Sunday, March 06, 2011

42nd NAACP Image Awards Red Carpet

I'm feeling the red carpet love right now so when I saw that the NAACP Image Awards had a red carpet - with some rather interesting dresses - I knew that I had to share it with you. I know I'm spoiling those of you who love the red carpet posts but from here until August or September there will be slim red carpet pickings.

What I loved about this red carpet is that it wasn't full of celebrities or stick-thin people. There were real women of all occupations - writers, producers, directors, actresses, singers - with real figures in all shapes and sizes on this red carpet. Some of the women were able to dress their bodies in flattering and balanced ways, and some weren't.

As usual, I'm only looking at what the women wore. I've included as many red carpet photos from this event that I can find as well as the outfit designers where possible. Because there are so many pictures and this post is so long, I'm putting the bulk of it after the jump. This way, people who don't want to scroll through all of these pictures can avoid them.



Actress Chandra Wilson arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Chandra Wilson in David Meister
Wowie zowie she looks hot! I love the brooch on the shoulder and the pleating across the bust because they bring the eye up. There's really no need for that, though, since this dress fits her so well and emphasizes her curves. I only wish that the ruching covered up the under-dress a bit better.

Actress Tatyana Ali  arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Tatyana Ali in Oliver Tolentino
If she weren't walking on this dress, and if we could see the embellisments at the hem, I would love this dress. As it is, she looks fabulous from the knees up. I love the embellishments, silhouette, and colour on her. 

Actress Aisha Hinds  arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Aisha Hinds
This is a cute LBD, and I like that she didn't wear black shoes with it. However, she could use some help posing because right now I'm wondering how she gets through life without a neck.

Osas Ighodaro - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Osas Ighodaro in Leon Green
Double-sided tape is a wonderful thing! Without it, there's no way that she could go out in public with this dress because her boobs would spring free after only a couple of steps. They're barely confined as it is. There is no doubt that this is one seriously sexy dress on one smoking hot body.
Terry McMillan Writer Terry McMillan (L) and sister Rosalyn McMillan arrive at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Terry McMillan (with Rosalyn McMillan)
The embellishments look like student work. I can see putting the line of them down the center front and at the collar and hem, but adding the little pieces on the sleeve cap and angling them up towards the back at the waist looks over-designed.

Maya Gilbert - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Maya Gilbert
Her boobs look weird in this dress, especially on that one side. I love the print that used on the bodice and at the hem but I's like it better if it covered the whole dress. That bit in middle looks strange.

Tina Atkins-Campbell - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Tina Atkins-Campbell (left) and Erica Atkins-Campbell (right)
Tina, Tina, Tina. From one thunder-thighed girl to another, the absolute worst thing you can do is outline your thighs with that kind of seaming. Cupping your thighs that way just makes them look huge-mungous. Erica, you look lovely, and even better next to Tina.

Regina King - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Press Room
Regina King in Enzoani
There's something about the way she's standing that makes me think that she doesn't wear dresses all that often. Maybe it's just that she doesn't pose on the red carpet all that often.

Writer Bernice L. McFadden arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Bernice L. McFadden
First, I have to compliment her on wearing the right bra: those girls are up and forward, just like they should be. I love this dress on her; the different ruching angles are slimming and it definitely fits her. Plus it looks comfortable.

Niecy Nash - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - After Party
Niecy Nash
Oh, I love this dress! I love the allover sequins, the long sleeves, the neckline, the colour, the fit, the silhouette... and not just because I love this style. This dress looks amazing on her.

Holly Robinson Peete - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Holly Robinson-Peete
There is a slight nightgown quality to this dress but the overall sparkle takes it from bedtime to the red carpet. There's something about this look that reminds me of a sultry 50s lounge singer.

Actress Essence Atkins arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Essence Atkins in Jean Fares Couture
Now this is how you place ombre colours for maximum effect! There's nothing I don't love about this dress on its own and on her. She looks fabulous.

Actress Erica Hubbard arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. 
Erica Hubbard in Sue Wong
What a lovely wedding gown! The beading, the godets, the colour, all work together. If she was actually getting married, this dress would fit her a lot better: she wouldn't be trying to fit her boobs into those tiny cups and the fabric wouldn't be pulling across the waist.

Author Camille T. Dungy arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Camille T. Dungy
This muu muu is a little too lose on the sleeveless side to be truly flattering. The best part of this dress is the gold trim, which draws the eye to her face. I like the one sleeve, though. And I like her hair.

Actress Demetria McKinney arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Demetria McKinney
The necklace is gorgeous but the rubies look weird next to the dress because they're not the same colour. I'd overlook that if the dress fit her properly, which it doesn't. The bodice is too small for her boobs, the waist and hips are too long, and the skirt is way, way too long.

Producer Marilyn Gill arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Marilyn Gill
Huh. The bodice and sleeves are great but that released pleat at her waist doesn't really work. The length is also too long or maybe too short - either way, that length is just wrong.

Actress Anna Deavere Smith arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Anna Deavere Smith
This is a little matronly. Maybe a lot matronly, if you take into account her hair. It's a dress-up version of an Anne of Green Gables dress. The colour is ok but not great on her.

TV personality Connie Orlando arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Connie Orlando
Those straps on the bodice are weird and I think I want them filled in. Plus matching the straps on the dress with straps on the shoes is a bit much. 

DJ Fyne - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
DJ Fyne
What kind of message is she sending with the black collar, cuff, and ankle straps? Is this some way of telling the world that you don't object to being tied up? Clearly her boobs don't like to be constrained or else they'd be up and out instead of down and droopy.

Actress Sara Ramirez arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Sara Ramirez
When your boobs are up and forward, like these are, it isn't strictly necessary to push them even more forward. Everyone will see them even if you stand more naturally, I promise. I like the lace but that sash looks a bit bridal.

Jolene Rust - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Jolene Rust (with Michael Franti)
The diagonal bodice isn't quite big enough and makes her boobs look too big. Actually, this dress could have used more areas where the fabric went in a different direction. And he could have used more shoes.

Vanessa Williams Actress Vanessa Williams, winner of the award for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series for 'Desperate Housewives', poses in the press room at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Vanessa Williams
Mustard is a difficult colour for everyone to wear, which is why most people stay away from it.... which is what she should have done. This would be a lovely bridal dress if it weren't this colour.

Kat Graham - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Kat Graham in Rami Kashou
Sometimes trying to figure out the inspiration for a dress can help to understand why a dress looks the way it does. Let's use that technique to try and understand this dress. I see a caged butterfly up at the bodice, an Elizabethan look in the panniers at her hips, a competitive ballroom dancer in that ruffly top skirt, and a bridal gown in the underskirt and train. So we have an Elizabethan dancer who is becoming a caged butterfly at her wedding.
ETA: This dress was designed by season 4 Project Runway contestant Rami Kashou. Wow. I'm speechless.

Karimah Westbrook arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Karimah Westbrook
I want to like this but I'm a little tired of the ruffles going across the bodice and over the shoulder. The colour is ok on her and the dress definitely fits. The shoes are all kinds of weird with this dress.

Salli Richardson-Whitfield - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Salli Richardson-Whitfield
She's a little young to rock this cougar look. I'm not at all a fan of this allover animal print even though the dress fits properly.

DJ Beverly Bond arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Beverly Bond
Except for the peek-a-boo embellishment which makes that one boob look like it's being cut in half, I love this dress. The silhouette and colour work for her.

Actress Wendy Davis arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Wendy Davis in Ali Rahimi
Fabulous, except for the fact that the dress is too long. It's always ok to hem or take up a dress so that it's the right length. 

Cheryl Edwards - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Cheryl Edwards
I like this dress on her because the colour is gorgeous against her skintone and the silhouette works for her. I also love how the eye is drawn to her beautiful face but there's lovely details - like the hip sash and skirt - throughout. I also love how she's showing off her figure instead of hiding it under a caftan or muu muu.

Viola Davis - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Viola Davis
Spectacular. I love the diagonal bow on the bodice; it adds interest to what would otherwise be a bit simple dress. The colour is amazing on her.

Kellee Stewart - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Kellee Stewart (with Kevin Rodney Sullivan)
Look at the length! This dress has been hemmed so that it's not dragging on the ground or showing off her ankles! I'm definitely impressed. She looks gorgeous.

Dr. Julianne Malveaux arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Dr. Julianne Malveaux
Without the shawl this outfit would accent her figure. Even so, that charmeuse skirt (with train) and the heavy bodice don't really work together. It would have been better to take that shawl and make it an overdress because it would have pulled the bodice and skirt together.

Actress Sandra Oh arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Sandra Oh
Beautiful! The zigzagging black ribbon adds interest to the dress and gives her an hourglass figure. I also love the prnt and the way the black ribbon picks up the black swirls in the print. Well done! I wish I knew who designed the dress.

Author Heidi Durrow arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Heidi Durrow
I think that the whole overdress is supposed to look crinkly like the skirt does since it's cut all in one. Since I see horizontal instead of vertical crinkles, that bodice is too tight. This might be the reason why the underskirt is so short; I'm fairly certain that it shouldn't be four or five inches above the hem of the overdress. When will these ladies learn that it's always, always, always ok to go up sizes until the dress fits?

Shaun Robinson - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Shawn Robinson
 She'll have no problem blending into the red carpet if she needs to in this prom dress: there's a lace skirt under the chiffon that's the exact same texture and colour as that red carpet.

Phylicia Rashad
She looks so regal and queenly. I love her hair and that colour on her even though the blue burnout-velvet thing is more caftan-like than slimming.
Actress Erin Cummings arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Erin Cummings in Jennifer Salzman
Not many women have the confidence to go to a red-carpet event with their boobs taped up over the outside of their dress. It wouldn't be something I'd do or brag about, myself, but I'm not her.

Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Kerry Washington in Zac Posen
It's too bad that the fabric wrinkles so easily because she's covered in wrinkles from boobs to feet. I know she can't help that but I'd think that her stylist would have brought a steamer to take those wrinkles out. Then again, if the wrinkles weren't there I'd be talking about how this dress is just this side of a bridal gown.

Victoria Justice - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Victoria Justice in Romona Keveza
Not only does she have an extra-long train but this dress is way too long for her. And this is such a lovely dress, too. Well, except for that shoulder strap which looks like an afterthought.

Angela Bassett - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Angela Bassett
The bodice is lovely but the dress doesn't work for her. Between the high waist and the long, flowy skirt, this dress takes away her curves and makes her look bigger than she is.

Teala Dunn - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Teala Dunn
I don't know I'd be so comfortable wearing what looks like a multi-fingered claw on my shoulder. The embellishment not only draws attention up to her face and is super-sparkly, it takes attention away from those shoes. 

Amber Riley - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Amber Riley in Jennifer Salzman
She'd better be careful or she's going to poke someone's eye out with those boobs. Luckily, everyone will be standing back and admiring how curvy and hot she looks in this dress. 

Actress Tia Mowry arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Tia Mowry in Mandalay Couture
She's pregnant and looking lovely even though she's wearing a negligee. Well, why shouldn't she look like she's ready for bed? It's not like she can get pregnant again.
Julia Pace Mitchell Actress Julia Pace Mitchell arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Julia Pace Mitchell in Dalia MacPhee
Va-va-voom! This is one sexy yet tasteful dress that fits her to a tee. Her boobs are up and forward, she has a clearly-defined waist, and the skirt makes hips look curvy. Beautiful colour, too.

Kali Hawk Actress Kali Hawk arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards after party at the SLS Hotel Beverly Hills on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Kali Hawk in Nicole Miller
Well, isn't this interesting with all the draping and shine. I want to love this because it's the right length, fits her so well, and shows off her curves, but I'm just not a fan of the cowl bodice. 

Tamera Mowry - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Tamera Mowry in BCBG
There is nothing wrong with having a pear-shaped body. But if you have wide hips like Tamera here, why would you emphasize them with the hip drape? 

Actress Cicely Tyson  arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Cicely Tyson
Not enough women wear pantsuits on the red carpet so I love that she's wearing one. I'm not sure what to think about the cross-drape over her torso but the overall look is lovely.

Angell Conwell - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Angell Conwell in Jean Fares Couture
Her hair and earrings are all 70s but the dress is today. I love it - I love the allover sequins, the ombre effect, and the style. She looks amazing. I love the silver sequins against her skin.

Loretta Devine - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Loretta Devine
I love that her shoes pick up the red in her dress and I love the look from the shoulders up. But everything in between, well. Maybe she wanted to make her hips and thighs look wider to balance out her shoulders.

Keshia Knight Pulliam - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Keshia Knight Pulliam
Rudy Huxtable has definitely grown up! In theory, this almost-prom look should work, but the bodice needs to be just a bit taller both to cover her boobs a bit more and to balance out that skirt. Love the colour.

Kimberly Elise - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Kimberley Elise in Pamella Roland
You know what would have made this pretty dress more perfect? More sparkles at the top of the bodice to balance out her hips and to bring the eye up and hemming it so it's not quite so long.

Erika Alexander - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
Erika Alexander
Thank goodness the shoulder embellishment is there because it draws the eye up. Although this means that the eye is drawn to her boobs which would be happier in a properly-fitting bra. The real problem here is that the dress is form-fitting at the knees; had it been looser there it would have looked amazing on her

Gugu Mbatha-Raw - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Gugu Mbatha-Raw in Alberto Makali
Beautiful. Everything about this dress works for her and makes her look sexy and gorgeous. The bodice with its slight cowl and shoulder straps brings the eye up and makes her boobs look proportionate to her hips. The skirt doesn't fit her hips or thighs too tightly so even if they're bigger, no one will notice. 

Anika Noni Rose - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Anika Noni Rose
Let me reiterate, once again, that it is always, always, always ok to go up a size if the outfit is too tight. When something is too tight it makes the wearer look bigger and lumpier than they are. Like here. This dress is just too tight through the bodice, abdomen and thighs. The sequins on an allover-sequinned dress should look random, not laid out in lines. Go up a size: you'll look and feel better.

Regina Benjamin - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Dr. Regina Benjamin
I love it! Apparently she's the US Surgeon General. I don't know if this is some kind of dress uniform but either way, it fits and is very flattering on her. This is a great choice. 

Recording artist Blair Robinson arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Blair Robinson
This is a little bit too tight on her. Her belly is tiny but it's clearly visible here and I'm sure that's not the sun. The neckline, with its slight silver embellishment, is beautiful.

April Sutton - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Red Carpet
April Sutton
Proper undergarments can make or break a dress, as we see here. Her bra is perfect because her boobs are up and forward. The problem is at her midsection and is caused by a combination of the dress being a little bit snug around her tummy and her pantyhose waistband falling a bit which makes her tummy pooch out over it. Otherwise the silhouette is fabulous on her, as is the colour.

Jennia Fredrique - 42nd NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals
Jennia Fredrique
I like the lace over the shiny under-fabric as well as the rhinestone embellishments. But the dress does nothing for her figure and in face makes it look like she has neither a waist nor hips.

Author Dolen Perkins-Valdez arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Dolen Perkins-Valdez
I like the brooch. We don't see enough brooches on the red carpet (or anywhere else) these days. Unfortunately, the brooch calls attention to the empire waist bulgy things, which I don't like because they widen her waist and take away from her hourglass figure.

Writer Myra J. arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Myra J
Usually this kind of broomstick-pleated fabric is flattering because it skims the body, minimizing lumps and bumps. Then again, most people wear the pleats so they open up around the body, not so they spring down to the ground, jutting out from the body and making it look huge in the process. 

TV personality April Woodard arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
April Woodard
This reminds me of a cross between those expandable broomstick-like tops made out of polyester so they never lose their pleats (like the cotton broomstick skirts that have to be twisted and tied when drying them) and that cover Marie Claire dress that Anthony made in Project Runway. This can't be good.

Director Millicent Shelton arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Millicent Shelton
At first I thought the gathered side skirt panels looked weird but somehow the overall 50s-inspired silhouette really works for her. 

Author Rita Williams-Garcia arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Rita Williams-Garcia
If she'd worn a more structured bra that thrust her boobs forward, this dress would have looked amazing. As it it, she looks lovely; the silhouette and colour suit her.

Celebrities attending the 42nd NAACP Image Awards at The Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, CA.
Sofia Vergara in Dolce & Gabbana
She can't not look sexy, I think. Even if she was wearing a sack she'd look curvy and sexy... and this is not a sack. At least her dress isn't sheer so she's leaving something to the imagination.

Celebrities attending the 42nd NAACP Image Awards at The Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, CA.
Halle Berry in Emilio Pucci
This is the dress that convinced me to write this post. It's not often you see a peek-a-boo bellybutton like this on a red carpet. Sure, this dress is a little risque with the navel and shoulder cutouts and the love neckline but with her legs, bum, and arms completely covered the overall look is sexy. I like the print.

Actress Vanessa Bell Calloway arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Vanessa Bell Calloway in Sue Wong
What a lovely prom dress! The godets come out of nowhere and the pattern doesn't do anything for her figure. Why wouldn't those circles be place a little higher to make her waist look smaller instead of placing them so they widen her hips?

Rolonda Watts Actress Rolonda Watts arrives at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards after party at the SLS Hotel Beverly Hills on March 4, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
Rolonda Watts in Dalia MacPhee
I love the colour of this dress; it suits her. There is definitely a bridal quality to this dress that it mitigated by the more casual necklace she's wearing.

photo credits: zimbio.com, tomandlorenzo2.blogspot.com

1 comment:

The Hyperlexian Aspie said...

YAY on new red carpet critiques!

one of my faves is Victoria Justice in Romona Keveza (even with the missteps like the strap and the length). i love the ruching and the liquid metallic fabric.

Sandra Oh.... that dress turned my head and kept my eyes moving. she drew my attention again and again. loved it!

Cicely Tyson in the suit. i adore women in suits, and wish more women went that way on the red carpet.

Anna Deavere Smith looked like she wanted to cover herself as much as possible, which made me feel a bit bad for her, because i understand that sentiment. but she could have stayed covered while still choosing something more flattering. same situation with Camille T. Dungy's muumuu.

love what you've said! so funny and so true! i learn quite a lot about fashion when i read your posts.

love,
vicki