Designers save a few fashion surprises for Oscars

Tue Feb 21, 2012 5:05pm EST
 
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By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Big films. Big stars. Big Fashion. When the red carpet rolls out for the Oscars Sunday night, it won't only be the biggest night in Hollywood, it will be a major night for celebrity designers.

The long parade of women in glamorous gowns and expensive jewelry that starts in January at the Critics Choice, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards finally ends with the Oscars. The best looks, experts say, have been saved for last.

Colorful gowns that show some skin and classical looks from Hollywood's Golden Age will again be de rigueur, with perhaps a white dress or two. Recent fashion shows in New York and Paris will bring out fresh looks, and while eyes will be on Angelina Jolie, as always, new fashions are in town with names like Rooney Mara and Viola Davis.

"The Oscars are the biggest fashion show on the planet," said designer Marc Bouwer.

His is no understatement. Unlike catwalks in New York and Paris, Oscar's red carpet walk-up to the world's top movie honors is televised live and seen by tens of millions of people around the world. Photographs and videos of the celebrities appear in newspapers, magazines, the Web and are sent on mobile phones to fans and friends. One slip up, and it's curtains for the stars.

"If you're wearing bright colors, you'll pop more and that's important in a photograph," said designer David Meister. "This is the night where the cosmetic and jewelry companies are looking for their next women, their next big contracts. You want to look beautiful, pretty and sexy."

While some gowns this year on Hollywood red carpets have featured long, luxurious sleeves, actresses need to exhibit sex appeal, too, and show a touch of skin, "a bare back or plunging neckline," he said.

Bouwer sees more white, ivory and silver.   Continued...

 
Actress Rooney Mara, from the film "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo", arrives at the 69th annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California January 15, 2012. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok