Old Hollywood on red carpet

Fashion

The 77th Annual Academy Awards

February 28, 2005|By Tanika White | Tanika White,SUN STAFF

Call it life imitating art: Last night, as if all the celebrities at the Academy Awards had been inspired by The Aviator, actors and actresses brought back the glamour of old Hollywood.

This year's red carpet was aglow with stars dressed in long, body-conscious gowns, with elegant up-dos and classy makeup. They evoked the glory years of Tinseltown when celebrities would never be seen in tabloids in ripped jeans, Juicy Couture baby tees and Ugg boots.

Instead, they'd be gorgeous and impeccably put-together all the time, the envy of all the women watching. Their designer clothes would look rich, their hair and skin luxurious.

Last night, the stars went back to that time.

"I think this was the red carpet where I've seen the least craziness and the most absolute gorgeousness," said Dannielle Romano, editor of DailyCandy .com, an online guide to new styles and trends. "No one really went for a tougher look or a menswear-inspired look. It was all pure glamour."

Hilary Swank won the night's best dress honors. Some will say it was ill-fitting and that it didn't flatter her. But the Guy Laroche high-neck, long-sleeve dress - with its plunging back - was bold and different, sleek and sexy.

Most other dresses were strapless or sleeveless, and very form-fitting. Many, such as Closer's Natalie Portman and Maria Full of Grace's Catalina Sandino Moreno, chose the Grecian goddess look seen on the runways for spring 2005.

Actresses such as Kirsten Dunst, Scarlett Johansson and Drew Barrymore looked gorgeous in not-so-basic black, Johansson's Roland Mouret off-the shoulder being the most creative of the three.

But color was definitely in this year. Blues, reds, yellows, and metallic golds and silvers - no one hue dominated.

The winner of the "Best Use of Color" award goes to Kate Winslet in a smartly sparkly Badgley Mischka blue gown.

And Cate Blanchett's yellow Valentino gown, with a brick-red sash, beautifully played off her makeup and hair.

"She always looks so chic," said Suze Yalof Schwartz, editor-at-large for Glamour magazine. "But this was one of her best fashion moments ever."

Poor Penelope Cruz's golden-yellow Oscar de la Renta was the wrong color for her, however, and the enormous bow in the back was a mistake on her petite frame.

Even the usually overlooked men - except for Spike Lee and Johnny Depp (gasp!) - took their old-school tuxedos up a notch, wearing jackets with subtle stripes and simple black neckties, replacing the bow tie as the neckwear of choice.

Jamie Foxx went against the grain in a dark blue coat (not black) with a soft stripe, and a black necktie. Paired with chic sunglasses, he looked like a star. But in a cobalt blue tuxedo coat and tacky neckwear, Depp was a fashion don't.

Actresses, for the most part, skipped the red-stained lip and cheek in favor of a pale face, nude, glossy lips and smoky eyes that were heavier with dark mascara and eyeliner.

"It wasn't all about the super-bronzed skin that we've been seeing. This year, everyone seemed a lot more luminous," said Tim Quinn, celebrity makeup artist for Giorgio Armani cosmetics, worn this year by such actresses as Salma Hayek, Winslet and Dunst. "And there was a lot more of that old Hollywood glamour on the eyes."

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