These end-of-the-year picks by no means are conclusive final word – the movies are the ones that I caught and watched therefore anyone coming after me why a certain movie was not included – well I did not see it. But this year undoubtedly was where women were on the forefront – be it kicking ass in real life or on screen and with their multi-layered portrayal, hit home and ran away with all the accolades. Matching actors and actresses were the costumes that helped them transform into these multi dimensional characters, merging with it’s sensibilities so much that you only see the character – not the actor
Met Gala 2014 exhibition titled ‘Charles James: Beyond Fashion’ had the classic theme of ‘white tie and decorations’. Since women usually do tend to make an effort by incorporating the designer’s style into their wardrobe, it was men who were thrown in a toss to get ready for the big night. The classic theme had its fair share of rebels and those who went all out at the theme whole heartedly. Many designers pushed envelopes in their own styles while being inspired by the construction master in whose honor the whole exhibition was taking place. Others went very off key but its fun to see how the themes are interpreted. My picks this year (in random order):
The diva DITA VON TEESE chose the designer who has always been inspired by Charles James and known for his impeccably constructed gowns. Zac Posen had Dita Von Teese as his muse in a blush mermaid petal gown with red details merging into the red carpet. The detail being similar to that of James, Zac Posen paid homage to the construction master in his own way. Accenting it off with red details, including the red Roger Vivier clutch, and those waves, the burlesque dancer was quite the bewitching sight on the red carpet. Glamorous, thematic, experimetal, she ticked all the boxes.
Charlize Theron‘s successful run continued at the red carpet of MET. The woman has been consistently delivering one after the other good looks that are chic and MET night was no different. The Dior gown with criss cross black and white details on the side fit her like a glove. The modern take on ‘American’ elite eveningwear, the gown was perfect for the occassion while referencing James. The master stroke was the tuxedo jacket that brings in the unexpected element of the male theme into womenswear. It was hip, chic and she styled her in-between length brilliantly showing off her Fred Leighton jewels. She finished it off with jimmy choo sandals.
As a designer pushing the boundaries, in an aesthetic manner, is as important. That is precisely what Alexander Wang did representing Balenciaga on the red carpet with muse Kristen Wigg (woohhooo!! wat an unexpected… i almost expected Carey Mulligan). The ensemble that felt more Wang than Balenciaga, was a high-low hem black top with black pants. What was fun was Wang through his minimally chic n uber modern constructional sensibilities paid respect to Charles james in his own way. The top was immaculately constructed and while witholding the shape, it felt like someone had sliced through a ball gown. The slick back hair and smoky eyes gave miss wigg a polished and edgy look, far removed from her comic demeanor.. Love
Blowing everyone out of water was model Karolina Kurkova in a blue Marchesa gown. The impeccably constructed gown followed the theme to a T with classic American 50’s flair with a modern twist to it. Featuring painted flowers with some of them going 3d, the layered gown with its petal shapes took floral inspiration from James.. It could have easily drowned miss Kurkova, but the supermodel shows you why she is one of the best in the business. Accessorizing with just the neck piece, this was poetic construction.
Bringing high street to high fashion was Anne Hathaway in Calvin Klein. The crop top has made quite the appearance in the high street circles and bring that trend with her A game without any doubts was Miss Hathaway in a two piece column ensemble in red at the MET gala. The crop top bared just enough midriff without it being too much. She played up tonal color block with ruby red shoes and a hexagon ruby red clutch. She finished off with her dark pixie hair side swept and dangling earrings perfectly framing her face. Delicate and fierce at the same time.
Olsen twins, one in vintage Chanel, other in military inspired vintage Ferre, cut quite the modern picture on the red carpet. Androgynous in their approach of gowns, both the sisters had pulled back their hair for some serious fashion to the red carpet. In their gowns they looked smart, chic, no nonsense young women. The young entrepreneurs each one accessorized it minimally but differently. While one had a neckpiece with her wide collar pinstripe Chanel gown, other one had just pearl earrings with her gown.
Hailee Steinfeld literally grew this night and how!! In a Prabal Gurung black and white gown, the young starlet looked all grown up woman from the last time I saw her in Marchesa at Oscars. Prabal Gurung with his gown spun a young modern take on the gown, while paying homage to the designer in exhibition. The racer back top part combined with the whole skirt with high low hem tease to show off her shoes was a brilliant move. Choosing black and white, his muse worked that gown hitting the ball out the park every minute. With her hair, middle parted and in a chignon she finished the look with Van Cleef & Arpels jewellery. It was young, hip, sporty and classic all at the same time.
Zac Posen was quite the popular designer apart from Oscar dela Renta on the Red Carpet, possibly because of his constructions hitting quite close to Charles James. Maggie Q was no different opting for the gown from the young designer. What made Maggie Q stand out was the choice of her gown, along with the way she carried it lending a certain aristocratic air to the whole look. The black gown that featured extensions around hip, that extended downward, was styled minimally with a severe parted hair bun, smoky eyes and minimal jewels. Full points to nailing the look.
The co-chair herself,Sarah Jessica Parker graced the occasion in an Oscar dela Renta gown, complete with gloves and an updo for the night. The designer took a leaf from Charles James book and recreated the whole look, however addeded in a checkered back panel with his signature, lending a contemporary light hearted take on the look. The petal gown in ivory and black was as classy evening wear as it would go. I love how Miss Parker goes all the way into the theme every year and comes out trumps without taking herself too seriously. The double beehive with flowers completed the whole look.
Was literally torn between Zoe Saldana and Anna Kendrick for this last spot, but then again, who’s gonna kill me for including both.. no one. Marc Jacob’s date Zoe Saldana made a statement with a black and white halter with a plunging neckline. The lower part of the gown flared into a controlled bubble which could have gone either way but thanks to the designer it doesn’t. Credit to Ms Saldana for keeping the makeup contemporary without needing a pop of color. The berry lips and bronzed makeup were minimally perfect. Anna Kendrick on the other hand in J. Mendel cut the pretty constructed picture in a black and white gown with a cut out. Not as dramatic as others, but the gown with its slick construction of bustier with a peek a boo of the mid riff was just enough for her to score major points going the modern classic way. Accessorizing with just diamond studs and side parted hair, this woman definitely turned heads that night.
Usually at MET the women tend to follow the theme set by the exhibition but this time around we did see some rebels. However the theme for the red carpet set by Anna Wintour set many men out there in a tizzy with WHITE TIE & DECORATIONS. Stepping up their game, the men did not disappoint.
Wearing Tom Ford to the gala, Bradley Cooper followed the theme literally to the T. He had the Tailed coat, the white tie and vest, tailored pants… and women couldn’t get enough of him. He’s forgiven for the onyx, but would have preferred a much more polished look but its maybe his next movie’s look. Finished it off with white pocket square.
Even though his partner did not go the route, Jim Parsons went the whole way in his tux by Brooke Brothers. The white on white bowtie with shirt and vest and the tailcoat was complete in sync with the theme. What was fun was the floral lapel pin that both sported. Cute and quirtky.
Let’s just not even… Hawtness in a shot. Tom Ford in tom ford and Benedict Cumberbatch in Ralph Lauren.
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Apart from the winners in motion pictures, Academy awards or Oscars is one cynosure event that is waited because of the red carpet. While many fumble the best turnouts were the one classic simple ones (golden rule of awards red carpet). I definitely was up at 5 am only for the red carpet. My picks in no particular order:
LUPITA NYONG’O: The princess of red carpet, Lupita Nyong’o has been having quite the chic run on the red carpet this award season. With her structured columns, the debutante has been turning heads like a veteran on the red carpet. However, for the Oscars, Miss Nyong’o decided to ditch her structured run for a much more princessy look – one choice I am glad she made, going out the unexpected route and pulling it off with aplomb. The powder blue Prada dress was the perfect choice for the young Best Supporting Actress winner. The color, apart from looking brilliant against her skin, gave the light gown a fairy tale appeal with her sashaying down that red carpet with a playful confidence of debut and sass of a veteran. What is amazing is how her innocence is perfectly complimented with that gown during her interviews and here’s to hoping it isn’t the last we see of her. She finished off her look with a studded headband and jewels by Fred Leighton.
SANDRA BULLOCK: America’s sweetheart and Best Actress nominee for the night, when Sandra Bullock walks the red carpet, you know Hollywood royalty is gracing the oscars. Stunning in a navy McQueen gown with the side sash draped detail and sweetheart neckline, Sandy, cut the perfect red carpet picture with not a hair out of place. With her side parted hair tousled into waves at ends, Sandra Bullock was definitely one of the best of the night on the red carpet.
CATE BLANCHETT: When you are having such a brilliant run at the award season, all eyes are definitely going to be on you since you are the front runner. Ms. Blanchette doesn’t disappoint one bit in her nude beaded Armani Prive gown. The flared gown was nothing trailing and was just the right length for her. Also going the side parted route, Ms. Blanchette however changed it up with a retro vibe to her mane with tousled hair and minimalist makeup. Also going for the ethically mined and oversized light teal Chopard earrings that perfectly went together with the beading detail, this Best Actress Winner of the night went home also being one of the best dressed of the night.
CHARLIZE THERON: The evil Queen in her full demeanor, Charlize Theron in her Dior gown made sure she turned heads on the red carpet despite not being nominated in any of the categories. The mesh play of the black with pleating detail and barely there straps, the gown was an absolute winner. Pairing them up with Harry Winston jewels worth $15 million, and her pixie hair cut done up neatly in a side part, Charlize was one fierce chick on the red carpet.
KATE HUDSON: Cutting a chic picture on the red carpet in an Atelier Versace, Kate Hudson turned up taking a twist on the simplicity of the classic red carpet look. The silver gown with the exquisite bead work and the trail spelt glam from the word go. The uber chic look with the plunging neckline went a different route with the shoulder covering cape (she took it off for an equally stunning look during the ceremony). The sleek side parted waves added in the perfect compliment to the whole look which was put together without a false note and was in perfect balance.
AMY ADAMS: The polished one of the night, Amy Adams proved sometimes less is more with her look. Turning up at the ceremony in a tuxedo inspired navy Gucci Premiere gown, the actress was in total confidence (gone is the shy amy on the red carpet thanks to American Hustle). Daring to go against the grain,the petiete actress did her hair in a classic swiss roll updo showing off her shoulders in the strapless number. The navy gown was accented with pink and navy Tiffany and Co. jewels that were in quite an interesting shape and form. She may have not won the award for best actress for the night, she definitely was one of the chic and the best dressed one.
JULIE DELPY: There is something inanely attractive about this french actress that just compelled me to include her on the list. The laid back glamorous approach in that Jenny Packam gown accented with red lips was all it took for this actress to stun everyone on the red carpet in the shimmer sheer gown. The Before series actress looked every bit seductive and hot without even trying…maybe that is where lied her charm. She finished her look with the middle-side parted hair and Chopard jewels