A nominee group hug…
Last nights Oscars were…fine. The show and the red carpet. There were few surprises and even fewer wow” moments. People looked reliably good, particularly the nominees, but there weren’t any looks that blew me away. Maybe that’s what I get for trying to play fashion God…
Allison Janney in Reem Acra
The Queen of the “West Wing” looked positively regal while winning her first Oscar. There’s no denying that this Reem Acra is perfect on her. The fit is flawless, the color fantastic, the sleeves dramatic. I wish it didn’t remind me so much of Lupita Nyong’o’s red caped Ralph Lauren at the 2014 Golden Globes. It feels like such a similar moment. A great moment, but still similar.
Octavia Spencer in Brandon Maxwell
This is fantastic. The color and cut are both exceptionally flattering. I am thrilled to see her branching out from her go-to designer, Tadashi Shoji. I could see Brandon Maxwell being a really good fit for her style. And I am very pleased with myself for correctly predicting the type of neckline she would go for!
Saoirse Ronan in Calvin Klein by Appointment
When I was working on my “Fantasy Stylist” post, I sent a slew of selections around to friends and family for some help matching wearer to dress. While I ultimately (and optimistically) chose the metallic Christian Dior that Jennifer Lawrence ended up wearing for Saoirse, my mother got it right when she said that whatever happens “Saroise will wear something way too pale”. This 50’s style Calvin Klein column is quietly lovely, but it washes her out, and the bow in the back is a bit too little too late to make it interesting. Remember the shimmering emerald-green gown she wore to last years Oscars? That’s the kind of moment I was looking for from her.
Margot Robbie in Chanel
There is nothing interesting about this dress to me. The scalloped hem is a bit twee for Margot, and the leftover Christmas tinsel across the neckline feels like an afterthought. She could have and should have done better.
Meryl Streep in Christian Dior
I love this gown on Meryl, it’s simple but effective. And I have to toot my own horn here a little, because I suggested she wear a gown in the same silhouette AND color…so, call me Meryl? Also, can we get the worlds greatest actress a cooler pair of frames for her glasses? Can someone call Warby Parker for her?
Sally Hawkins in Armani Privé
I like this a lot, the soft lilac color is really lovely and the beading on the bottom keeps it interesting. She still dresses like a much older woman – this would also work on Helen Mirren or Jane Fonda, both at least three decades older than her. That’s not a bad thing – I have been known to have slightly geriatric style, it’s just interesting. Maybe it’s the style, the roles she chooses, or both – but she seems like an old soul.
Frances McDormand in custom Valentino
Frances took home the nights top acting prize and gave a rousing and eccentric speech which ranged from pleas to pick her up if she fainted to exclamations about the importance of inclusion riders. She didn’t walk the red carpet, nor did she discuss who designed her gown (some digging revealed it to likely be a custom Valentino). For someone who doesn’t seem to care that much about red carpet aspects of her job, she (or her team) did very well. This dress is genuinely interesting and looked beautiful on stage.
Greta Gerwig in custom Rodarte
I love the marigold color of Greta’s gorgeous Rodarte, but can we all agree that Michelle Williams made it damn near impossible to wear that color without being found wanting? That being said, Greta looks lovely and this is delightfully restrained for Rodarte. Mulleavy sisters: more things like this, please!
Laurie Metcalf in Christian Siriano
Siriano had a mixed night – he dressed Laurie here, who looks simple and elegant, if rather safe. He also dressed Whoopi and Lindsey Vonn…who looked hilariously bad. You win some, you lose some.
Mary J. Blige in Atelier Versace and Vera Wang
Mary’s first look of the night was a white gown from Versace which I didn’t love. It felt dated and it aged her. I preferred the red Vera Wang she wore to perform, but unlike her vocals, it didn’t blow me away either.
Lesley Manville in custom Anna Valentine
This grey, cloud-like gown is a custom creation from British designer Anna Valentine, who I had never heard of. I will have to keep her in mind though, since she is apparently a favorite of the Royal Family – particularly Camilla, who’s wedding dress she designed. #TheMoreYouKnow
Emily V. Gordon in J. Mendel
Emily was nominated alongside husband Kumail Nanjiani for their work on “The Big Sick” and she looks nice in J. Mendel. I’m not in love with the slightly sickly color of the skirt, but I really like the maroon band at the waist.