Oscars Week – Unfashionable Friday

Look 1

By Niall McArdle

Men have it easy at the Oscars. All they have to do is rent a tuxedo. Women, on the other hand, have to suffer an avalanche of judgement on their fashion sense, and walking the red carpet must feel like running the gauntlet. Everyone knows there’s a double standard: nobody bothers to ask the men “who are you wearing?”, and in any event, the answer is almost always the same, “Armani”.

No man has to suffer the indignity of a camera roving over his body and lingering on his butt or crotch, but it’s still nice to know that Cate Blanchett called ‘bullshit’ on this.


All that said, of course, there are still some fashion choices that are downright bizarre. Some actresses can carry it off with aplomb (they’re in the image business after all, so it shouldn’t be a surprise). Helena Bonham Carter usually arrives at the red carpet looking like a bag lady, and she at least recognises that fashion should be fun before anything else.

Look 2

Before I go on I should point out that I have little understanding of fashion. When in need of style tips, I go here. Perhaps I should go there more, because some days I look like this BhQvWvnCQAANxdKAnd some times like this

166172_489600186111_4720931_nAnd on one occasion, this

1660968_10152570345333098_1151458462_nPerhaps red isn’t a flattering colour on me.

So I am in no way an expert. That said, even to my untrained eye, some dresses just look … odd. What is the purpose of fashion anyway? To accentuate a woman’s figure? To draw attention to her beauty? If so, then why do some dresses just make the most glamorous of women look so awful? Is it the dress? The makeup? The hair? The jewellery Or some perfect storm clusterfuck involving all of them?

Here is a selection of some of the most memorable (and memorably bad) Oscar dresses.

Angelina-Jolie-oscar-dressAngelina Jolie. There’s nothing wrong with the dress: it’s quite nice, actually, but it had an unfortunate slit, forcing Jolie to adopt at an awkward stance. Within minutes of her appearance on the red carpet her right leg had a parody twitter account, and several celebs took a few jokey pot-shots during the evening.

Whoopi2009Whoopi Goldberg chose this cheetah print dress, looking like the blowsy madam of a cheap brothel.

Tilda-Swinton09Tilda Swinton has never forgotten her avant-garde roots; she still seems uncomfortable in the rather cheesy surroundings of celebrity-adoring Hollywood. And she has her own style.

Uma Thurman04Uma Thurman. Nobody liked this odd concoction. I don’t care. She could wear a paper bag and I’d still think she’s hot. She dresses well here.

Bjork01Bjork. The swan dress that launched a million jokes. And let’s face it, some of the other great dresses and bad dresses fade with time: you’ll never forget this.

Gwyneth Paltrow02Gwyneth Paltrow. I like seeing a beautiful woman’s nipples as much as the next man, but on this occasion a brassiere would not have been a bad idea.

Just to even things up, here are some red carpet fashion faux-pas made by some men one man.

Dominique Charriaumickey-rourke-oscars-red-carpet-022209-lg-4832145584450331_full

3 thoughts on “Oscars Week – Unfashionable Friday

  1. Your monkey hat is a classic. Julie bought me one similar, with Yoda’s face and ears, in bright green! I have only worn it inside so far! I agree about that bra too. Sometimes things are better covered up…
    Cheers mate, Pete.


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