What better way to start the year and the awards season than with a look back at the best celebrity looks of 2010?
The last year was an especially adventurous time for movie and television stars to try on runway looks on the red carpet. Some were gigantic failures (I'm still wondering what were Carey Mulligan's shoes at the Oscars all about) and some paid off in astonishing ways.
Without further ado.
10. January Jones in Atelier Versace at the 2010 Emmys
People made fun of her disheveled hair, her Madonna-like chest and the overall 80's prom feel of the weird midlength cut (midlength was actually huge in 2010!).
The truth is that this look doesn't work because of the dress itself, although it's a real work of art (notice the pleads which I'm sure were adhered individually and must've taken weeks of work!) the look works because January carries it with such confidence.
You can tell that beneath her beach blond bob she knew people would talk about her for months to come and her proud smile ended up being her best accessory.
9. Sarah Jessica Parker in Halston at the Met Costume Ball
Having recently taken control as creative consultant and designer of the iconic American fashion house, SJP gave us a preview of what was to come under her reign.
A simple disco dress that would've been just as appropriate for Jane Fonda in the 70's, Cher in the 80's and Sharon Stone in the 90's, SJP is the life of the party.
8. Anne Hathaway in Valentino at the Met Costume Ball
Ms. Hathaway epitomizes what it's like to look like a princess in almost anything you wear.
(I still love that you can barely tell it's Kate Bosworth next to her in this picture. Annie truly outshines everyone around her!)
7. Sarah Jessica Parker in Alexander McQueen at the CMDA Awards
The late McQueen would've never been able to find a better exponent of his last collection than the amazing SJP (sorry Lady Gaga!).
She dons this psychedelic dress with the class and poise needed for it not to overshadow whoever's wearing McQueen.
6. Gwyneth Paltrow in Atelier Versace at the Country Music Awards
Before making her live singing debut at the CMA's, Paltrow walked the red carpet in this stunning creation by Versace.
Part of the dress screams Maya Rudolph as Donatella (maybe it's the sparkle! Or the fact that Maya and Gwyn are close friends?) but she's able to overcome the potentially tacky Faith Hill-ness of it all and owns the look in a way that's impossible to deny.
Also extra points for pulling off all the risque cuts and cleavages throughout the year.
5. Sarah Jessica Parker in Chanel Couture at the Academy Awards
Once more reminding us of the rich history in fashion, SJP owns this 60's look, complete with the humongous Julie Christie/Jackie O. bun and the impressive metallic ornament.
She's a towering vision of class despite her actual height.
4. Diane Kruger in Chanel at the Academy Awards
Kruger proved that she's more than a pretty face and red carpet icon (she was absolutely fantastic in Inglourious Basterds) and wherever there was a red carpet event for the movie she represented them with utmost style.
Her best look was at the Oscars, where she literally grabbed this dress from the runway and wore it like a legend. I like to call this the "scratch and sniff" dress given how you instantly know it's Chanel from the color, the roses and the flapper-ish touches.
Whenever I saw this picture the smell of Chanel No. 5 filled my mind instantly.
3. Carey Mulligan in Lanvin at the SAG Awards
Poor Carey Mulligan spent the first half of 2010 attending awards ceremonies where she sat like a nominee and was beaten almost every time by an inferior performance.
However she showed all her colleagues how it was done on the style department. She was absolutely breathtaking each and every time (again, except at the Oscars...)
In this deep red Lanvin, she overcame her childish look and for once looked absolutely, almost stunningly sexy. The brooch, the draping, the color! Everything screams femme fatale!
2. Cate Blanchett in Christian Lacroix in Shanghai
I recently mentioned how much I need, crave almost, for Cate Blanchett to appear in red carpets. This astonishing look explains why.
1. Carey Mulligan in Vionett at the BAFTA Awards
The one time Ms. Mulligan won an actual award for her performance in An Education she fortunately happened to wear the most breathtaking gown I saw in 2010.
Once again recurring to the midlength strategy, she is a vision of something that can only be called pure fashion joy.
She looks absolutely at home in this dress and the risky pattern reminds us of her youthfulness (the flowers) while making a statement about her imposing gracefulness (the colors).
If you saw a better look all year long I'd love to hear about it!