Get Off My Red Carpet
Michelle Obama looking beautiful in a painterly Bibhu Mohapatra dress. I’ve mentioned before how much I love black women in yellow and FLOTUS shows us why: such a fantastic color against their skin tone. Not to mention this soft, simple silhouette is great on her athletic figure. 
Inspired shoe choice here. Pulling out the blue of the dress would have been far too loud, yellow would have been woefully UNinspired but the teal is a nice contrast. 
However, as frequently happens, I really dislike her choice of belt. She complicates it by always choosing an overly fussy belt. Keep it simple. A thinner belt would have been a better choice and one without negative space. Listen up ladies, never wear an open work belt with a print. It’s too busy. But overall she looks amazing. Can’t argue with that. 
Image credit: likely NBC (Swiped it from the twitterz. Guilty as charged.)

Michelle Obama looking beautiful in a painterly Bibhu Mohapatra dress. I’ve mentioned before how much I love black women in yellow and FLOTUS shows us why: such a fantastic color against their skin tone. Not to mention this soft, simple silhouette is great on her athletic figure. 

Inspired shoe choice here. Pulling out the blue of the dress would have been far too loud, yellow would have been woefully UNinspired but the teal is a nice contrast. 

However, as frequently happens, I really dislike her choice of belt. She complicates it by always choosing an overly fussy belt. Keep it simple. A thinner belt would have been a better choice and one without negative space. Listen up ladies, never wear an open work belt with a print. It’s too busy. But overall she looks amazing. Can’t argue with that. 

Image credit: likely NBC (Swiped it from the twitterz. Guilty as charged.)

Jessica Biel shilling for Total Recall at Comic Con. 
Mugler at Comic Con? Really? Don’t get me wrong, I love the skirt, and that asymmetrical peplum is divine, but let’s leave Mugler to movie photocalls and lesser red carpet events. Besides, pairing it with a super thin Joe’s Jeans tee and Brian Atwood’s 1989 inspired video vam pumps shows that you’re clearly trying way, way, too hard for this event. You put a lot of (unnecessary) effort into this ensemble and clearly ran out of steam when you got to that mop of a hairstyle. Helmet bangs and fluffy blanket hair is not a good look. Not even on you. My advice for next time is to call Kristen Stewart to find out how it’s done.
Image credit: Getty 

Jessica Biel shilling for Total Recall at Comic Con. 

Mugler at Comic Con? Really? Don’t get me wrong, I love the skirt, and that asymmetrical peplum is divine, but let’s leave Mugler to movie photocalls and lesser red carpet events. Besides, pairing it with a super thin Joe’s Jeans tee and Brian Atwood’s 1989 inspired video vam pumps shows that you’re clearly trying way, way, too hard for this event. You put a lot of (unnecessary) effort into this ensemble and clearly ran out of steam when you got to that mop of a hairstyle. Helmet bangs and fluffy blanket hair is not a good look. Not even on you. My advice for next time is to call Kristen Stewart to find out how it’s done.

Image credit: Getty 

Kristen Stewart shilling for Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 at Comic Con. 
No doubt every male Comic Con attendee dropped his costume props when she bounced on to the premises in her one size too small cropped Fluxus tee + black bra and neon mini courtesy of BCBGMAXAZRIA. She has an instinct for this type of uniform, as evidenced by her Barbara Bui shoe choice, and the Comic Con venue suits her far more than any red carpet attire on her best dressed day. There’s an awkwardness and vulnerability at social events but here she is definitely more comfortable; she wears Hot Geek Chic well and I’m sure every fanboy agrees.
It would be nice however if her hair didn’t always resemble a squirrel’s nest. But I’ll take what I can get.
Image credit: Getty 

Kristen Stewart shilling for Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 at Comic Con. 

No doubt every male Comic Con attendee dropped his costume props when she bounced on to the premises in her one size too small cropped Fluxus tee + black bra and neon mini courtesy of BCBGMAXAZRIA. She has an instinct for this type of uniform, as evidenced by her Barbara Bui shoe choice, and the Comic Con venue suits her far more than any red carpet attire on her best dressed day. There’s an awkwardness and vulnerability at social events but here she is definitely more comfortable; she wears Hot Geek Chic well and I’m sure every fanboy agrees.

It would be nice however if her hair didn’t always resemble a squirrel’s nest. But I’ll take what I can get.

Image credit: Getty 

{Vintage Style}: Diamond Jubilee edition

As Queen Elizabeth II and fans celebrate her Diamond Jubilee (60 year reign), let’s take a walk down fashion memory lane of Queen E’s style. 

Ethiopia, 1965

Positively regal. When I think of royal attire, at least in the past, this is what comes to mind. There’s a very Edith Head* quality about it - a designer I always thought gave Hollywood starlets the royal treatment with her work. 

India, 1961

Few women can pull off full floral millinery but the Queen did it with great style.

Princess Margaret’s wedding, 1960

The Queen beautifully accessorized for Princess Margaret’s wedding: hat, pearls, brooch, clutch, 3/4 gloves (a personal fave), bracelet. It’s a lot but she carries it without looking overdone.

*Fun side note: Roman Holiday was reportedly inspired by Princess Margaret’s Italian adventures. She had a much publicized relationship with commoner Peter Townsend whom she was later forced to renounce for someone more “suitable”. Costume designer: Edith Head, Actress: Audrey Hepburn. A must see. Go forth and watch.

Image credit: Getty

{Fashion Critique}: Cannes 2012, Diane Kruger

What a delicious time the Cannes red carpet has been don’t you think? Starlets have really stepped it up this year. I love to see them looking impeccable on the red - though, admittedly, critiquing the failures are tad more fun. But I love my eye candy, too, and I love to share when they own it like movie stars should. And Diane Kruger has been owning it:

Giambattista Valli

    

This gown is as delicious as a plate of macarons! The color is FANTASTIC (a personal fave second only to pale yellow) and the asymmetrical cape-like sleeve really drives home the movie star look - it wouldn’t have nearly the drama without it. Can you not picture this in motion on the red with parfumed ocean breezes in the air? She is mermaid lovely but those shoes, oh those shoes are another matter entirely. You know how I feel about platforms, especially with gowns. Why ladies insist on having thick looking feet is beyond me. 

Nina Ricci

    

A 1930s inspired stunner. Even the corsage harkens back to the time as does the hair; a little bit retro but not so much that it resembles a costume. The feather trim beautifully segues into the skirt. It’s the right amount of everything. Pity Josh looks like he’s been on a bender. He could have at least bothered to shave for the occasion instead of looking like a sloppy drunk.

Vivienne Westwood Gold Label

            

I’m so envious of Diane’s Cannes wardrobe. Here, a nod to the 1940s but still stunningly contemporary. Such a striking figure she cuts on the red carpet. This more than makes up for the Muppet dress.

Chanel

              

That’s Chanel Resort 2013 to us beggars. She is rocking this frock and, dare I say, even better than the runway version? Yes I do think so. 

Image credit: Getty 

{Fashion Critique}: Kate Middleton, Olympic gala concert

This is positively teal-rific. 

Note: I am not a fan of teal. I blame it on a misguided bride for her hideous wedding color choice. Teal taffeta is flattering on no one. 

HOWEVER, Jenny Packham has reinvented it for me and I like it anew. And why wouldn’t I, look how smashing Kate Middleton is in this thirties inspired stunner:

Kate Middleton, teal, Jenny Packham

Isn’t it delicious? The style of the gown perfectly suits Kate’s slender frame. The back is even lovelier than the front:

Kate Middleton, Jenny Packham, teal, fashion

The lace back and cap sleeves. The covered buttons. Those pleats! I’m so smitten with goffering; I simply can’t help myself. The attention to detail is magnificent. And I’m so glad to see the Duchess decided to forego her usual hairstyle in favor of  an up-do. Never cover up design work like this. Plus she looks lovely with her hair off her face. You should do this more often my dear.

There is one thing though that could have made this ever so much better…

Kate Middleton, Jenny Packham, teal, fashion

That I can see her scapula straining against the lace can mean only one thing: poor posture. She tends to slouch. A lot.

      Kate Middleton, Jenny Packham, teal, fashion

Most unfortunate. She *can* stand up straight - one need only look at photo 2 to see that she’s capable. All that yoga isn’t good for her physique alone. But maintaining posture is as much a practice as yoga and one to which she needs to give attention. 

      Kate Middleton, Jenny Packham, teal, fashion

There are few instances when I like a matching handbag. This is one of them. Anything else would pull focus from the dress. She did, however, choose her favorite pair of silver Jimmy Choo sparklers and who can blame her really:

Kate Middleton, Jenny Packham, Jimmy Choo, fashion

They’re fabulous. 

Image credit: Wenn, Goff, PA, Splash, Goff, Goff

{Fashion Critique}: Met Gala 2012, part five

And the final post on the Met Gala madness. Most fabulous is last of course! 

Mary Kate Olson, The Row

            

Damn’t Mary Kate,  you’re SUPPOSED to save the ritual burning attire until AFTER the summer solstice.

Leighton Meister, Marchesa

            

Oompa loompa doopity do I’ve got a perfect puzzle for you. 
Oompa loompa doopity dee, if you’re wise you’ll listen to me:

     Step away from the spray tan booth.

Ginnifer Goodwin, Monique Lhuillier

          

Love it. Love the color, the beautiful neckline detail. You are forgetting one accessory: a smile. Inspired shoe color my dear. Love that.

Florence Welch, Alexander McQueen

   

Only Florence Welch can pull this off. It’s a lot of dress but it suits her aesthetic.

Rooney Mara, Givenchy (w/ Riccardo Tisci)

       

Love it. The only sheer lace skirt worn right, too. 

Karolina Kurkova, Rachel Zoe

       

Say it with me: I can’t believe this dress is from Rachel Zoe’s collection. I know, I am as stunned as you.

       

But good lord is Karolina Old Hollywood fabulous or what? She is vamping this dress and kicking everyone’s red carpet booty. The turban makes it:

       

As does the smile. 

More Met Gala fashion critiques:


Image credit: Getty

{Fashion Critique}: Met Gala 2012, part four

The Met Gala red carpet is ever so much more fun than any awards ceremony every thought about being. Capes! Side boob! Aprons!

Bianca Brandolini D’Adda, Dolce & Gabbana

               

Well, Liberace would think it fabulous.

SJP, Valentino

          

I had bed sheets like this when I was little. Didn’t have the matching shoes though. Pity.

Diana Agron, Carolina Herrera

         

Gorgeous. Even Christina Ricci’s life size bow in the background can’t detract from how wonderful she looks.

Donna Karan, her own design

         

We all know our bodies change as we age. Even clothing that fits doesn’t always work well with our less than elastic bodies. Donna should know this. She should also know that boob spillage at the armpit is a no no.

Gwyneth Paltrow, Prada

    

MY EYES! You were too busy role playing as a porn star housekeeper with the hubby when you realized the time, eh GP?

Amazing legs and I don’t blame you for showing them off but when you go that short, you have to cover up the top. I know you know this rule. 

Cate Blanchett, Alexander McQueen

          

And this is how you do fabulous. And feathers. 

More Met Gala fashion critiques:


Image credit: Getty 

{Fashion Critique}: Met Gala 2012, part three

The awful and the fabulous just keeps coming!

Diane Kruger, Prada

         

Y’all know I love feathers right? I even have a Pinterest board dedicated to my feather love. But this isn’t how you wear them. Feathers are hard to wear. Feathers dyed a bright color are even more difficult to wear because the image frequently conjures up Muppets. (See also, Beyonce.) On another woman this would look completely different. There’s definitely a Ginger Rogers feel to the skirt. But not today and not on you.

Elizabeth Banks, Mary Katrantzou

          

I don’t know what happened here. Elizabeth usually does quite well in the style department…

           

… but her tray table isn’t in the upright position. 

Eva Mendes, Prada

           

Dear Prada, this dress is in need of ProActiv help. 

Rachel Zoe, her own design

         

Hard to believe this woman is a stylist and a “designer”. I’ve never seen anyone actually achieve concave before. Clearly why she’s glaring at the photog like he’s a cheeseburger. Or it could be those crazy ass eyebrows. 

Julianne Hough, Carolina Herrera

             

This is just a “world peace” answer away from a beauty pageant.  

Bee Shafer, Erdem

          

Beautiful. She’s rocking the blue/black fall trend early and who better to wear than Erdem? 

More Met Gala fashion critiques:


Image credit: Getty

{Fashion Critique}: Met Gala 2012, part two

The fun never stops.More Met Gala madness:

Kristen Bell, Tommy Hilfiger 

        

Beautiful juicy color. Love the neckline on her but her hair is competing. Better to do a low pony or chignon. Also needed, better jewelry. Newsflash: they let you BORROW it honey.

Jessica Biel, Prada

   

At first glance I loved this dress. But then I saw the hem and I cringed. No, not the length - that I like - the thick, unpressed appearance. It’s very odd on such a sleek dress. And honestly, the more I look at it, the more I dislike how it lays on the body. It bulges in odd ways which tells me the fabric has a stiffness that doesn’t lend itself to form fitting silhouettes. Fail.

   

Also the accessorizing, while not bad, isn’t great either. The haircut is meh and the makeup washes her out. Camera flash is not our friend. Always a good idea to plump the color on the lip and cheek just a bit. The rear view, however, is still pretty awesome and that’s what everyone is looking at anyway.

Lana Del Rey, Joseph Altuzarra

          

Bored and clearly waiting to bite someone’s neck. This woman is such a marketing gimmick. But here I am talking about her. Well played.

Kristen Stewart, Balenciaga

               

I admit I am not a big Kristen Stewart fan but she has so much potential to be interesting on the red carpet that I can’t help but cheer her on and hope for more. Not today. This dress looks like it was inspired by a daycare: red block - check!, blue block - check! And she’s just trying way too hard with those ridiculous shoes.

Kanye West, Givenchy

           

Seriously, could you put away the bitter bitch expression for one event and just pretend you’re blessed beyond measure or talent? Ass.

Katherine McPhee, Elie Saab

         

Meow Katherine. So Karen can be sexy. Who knew? She spends so much time running around on Smash trying to figure it out…does anyone still watch this show? I gave up. Anyway, this silhouette loves you my dear as does this color. Just get better jewelry next time. Those earrings are far too grandma.

Rosie Huntington-Whitely, Burberry

        

And this is how it’s done. Beautiful. 

More Met Gala fashion critiques:


Image credit: Getty + Patrick McMullan (last photo)

{Crushing}: Neon Accents

I admit when the season’s popular trend popped up I had flashbacks. I lived through the 80s when neon was HUGE. No one - no one - looks good in neon. I didn’t want to venture there again. 

But, dare I say, I’m actually liking the application of neon this season; mostly used as an accent in accessories rather than full on attire bathed in retina searing hues. And paired with nudes, greys, and the seasons pastels - it’s elegance with an edge. This, I can do.

My favorite neon finds:

These leather bracelets from gorjana make my heart skip a beat. If you want more mileage from neon purchases beyond this season, I would stick with (mostly) yellow or orange. The acidic quality of these citrusy hues pair beautifully with most any pastel and won’t look out of place once the trend tapers off. As we move later into the year, neon pink belts will still look smart paired with Fall 2012’s navy and dark blues. 

I fell in love with these shoes when I saw them on the Ann Taylor site. Had to have a pair. They’re the perfect hint at the neon trend without overdoing it. Classic with an edge and they look great with so many items already in my wardrobe: acid pastel cardigans + denim capris, navy striped pants, grey linen trousers for summer. They are currently my “go to” shoe for the every day. 

There’s just something about that highlighter yellow that just gives me whiplash. A daring stripe across a minimal zip-top pewter clutch is so elegantly street worthy. 

This is neon for the adults.

For more trends and personal pins: http://pinterest.com/offmyredcarpet/ 

Image credit:  gorjana, Ann Taylor, clutchny 

{Fashion Critique}: Oscars 2012, part two

How did cinema’s leading ladies do on the red last night? Did they hit or miss the mark completely? Let’s have a look.

Viola Davis, Vera Wang 

              

There was a lot of raving about this gown last night. The color is fantastic on her and therein lies the majority of the comments. Few said little about the style which is not nearly as flattering as Viola’s past gowns. She has incredible skin, fantastically toned arms and a beautiful bustline that is being smothered by that bodice. The gown completely straightens her figure - horizontal seams broaden my friends - visually there isn’t much difference between her bust, waist and hips. I wouldn’t take issue with the skirt if there wasn’t the addition of that strange cut out surrounded by a ruffle. Still, the color clearly makes up for the shortcomings of the gown. I prefer her Marchesa from the SAG awards. 

Michelle Williams, Louis Vuitton

       

Michelle’s coral dress was a bright spot of color amidst a sea of white, black and neutrals. I’ve gone back and forth on this dress. I keep trying to like this on her. The color is lovely, the peplum is deliciously retro, the bow brooch at the waist a sweet addition; but try as I might, I just don’t love it on her. She certainly doesn’t look bad. Quite the contrary. There is just something always wanting with her choices. I love her and the dress separately but not together. I am glad to see her carry a clutch, a rarity. It gives her awkwardly held arms something to do. I won’t even bitch about the color. Her makeup, however, is beautiful.

Rooney Mara, Givenchy 

       

I have such a fashion crush on Rooney and she disappointed me in the worst way with this dress. While amused by her flippant approach to Oscar gowns, “I picked it this morning”, leaving it to the last minute isn’t wise. For one, it doesn’t fit. Secondly, someone needed time to remove the oddly-placed boob and bandaged back decorations. Say it with me Rooney, “Don’t wear gowns that make the boobs look droopy”. She does so well on the movie premier red carpet but when it comes to the awards shows, she has fallen flat the whole season. Pity because there is a slight Audrey Hepburn look about her face and she fancies wearing a limited color palette much the same as Audrey did. Ironically, Givenchy was Audrey’s favorite designer, but Audrey would never step out in a gown that wasn’t tailored to fit her. Beautiful makeup - digging that cherries in the snow bit my dear.

Glenn Close, Zac Posen

          

Two things: 1) I hate the color of this dress 2) This color looks fabulous on her. I know, I’m confused by this, too. The structure is superb on her figure but there’s too much going on with the skirt + the jacket + the seaming on the bodice. If there was less skirt it would be a total win. I do love that jacket on her. She should definitely do more of that. It’s such an improvement over the Frankenstein’s bride sleeves. 

Meryl Streep, Lanvin

          

You know there’s a trend among nominees who wear gold to the Oscars yes? They tend to walk away with that ever coveted statue as Meryl did last night. The color is fantastic on her and looked quite lovely with little Oscar in hand. I think the draping is superb on her figure but it’s a bit too large from the waist up (I saw a photo or two with a little bra peeking out). Otherwise, do more of this honey. 

Image credit: (1) Kevin Mazur/WireImage, (all others) Getty 

For my other Oscars 2012 critiques and Pinterest boards with even more Oscar fashion: