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2021 Oscars: A Look at 5 Fashion Trends on the Red Carpet

The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, is one of the biggest nights in the world of Hollywood. A single Oscar win can make or revive a person’s career. And it’s not just people: a best Picture Win can herald the rise of a new production studio in Hollywood. Some win big and others go home. (And going home with no Oscars stings-especially if you have been nominated multiple times!)

Oscars night is not just about the movies. The pre-Oscar red carpet show is a major fashion event. Celebrities dress up for the Oscars in custom-made designer dresses and give interviews. One show-stopping dress can define fashion trends for years to come. In this way, the Oscars red carpet is like the Met Gala: there are celebrities and then there are amazing dresses. What’s not to like?! 

1. Metallic Dresses

Wearing metals, especially gold, never goes out of style. The metallic sheen of a well-made dress is bound to attract eyes and cameras on the red carpet.

This year, we saw Carey Mulligan in a Valentino dress. Mulligan wore a voluminous princess gown which had a dazzling orange-gold tint. Singer Andra Day also went for gold with her shimmering Vera Wang dress. Day’s dress-a cutout gown with a thigh slit-had our editorial team split. Did she look more like a glamorous diva or a Bond girl on a night out?

In the mens’ section, we saw gold again with Leslie Odom Jr. in a perfectly tailored Brioni suit. Was Odom Jr. taking inspiration from the Oscar statuette? We certainly think so!

2. Bright and Fiery

Vibrant and bright colors were also a major theme with this year’s Oscars. Red, blue, orange and yellow were all over the designer dresses. Our favorite bright dress was hands down the one worn by Zendaya. This gorgeous yellow chiffon number is called the ‘Force de beaute’. It was custom made for Zendaya by Valentino creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli. 

Trailing closely behind Zendaya in the bright parade was Amanda Seyfried in a Giorgio Armani Prive gown. This hibiscus red ballroom dress featured a deep v-shaped neckline complemented by tulle ruffles. We dig Seyfried’s dress for its sweeping elegance and queenly airs!

3. Singular Colors

Men at the 2021 Oscars went monochrome with their classic tuxedos. Daniel Kaluuya appeared on the carpet in a black Bottega Veneta suit. Colman Domingo on the other hand proved, once again, that real men wear pink! Domingo’s hot pink Atelier Versace suit went against the grain and we love it!

Actresses Ariana DeBose and Angela Bassett also opted for vibrant and singular colors on the red carpet. The asymmetric Versace gown worn by DeBose was a vivid orange affair that turned heads. But Angela Bassett stole the show with her timeless red puff-sleeve gown. Ms. Bassett’s dress, created by Alberta Ferretti, makes us wonder: has this actress ever lost her groove to begin with?!

red carpet oscar

4. White steals the light 

White will always be a classic and chic color. Even though the 2021 Oscars was dominated by bright colors, some celebrities did go for white dresses. (Pro tip: Diamonds and pearls will never not be great accessories for white dresses.)

Actress Maria Bakalova made her debut on the Oscars red carpet with a beaded white Louis Vuitton gown. Viola Davis went for simple yet regal with her Alexander McQueen white cutout dress. Also rocking white was comedian Jena Friedman-in a fitted cutout gown-and singer Tiara Thomas in a white Jovana Louis jumpsuit.

5. Back in Black

What are the Oscars without celebrities in black? This year however, the ubiquitous Oscar color took a bow and was (no pun intended) in the shadows. True: men still wore black tuxedos. But it was a different matter with the ladies.

Actress Brie Larson was one of the lone figures in a black Oscar de la Renta dress with an off-shoulder cut. Others spotted in black were actress Laura Dern (Oscar De La Renta dress with white feather skirt) and actress Nicollete Robinson (Zuhair Murad gown).

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