Musings on the culture of keeping up appearances

All the Rage

Category: Red Carpet

Fashion News: Teen Choice Awards bring out the Barbies

The Teen Choice Awards brought stars of film, music and TV to Universal City on Sunday night and a lot of Barbie-esque mini-dresses in bubble gum colors, too (Selena Gomez, Lea Michele, Hayden Panettiere). The look was fitting considering the audience and the event, but I preferred Kristen Stewart rocking fall's menswear trend early in a blue silk Robert Cavalli jacket and leather leggings (above), and singer Carly Rae Jepsen's red-carpet look of a palm-tree print jacket and shorts suit by Lisa Ho, and Tiki bar clutch by Kate Spade New York (below). Stewart, Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift were among the evening's winners. You can check out E! Online's gallery of arrivals here.Jepsen

I saw "The Dark Knight Rises" this weekend, and Anne Hathaway is hot, hot, hot in that skintight black catsuit. She is going to do more for the black leather fashion trend that's upon us for the fall season than any magazine spread. Hathaway looked so good in the costume, in fact, that a fashion friend I spoke to wondered whether the filmmakers used computer technology to whittle her waist. Not likely. The Huffington Post reports that the star went on an anti-inflammatory diet to fit into the suit, which was created by the film's costume designer Lindy Hemming.

It looks like the next big historical costume blockbuster will be "Anna Karenina," which opens Nov. 9. The costumes for the screen adaptation of the Leo Tolstoy classic are being made by Jacqueline Durran, and Women's Wear Daily reports the baubles for the film's lead Keira Knightley were supplied by Chanel Joaillerie. 

Nicole Richie's exclusive limited-edition collection for Macy's Impulse is slated to make its runway debut on Sept. 7 in L.A. at this year's annual HIV/AIDS fundraiser, "Macy's Passport Presents Glamorama," but we have a sneak peek.

-- Booth Moore


Review: 'The Dark Knight' more than shines

Juicy founders return with new line, new look

Top photo: Actress Kristen Stewart accepts the Ultimate Choice award onstage during the 2012 Teen Choice Awards on Sunday. Credit: Kevin Winter / Getty Images

Lower photo: Singer Carly Rae Jepsen arrives at the awards ceremony. Credit: Jason Merritt / Getty Images

Fashion news: Armani, 'Great Gatsby' and Cannes Film Festival


Giorgio Armani contemplates his legacy in a profile in the upcoming WSJ magazine: Gabriella Forte, a consultant for Dolce & Gabbana and a former executive at Armani, tells writer Alessandra Galloni that "his brand isn't only about fashion; it's bigger than that." Galloni adds: "Armani, who turns 78 in July, looms so large over his company that it's hard to imagine a future without him." [WSJ]

In the meantime, Armani has seen its profits climb 23%. [WWD] (subscription required)

Lots of chatter about the release of a trailer for Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby," and that includes lots of commentary about the clothes. New York magazine weighs in: "In typical Luhrmann fashion, they're far more fantastical, sparkly, and circuslike than, say, historically accurate for 1922. Gauging by the first trailer ... we can probably expect the wardrobe to look like some combination of the film's 1974 adaptation and a Beyoncé concert in Vegas." [Cut]

Where are the best indie shops in Los Angeles? Racked has compiled a list of 38 stores, including "Eastside indie style mecca Mohawk General Store."

The Cannes Film Festival continues, as does the parade of starlets on various red carpets. Who's the fairest of them all? Naomi Watts, Kirsten Dunst and Diane Kruger, among others. [People]

Not to be outdone by his fashionista peers, Brad Pitt walked the red carpet in Cannes, sporting a pricey pair of shades. How pricey? The Sama Eyewear sunglasses are $1,250. [Us]

-- Alice Short


'City of Style' makes a fashionable debut

Cannes Film Festival: Walter Salles' journey to 'On the Road'

'Paperboy's' Zac Efron talks semi-nudity; director bares own soul 

Photo" A scene from "The Great Gatsby." Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Juan Carlos Obando plots growth, new jewelry line and e-commerce

Juan Carlos Obando
Los Angeles-based designer Juan Carlos Obando is in growth mode. He's planning a new jewelry line to roll out in November, the same time he launches e-commerce, and is expanding his company with a few key hires, including his first chief operating officer.

When Obando launched his collection at Los Angeles Fashion Week in 2005, he still had a day job as an art director in advertising, working with such clients as BMW, Coca-Cola, Disney and Sony. He taught himself fashion design by pulling apart vintage pieces and sewing them back together.

For the first few seasons, he was admittedly influenced by Tom Ford. As his style began to develop, his collections were often aggressively sexy, with lots of tailoring and an emphasis on hand craft. He singed, sun-bleached and even broiled fabric, all in the name of achieving interesting effects. And in 2008, he began showing his collection in New York. (Check out the evolution of his collections above. Left to right, a dress with hand-painted fish from spring 2006, a superhero-inspired jacket from fall 2008, sun-bleached frontier-style tailoring from spring 2010 and KISS-inspired leather appliques from fall 2011.) 

But only when Hollywood discovered his talent, did he really discover himself. 


"That Freida Pinto dress turned my business around," Obando said when he had breakfast last week, referring to the green, bias cut gown (above, right) the star wore in July 2011 to the L.A. premiere of "Rise of the Planet of the Apes."

Perhaps because of his background in advertising, Obando was more than willing to listen to what his customers wanted. And beginning in 2011, he started to focus more on the evening wear that Pinto, Miley Cyrus, Viola Davis and other celebrities were clamoring for.

"Before that, my style was a bit dark," he said. "Now, I'm known for simple, streamlined gowns in bright colors. I have an evening wear company."

He's become a red carpet go-to for L.A.'s art, society and media types, too, including Willow Bay, Jacqui Getty and Katherine Ross, a fashion consultant and the wife of LACMA director Michael Govan. 

"Seventy percent of my clients have come to me because of Katherine," Obando said. "She is intrumental in developing that strategic eye and picking the right celebrities. And she has helped so many L.A. designers -- Gregory Parkinson, George Esquivel and Johnson Hartig."

Obando, who is about to turn 35, is at a point where he can appreciate his creative journey "from what I thought my style was, to what it is, to what it needs to be," he said.


This spring, he was able to get his feet wet in the jewelry category by designing a few pieces (see above) for Atelier Swarovski, in stores and online now. (The Austrian crystal brand has been sponsoring Obando's New York Fashion Week runway shows for three years.)

For his own jewelry collection, which he hopes will hit stores in time for the holidays, he's taking inspiration from men's metal watch bands. He'll launch e-commerce at about the same time, with a selection of his signature gowns, as well as more separates, such as breezy blouses to throw on over jeans.

"It's funny as a designer how my vision has changed," Obando said. "Some people don't like the reality of what their vision becomes, but for me, I'm happy."

Juan Carlos Obando's collection, $1800 to $3500,  sells at Barneys New York, Des Kohan in Los Angeles.

-- Booth Moore


Fashion Diary: It's L.A. Designers' time to shine

New York Fashion Week Fall 2012: Juan Carlos Obando

New York Fashion Week Spring 2012: Juan Carlos Obando

Top photos of Juan Carlos Obando, Robert Durell /Los Angeles Times.

Second-row photos, left to right: Los Angeles Times; Anne Cusack/Los Angeles Times; Jonas Gustavsson & Peter Stigter/ For The Times; Jonas Gustavsson and Peter Stigter / For The Times.

Third-row photos, left to right: Viola Davis wearing Juan Carlos Obando at the 84th annual Academy Awards Luncheon at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in February. Credit: Kirk McKoy/Los Angeles Times. Freida Pinto arrives at the Premiere of 20th Century Fox's 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes' at Grauman's Chinese Theatre on July 28, 2011, in Los Angeles. Credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

Juan Carlos Obando' Atelier Swarovski collection, from the designer.

Red Carpet: Kate Winslet in Jenny Packham, new Hollywood designer fave

Kate Winslet wore Jenny Packham for the premiere of "Titanic 3-D" in London. Packham is a new Hollywood designer favorite
London-based designer Jenny Packham is doing the Old Hollywood glam look about as well as anyone these days. Kate Winslet wore one of her gowns to the Golden Globes, and chose another, a custom-designed gown with crystal cap-sleeves, for the premiere of "Titanic 3-D" tonight in London.

The two looks are quite stunning in their simplicity. They hint at the Art Deco trend, which is a perennial in Hollywood, and showed up on the spring runways of Ralph Lauren, Gucci and others.

But more than that, the gowns emphasize Winslet's statuesque beauty, giving her an almost regal, 'I'm above playing the fashion game' air. (It's no wonder that that other regal Kate, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, is such a huge Packham fan.)

PHOTOS: 'Titanic 3-D' red carpet premiere

Jenny Packham is a new Hollywood designer favorite
Dita Von Teese is another. (The burlesque star loves to rock the Old Hollywood vibe.) She wore this hot-off-the-runway look from Packham's fall 2012 collection (titled "Film Noir") to Elton John's Oscars party back in March. (She had attended Packham's runway show in February at New York Fashion Week.)

Packham is bringing her collection to Los Angeles next month, and setting up meet-and-greets with stylists and celebs. So expect to see more of her designs on the red carpet soon. She's also set to launch a lower-priced dress line, called No. 1, next month at London department store Debenhams.

Might be worth making the trip.

-- Booth Moore

Upper left photo: Kate Winslet at the "Titanic 3-D" world premiere in London on Tuesday. Credit: Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images

Upper right photo: Winslet at the 69th Golden Globe Awards in Los Angeles on Jan. 15. Chris Pizzello / Associated Press

Lower left photo: A look from the Jenny Packham fall 2012 show in New York on Feb. 13. Credit: Mike Coppola / Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week

Lower right photo: Dita Von Teese arrives at the Elton John AIDS Foundation's Oscar party in West Hollywood on Feb. 26. Credit: Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images

Oscars 2012: How stars like Octavia Spencer get ready

Viola Davis, Emma Stone, Octavia Spencer
Viola Davis, Emma Stone and Octavia Spencer have all looked flawless on red carpets this awards season and doubtless they will pull out all the stops for Sunday's Academy Awards.

Anticipation for the Oscar red carpet seems higher than ever this year. The E! network plans to start its coverage at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, hours before a star even arrives, just to speculate on what people might be wearing. 

In certain circles, the Oscars red carpet generates more buzz than the awards ceremony itself. That two-hour window when stars stroll, preen and gush often showcases the results of hours and hours of prepping by a team of experts tasked with readying their client to face a sea of photographers and impromptu interviews — to say nothing of the worldwide TV audience and the crush of off-camera media in critique mode.

For an event as big as this one, that team often includes a fashion stylist, tailor, hair dresser and makeup artist. Their work may have begun months ago, starting with the stylist combing through images from designer collections online or jetting to New York or European ateliers to lend input to custom creations.

In this week's Image section,  take a look at some of the people -- including Octavia Spencer's stylists and Gwyneth Paltrow's go-to makeup artist --  whose work will be on display Sunday as stars glide down the red carpet or appear at parties.


A-List stars attend pre-Oscars Vanity Fair party

Stargazing, chili-dog eating, scarf shopping this Oscars weekend

Kate Beckinsdale, Rooney Mara at Costume Designers Guild awards

-- Melissa Magsaysay

Photo: From left, Viola Davis, Emma Stone and Octavia Spencer at this year's Screen Actors Guild Awards. Credit: Mark J. Terry / Associated Press

Miley Cyrus and the meaning of red carpet clothes

Miley Cyrus

Los Angeles Times Fashion Critic Booth Moore was pretty impressed when she saw what Miley Cyrus wore to the People's Choice Awards earlier this month.

PHOTOS: Red carpet trends

The knee-length dress from British designer David Koma's spring collection was a fashion star that telegraphed, "Look at me; I'm grown up and sophisticated."

"For the first time, she came across less as a trash-talking, peace sign-flashing teen and more as a sophisticated, well-dressed, refined young woman," Moore writes, in an examination of why a dress worn on the red carpet is more than just a dress.

This fashion coup could have a lasting effect on Cyrus' career. What a star or starlet wears on the red carpet can help promote a film, create a memorable persona or fade into the background.


PHOTOS: Red carpet trends

Hair takes center stage at the Golden Globes

Golden Globes 2012: Best and worst dressed celebrities

-- Susan Denley

Photo: Singer and actress Miley Cyrus arrives at the 2012 People's Choice Awards in January. Credit: Frazer Harrison / Getty Images for PCA

At the AFI Awards luncheon, the look is graphic black and white

The concept of anyone dressing for a luncheon is funny in this day and age. It feels like a throwback to the 1950s and '60s. So I was interested to see how the celebs dressed up for the AFI Awards luncheon on Friday. It wasn't matching shoes and handbags but modern and simple that seemed to be the wardrobe strategy.

I liked Claire Danes' white Donna Karan shirt dress, which she paired with a wide black belt with blue buckle and cobalt blue suede pumps. Viola Davis' David Meister Signature sheath also looked smart with red suede pumps. (Davis has been wearing a lot of looks by the L.A. based Meister on the red carpet lately.) But Jessica Chastain's Andrew Gn shift dress was a total knockout. It had a kind of mod '60s vibe.

All three women wore graphic black and white, which is a big trend in the resort collections in stores now.

I wonder if the awards show circuit feels like an extended wedding weekend, when all one ever seems to be doing is changing clothes and heading to the next event. It sure looks like it from afar.


The big business of Hollywood red carpet bling

Critics Choice Awards: Best and worst dressed

People's Choice Awards: Best and worst dressed

-- Booth Moore

Photos, left to right: Actress Viola Davis in David Meister Signature, Jessica Chastain in Andrew Gn and Claire Danes in Donna Karan at the 12th annual AFI Awards luncheon. Credits: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

The big business of Hollywood red carpet bling

It comes by Brink's truck and is hand-delivered by security guards. It is served up on silver platters and in lighted glass vitrines at chi-chi cocktail parties. The finest jewelry in the world is in Hollywood during the weeks leading up to the Golden Globes and Oscars. Because no matter how valuable a diamond may be, a photo of a celebrity wearing one on the red carpet is priceless.

Awards show season is the Super Bowl of celebrity placement. The world's biggest jewelry brands (Harry Winston, Cartier, Chopard, Tiffany & Co., Bulgari, Van Cleef & Arpels, Fred Leighton, Pomellato) are competing with hometown favorites (Neil Lane, Martin Katz, Loree Rodkin), brash newcomers (Kimberly McDonald, Stephen Webster, Solange Azagury-Partridge) and mass-market players (Kwiat, Le Vian) for the chance to bejewel Hollywood's beauties and dazzle armchair fashion fans watching around the globe.

One sparkling moment in the celebrity spotlight can be worth millions in advertising for a jewelry brand. The styles celebrities choose to wear set trends that trickle all the way down to the mall's fast-fashion copycats.

That image of a celebrity wearing drop earrings or a dramatic necklace and all the many ways it is shown and commented on in the weeks after the awards shows, "there is no way to quantify the value," says Victoria Gomelsky, editor of JCK magazine, a trade publication for retail jewelers. The Tiffany tassel earrings worn by Natalie Portman at last year's Academy Awards had "an enormous repercussion on the market." Jewelry worn in the hair is another trend that was sparked by celebrities wearing brooches and bracelets in their awards night 'dos. And Le Vian successfully changed the perception of brown diamonds by renaming them "chocolate diamonds" and lending them to Halle Berry and other celebrities to wear on the red carpet.

Check out my story about the big business of bling on the awards show red carpet.


Critics Choice Awards: Red carpet fashion rundown 

People's Choice Awards: Best and worst dressed

-- Booth Moore

Photo at left: Actress Eva Mendes, wearing a Van Cleef & Arpels necklace, at the 2009 Golden Globe Awards; credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images. Middle photo: Beyonce Knowles, in earrings by Lorraine Schwartz, at the 2005 Academy Awards; credit: Mark Boster/Los Angeles Times. Photo at right: Actress Julianne Moore, in a Bulgari choker, at the 2011 Golden Globes; credit: Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Image

Critics' Choice Awards: Best and worst dressed

"The Artist" took top honors at the Critics' Choice Awards on Thursday night, and the French love letter to Hollywood is undoubtedly the darling of this awards show season. Which is why it was such a disappointment to see the film's female star, Berenice Bejo, drop the ball on the red carpet. This is her moment! She is this season's French red carpet ingenue, like Marion Cotillard, Vanessa Paradis and Audrey Tatou before her. And yet, the unremarkable, royal blue Elie Saab cocktail dress Bejo chose to wear Thursday night made her like any run-of-the-mill, standard-issue starlet.

PHOTOS: Critics' Choice Awards best and worst dressed

The 1920s are a huge trend in fashion right now, and "The Artist" is set in 1927. Bejo should be playing the 1920s star off-screen. What better way to remind people of who she is on-screen, and make an impression that will last far beyond this awards show season?

Bejo aside, it was a pretty impressive group at the Critics' Choice Awards. And despite the fact that this show doesn't have the cachet of the Golden Globes or Oscars, actresses brought out the big guns in choosing to wear the top designers of the moment.


Elle Fanning played the fresh young thing perfectly in a glorious Rodarte gown covered in sunflowers. Black dresses were anything but basic, with Michelle Williams in sophisticated black-and-white wrap effect Chanel gown, Charlize Theron in a glorious sculptural black Azzedine Alaia, and Kirsten Dunst in a short black Dior cocktail dress trimmed in ribbons and bows.

What I loved was that the hairstyles tended to be untidy, which made the high-impact clothes more modern and real-looking: Dunst's messy side ponytail, Theron's braid bun, Fanning's beachy waves.

In the miss category was Diane Kruger, which is unusual, since she usually looks perfect. Her striped chiffon Prada gown bunched strangely across the bust, which was distracting. I was also puzzled by Elizabeth Olsen's Emilio Pucci dress. It looked too old and too busy for her. And Chloe Moretz, darling in Proenza Schouler at the People's Choice on Wednesday night, made an off-choice in the dark, Goth-looking Chanel dress. I see what they were going for with the little-girl look, but she's only 14; why so serious?

-- Booth Moore


Movie costumes: the 1920s roaring again

12 fashion trends and ideas to look for in 2012

People's Choice Awards: Best and worst dressed

Top photos, from left: Berenice Bejo, in Elie Saab, arrives at the 17th annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards on Thursday in Los Angeles. (Credit: Dan Steinberg / Associated Press); Charlize Theron in Azzedine Alaia (Matt Sayles / Associated Press); Elle Fanning in Rodarte (Matt Sayles / Associated Press); Kirsten Dunst in Dior. (Dan Steinberg / Associated Press).

Bottom photos, from left: Michelle Williams in Chanel (Credit: Dan Steinberg / Associated Press); Elizabeth Olsen in Emilio Pucci (Matt Sayles / Associated Press); Chloe Moretz in Chanel (Dan Steinberg / Associated Press); Diane Kruger in Prada (Dan Steinberg / Associated Press).

People's Choice Awards: Best and worst dressed


This post has been corrected. See the note at the bottom for details.

The People's Choice Awards red carpet was hit and miss Thursday night, but what I noticed most is that there was so much Fashion with a capital "F." More than ever, the objective on the red carpet seemed to be to say, "Look at me! I can make a fashion statement!"

PHOTOS: People's Choice Awards: best and worst dressed

Fashion is big business for today's Hollywood stars. Part of the career plan is landing lucrative endorsement deals and advertising campaigns, and maybe even having a clothing collection of one's own some day. Which is probably why young stars are out to prove they can play the designer fashion game. 

It could also be that stars (and their stylists) are realizing that the public expects more from the red carpet now that we all have a more sophisticated understanding of fashion, thanks to TV shows and blogs that provide unending commentary on who is wearing what, and designers themselves taking to the judges' chair on "Project Runway."

We expect the red carpet to look like a runway. Meaning that it's not enough for an actress or singer to dress attractively or sexily, she must dress like she's working a look. Everyone's a fashion critic, and stars have to give us something to chew on. 

But back to Thursday night. I never thought I would say this, but Miley Cyrus was the best-dressed! Her cream dress by up-and-coming London designer David Koma had loads of interesting details -- a plunging neckline, sheer insets, iridescent details at the hem. It was more sophisticated than anything she has worn before, but to the point I made above, it did not overwhelm her, like Lea Michele's draped-and-fringed Marchesa gown did her.

I'm all for a tuxedo on a woman, but Emma Stone's green Gucci number didn't quite work. It was less sleek le smoking, and more toot toot bandleader. Faith Hill is someone who always seems to get it right, and I liked the red Bill Blass dress she wore to walk the red carpet, as well as the red jumpsuit she wore when she performed onstage. Red was a big color for the night. Kaley Cuoco's red bubble skirted Naeem Khan dress was charming (the best of all she wore during the event), as was Jane Leeves' Jean Paul Gaultier gown. And I've been a huge fan of Ginnifer Goodwin's style for a long time too. She looked great in a shocking pink Roksanda Ilincic dress with bell sleeves and lace Jimmy Choo booties.

There were a lot of misses too -- mostly because the dresses were too tight (Cobie Smulders' Reem Acra), too trashy (Demi Lovato's Marchesa), or trying too hard (Jennifer Lawrence in Viktor & Rolf and Jennifer Morrison in Oscar de la Renta).

Next up, the Critics Choice Awards!

[For the record, 3:16 p.m. Jan. 12: A previous version of this post stated that Jane Leeves was wearing a dress by Jay Carlile. Her dress was by Jean Paul Gaultier and her jewelry was by Jay Carlile.]


Vividly Ilincic

New York Fashion Week: Proenza Schouler

London Fashion Week: David Koma hits the spot

-- Booth Moore 

Left photo: Singer Miley Cyrus arrives at the 2012 People's Choice Awards held at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on Thursday. Credit: Jason Merritt / Getty Images

Second photo: Singer Faith Hill. Credit: Jason Merritt / Getty Images

Third photo: Host Kaley Cuoco. Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Right photo: Ginnifer Goodwin arrives. Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


Tweets and retweets from L.A. Times staff writers.