Top Academy Awards Dresses

Thursday, February 11, 2010 at 9:57 am

Since the debut of the Oscars over 80 years ago, women have loved to talk about the top Academy Awards dresses. But the craze over Oscar fashions has really taken off in the last 25 years, no doubt spurred on by the rise of the paparazzi and cable networks like E!. Now every designer dress is scrutinized for days following the industry’s biggest show of the year. Some are praised. Some are panned. Some become legendary.

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In this post, I’ll be taking a look at some of the top Academy Awards dresses over the years. I’ve also provided links for those of you who want to see the actual dresses. If you’d like to learn more about the styles of Hollywood, here are a few books that I recommend. Each book is available on Amazon, and we even get a small commission for sending you there.

Julia Roberts (2001) – Roberts won her first Oscar in 2001 for her lead role in Erin Brockovich, ending her streak of three nominations without a win. She accepted in style with a Valentino black column gown with tulle skirt and white piping. Her simple, elegant hairstyle also added to the effect.

Hilary Swank (2005) – In 2005, all eyes were on Hilary Swank. She won the Best Actress award for Million Dollar Baby, but she also wowed viewers with this Guy Laroche gown with a low back and high neckline. Her toned body was perfectly suited to pull it off, and the navy color provided a nice change of pace from the usual palette of the red carpet fashions.

Grace Kelly (1955) – The future princess set the standard for beauty in her aqua silk dress created by Edith Head. As she accepted her Best Actress Oscar for The Country Girl, her timeless figure was surrounded by material that cost more than $4,000 (and that’s 1955 money, folks).

Halle Berry (2002) – Wearing a red ball skirt and a sheer top embroidered with flowers, Halle Berry stole the show in 2002. It didn’t hurt that she also became the first African American woman to win a Best Actress Oscar. Too bad she turned around and starred in Catwoman.

Sharon Stone (1999) – Sharon Stone proved that you don’t have to spend a fortune to look great. She combined a Vera Wang ball skirt and a Gap shirt from her husband’s closet and became the talk of Tinseltown. Not a bad accessory for under $30. Of course, having Stone’s natural good looks never hurts, either.

Audrey Hepburn (1954) – Demure legend Audrey Hepburn accepted her Roman Holiday Oscar in this simple-yet-elegant gown from Givenchy. The perfect compliment for her delicate frame.

Charlize Theron (2000) – The tanned South African beauty was radiant in this peach Vera Wang down. Add diamond clips for accessories, and you’ve got an Academy Awards dress that’s still being talked about.

Catherine Zeta-Jones (1999) – Catherine Zeta-Jones didn’t win an Oscar in 1999, but she sure set the red carpet on fire with this ruby-colored Versace gown.

Nicole Kidman (1997) – This acid green Christian Dior dress turned Kidman from an Oscar fashion zero to a haute couture hero. Add a stunning backless design, embroidery, and a thigh-high slit, and the former Mrs. Cruise never looked better. Thank you, John Galliano.

Jessica Alba (2006) – Combine a gold Versace gown with an understated hairstyle and the hot bod of Jessica Alba, and the result is fit for the Oscar fashion hall of fame.

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