February 2011

Image: Unzipped The New Red Carpet

illustrations by ANN FIELD

Each year, people prattle on about how they miss the good old days of Academy Awards dressing—like when Cher wore an enormous Bob Mackie headpiece or Björk swanned in with waterfowl around her neck. Lamenting the lack of risk taking has become a national pastime for those of us who eagerly await celebs’ red-carpet attire. But let’s face it, those highly paid stylists aren’t going anywhere, so the possibility of a gaffe of Demi Moore–in–bike shorts proportions is highly unlikely again.

This year, we take a crack at dressing six of the Oscar nominees, showcasing them in the winning designer looks we wish they would wear and attempting to persuade them with our silver tongues—and some tried-and-true fashion logic. Sure, no one asked for our opinion, but really, where’s the fun in just sitting back and bemoaning all the faux good taste? Why should the stylists lucky enough to be whispering in all those A-list ears have all the fun? So without further ado, we give you our Oscar-gown picks...


True Grit’s breakout star looked perfectly age appropriate at the Golden Globes, with a ponytail and white Prabal Gurung dress. We’d like to see her score another hit for the teen set in this short ruffled number from Marchesa. While it has the potential to make an older woman look like a chicken or, worse, a meatball with legs, Steinfeld could handle the extra plumage. We’d throw in a pair of Nicholas Kirkwood ruffled shoes, with the advice that she begin practicing walking in them pronto.