Who you are wearing is as prominent a question as who the winners of the night are going to be at the Oscars, a night of broken ambitions and embarrassing flubs.
Fashion at the Oscars has become such a crucial part of the biggest night in Hollywood that many people tune in just to see the exquisite dresses that fashion circles are going to be discussing for months.
This year’s Oscars’ fashion drama started even before the red carpet was rolled down Hollywood boulevard. Karl Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel, told Women’s Wear Daily that the company made a custom gown for Meryl Streep, but the actress decided to go for another designer’s dress because they offered to pay her for wearing their dress. Lagerfeld even accused Streep of being cheap.
The celebrated actress did not take such accusations lightly and issued a public statement saying that being paid for wearing dresses is against her ethics. She also demanded an immediate apology from Chanel, which came in the following days.
On the night of the Oscars, Streep satisfied everyone’s curiosity by wearing Elie Saab, a designer who has once again proven to be one of the stars’ favorite choices for Oscars dresses. Streep, who was nominated for an award in the Best Actress category, paraded in a blue open shoulder gown, which consisted of pants under a lengthy skirt.
But the dress drama did not go unnoticed during the ceremony. In his opening monologue, the host of the show, Jimmy Kimmel, made a joke out of it. “Nice dress,” he said, addressing Streep. “Is that Ivanka?”
Singer-turned-actress Janelle Monae also wore an Elie Saab gown, with black and gold patterns and embroideries atop see-through silk. Emma Stone chose a ‘50s inspired mermaid dress, while Jessica Biel and Dakota Johnson opted for long sleeve golden dresses. Johnson, however, fell flat with a very unflattering hairstyle that made her almost unrecognizable.
Presenter Halle Berry walked the carpet in a classic Hollywood black and golden Versace dress, while also awing Oscar viewers with her stunning afro hairstyle.
Attendee Ginnifer Goodwin, nominee Ruth Negga and winner Viola Davis went for bold red tones, with Negga going for an airy Valentino dress and Davis dominating both the carpet and the ceremony with a custom Armani that highlighted her silhouette. Brie Larson took on a femme fatale look in her Oscar de la Renta mermaid dress.
As for the men, Mahershala Ali stole the red carpet with his black-on-black Ermenegildo Zegna ensemble, as he was able to bring some spice into the usually boring men’s red carpets outfits. Dev Patel also stood out in his custom Burberry with a white jacket.
In a year where the political climate is so intoxicating, it was hard not to expect political commentary, even on the red carpet.
Many celebrities including Negga, model Karlie Kloss and songwriter Lin-Manuel Miranda wore blue ribbons in support of the American Civil Liberties Union.