The British Academy of Film and Television Arts held its annual awards gala last Sunday, and quite the star-studded event it was, even though only one of our awards season style pool contenders made it over the pond. To everyone’s non-surprise, The King’s Speech ruled the award roost, taking home honours for best picture, best actor, best supporting actor and best supporting actress, among others. If the trend continues, it will roundly trump The Social Network at the Oscars. Natalie Portman, who was not present, continued her victory lap with a win for best actress (Black Swan).
But enough about the awards; let’s get to the red carpet, shall we? Given than five out of our six style pool nominees were not there, I won’t be counting this event towards the overall ranking. Instead, let’s take a look at what everyone else was wearing … and imagine how their picks might have worked out for our candidates.
First, though, a round of applause for Amy Adams, who not only showed up, but did so looking lovely. She finally went with a bold colour, and a risky one at that for a redhead. Still, I think her pinkish peach Elie Saab looked pretty and ethereal, and complemented (rather than battled) her complexion.
Next up, Jessica Alba. Now, I have no idea why she turned up at the BAFTAs, but I’m rather glad she did if only because it gave me the chance to say, “THIS! This is what Natalie Portman should be wearing!” I’m not sold on Jessica’s braided up-do, but I love the cut and detailing of this Versace gown – and the empire waist is bump-friendly whilst still figure flattering (no one would mistake this for a sack).
I also thought that BAFTA- and Oscar-nominee Annette Bening looked stunning in her ivory, one-shoulder gown. Some have described this dress as “bridal” but I disagree. I could easily see Nicole Kidman rocking this dress, as it is very much her style – white column dress, one shoulder, discreet bling – and it’s a much more memorable look than anything I’ve seen from Nicole this awards season.
[As an aside, here is what Nicole Kidman actually wore to the Grammy’s, also held last night. I can’t say I whole-heartedly approve of this Jean Paul Gaultier gown – I could have done without the crinkly, Christmassy fringes – but I love the silhouette and ombre detail, and this is the most adventurous I’ve seen Nicole on the red carpet in a while.
Fellow BAFTA-nominee Hailee Steinfeld wore a whimsical Miu Miu dress that I would have loved to see on Michelle Williams. Hailee looked adorable, but the dress struck me as a little bit too “old” (she’s 14!) and too long for her. However, I think it would fit Michelle’s slightly off-beat style (and blonde pixie cut) very well. Love the violet clutch!
One of the most memorable looks of the night came courtesy of Thandie Newton, who wore a pink Monique Lhuillier show-stopper of a dress. [Wet spots aside; it must have been raining in London.] I wish Thandie had picked a more outstanding necklace, but she looks amazing nonetheless. This gown has all the glamour and drama that I was hoping Anne Hathaway would bring to the red carpet. So far, though, Anne has been sticking to slinkier, more avant-garde looks; I’m curious to see what will be in store come Oscar night.
One of my least favourite looks of the evening was Emma Watson‘s Valentino gown. It was a lovely dress (on a lovely girl) but it doesn’t really strike me as her style. Maybe it’s the ruffle; I’m not crazy about that ruffle. Or maybe it’s the somewhat jarring contrast between this very romantic gown and Emma’s super-modern pixie cut (which, on its own, is adorable). Emma doesn’t look too comfortable in this dress, either, but that could just be her posture in this picture. I do wonder what the dress – minus the ruffle – might have looked like on Mila Kunis (who rocked a similarly romantic look, plus goddess waves, on the SAG red carpet).
As for my bottom picks at the BAFTAs, the (dubious) honours go to Eva Green (in Tom Ford) and Jennifer Lawrence (in Stella McCartney). Both chose fairly iconic designers, but somehow ended up missing the style high mark for me. In both cases, I think the problem lies primarily with each gown’s bodice. Oh, and that choker! Paired with the (very low) corset top, it just screams “Wild West madam” to me. What do you think?