Glamour in times of recession
You'd think that in this darker times fashion would be as stark as our new (forced) lifestyles but the red-carpet season just began and already stated an optimistic tone. Come to think of it depression times have been also eras of glamour in terms of fashion statements.
Film awards events including Critics Choice, Golden Globes and SAG were a fashion delight; more colorful than ever, the red carpet was a spring celebration.
1st row: Laura Linney, in Elie Saab Haute Couture, Marisa Tomei, in Elie Saab, Eva Longoria, in Jenny Packham and again Laura Linney, in Michael Kors.
2nd row: Olivia Wilde, in Reem Acra, Cameron Diaz, in Chanel Haute Couture, Rumer Willis and Eva Longoria Parker, both in Reem Acra.
This rainbow of shades matched the variation in shapes and cuts: alongside the usual mermaid-trains, one-shoulder or strapless ball gowns there were a wide range of halter neck dresses, goddess-worthy draping, origami pleats and old-school glamour bias-cutting (see Christina Applegate). Also, the so-called spaghetti-straps evening dresses made a glorious come-back in fashion.
1st row: Drew Barrymore, in Dior Haute Couture, Freida Pinto, in Marchesa, January Jones, in Versace and Maggie Gyllenhaal, in Lanvin.
2nd row: Kate Winslet, in Narciso Rodriguez, Evan Rachel Wood, in Monique Lhuillier, Alison Pill, in Jason Wu and Christina Applegate, in Emanuel Ungaro.
Spring 2009 revelation: nude neutrals, such as greige and blush, look best on fluid silhouettes with soft draping or frills. My favourite: the 30s inspired cap-sleeved pale pink dress worn by actress Elizabeth Banks.
Kristin Scott Thomas, in Lanvin, America Ferrera, in Vera Wang, Isla Fisher, in Carlos Miele and Elizabeth Banks, in J. Mendel.
Vivid colored dresses were rivaled only by white and nude-colored gowns. Crisp white seemed to be the perfect "medium" for avant-garde looks: origami pleats, unusual folds and pleats.
Teri Hatcher, in Monique Lhuillier, Eva Mendes, in Christian Dior, Kate Beckinsale, in J. Mendel and Anne Hathaway in Gianfranco Ferré.
Actress and humanitarian activist Angelina Jolie started her own trend of floor sweeping blouson gowns with high slit. She stated a preference for Max Azria (white & blue dresses) but looked best in the pale silvery gown from Atelier Versace.
Black was replaced by navy, dark purple and indigo with the freshest look in a while donned by Golden Globe winner Anna Paquin. Sparkling appliqués or oversized jewelry kept the dark-colored dresses from looking too dull.
Anne Hathaway, in Armani Privé, Kate Beckinsale in J. Mendel, Anna Paquin, in Hervé L. Leroux and Hayden Panettiere, in Gianfranco Ferré
Speaking of bling - this year it was kept at minimal, as well as the make-up and hair-dos. Jeweled neckline and shining embellishments or embroidery adorned some of the white and the few of the black dresses on view.
1st row: Anne Hathaway, in Azzaro, Penélope Cruz, in Armani Privé and Miley Cyrus, in Marchesa.
2nd row: Amy Adams, in Oscar de la Renta, Evan Rachel Wood, in vintage Elie Saab Haute Couture and January Jones, in Andrew Gn.
Three young actresses started a new trend: the 30s screen-siren look with their thin-strap, sequined, body-hugging gowns. Sounds cliché but this was the revival of Old Hollywood Glamour.
Vanessa Hudgens, in Alberta Ferretti, Emily Blunt, in Pamela Rolland and Megan Fox, in Ralph Lauren.
I don't know about you but these events were a fashion feast for me and I'm looking forward for the next big thing on this year's red-carpet season: the Oscars.