It's no secret that the Oscars are known as the most glamorous event on Hollywood's calendar. Showcasing the best gowns, jewels, and accessories the fashion world has to offer, the event draws all eyes to the red carpet outside the Kodak Theater.
But this year, the glamour just wasn't there. Everything about the red carpet was subdued: those going for the gold definitely did not glitter. Although the stars looked beautiful, it was low-voltage across the board.
The color of the night was definitely red. Heidi Klum strutted her stuff in a dramatic Galliano gown in lipstick red, with Miley Cyrus, Katherine Heigel, and Anne Hathaway following her lead. But in this time of toned-down elegance, black also took a front seat. The appropriate color was seen on Tilda Swinton, who sported a plain Lanvin sheath in charcoal velvet; Hillary Swank in Versace; and Jennifer Garner in Oscar de la Renta.
Various shades of nude tones also made a showing, from Cameron Diaz's pale rose Dior to Renee Zellweger's silver-sequinned Carolina Herrera sheer gown, made extra luxurious with a leggy slit up the side. And Keri Russel went from "Felicity" to femme fatale in her sumptuous, barely-there pink Nina Ricci full-skirted gown. If you wanted to sum it up in one phrase, the Oscars this year were black, nude, and red all over!
And now, the moment you've all been waiting for: the winners of the annual Fashion Bloch-Buster Awards.
Best Actress: Anne Hathaway
The devil may wear Prada, but Anne Hathaway looked like an angel in her crimson red Grecian gown by Marchesa. The one-shoulder design and delicate rosette details made this young starlet stand out from the rest. And with her matching lipstick and simple up-do ponytail, she was the definition of Oscar glamour.
Best Costume: Marion Cotillard
This chic French actress who won the little gold man for her haunting portrayal of Edith Piaf in "La Vie En Rose" looked like a beautiful mythical creature in her mermaid-inspired Jean Paul Gaultier couture gown. Few could pull this look off, but Marion did it with style, grace, and a little je ne sais quoi!
Best Screenplay: Katherine Heigl and Miley Cyrus
Ladies and gentlemen, there was a tie! The Bloch-Buster award went to two ladies in red who truly came out of their shells this Oscar season.
Katherine Heigl, the breakout star from "Grey's Anatomy," consistently gives old-school Hollywood glamour a modern twist when she walks down the red carpet. Her asymmetrical Grecian gown from Escada in brilliant ruby red made everyone's jaws drop.
Teen-queen Miley Cyrus definitely stepped up to the plate this Oscar season as a future style icon in her simple but elegant and, most importantly, age-appropriate gown by Valentino. While Britney and Jamie-Lynn Spears are making parents panic with their antics, Cyrus has all the makings of what little girls should be aspiring to become.
Best Special Effects: The Baby Bump
Even Oscar host Jon Stewart couldn't deny that the baby bump stole the show this year. And the award goes to … it's an unheard-of three-way tie!
Jessica Alba looked healthy and glowing in her aubergine Marchesa empire-waist gown with feather trim. Head designer Georgina Chapman-Weinstein hand-sewed the feathers on the dress herself the night before the big show. The gorgeous draping of the gown delicately and effectively camouflaged her bun in the oven.
The always edgy and fashion-forward Cate Blanchett looked extraordinarily elegant in her Dries Van Noten silk gown. The amethyst shade perfectly complimented her alabaster complexion and her Lorraine Schwartz jewels were the perfect finishing touch. She looked nothing less than exquisite, as any double Oscar nominee should.
Finally, the eternally elegant Nicole Kidman showed off her baby bump in a dramatic black silk Balenciaga gown made all the more glamorous with the stunning extra special effects of her L'Wren Scott necklace, which draped like icicles around her neck. What better accessory to compliment a growing belly than some serious bling?
Best Original Score: Keisha Whitaker
Keisha Whitaker, my friend and client, definitely deserves this award for her stunning J'Aton Couture strapless gown in bejewelled nude tulle. This brand new design duo from Australia scored big on their first Oscar outing. And, of course, her ultimate accessory is the greatest score of all — her hubby, Forest Whitaker. Every woman should be so lucky to be so loved.
Best Hair and Makeup: Jennifer Garner
Jennifer looked pretty and effortless with her perfect side part and sweeping bang. She was just so natural and fresh, bringing a much-needed relaxed elegance to the Oscars this year. For Garner, it's all about the natural glow, not over-done makeup. She looked young, bright-eyed and totally perfect in Oscar de la Renta.
Best Foreign Dress: Penelope Cruz
This year was definitely a year for foreigners, with all the acting awards going to international stars. And Penelope Cruz was the sultry cosmopolitan celeb who stood out to me the most. Her glamorous Spanish coloring against the dramatic strapless black feathered gown from one of Europe's most prominent designers, Karl Lagerfeld, was a match made in global heaven.