The Fashion Statement: Outre In at the Oscars?
Blame Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj and consumer confidence: all reasons why Oscar fashion is expected to be dialed way up this year.
Hollywood actresses have suffered a fashion drought for years-showing up in any ensemble that said "conspicuous consumption" was a faux pas in the midst of economic misfortunes. But, now, as consumer confidence rises, so will the ante at this year's awards ceremony, say the experts. Colors are expected to be bolder, silhouettes more distinctive, baubles flashier: In other words, Sunday's red-carpet parade is shaping up to be a good show.
In fashion, one is always emboldened by precedent. "Artists are starting to dress much more crazy, more out there and it has a ripple effect on fashion," designer Marc Bouwer told Reuters yesterday. "While you won't see a Lady Gaga outfit necessarily on the Oscar red carpet, you will see more architectural styles -- an expanded shoulder, a pronounced sleeve. The stronger power woman has emerged, and you cannot ignore that trend."
Last month's Golden Globes, to which numerous luminaries turned out in pink, rose and pale skin tones, is always a good indicator of things to come at the Oscars. But you could see more purples, greens, oranges and indigo blues, too.
Bolder and bigger is also expected in jewelry. "Of all the red carpet moments to come out of awards season, certainly the Academy Awards are the most grand, so expect to see jewelry that follows suit," says Adelaide Polk-Bauman of the Diamond Information Center. "Striking and bold always has a place but this year classic styles done in a very big way will be just as prevalent – think 20 carat diamond studs, for example. Grand classic pieces will be statement making, but won't overpower the overall look."
Natalie Portman laments that the fashion show tends to upstage the event itself. She told AP earlier this month: "It is always surprising also that [fashion] become the conversation instead of the movies now. What are you wearing?"
Unfortunately for Portman, the horse is long out of the barn. The Academy itself embraces its role in fashion. During Oscar season, I think of my lovely friend Patty Fox, who, sadly, succumbed to ovarian cancer late last year. In her role as official fashion coordinator for the Academy Awards from the '90s up until 2010, Fox would put on a show for the international press that would try to forecast the year's trends. As Fox told the Los Angeles Times in 2000: "The red carpet has become the celebrity catwalk. Movie stars are the real supermodels."