Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Put It Away Award

Heidi Klum in Julien Macdonald

Heidi, Heidi, Heidi. We know you’re a doll. And we know you’re single. But please, keep the girls wrangled. The Oscars is supposed to be a classy event. And while I realise that you’re only attending an Oscars party – and please, please don’t ever try and break into the movie scene – this dress screams desperation.

It says ‘Las Vegas stage costume’.

It says ‘Lindsay Lohan’s trust fund’.

It says ‘lonely 3am texts to Seal’.

And as if her squashy golden melons weren’t enough, we turn our attention to the sheer panelling. I get that illusion panels give the impression of ‘barely holding it together’ skin-show from afar. But up close, it’s just a mess. It gives Heidi side rolls that we all know don’t exist. And more than anything, it just looks cheap.

The Trashtastic Award feat. Who?

Brandi Glanville in BrandiB

This woman was not at the Oscars. She was invited to an Oscars party though, so she must be someone. Google tells me she is a Real Housewife, and I can see that now, although I would have assumed she was of the Desperate variety.

This trashtastic hoe-bag thinks so much of herself she has:
a)        decided to present the sum of her talent to the world, and
b)      designed this glorified nipple cover herself and taken it to the streets.

In response:
  1.  High class prostitutes wouldn’t wear this shit.
  2. There are so many better things you could have done with your husband’s money.
  3. Please go back into your house.

The Worst Thing Ever

Melissa McCarthy in David Meister

I love Melissa McCarthy. Her stylist does not. This just makes me sad. She’s a big lady, but there’s plenty you can do with that. Look at how great Adele looked. I guess the designers aren’t banging down her door to get her to wear their clothes, but there’s gotta be something better than this.

I don’t know what else to say… it’s good she’s got a sense of humour??

The Almost Forgotten

Jessica Chastain in Giorgio Armani

There’s all this fuss about Jessica Chastain and I don’t get it. Admittedly I’ve never seen her in anything, but I’ve seen what she wears, and that’s what’s important right? She just seems so BLAH. Like I can see why everyone thinks she’s totally pretty, but are they just going nuts because she’s a redhead and she’s attractive?

She always seems to pick the totally wrong colour for dresses – soft wishy washy colours, skin tones and pastels. Those colours are not the friend of redheads. Especially those with pale skin. I can tell you that because I am one of those people. Wear red! Wear green or blue. But wear it with gusto!

I adore this dress. It is possibly the most beautiful on the red carpet. But I wish so badly it was another colour. A colour that pops, not flops.

Best in Colour Award

Elizabeth Banks in Alexander McQueen

Elizabeth Banks is one of those people who I never understood why she was famous (apart from being ‘that one that looks like Chelsea Handler but prettier and less man-eaty’). Then all of a sudden she was in a million things and she’s like the new America’s Sweetheart.

I think Americans like her because she’s blonde and has a big smile. That’s generally what they like. If she had big hair they would leave trinkets at her gate and beseech her for a good crop season. And while she looks friendly in a thank-god-she’s-not-Chelsea-Handler kind of way, I just can’t get over how soul-crushingly generic she looks.

This dress is far from generic and I applaud her for wearing it. There are so many muted colours and gothic nuances around at the moment, and this is bringing so much colour to the party I want to throw beads at it from a balcony in New Orleans.

The So Close Award

Nicole Kidman in L’Wren Scott

It may be becoming apparent that I like a bit of sequin. Well this is Hollywood people, if you can’t wear sparkles here then where can you wear them. Shiny things make me happy. Nicole’s been making such good choices for the red carpet recently and she looks great. Somehow less robotic. But on to the dress.

I love this from the waist up. I thought I loved it all, but then I noticed that the gold at the bottom was in spiral patterns. I wish it just faded down like golden lava melting out of glittery igneous rock. That would have been way better than the stylised spirals. It’s just a bit too Hocus Pocus.

Best Over 70

Jane Fonda in Versace

Jane Fonda is also making her mark on worst dressed lists for wearing a colour that’s ‘too young’ and a dress that’s ‘too tight’. Haters gon’ hate.

If I look this good at 75 (and I could wear anything close to a shade of yellow) I’d be pushing those young* bitches out of the way and wearing this too. I love the colour. I love a bit of sparkle, and the design draws it in perfectly at the waist. I’m not a fan of the front seam, which appears to be poorly stitched and gathering. 

But damn, aerobics (yeah, yeah, and many-a surgeon) have done you all sorts of favours and I think you look great.

*I can’t even say ‘skinny bitches’ because Jane’s right on the mark with them. She looks better than I do at 27.

The Va Va Voom Award

Salma Hayak in Alexander McQueen

Fashion is so subjective and I have to note that many of my favourites are featuring on worst dressed lists and vice versa. 

Salma has a great body and I don’t know who decided to put her in a high-necked dress – usually such a no-no for the well-endowed – but for me the gold into the sweetheart neckline makes it work. Who else could wear velvet, and a style of dress no other woman with such magnificent breasts would have touched, and still come off looking like Spanish Jessica Rabbit? 

Best Outfit Change

Jennifer Lawrence (Calvin Klein) and Amy Adams (Oscar de la Renta)

It might seem that I have something against full skirts because of these two picks, but it’s their choice of full skirt and my love of shiny things that tips the scales here.

Jennifer Lawrence’s Dior dress has the big skirt that starts half-way down the thighs. I’m so not a fan of that and I just can’t see why you would ever want your skirt to start there. And it looks so bridal. Does Raf Simons secretly hate her? After that red cone-boob deal you have to wonder.

Amy Adams looks like she snuck off-set and skinned a family of Muppets for her big night. That’s all I have to say really. Their party dresses look amazing. 

Most Improved

Halle Berry in Versace

Let me first say that I HATE Halle Berry. I am loathe to acknowledge her existence, let alone give her an imaginary award. But I’m a teller of truths.  And this dress is good.

Ms Berry constantly wants us to see how bangin she is over 40 (is she over 40? It’s hard to tell with that constant ‘busy mum’ haircut) and strives to show off as much of her body as possible. Take her dress a few weeks ago at the Golden Globes. She’s going for the ‘I just had sex and draped this sheet around me’ look that no one in their right mind would wear on the red carpet. It’s a crime against fashion.

But I LOVE this Versace dress. She no longer looks like a mother who’s so desperate to ‘get in with the young kids’ that she shags her teenage son’s best friend. This is a grown-up’s dress. She shows us some skin, she hides some with the sleeves. Sleeves are so big this year and this is how you do it. As much as it pains me to say – “Well done”. 

The Absolute Best

Charlize Theron in Dior Haute Couture

This is perfection. I don’t think I even need to talk about the dress - the perfect tailoring, modern lines and crisp whiteness speaks for itself. I dare you to find fault in this dress – whether it’s your style or not.

What I will talk about is the constant need for some actresses to periodically cut off their hair to remind us all that they are so beautiful they don’t need glorious locks. (Halle Berry lives this concept.) Charlize also likes to remind people that she’s a serious actress. So serious that she made herself ugly in Monster *Gasp* and all of Hollywood was so overwhelmed by the self-sacrificing gesture they gave her an Oscar for it.

I hate the hair. She looks so glamorous with the wavy bob, and I think that would have completed this look so fabulously I might have possibly died in the wake of its gloriousness.

The Kudos Award

Britney Spears in Michael Cinco Couture

Kudos has to be given when someone with as much volatility in the ‘making good decisions’ department as Britney turns out looking like halfway decent. I think this is more than halfway decent for Britney and the brunette do is doing her so many favours.

When Britney’s blonde, it always looks like ‘dirty blonde'. Apparently in her ‘off days’ (although ‘off months’ may be more appropriate) she refuses to shower. It might be that blondes have more fun, but brunettes at least look clean when perhaps they are not.

What I like about this is that she’s not trying to cram herself into a bandage dress (as she did for almost every appearance on the X Factor) or ‘phantom dress’ so that everyone can marvel at the talent of her bikini waxer (as in that 2010 Grammys number below - although again, the brown hair looks great). Kudos Ms Spears. 

The Given

Naomi Watts in Armani Privé

I’m not totally sold on this dress, but I know I’m supposed to love it. Everyone else does, and she’s on more best dressed lists than Britney’s on prescription meds. It totally deserves a nod, but I feel like she’s going to get enough attention for this one as it is.

She looks amazing, the dress is nice, and it’s different enough to make everyone ooh and ahh, but essentially it’s her bangin body and a crap-ton of sparkles that are doing all the work here.

I’ve never been one for asymmetric designs, whether it be hems or sleeves, and that is the essence of this dress, so I’m predisposed to disliking it. That I don’t hate it speaks loads for how great it really is.


Best and Worst at the Oscars

Did anyone else notice a lack of stars at the Oscars this year?

I kept looking for fabulous dresses and dapper gents online, but they just weren’t there. Where were the Brad and Angelinas? Where were the Dame Helen Mirrens and Johnny Depps of the world? Where was Leo? Michelle Williams? They had a movie.

Is it uncool to walk the red carpet anymore? Are they all sneaking in the side door to avoid the glam cam? There seems to be very little evidence of actual stars this year and I fear that awards season has become such an E! extravaganza that the actual famous people don’t want anything to do with it anymore.

Perhaps they’ve all turned hipster and only go to the arty farty festivals to avoid Seacrest. ‘We were doing Cannes before it was cool’. And I was judging their dresses...

Thursday, February 21, 2013

What a woman wants

Apparently what a woman wants is big undies. That’s what stylist Lisa O’Neill had to say at the pleasantly hilarious Farmers What a Woman Wants event last night. This is the second time I’ve been to see Lisa at a Farmers night and she’s still touting spanx as a girl’s best friend.
Lisa O’Neil is a housewife stylist. And I don’t mean that in any derogatory way. She’s accessible to ‘real Kiwi women’ in a way that other stylists I’ve worked with* proactively avoid. She’s not about over-complicated and out-of-reach fashion. She caters for the masses, providing advice about how to cover your bum or boobs or other bits you don’t like but are stuck with. There’s plenty of emphasis on the ‘you’re stuck with it’ bit, and she casually told us all to shut up and get on with it. “Rub it and love it,” she says.

She’s obviously on the payroll at Farmers but she’s a good salesperson and holds no shame in touting ‘you want it you buy it’ philosophy. Forget the capsule wardrobe. Lisa wants people to try different trends and change it up. Of course Farmers wants you to do that too, but my bulging wardrobe denies me any kind of elitist soapboxery about having the perfect 20 pieces that cover all bases.

Now, back to the big undies. The only thing I don’t agree with is the complete acceptance of size and shape. Maybe she’s talking more to the older ladies or those who, like her, have had ‘tenants’, but I don’t think shapewear is the only answer to jiggly bits. It’s not that hard to get up and do a bit of exercise. And even if you don’t’ do enough of it to lose weight, the statement “it’s easier to change your mind about your body than it is to change your body” stinks of bodily resignation. It’s not the message we need to be touting to our already overweight nation.
But she did have a few other gems up her sleeve, which I will share with you.

Anything with a line or belt on it will draw the eye in and give you a waist. “But if your boobs go below the line – you can’t have it.” Sound advice for a gravity-challenged bosom.
And then this, which I will take with me: “No one approaches you from side-on, so stop worrying about that dimension”. I’m terrible at trying clothes on, thinking I look pretty good, and then turning to check out the view from the side and noticing the cookie pouch. Well she’s right, impressions are made from the front (or sometimes the back), but no one ever crabs up to you offering full belly profile. That’s just silly. So I’ll just put on my control panties and think about how great everything looks from the front from now on.

And finally, “don’t save your best, because most of us have got nowhere to go.” While there’s a hint of the housewifely resignation in there I have to agree. I always dress to impress, whether it’s at work or just going to get the vegies on Sunday (although to different extents). So if you buy a lot of lovely things, just wear them. The perfect event doesn’t come along every week. And over-dressed beats spit-stained or cat-haired daggy pants any day.
*oh how I love that I can say I’ve ‘worked with’ stylists J

Thursday, February 14, 2013

In defence of Kimbra

Poor Kimbra got totally slated on Fashion Police following her first appearance at the Grammys. I was super excited to see that she was even featured, but I guess with such a statement dress she was bound to get picked up by the fashion critics. Go Fug Yourself's Jessica was much kinder, letting Kimbra's cute enthusiasm beat out any desire to slander the dress.

Tbh I didn't think it was that bad. Ok, totally out there, in a kind of playful spritely way, but we're talking about the awards show which saw Riri get rave reviews for wearing a deconstructed toilet brush and Lady Gaga turning up in an egg. So there's room for kook. I thought the dress was totally cute, it unfortunate that it coincided with everyone toning down their looks, due to new network requirements.

In defence of Kimbra I would like to take it to the Fashion Police cadet who nominated her for worst dressed nominee, Queen G herself Giuliana Ransic. I love G, and she usually looks amazing, but this awards season she's got it so wrong. I think she's forgetting her place as a (laughably quote unquote) "reporter". Sorry G, I'll follow your baby-making troubles in NW, but you haven't actually achieved anything to be called a star.

Anyway, take her Golden Globes gothic travesty. I don't like to judge, but anyone so obviously ano as Giuliana should really stay away from high neck lines. Anything that brings such close attention to your lollipop head should be off limits. That thing looks more unbalanced than a baby with a candy apple. Seriously G, eat a pie, and send Morticia Adamms thanks for the loan of her wedding dress. At least Kimbra looks like a fairy princess, not an emo Bratz doll.