From vivid brights to shimmering chiffon, Hollywood’s A-Listers are expected to parade down the red carpet in spring’s hottest looks.
This story first appeared in the January 15, 2003 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Over the years, Golden Globes fashion watchers have witnessed the celebrity set don fashions that span the style spectrum: from pantsuits to ballgowns, minis to maxis, collection to couture. Given Los Angeles’ mild weather, the looks most actresses will be wearing, based on the spring collections, suit the day just fine (designers tend to hold couture and fall for the Oscars).
Here, the individuals working closest with attendees — designers, stylists and pundits — weigh in on their red-carpet predictions:
BLACK-OUT?: “For this year’s Golden Globes, color is very important,” said designer Collette Dinnigan. “I would love to see a palette of sorbet colors and glittery metallics that conjure up images of goddesses clad in liquid crystal.” Cari Ross, publicist and style advisor to Jennifer Connelly and Salma Hayek, added, “I do get the sense that not a lot of people will be wearing black this year.” Indeed, Giorgio Armani echoed others when he proclaimed that “color will come back to the red carpet.” Matthew Williamson agreed: “Go for strong, vibrant blocks of solid color. Keep things simple, feminine and sexy. Red and black are tried and tested, but a jade green, turquoise or fuscia pink dress could look fresh and modern.”
NAKED GLIMMER: “This year I think stars are going to be a little more experimental,” predicted Vera Wang. “I think the Balenciaga chiffon that Jennifer Connelly wore to the Oscars, and the pink Versace that Jennifer Lopez wore, will really influence people’s choices to be different. Our spring collection was 50 ways to do nude and ivory and silver and pale. We used more elemental colors, based on snow and rain. And we did a lot of lamé — a new fabric technique that does a shimmery look that is so much softer than the old, stiff lamés.”
Edie Falco’s stylist, Toni Fusco, is fond of the “pastels and sorbets out there — and silver. I also think winter white will be important this year.”
GRECIAN GODDESS: Expect the red carpet to be littered with “styles ranging from glamorous mermaid shapes to sexy Grecian siren looks,” said Armani. “It’s all about the mythology of women, from ancient times to Marilyn Monroe.”
Added Deborah Waknin, stylist for Jennifer Garner and Rachel Griffiths: “The hippie is dead! It’ll be all Grecian and goddess-like. I expect we’ll see a lot from the collections of John Galliano, Vera Wang, Halston, Elie Saab — and I even heard Fendi was making a few gowns. I’m going with sculpted, sleek lines in satin and satin-backed crepe. I’ve also seen some really stunning chiffons in column-style shapes.”
MINI ME AND MAXI, TOO: Anything goes when it comes to hemlines. “Sexy, sexy, sexy,” chanted Dominico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana. Gabbana said, “It seems that with even such a formal event like the Globes, the mini is starting to make its mark on the red carpet. Our spring-summer collection exemplifies how the mini can be perfectly suited for black-tie affairs.”
Jessica Paster, who’s dressing Helen Mirren, Allison Janney and Kim Cattrall, added the obvious: “Of course, for minis, you’ve got to have great legs. I think most of these women will wear long.”
Designer Elie Saab, who put Halle Berry on every well-dressed list with his chocolate Oscar gown last year, also prefers long. “Short dresses are suitable, but nothing beats a long gown with a train in charming, calming, powdery colors,” he said. “Events such as the Golden Globes cannot help but remind me of the Fifties, the Ava Gardner era when cinema was in its most genuine period.”
But WWD hears that some stars are having it all: short in the front and long in the back.
AND THE TRUTH IS: “You can have 18 dresses out there and nobody wears one,” Wang said. “Or you could have last-minute requests from five stars. In the Hollywood horse race, we designers are…without the control of Edith Head. Nor can we control the hair, makeup and accessories — the total look. One year I made a dress for Alicia Silverstone, after ‘Clueless’ — and I didn’t know she gained 35 pounds! Another year I made a dress for Holly Hunter and she wore it with chopsticks in her hair! All you can do is make the best dresses possible.”