Opera, A Very Long Engagement.

I’m thrilled to see that Kate Winslet (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) and Cate Blanchett (The Aviator) were nominated, both because they are fabulous actresses but also because they are sure to wear something smashing. And Clive Owen was nominated for Closer. Yum.