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Saturday, 26 September 2009

Emmy Fashion Plays it Safe, But Big Jewels Abound

The annual Emmy awards comprise a star-studded occasion preceded by one of the most-watched red carpet events of the year. Twirling down the scarlet aisles in creations that dazzle the eyes and instantly inspire envy, admiration, bewilderment, or even bouts of laughter, Emmy fashion is practically its own spectator sport. Those fans who were looking forward to a challenging and adventurous event this year may have been disappointed, however, by the relative safety with which most stars stepped out on the big night. Though there was no dearth of class or elegance, risky ensembles and make-it or break-it gowns were, for the most part, left on the shelves as more reliable numbers made their way out of the limos and into the Los Angeles theatre venue.
Many designers were able to showcase a number of spectacular gowns from their collections; among them, Monique Lhuillier, Merchesa, and J. Mendel saw their creations getting ample spotlight time as notable stars donned their dreamy evening duds. A full spectrum of color and fabric was present at the event, with blue reining as one of the most popular choices for hue. Cut and shape was relatively uniform, however, with a few asymmetrical shoulders being the most “wild” departures from classic design –hardly a cause for gossip. The men showed up in relatively tame fashion as well, with refined suits, dinner jackets, and sweater vests making subtle statements that failed to rush anyone to the design headlines.
Though jewellery is often a hot topic on the Emmy red carpet, it was especially attractive this year in contrast to the simpler clothing designs worn by the stars. Great numbers of elaborate chandelier earrings were out in full force, and many gowns featured bejeweled bodices and skirts that played up the backgrounds of simple fabrics. Always eye-catching over-sized gems had their part to play as well; in enormous cocktail rings, seemingly painfully heavy earrings, and bordering-on-ostentatious bib necklaces brought out the sparkle that some suspect creates a fair amount of the “entertainment” extracted from the performers.
Regular fashion critics may have enjoyed the opportunity to focus on accessories and gab about makeup and hairstyles, but most were noticeably let down by the collective resistance to take any chances. While the Hollywood hot-or-not crowd can be especially vicious when an unfortunate fashion faux-pas finds itself in the spotlight, a little friendly jabbing could have helped the event satisfy the spectator appetite. The cure for a red-carpet night in which the floor itself was the most stand-out item? As London's recent fashion week has shown with its unveiling of bright and optimistic collections, fashion may be heading back towards the realm of experimentation. Here's hoping that the trend will make it through until next year, and that more stars will grace the Emmys with designs worth dishing about.

stars in their gowns at the 2009 Emmy Awards

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