Monday, March 06, 2006

It's Oscar Night!

In honor of the latest Carnivale of Couture (with the theme of film and fashion, and hosted by the fabulous Counterfeit Chic), here is my rundown of the 2006 Academy Awards, that night when Hollywood and fashion join forces to create a spectacle that is watched by millions.

Tonight was one of the most important nights in film and fashion - what the stars wear to the Oscars is almost as important as who wins! As always, there were some some standouts and some "what was she thinking?" moments, and lots of safe, boring dresses.

The fashionable Kiffen's favorites included Salma Hayek in turquoise Versace, Keira Knightley in asymmetical Vera Wang, and Charlize Theron in dramatic Dior.

What's interesting about Oscar fashion is that the dresses worn tend to create just as many trends as the fashion shows. Knockoff artists like ABS have affordable versions of the popular dresses on the racks mere days after the broadcast, so wearing a fabulous dress is not only great for the star, it is free publicity for whoever designed it. Also important to know is that the stars generally do not choose their own dresses - their stylists do it.

Hollywood stylists are some of the most influential people in fashion today - their power to define trends and elevate items to "it" status is underrated. After all, it is stylists like Rachel Zoe who dress stars like Nicole Richie and Lindsay Lohan - and love them or hate them, they definitely have influence. (Just for the record, although I am around the same age, I have no desire to emulate them). The majority of celebrities do not dress themselves, and it is about time we see the stylists getting some red carpet credit.

Another important fashion moment at the Oscars is the award for Best Costumes. There were several notable films nominated, including Pride and Prejudice and Walk the Line, but my personal favorite, Memoirs of a Geisha, took the prize. The costumes in this movie were amazing, from the gorgeously intricate kimonos worn by the geisha to the immaculately cut suits on the men, the whole movie was pure visual perfection.
All in all, the biggest night in film and one of the biggest nights in fashion held no real surprises on the fashion front. Playing it safe is boring - when are we going to see an actress wear Pucci?

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