I’m very surprised by my choices as I usually love colour and print, but nothing really exceptional stood out tonight. The problem is that it’s always the same five or six names worn on the red carpet: Dior, Armani, Chanel, Elie Saab and Versace, although (thank heavens!) there was a lack of Donatella representation at the Oscars tonight. It’s odd when someone like Alberta Ferretti feels like a fresh choice. But the designer’s armour-like frock worn by the wickedly talented Laura Dern was one of the best of the night. Naomi Watts gave a similar metallic vibe in her backless halter top Armani, a contemporary dress choice paired with the Hollywood hair-of-the-moment, the side swept wavy long bob.

There were two notable black numbers with Sienna Miller’s Oscar de la Renta and Margot Robbie’s Saint Laurent, but the latter one wins for its dramatic impact on the red carpet. No one can deny the addition of that Van Cleef and Arpels zipper necklace (famously worn by Duchess Wallis Simpson) paired with that amazing orange-red matte lipstick (Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Raven, if anyone’s on a hunt).

As far as reds go, I liked both Rosamund Pike’s Givenchy and Dakota Johnson’s Saint Laurent, but I had to give my top five spots to the two women in white. Marion Cotillard’s Christian Dior frock was the biggest risk taker of the night, with the t-shirt-like shape and the break in volume at the back. She always looks exquisite, no matter the occasion. Lupita Nyong’o’s Calvin Klein number would’ve been a bore had it not been embellished with 6,000 pearls. When I heard the number, I tweeted: “Imagine the core power required do wear 6,000 pearls?” Imagine. With a gown like this, it’s all in the close-up.

Having complained about the repetitiveness of the red carpet, I’d like to see some fresh names enter the scene. How about Jason Wu, Rosie Assoulin, Tome, Honour, or Emilia Wickstead? You hear me, Hollywood stylists?


Laura Dern in Alberta Ferretti


Naomi Watts in Armani


Margot Robbie in Saint Laurent


Marion Cotillard in Christian Dior


Lupita Nyong’o in Calvin Klein

P.S. Kudos to Lady Gaga for bringing Alaïa to the red carpet, but it didn’t work for me.

Images via New York Times and Vogue.