Archive for the ‘crimes of fashion’ Category

After the Globes

January 17th, 2011

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My choice for best dressed, Anne Hathaway in Armani Privé. Total movie-star dazzle.

The day after the Golden Globes, here’s another 2 cents on the way they wore.

Of course the women tried their best, as usual, to wow the paparazzi and the viewers at home. But the men really stepped up their game this year. They seem to be getting the message that they need to match the women in the appearances game. Even the normally unkempt Johnny Depp put on a suit and looked quite dapper. The hair was still disheveled but women love him for just that sort of rapscallion contrariness and swagger, right?

As for the women, I usually complain about how boring a gown can be. Across the Internet, there were raves about Angelina Jolie’s green gown, but from a distance, it looked like some forlorn, matronly dress you’d find at the end of the line at Ross’s. There were a lot of actresses, like Michelle Wiliams, who tried stepping out of the box, without much success. I appreciate the attempt, though. It does make the red-carpet watch more interesting.

A more polished Johnny Depp.

Christian Bale went with a classic black-on-black look, as did Jeremy Renner.

I love, love, love the very talented Michelle Williams. This flower power dress from Valentino is a cute match for the fresh, vulnerable persona and pixie-ish beauty that comes across in films, but for red carpet, it looks more like a day dress. The color fades into the background rather than calls attention to her star power.

January Jones dress is winning points in voter polls across the Internet, including the Huffington Post. I can only imagine it’s men doing the voting on this one. This is so trashy and tacky, not to mention blending into the red carpet except for one, I mean two, things. So gross. Who does she think she’s selling herself to? Surely in L.A., there’s dozens of hotel lobby bars for that.

Robert Downey Jr. wore Prada, but the suit didn’t seem to fit him properly. He also appeared on stage with his jacket pulling, and sleeves disheveled. It looked as if he’d just come back from the restroom without checking himself in the mirror.

A lot of viewers seem to have disliked Natalie Portman’s Viktor & Rolf gown, the rose, especially, but I thought it was symbolic of the sweet blush of her pending motherhood.

This Marchesa dress looked amazing when Olivia Wilde was on stage. I loved the cut and sharp angles of the skirt as it falls.

There’s rarely a shortage of candidates for worst dressed, but Helena Bonham Carter in Vivienne Westwood is certainly one of them. I got the mismatching shoe statement out of my system when I was 14.

The Golden Globes isn’t “Little Shop of Horrors,” but Jennifer Love Hewitt looks as if she’s being swallowed up by the carnivorous plant Audrey.

Rose Marie Wilson rules the runway

November 19th, 2010

Nadine Kam photos
Model Ellen
Baron wears a dress by Lehua Rabelas, behind her, who was the third-place winner in The Bella Project’s “Rule the Runway” competition.

The Bella Project launched its first “Rule the Runway” competition Nov. 17 at The Venue on Bethel St. with 15 Hawaii designers showing their best prom-worthy designs, created from old prom dresses no contemporary girl would even want to touch.

Preliminaries began in September, with designers entering for a spot in the competition. From 23 hopefuls, the field was narrowed to 15 who showed their work on stage.

I was one of the judges, along with hairdresser Paul Brown, and designers Roberta Oaks and Andy South. Malika Dudley was the emcee for the evening, and I was marveling at her corkscrew locks before the show. I thought she had it done on site, but she said her hair is naturally curly. I never would have guessed from her perfectly straight locks on Hawaii News Now, but curly hair doesn’t work with green screen. Empty spaces end up looking like holes, like a Swiss cheese.

Judging these things is kind of scary. The models go by so fast, and it’s only when they get close on stage that you can see some of the details, and in just a few minutes we had to judge on creativity, workmanship, original dress content (at least three yards), wearability and some other criteria.

Images of the original dresses were projected on a screen, so we could see how much they varied, or didn’t vary enough, from the original.

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The “Project Runway” plague of crooked hemlines abounded on this runway, and there were a lot of lining fabrics sticking out beyond the skirts, that weren’t pretty enough to be intentional. Just in case, we had the opportunity to ask five finalists about their creations before final judging.

From our initial scores, the five finalists were Thomas Downes, Malia Flores, Lauren Lee, Lehua Rabelas and Rose Marie Wilson. Judging was blind, but I was already familiar with Thomas and Lauren’s work. They were classmates at Honolulu Community College and Lauren is a star in the niche world of Lolita fashion. I’d also interviewed Malia before, based on her business of making diaper soakers. She said her pink prom dress was her first dress creation, and after the event was over, she asked me if I recognized the diaper pant snaps she used for the back of her dress! (No, I didn’t make that connection.)

When Rose Marie was announced as the winner, I pounced on her right away, as in “Who are you? Where did you come from? How come I don’t know you?”

She said she knew she was the oddball in the competition because all the other designers were about the same age, or came out of HCC, or knew each other. She said she’s just liked sewing since she was in the third grade. She’s helped create dresses and wedding gowns for friends over the years, but hadn’t pursued it as a career.

Her fabric was velvet, which isn’t easy to work with because of its weight and nap. She employed the long over short trick to give her dress a little buoyancy, creating a short dress with a scalloped hem, with a detachable skirt overlay in a lighter color and fabric. Her tailoring was impeccable.

Congratulations all, and congratulations to Bella Project founder Amanda Ross and her team for a job well done, and one more venue for new designers to share their work.

Before final judging, second-place winner Thomas Downes talked about his dyed fabric and use of feathers on his dress worn by Lauren Landry.

Rose Marie Wilson takes her winner’s walk down the runway with her model Quinterria Que.

Fellow judge Roberta Oaks, left, with the evening’s emcee Malika Dudley.

From left, the Bella Project founder and executive director Amanda Ross, with second place finisher Thomas Downes and his model Lauren Landry, designer and judge Andy South, and “Rule the Runway” winner Rose Marie Wilson.

Malia Flores, right, was a finalist with this pink dress that marked her first attempt at dressmaking.