The Oscar countdown has officially begun and what better way to prepare than to recap the top 10 worst red carpet dresses of all time. The 2014 Academy Awards are being held this Sunday, March 2 and will be hosted by Ellen Degeneres. With nominees and fashion superstars such as Amy Adams, Cate Blanchette, Jennifer Lawrence, and Lupita Nyong’o, all eyes will be on the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles as we watch the stars show off their most elegant attire.
Red Carpet fashion is certainly a highlight of the awards season. Beginning with the Golden Globes in January and leading up to the highly anticipated Oscars it is a veritable sea of glamorous gowns and tuxedos. Stylists are working overtime coming up with just the right look for Hollywood’s A-list celebrities. Nominees and presenters alike spend their hours leading up to the ceremony in the hair and makeup chair, not daring to eat lest they will be unable to fit into their dress. Their jewelry has to be just right. Unfortunately, sometimes they are way off the mark (and some might say off their rockers). Over the years we have seen many beautiful women show up to the ceremonies looking like they just rolled out of bed. Here is the Oscar countdown to the 10 worst red carpet dresses of all time.
10. Gwyneth Paltrow, 2002 – Paltrow is a beautiful woman who usually hits all the right fashion targets. Her look is typically very natural, from her makeup to her choice of dress; but she completely missed the bullseye in 2002. Her goth-inspired Alexander McQueen dress was sheer up top, emphasizing the fact that she chose to forgo any undergarments. Her braided updo seemed child-like and her makeup was more than heavy handed; it was raccoon-like. She has made up for her misstep in recent years, but no one will forget this fashion “don’t.”
9. Demi Moore, 1989 – In a dress of her own design, Moore had many fashion critics shaking their heads at her outrageous bicycle short and bustier combo. The embroidered half skirt only added to the confusion.
8. Kate Hudson, 2001 – Hudson was supposed to be the belle of the ball at the 2001 Academy Awards. The Oscar nominated actress (for Almost Famous) worked with designer Stella McCartney to come up with a young and hip dress. The dress itself, a dove grey sparkly sheath, was fitted perfectly to Hudson’s petite form. Then McCartney added a fringed shawl and that is where the look fell flat. Hudson didn’t do the dress any favors by fashioning her blonde hair into a 70’s era permed updo. She walked away without an award and onto everyone’s worst dressed list.
7. Lizzy Gardiner, 1994 – One of the most interesting red carpet dresses of all time came courtesy of Gardiner, an Oscar nominated costume designer for The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Gardiner had fashioned over 250 expired American Express gold cards into a dress that was to be worn in the movie. When American Express would not grant her authorization to use it she decided to wear it herself. Gardiner may not have topped anyone’s best dressed list, but she did come home with the best accessory of all: her very own Oscar.
6. Kim Bassinger, 1990 – Bassinger was merely a presenter at the 1990 Academy Awards when she showed up in a gown of her own making. The full-length white gown had a full skirt that was topped with a bolero jacket that exposed one shoulder while the other was padded within an inch of its life. Bassinger’s sloppy, half-up, pushed over to the side hairdo didn’t help matters.
5. Celine Dion, 1999 – No stranger to high fashion, Dion decided to mix things up at the 1999 Oscar ceremony. In a white backwards Christian Dior tuxedo complete with custom made Ray Ban sunglasses and a white fedora. The suit was ill fitting, Dion was positively swimming in it, and it had her topping the worst dressed list for a solid year.
4. Angelina Jolie, 2000 – Jolie must have gotten her Academy Awards invitation mixed up with an invitation to the Morticia Addams look-alike contest. Her black, long-sleeved Versace gown and matching black hair would have made her a top contender. Instead, she came home with her first Oscar for her performance in Girl, Interrupted.
3. Whoopi Goldberg, 1993 – Oscar winner Goldberg claims to have found her ensemble at a Beverly Hills boutique. The long purple coat opened to reveal a neon green lining and, more importantly, brocade pants. Complete with matching shoes. That may have been where the line was drawn.
2. Bjork, 2001 – Historically, the name Bjork was not synonymous with the word fashion. Her usual attire could be described as bohemian, at best. It came as no surprise to anyone that she showed up at the 2001 Oscars wearing the now-famous swan dress. The dress, designed by her boyfriend Matthew Barney, featured a nude bodysuit and white tulle skirt. The swan itself draped around her neck and reportedly dropped golden eggs. Outrageous and original, just like the artist herself.
1. Cher, 1988 – All roads lead to this, the worst red carpet dress of all time. Cher was no stranger to the Oscars. She had been nominated before. She knew exactly what she was getting into when she showed up wearing this Bob Mackie ensemble. Admittedly, she had the body to rock the sheer dress. The head piece seemed a little over the top, but this is Cher, after all. She got the last laugh when she won the Oscar for her role in Moonstruck.
The countdown to the Oscars in 6 days and counting. Hopefully the nominees have their dresses picked out aren’t having any second guesses. After all, no one wants to wake up next Monday morning on the worst dressed list.
By Mary Kay Love