By Debbie Yonick, jewelry guru and journalist.
Growing up, the one thing my mom, an avid movie buff, demanded was silence for three hours while she watched the Academy Awards. The hype surrounding this all-important annual night for mom got me hooked on watching it, too. But at that time, Oscar fanfare was nothing like it is today.
Considered the pinnacle of talent recognition in
At this year’s 79th Annual Academy Awards the trend for old Hollywood glamour continued, as young starlets opted for chic over shock. But where many divas took chances was in their use of color. Shades of purple and blue have become the new black.
Despite Leonardo DiCaprio’s Oscar nod for “Blood Diamond,” for which the media questioned the extent of sparkle on the red carpet this year because of the controversial nature of the film, most starlets gave a nod to diamonds. Among the most memorable looks were on Naomi Watts in a triple strand diamond necklace (totaling 85 carats) by Chopard and Portia de Rossi in 100 carats of Kwiat diamonds—bracelets, stud earrings, and right-hand ring—valued at $1 million.
By far, diamond bracelets were more popular than necklaces, followed by earrings and right hand rings. Many celebs favored fancy colored diamonds over white, including Cate Blanchett in black diamond earrings and green jade and black diamond bracelet by Lorraine Schwartz. Jada Pinkett Smith complemented her gold gown with yellow diamond earrings (50 carats) by H. Stern; and best actress Helen Mirren tacked a Chopard cognac diamond brooch at the back of her Christian Lacroix gown.
Not only colorful diamonds but vivid gemstones popped brilliant hues against neutral gowns—like Cameron Diaz glinting green atop her white Valentino in vintage Cartier emerald drop earrings. Monochromatic looks also stole the show, a la Jodie Foster in Bourcheron blue sapphire pendant earrings against a fluid slate blue Vera Wang gown. A growing gem trend on the red carpet is onyx and diamond. Both Diane Keaton and Jessica Biel wore
Although criticized for not looking “haute couture” after her role as a fashion magazine editor in “The Devil Wears Prada,” Meryl Streep sent the message that she dresses to the beat of her own drum. Maybe not her best red carpet look (although Prada), Streep was zapped for her accessories. Perhaps one too many necklaces, her jewels were not clunky costume as the mainstream media reported, but rather vintage Fred Leighton, including a 1960’s coral bead, onyx link, and carved agate scarab pendant necklace.
I emerged from the Oscar zone a bit miffed from the fashion critics who trashed more than Meryl and her beads. I call for an internal affairs investigation of the fashion police and their questionable style—hey Joan, what was with that garish red fur coat you were wearing on the red carpet? The way I see it, true Oscar winning style is not about pleasing others, but feeling good in your own skin.
Photos Courtesy of: Chopard, H. Stern, Kwiat, Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), WireImage and The Diamond Information Center.
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