If there's anything that gets a fashion person off this spring, it's that banana tree of a spring 2011 Prada collection that caused WWD to compare the designer's ingeniousness to Charles Darwin's. In his assessment of last night's dresses on the SAG Awards red carpet, Vogue's André Leon Talley leads with True Grit's 14-year-old breakout star Hailee Steinfeld, calling her "spectacular" and the "best dressed of the night." Indeed, those stripes — which would be a very risky choice for most actresses and are not easy to pull off — are a great match for her age. Talley writes, "What made it so right for the teenager was the just-out-of-bed tousled hair (the style of the evening) looking so natural on her, deft makeup, and no bling. She didn’t try too hard."
And isn't that what it's all about? Isn't it refreshing, when you're watching the Oscars, and the camera pans to Meryl Streep, who has been nominated again, and is wearing glasses and a wrap, looking like she just threw aside her magazine that afternoon and trotted over to the Oscars as though it were a coffee date? But of course there's lots of trying at these things, with varying degrees of who best hides it. Mila Kunis did a fine job in her Alexander McQueen gown from the 2011 resort collection — the first designed by Sarah Burton — that was sort of two straps away from Michelle Obama's hotly contested McQueen State dinner dress.
Talley also liked January Jones's rest from Versace in Carolina Herrera. Though the dress's coverage was a welcome departure from her fringed Golden Globes dress, we thought the business of it overwhelmed her. "After her elegant simplicity at the Globes, Claire Danes (Temple Grandin) missed the mark this time, constantly yanking at her Louis Vuitton," Talley continues. "It was full of wonderful details, but along with the siren hairstyle, she looked overdressed for a relaxed occasion." We didn't watch the awards show, so we can't comment on the tugging, but thought the look felt modern.
Another gown sure to be debated, as hers tend to be, belonged to Mad Men's Christina Hendricks, who wore L'Wren Scott. It was sexy without being vulgar, as a Project Runway judge might say, though it seemed a few sparkles away from something in Hugh Hefner's closet.
And then there was Helena Bonham Carter, who has joked about repeating her widely disliked Golden Globes dress at the Oscars, along with a shoe on her head. Talley doesn't bother addressing her look, perhaps because all it really needed was a shoe hat. And that is why we love her.
André Leon Talley on the SAG Awards' Red Carpet [Vogue.com]