File this under “rest”. When Cher presented at the Oscars in 1986, she took to the stage in one of her infamous Bob Mackie get-ups (it was the mohawk one), and quipped “As you can see, I did receive my Academy booklet on how to dress like a serious actress.” She meant it sarcastically, of course, and it was her response to the rumours that she had failed to secure a nomination herself that year because the Academy didn’t think she dressed like a serious actress – which might sound laughable had the Academy not just reminded us again for the umpteenth time that they are nothing if not a bunch of conservative old farts. Still, it was a quote that sprang to mind when I saw Jennifer Aniston at the Golden Globes 2015, because you got the sense looking at her that those very words could have tumbled out of her mouth in all seriousness.
Not that she’s exactly known for her boundary-pushing red carpet attire, and black is definitely her go-to colour, but Jennifer Aniston really managed to dial up the snooze factor in this Saint Laurent dress, and the only thing remotely interesting about this is the fact that it’s Saint Laurent, and that brand has been forging a pretty tight relationship with Angelina Jolie over the last year. Other than that, it’s a very unremarkable choice, especially given that she’s been doing everything in her power to draw attention to herself over the last few weeks – including shamelessly exhuming her “first love”. Sadly that dearly departed dude, who she thinks “sent” her Justin Theroux, did not also see fit to send her an Oscar nomination. Karma is a bitch.
File under “best”. Allison Tolman is an absolute dream.
As much as I loved Maggie Gyllenhaal in The Honourable Woman, this is SUCH a winner’s dress that part of me wishes Allison had been able to sweep up there and pick up the Best Actress award for Fargo. The wrapping of the sheer elements on the bodice has been done in such a cool way, and the addition of some serious gold hardware on each wrist saves this from looking too princess-ey. It’s black but it’s interesting; it’s a traditional shape worked in an unconventional way, and I love it.
File under “coolest”. In the age of the celebrity stylist, it’s no small feat to stay utterly true to your own personal style at a major awards show.
And yet Lorde, in this Narciso Rodriguez suit, looks totally herself, and keeps it event appropriate by upping the style quotient with a cropped top and a diamond collar. I have reservations about the cut of the trousers, but the mannish suit over a cropped top is a big story for spring and it’s nice to see someone working it so well on the red carpet.
File under “damn”. Taystee by name, Taystee in this Carmen Marc Valvo dress.
The shoe here looks a little dated, and with the gold panelling on the dress I kind of wish Danielle Brooks had gone chunky and gold with the jewellery like Allison Tolman, but this is a great dress on her and the deep red lip works really well with the quiff and full ponytail.
File under “surprise”. Even Gina Rodriguez didn’t see this coming.
I wonder if she had, would she have felt the need to go for something a little more pronounced, and maybe youthful, than this quietly elegant black Badgley Mischka dress? I do like it, and I think “at the bottom of a well cut, simple, strapless sheath” is possibly the only acceptable answer to the question “when can you have a semi-sheer, fringed, crocheted, macramé fish tail on your dress?”, and her sparkly clutch and diamond jewellery did add some much needed pizazz.
File under “phew”. Because Lady Edith is my celebrity lookalike, and every time Laura Carmichael represents us well on the red carpet I feel sort of personally vindicated that she is so much less frumpy than her Downton character.
I think we should have gone for a more substantial shoe, and in the eternal words of The Fug Girls we definitely N.A.B (need a bracelet), but other than that, we’re looking pretty fantastic. Ultimately, as usual, we were not nominated for anything (and honestly, we’re a little bemused that Downton continues to be) and therefore this understated vintage James Galenos is an elegant and classy choice.
Also we’d like to make it clear that that’s a star on the hip, not a scissors, and naturally YES, we did our best to advise Joanne Froggatt against wearing Marchesa, though we will admit that could have worked out a whole lot worse for her. She looks nice, and who would have thought Zoe from Coronation Street would ever amount to this?