BEIRUT/BEVERLY HILLS, California: The Golden Globes Sunday offered a curtain raiser of sorts for the spring-summer haute couture fashion shows to come next week in Paris, as celebrities brought out their best couture dresses and custom frocks. Each year, top Lebanese fashion designers feature big, both at the Golden Globes and shortly after at Paris’ biannual couture shows, which present the exclusive and often fantastical creations that later pop up on the red carpet. Lebanese couturiers represented Sunday night included Elie Saab, Zuhair Murad, Rani Zakhem and Georges Hobeika.
Zakhem, a rising local designer, got a big boost at this year’s awards ceremony. Zakhem dressed Kaley Cuoco, star of the hit TV series “The Big Bang Theory,” in a corseted floral ball gown from his winter couture collection.
Designers with roots in Lebanon also took center stage, as stars donning their creations won awards Sunday night. Robin Wright won best actress in a TV drama for her role in “House of Cards” wearing a champagne halter dress by New York-based designer Reem Acra.
Wright got some flack by celebrity style hawks for flashing a bit of nipple pasty on stage. Although that didn’t stop Vogue, and a number of other fashion and celebrity publications, from naming her one of the best dressed that night.
Acra also dressed Zosia Mamet, co-star of the hit HBO’s series “Girls,” in a white column dress with contrasting black floral embroidery.
Elizabeth Moss took home an award for best actress in a mini-series or TV movie for her role in “Top of the Lake.” And while Moss shot a middle finger at E! TV cameras when asked about the dress she wore to the ceremony, she celebrated her win at the after party dressed in a sexy black jumpsuit by Hobeika.
Hobeika was a mainstay at this year’s awards. He also dressed “Modern Family” star Sarah Hyland in a pink crepe and mousseline gown, featuring a sheer, Swarovski-embellished back, from his fall-winter 2014 couture collection. Lily Rabe, actress in “American Horror Story,” chose a black tulle dress from Hobeika’s spring-summer signature collection.
English actress Kate Beckinsale was among a handful of stars who made it onto nearly every best-dressed list. Beckinsale wore a strapless silver hand-beaded mermaid gown from Zuhair Murad’s fall-winter 2014 couture collection. Colombian actress Sofia Vergara, best known for her sassy comedic role on “Modern Family,” also wore a plunging silver dress by Murad to the awards’ after-party.
Individuality blossomsBold reds, shimmering metallics and vibrant floral hues blossomed on the Golden Globes red carpet Sunday, as the stars shirked trends in favor of individual statements on one of the most watched Hollywood runways.
Red hues, sometimes avoided for being too similar to the red carpet, were represented in a variety of silhouettes, such as “American Hustle” best film comedy actress nominee Amy Adams in a plunging halter Valentino that paid homage to the 1970s style of the film.
“I am kind of influenced by my character,” Adams said of the look.
Newcomer Lupita Nyong’o, nominated for best supporting actress in a film for “12 Years a Slave,” stunned fans with her fitted red Ralph Lauren gown with caped sleeves. Other stars opting for the bold hue included Berenice Bejo in a lace Giambattista Valli gown, “Nebraska” nominee June Squibb in a beaded velvet Tadashi Shoji, and Emma Watson spinning a twist on the traditional gown with a red Christian Dior tunic and pants combination.
“The dress has pants, which I thought was the coolest thing ever. I feel so comfortable,” Watson told Reuters.
Vibrant hues also came in the form of a jade green column dress on Reese Witherspoon, while pregnant Olivia Wilde donned a form-fitted sparkling emerald Gucci gown and “Scandal” actress Kerry Washington, also pregnant with her first child, opted for a mint green Balenciaga. And “Masters of Sex” actress Caitlin FitzGerald wore a turquoise blue Emilia Wickstead gown.
“I was very impressed with the diversity, by the lack of trend and the somewhat unconventional choices on the red carpet this year. No one color or shape or designer dominated,” Hal Rubenstein, InStyle’s editor-at-large, told Reuters.
UNDERSTATED GOWNS ADD CONTRASTPale golds and silvers were dotted among the vibrant tones. “New Girl” best TV comedy actress nominee Zooey Deschanel wore a pale gold beaded flowing Oscar de la Renta dress, while “Downton Abbey” best TV drama actress nominee Michelle Dockery also donned a strapless silver and gold beaded gown by the designer.
Mila Kunis rocked a sleeveless Emilio Pucci beaded silver gown, while “Breaking Bad” actress Anna Gunn wore a blush gold Donna Karan Atelier gown and actress Sally Hawkins from “Blue Jasmine” wore a vintage cream beaded Dior gown borrowed from the design house’s archives.
“If you’re going to do a shiny dress with sparkle, it has to be understated or else it’ll look garish. If you’re going to go glittery, you have to pare it down,” Rubenstein said of the looks.
Jennifer Lawrence, who picked up the first award of the night for her best supporting role in “American Hustle,” wore a white strapless Dior haute couture dress with tiers divided by black belts, while Australian actress Margot Robbie from “The Wolf of Wall Street” donned a fitted cream Gucci gown with green crystals.
In clear contrast to the vibrant hues on the red carpet, “Blue Jasmine” actress Cate Blanchett led the stars in black, in a high-neck fitted lace Armani Prive dress, while “The Good Wife” star Julianna Margulies opted for a V-neck wide-skirted black gown with gold embroidery by Andrew Gn. “Saving Mr. Banks” actress Emma Thompson also chose a gold and black combination with her vintage embroidered Lanvin number.
“August: Osage County” star Meryl Streep wore an understated satin black Vivienne Westwood dress, while her co-star, Julia Roberts, added a white-sleeved shirt to her black strapless Dolce & Gabbana look and “Girls” actress Allison Williams chose a form-fitted Alexander McQueen black and white gown.
Rubenstein listed Blanchett, Robbie, Nyong’o, Williams and FitzGerald among his picks for best dressed, but added that he felt everyone looked individual.