Musings on Jewelry at the 2009 Academy Awards: Earrings

Everyone’s a critic when it comes to the fashions and jewelry at the celebrity world’s biggest red carpet event – the Academy Awards. I admit I enjoy hearing and reading the wide range of opinions of the best and the worst. Prodded by individuals who insist on knowing what I think, I add my voice to the cacophony of opinions.


After all the hoopla in the press about the return of enormous earrings, what was striking was their lack of ubiquity at the Oscars, the event at which one would expect designers and stylists would pull out all the stops. Instead, we saw a noticeable return to much more modestly sized earrings, often taking the form of classic diamond stud earrings, understated in design but eye-popping in carats. 


    [Penelope Cruz]


An exquisite example of this trend was seen on my nominee for best-dressed, Penelope Cruz, a vision of loveliness in her vintage Balmain gown. In the same vein of elegant, timeless style as her huge diamond stud earrings was the necklace of graduated cushion-cut diamonds by Chopard adorning her neck. The classic necklace and earrings were the perfect adornments, allowing the dress and the woman to shine.


Style-setting young actresses such as Anne Hathaway and Natalie Portman eschewed large earrings. Beyonce, who wore (beautifully, I may add) huge earrings long before their latest resurgence, wore no earrings at all on the red carpet.


There were exceptions, of course, the pinnacle being the breathtaking emerald drop earrings of Lorraine Schwartz worn by Angelina Jolie. Her black gown was reminiscent of the style worn by “Madame X” in the famous 19th Century painting by John Singer Sargent. The earrings here too were of an understated style that showcased the gemstones and the beauty of the woman wearing them.



            [“Madame X” and Angelina Jolie}


     [Close-up of Angelina Jolie’s emerald earrings]

Other standouts in earrings were Alicia Keys’s diamond waterfall design, Frieda Pinto’s stunning sapphire and diamond drops, and Melissa Leo’s emerald drop earrings that played beautifully against her red hair and the hue of her gown. Heidi Klum wore an interesting choice of huge coral-embellished earrings with her elaborate red gown, a color pairing also seen on Jack Black’s wife, Tanya. Perhaps this unexpected color coupling is the beginning of a new trend?


     [Alicia Keys and Frieda Pinto]


[Melissa Leo. Her brooches and spider pendant merit mention too.]


   [Heidi Klum]

Another architecturally interesting red gown was set off to perfection by Virginia Madsen with multi-segment yellow gold drop earrings of an overall diamond shape. True chandelier earrings were rare, but made a lovely appearance on Rachel Evan Wood. I also liked Vanessa Hudgens’s playful shoulder-duster earrings, the perfect accompaniment to her youthful beauty.


[Virginia Madsen and Evan Rachel Wood]


[Vanessa Hudgens]

As always, the jewelry at the Academy Awards was a feast for the eyes. Musings on necklaces will follow.

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