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From red carpet to real life

Awards season is in full bloom and, while we all love poring over the dresses, they’re not exactly looks to replicate in a working wardrobe. But the red carpet can be an excellent barometer of upcoming trends, and we’ve worked out how to translate them into real life.


The look: The brightest, most mouth-watering, traffic-stopping shades in the spectrum, worn as a block colour, from top to toe.

On the red carpet:Reese Witherspoon and Caitlin Fitzgerald stood out at the Golden Globes in bright blue hues, but this look’s reigning queen is the newcomer Lupita Nyong’o, who has cemented herself as a style icon this red carpet season in a series of bold, eye-popping dresses, such as a red-caped Ralph Lauren number and a Calvin Klein vision in turquoise.

In real life:A dress is the simplest way to go for full-on colour. Cédric Charlier’s simple silhouettes set off hues such as blood orange and lemon, while Roland Mouret’s curve-enhancing cuts provide the confidence you need to pull off aquamarine. Feel more comfortable in tailoring? A coloured suit is a modern classic, and a brilliant hue will add a burst of summer freshness to formal wear.


The look:Sequins and sparkles that catch the light and dazzle the room in traditional old Hollywood style.

On the red carpet:The awards stalwart Naomi Watts’ shimmering silver Tom Ford sheath at the Golden Globes oozed understated elegance, while bright young things Jennifer Lawrence and Emilia Clarke glittered in metallic hues at the SAG awards. Taylor Swift sported the most modern incarnation – the short sleeves on her sparkling Gucci gown at the Grammys gave it a youthful edge.

In real life:Let’s face it, a glitzy gown doesn’t really translate into real life unless you have one hell of a party to attend but, on a shirt or vest, sparkles can inject a playful sense of fun into your wardrobe and your mood. Marc Jacobs’ glittery stripes, in trouser and dress form, and worn with simple, timeless basics, prove that sequins can exude off-beat chic.


The look:Beading and embellishment that add a sense of artistry and occasion to an outfit, and give an overall feeling of haute couture no matter what the piece.

On the red carpet:Zooey Deschanel’s Oscar de la Renta skirt and top combo was dripping in beads but still managed to offer a new, more modern direction for red-carpet wear, while Rashida Jones’ palm-tree embroidery upped the quirkiness of her Fausto Puglisi gown. The rapper Iggy Azalea’s angelic white dress at the Grammys projected her rising star even higher into orbit.

In real life:Follow Zooey’s lead with a beaded tee or cropped jacket – but leave the long skirt at home and wear with jeans or your favourite pencil skirt for low-key glamour. Appliqué or embellishments can liven up day-time knits: see how James Long and Tsumori Chisato’s versions reinvent the humble sweater as a sports-luxe classic.

Hollie Moat