Oscars 2019: A look back at most iconic red carpet appearances, from Audrey Hepburn to Gwyneth Paltrow

Pratishruti Ganguly

Feb 22, 2019 16:05:59 IST

The Academy Awards ceremony is arguably the grandest, splashiest and most awaited event of the year. Every year, cinephiles from across the world plant themselves in front of the television (or tablets/phones for the digitally adept) to witness the industry assemble under the same roof to felicitate extraordinary achievements by the showbiz luminaries.

As blasphemous as it may sound, films aside, the Oscars is also regarded as the 'high tea' of fashion, where we get an opportunity to watch our favourite celebrities turn up in their snazziest best.

As the 91st Academy Awards is round the corner, we, the self-proclaimed but dedicated fashion aficionados, have taken it upon ourselves to gouge deep into the 90-year-old repository to present the most iconic red carpet appearances in the history of the Oscars.

Audrey Hepburn (1954)

Oscars 2019: A look back at most iconic red carpet appearances, from Audrey Hepburn to Gwyneth Paltrow

Audrey Hepburn wore a white floral Givenchy dress to the Academy Awards in 1954

Let us start with the Hollywood icon Audrey Hepburn. A legend on and off screen, Hepburn wore a delicate floral belted Givenchy dress to the 1954 Academy Awards ceremony. History has it that it was the first time that Hepburn donned a creation by Hubert De Givenchy to a public event. The actress left an indelible mark on the fashion industry as she picked her golden statuesque for Roman Holiday.

Farrah Fawcett (1978)

Farrah Fawcet looked like the Golden statuette herself in her gold strap dress

Farrah Fawcet looked like the Golden statuette herself in her gold strap dress

Farrah Fawcett looked she was an embodiment of the same gold statue that she clutched in her arms. The Stephen Burrows slouchy gold gown accessorised with just her feathered blonde hair defined Hollywood glamour for over a decade.

Cate Blanchett (1996)

Cate Blanchett on the Oscars red carpet through the years

Cate Blanchett on the Oscars red carpet through the years

A separate column should be started, dedicated to fashion doyenne Cate Blanchett. The powerhouse performer has never shied away from experimenting with colours, patterns and textures, and through the years, she has channeled her inner fashionista on the Oscars red carpet. In 1996, the actress made waves in a punk John Galliano gown, with a sheer back dusted gown ,with tattoo like flower and bird motifs. In the subsequent years, Blanchett has been seen in everything, from unconventional colours (remember her mint green Armani gown in 2016), to classic California bouffants and Marylin Monroe lips. We demand a fashion directory on Blanchett. Asap.

Sharon Stone (1996)

Sharon Stone channeled high-street chic avatar at the Oscars red carpet

Sharon Stone channeled high-street chic avatar at the Oscars red carpet

Sharon Stone's plucky sartorial choice on the 1996 Oscars made red carpet history. Two years after she appeared at the event in a turtleneck top, she strutted the red carpet in a GAP button-down shirt that she grabbed out of her own wardrobe, and paired it with a lilac satin Vera Wang skirt. This is what high-street fashion dreams are made of.

Nicole Kidman (1997)

Nicole Kidman with her then-husband Tom Cruise

Nicole Kidman with her then-husband Tom Cruise

In retrospect, the year 1997 seems to have been the year when Nicole Kidman set the ball rolling to single-handledly create the most memorable looks at the Oscars. The actress stepped out in a absinthe green mandarin-inspired Galliano for Dior couture dress, with her then-husband Tom Cruise by her side. Another history nugget for the fashion geeks: the gown marked the return of haute couture to the red carpet scene, as opposed to celebs turning out in ready-to-wear outfits.

Gwyneth Paltrow (1999)

Gwyneth's Paltrow's blush pink ddress drew a lot of flak from fashion critics in 1996

Gwyneth's Paltrow's blush pink dress drew a lot of flak from fashion critics in 1996

Gwyneth Paltrow's blush pink Ralph Lauren gown which she paired with a diamond collar necklace, was a subject of much scrutiny in 1999, when fashion pundits wondered if the attire was "incongruous with the current fashion" and made the actress look like a "a Barbie doll wrapped in a satin ribbon." Two decades later, it turns out that her willingness to take risks has bode well, as the dress is enlisted in various fashion zines and portals as one of the greatest dresses in the history of the Oscars red carpet. She was even compared to the ethereal Grace Kelly. Iconic, you say!

Halle Berry (2002)

Halle Berry's mesh and silk dark red gown is one of the most memorable outfits in the history of Oscars

Halle Berry's mesh and silk dark red gown is one of the most memorable outfits in the history of Oscars

Halle Berry's 2002 turn at the Oscars became a path-breaking moment of the awards ceremony. Wearing an Elie Saab sheer wine hued gown with floral details, Halle became the first black woman in the history of Academy Awards to win an Oscar for Best Actress. The deep-red mesh dress was even voted the eighth greatest red carpet gown of all time, in a poll by Debenhams published in The Daily Telegraph.

Meryl Streep (2012)

Meryl Streep in her custom made gold dress

Meryl Streep in her custom made Lanvin gold dress

She is, beyond a smidgen of doubt, the most formidable actress that this generation has had the opportunity to witness, and bask in the glory of. But Meryl Streep has proven that she can deliver even beyond the 70 mm screen. Streep, who bagged her third Academy Award for her performance in and as the Iron Lady, sashayed on the red carpet in a custom-made matte-gold Lanvin number. Okay we can stop gawking now.

Lupita Nyong'o (2014)

Lupita Nyong'o has cemented her position in the fashion magazines, thanks to her incredible sartorial choices

Lupita Nyong'o has cemented her position in the fashion magazines, thanks to her incredible sartorial choices

In her maiden appearance at the Oscars red carpet in 2014, Lupita Nyong'o lived her Cinderella moment. She turned out in light blue Prada gown, and perched atop her head was a silver headband. The actress revealed that she opted for a blue outfit since it reminded her of her hometown Nairobi, Kenya.

Updated Date: Feb 22, 2019 16:10:11 IST