When done right, the details are often what make a simple look turn to outstanding. In the case of this year's Oscars Red Carpet, A pointed out that some folks took the "small details" to the extreme, by over-sizing theirs. In some cases, this could work... in others, less so. Let's discuss:
Emma Stone in Giambattista Valli
M: Were it not for the fact that this dress is a redo of Nicole Kidman's Balenciaga version from the same Red Carpet a few years prior, I would love this look. I love red on a redhead, and this is a beautiful red. Now, the detail. That's a LARGE BOW there around your neck, Ms. Stone. But I like it. It's glamorous, not distracting (remember Charlize Theron's huge shoulder bow dress from the 2006 Oscars?). Plus, the styling here is perfect. If you're going to do a dramatic neck-bow, keep the hair and makeup simple, and the jewelry to a minimum.
A: I would have liked this way more had it not reminded me of Nicole Kidman. However, I do like how Emma's dress was flowy and the color was so complimentary to her hair and skin. She looked great.
Stacy Kiebler in Marchesa
M: I love the hue of this gold. LOVE! But I don't love that big ol' gold rosette on her hip. Imagine how stunning this would look if it was just all drapey in that beautiful gold all the way down the skirt, with just that one shoulder (the bodice on this gown is perfection). This is a detail I could do without.
A: Agreed. When I first saw this, she was attached to Mr. Clooney and the flower was hidden and I thought she looked gorgeous. Then she turned and I audibly gasped. WHAT the WHAT?! No thanks.
Penelope Cruz in Armani
M: It's hard for Penelope Cruz to go wrong, and if I'm honest, this isn't really wrong - it's just not crazy-good, either. The color is crazy-good, though. The detail issue I'm having with it is the off-the-shoulder bit. It comes off so heavy. Maybe that's nit-picking...
A: This dress is beautiful. However, on Penelope Cruz, it doesn't seem interesting enough to me - I mean it is a classic "Penelope Cruz" dress. I love me some "classic Penelope Cruz" but I wanted something else from her. I love love LOVED her hair though.
Michelle Williams in Louis Vuitton and Tina Fey in Carolina Herrera
M: So the issue here is peplum, a.k.a., the extra skirt. Two examples here, neither that exciting to me, but one slightly better than the other. I hate it on Michelle's dress; it works better on Tina's, I think. Maybe it's the proportions? On Michelle's it just looks so much like a tacked-on other skirt in the same fabric, where as in Tina's it sort of... I don't know, suits the material better? Meh to peplum.
A: Oh Peplum. I think i like this trend much better on shorter skirts, or as attached to jackets. On long gowns - PASS. I thought both of these looks were not great. I really enjoyed the color of Michelle William's dress and thought it would have been a hit without the peplum. I didn't like Tina's take on it - it was blah.
Ellie Kemper in Armani Prive
M: Okay, obviously the "detail" here is excessive bangs. I'm sorry, but they're just... SO MUCH. I actually like everything else about this look. I like the dress, the sparkle, the simple jewelery and clutch... I even like the color of her hair a lot. But those bangs! I mean, I can barely see your eyes, Ellie!
A: I am laughing that you included this - good call. These bangs are TERRIBLE. Seriously - they remind me of the middle school look where you would curl one giant bang with the curling iron.
Milla Jovovich in Elie Saab
M: Okay, to me this is GORGEOUSSSSSS. I had to make the photo huge to give it its moment. Yes, one could argue that there's some football padding under that over-sized shoulder pad, but still, something about this is just so magical. It's like updated Old Hollywood. I love it. Triumph! Best Dressed nominee (did someone hire us for Fashion Police yet?).
A: AGREED!!!!!!!! She looked so great - completely Old Hollywood, which is always a win in my book. Or maybe that is just my sparkle bias coming out again?! Her hair and makeup were fanastic and I love that the shoulder pad is balanced by the cuff and bag in the opposite hand! The only complaint I have about this is the white nail polish. I am not a fan of it - reminds me of people who painted their nails with white out in grade school - a nice nude pink would have looked better.