What Runway & Red Carpet Fashion Can Teach You About Your Style

by Ashley on January 23, 2012

The awards shows have begun, and Fashion Week is just around the corner.  This means we’ll soon be bombarded with images and posts of Best & Worst Dressed list and rundowns of the major collections.  While I’ve never posted recaps from these fashionable weeks (and don’t plan on starting!), you can guarantee I’m peeking through the photo galleries as they come up.

Most of the time, the red carpet and fashion shows just give me a little taste of “Things I Want But Can’t Have.”  Frankly, I don’t like spending my time going COVET COVET COVET when their unattainably and unbelievably out of reach.  (Michael Kors watch? Attainable with some savings & sale shopping.  Cartier vintage jewelry? Not even in my wildest dreams.)

When I’m not struck by a case of the covets, I use these sources as what they’re meant to be (for the average gal)–inspiration.  For those of us who don’t always know what our style is, who are looking to incorporate fresh flavor into our wardrobes, or who need a sartorial pick-me-up, the runway and red carpet are a great place to look!

alexander mcqueen rtw 2012, mila kunis red carpet, mila kunis golden globes 2012, christian dior haute couture 2011

Runway & Red Carpet Style Can Teach You About… Your Favorite Cuts & Fits

I’m gonna start with three VERY different outfits, but all three that I love– and feel are very me.  Christian Dior here, fun, playful, and whimsical.  Mila Kunis at the Golden Globes in a very classic, yet understated dress.  And Alexander McQueen–who need I say more?  Yet, at the heart of these outfits, we find similar structures: a fitted, structured bodice and, in the first two, fuller skirts.  The McQueen outfit provides a more streamlined silhouette, but you do begin to find weight towards the bottom of the skirt.

Look at your favorite picks each season– and what common elements are you finding? Are you drawn to the avant garde? The loose and elegant? Fitted skirts and plunging necklines?

betsey johnson rtw 2011, michelle williams red carpet, michelle williams golden globes 2012,

Runway & Red Carpet Style Can Teach You About… Your Favorite Colors & Prints

Hey– did you know I’m an avid fan of your wardrobe having a color palette?  Especially if, like me, you’re a color FIEND?

Sometimes a gal doesn’t know where to start though– where to narrow out colors, where to find the ones she truly wears.  I’m attracted to, and feel best in, jewel tones and vibrants.  I stay away from citrus-y oranges and yellows (though love to embrace a little chartreuse!) and pastels.  Not a surprise? I’m not attracted to those colors on the red carpet or the runway, unless it’s SPECK-TACULAR.  Same goes for prints.  I’m mad crazy for leopard print, polka dots, and stripes.  I don’t often buy florals or abstract prints.

Start hoarding those images in a folder, and figure out what colors you love– and which pretty prints!

betsey johnson rtw 2012, evan rachel woods red carpet, evan rachel woods golden globes 2012, evan rachel woods gucci, nicole kidman red carpet, nicole kidman golden globes 2012

Runway & Red Carpet Style Can Teach You About… Textures, Details & Accents That Attract You

Great outfits come from great details.

Great details can also bring to life the most basic pieces– the perfect studding on a top, the peplum on a skirt.  Details take the boring and ordinary to extraordinary.   Imagine Rachel Evan Woods dress if it were just a basic silk– beautiful, but ordinary.  Or Nicole Kidman’s without the intricate studding and channels.  Betsey Johnson shows us we can mix textures and a bit of pattern to create a look that’s over the top.

Runways and red carpets are great for figuring out what details you’re attracted to–whether ruffles, studs, sequins or feathers (all of which I love).  Then it’s a matter of integrating those in to YOUR personal closet.

emma stone red carpet, emma stone tom ford, emma stone golden globes 2012, emma stone lanvin,

Runway & Red Carpet Style Can Help Find You… A Style Icon

Crazy, no?  It’s hard to find a style icon if you’re not obsessively watching what celebs wear out on the street.  And those fab fashion shoots?  ARE ALL PUT TOGETHER BY A STYLIST.  Soooo…sheeetttt. How DO you find a style icon?

This is why I love the red carpet– it’s like seeing the best version of a performer.  While many have assistance by a stylist, the red carpet is often where you’re finding them representing themselves–best or worst dressed lists and all.  I love the red carpet because you can find out who are risk-takers, who always play it safe with pastel strapless dresses, and who uses each event as an opportunity to be share another side (Rachel McAdams, Emma Stone– I’m looking at you!).  If you search through each event as it happens, I’m sure you’re going to notice yourself attracted to the same performers over and over… and what do you know? You’ve got an icon.

I’m mad crazy about Emma Stone– and a quick look above probably shows why.  She picks amazing colors and simple silhouettes with a unique twist.  She realizes the details (the lace and shape in Tom Ford, her belt on the right, and the power of a hot pink lip against a black and white gown).

There’s no doubt in MAH MIND– if we were besties (which I think we could be), that I’d ALWAYS be going, OOOH GURL. WHERE’D YOU GET THAT?

 Do you use the red carpet or Fashion Week season to give your style a boost of inspiration? What are your tips for beginning the process (lawd knows I find all the designers at NYFW overwhelming!)?

All images via Elle.com.



Hannah Alyse January 23, 2012 at 8:11 pm

I looooooved this post!! I found your blog from IFB and couldn’t be happier :) I adore all the ways inspiration can come to help define your style and use celebrity dressing for just that purpose. I really enjoyed reading this…now I’m looking at your archives!
Hannah Alyse´s last blog post ..Bundled With Books

Ashe January 23, 2012 at 8:16 pm

Thank you so, so much, sweetheart! It was really fun to write– to look at the looks that inspire me and really figure out WHAT about them makes me tick. It’s amazing how much more inspiring inspiration can be when we figure out why :)

I’m glad you popped by from IFB & I can’t wait to visit your site. xoxo

Terri January 24, 2012 at 8:06 pm

I do pay a sort of haphazard attention to these things and use them in a way similar to what you describe. What’s been catching my eye lately are Art Deco patterns worked into clothing–the latest Gucci is an example. I’m asking myself how I can do the same, without the glitter.
Terri´s last blog post ..Visible Monday: Tweed

Kimberlee January 28, 2012 at 7:26 pm

Great advice!! Most people are like “how does this relate to me? I can’t afford this!” and you broke it down :) I also think it’s a good way to see what colors work for your skin tone or hair color. I’m fair skinned and would veer away from too pale of shades because I see how it washes out some celebs.
Kimberlee´s last blog post ..Movie Review: "Ultrasuede: In Search of Halston"

Ashe February 8, 2012 at 9:36 am

Thank you, princess! I love your tip about seeing how colors work for skin/hair colors. I’m super pale, too, and I definitely stay away from pastels! They wash me out so bad, that they’re just BANNED.

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