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Kim Appelt’s Academy Award Fashion Predictions

By Serena Matter
With the 87th annual Academy Awards happening this Sunday (tune in at 4 p.m. PST), we scored the inside scoop on what the stars will be wearing on Hollywood’s biggest night. Leading celebrity stylist Kim Appelt of Style By Kim XO, who dresses clients for everything from TV appearances to the red carpet, shared her predictions for the top trends and winning gowns. Lights, camera, action!


What are the top five trends we can expect to see on the red carpet?
1. Lace, with large embellishments and big embroidery
2. Enlarged sequences — a fashion term for large clusters of strategically placed sparkle and shine that create a specific design.
3. Velvet — it’s going to be big on the red carpet this spring. We should see some tuxes in velvet, too!
4. Fishnet – but a refined version, in gold or silver, that’s embellished and classy.
5. Nudes, metallics and liquid-metal hues — plus rich jewel tones on the more fashion-forward celebrities. 

Who will be wearing winning gowns this year?

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY in dolce & gabbana at the imitation game ny premiere

Keira Knightley: It's a near certainty that Keira, nominated for her supporting role in The Imitation Game, will be wearing Chanel. And seeing as how this brand ambassador doesn't always go for the expected, we should see something that’s not only interesting but also a little out there. Prediction: She won’t be the best dressed, but she will definitely be notable. 

Emma Stone: Known for her superior red-carpet game, Emma showed up to the Golden Globes in a fabulously sparkly jumper with a bow. As a first-time best supporting actress nominee, she’ll likely go the elegant, classic route. I see Emma in something polished but with a hint of a sharp edge. Prediction: Fitted Lanvin or a balloon-skirted Giambattista Valli gown.

aNGELINA JOLIE dazzles in atelier versace back in 2011

Angelina Jolie: Angie always looks stunning and knows that a simple black Yves Saint Laurent or brown Atelier Versace gown will invariably nab her a spot on the best-dressed list. Prediction: I have a feeling she may really pull it out this year and wow us. Look out, here comes Angie!

Kate Hudson: Kate always delivers on style and so far, her 2015 looks have been on point. I expect to see her on the best-dressed list for sure. Prediction: Something form-fitting and daring that will knock our socks off.

STILL FROM WILD

Reese Witherspoon: Reese usually plays it safe but is always classy and gorgeous. She’s nominated for best actress in a leading role for Wild, so I think she will go a little sexier this year. Prediction: Something body hugging and jewel-toned, perhaps from Armani or Zac Posen. 

STILL FROM STILL ALICE

Julianne Moore: Julianne will likely be an award winner. She’s overdue, after all. Prediction: A silvery gown or bold colors — maybe an emerald tone that accents her hair — and, of course, she’ll be wearing something by her friend Tom Ford. 

What menswear trends will be showing up on the carpet?
Men don't have as much fun or wiggle room on the red carpet. My favorite trend for men is black on black, which comes off very edgy and chic. A black tux, black shirt and black satin trim as an accent will be a winning combination. I also quizzed my friend Philippe Dubuc — a Canadian-born, award-winning menswear designer — to get some insight on what the guys will be bringing to the red carpet. Prediction: A little shimmer and color. "Electric blue and red bordeaux iridescent tuxedos are my favorite colors for the new tux,” Philip says. “To me, they’re the new black.”
 
Which celebrities always get it right at the Academy Awards?

Angelina Jolie:
She is a favorite of mine.  She always knocks it out of the park in an understated, demure way. 

Kate Hudson: With a body like that, it's almost impossible for her not to make the best-dressed list. 

GWYNETH PALTROW's 2011 prada moment in that year's venice film festival

Gwyneth Paltrow: She has melted me several times on the carpet with her sense of style. My favorite Gwyneth Oscar moment was in 1999, when she wore that pink taffeta Ralph Lauren princess dress to the Oscars. Seriously. I die. (Of course, the less we speak of the 2002 mail-order Alexander McQueen worn braless, the better.)

Jennifer Lopez: A touch of sexiness, a touch of edge and a deadly body. Ms. Lopez is a usual suspect for getting it right, and she never fails to make a scene on a red carpet. Also, is it just me or is she Benjamin Button-ing and looking younger every year? 

Matthew McConaughey: Dude crushes it every time. Even when dressed like a busboy, he commands a room.

JARED LETO at last year's academy awards

Jared Leto: He killed it last year in a white tux jacket and black pants with a burgundy bow tie. I loved it. In fact, he inspired me to put my client Casey Moss in a similar tux for the daytime Emmy’s last year!

Brad Pitt: Really, what can I say? The guy is deadly good-looking and has great style. Brad will go crisp and classic in Tom Ford this year, no doubt.  

Some of these men made their marks on the 2014 Academy Awards red carpet in eye-catching, fashion-forward tuxedos. Likely, they’ll do it again, and we’ll see tuxes in midnight blue and merlot — maybe even some subtle print and embroidery on the jackets as well.


By Serena Matter

Serena Matter is a writer, trendspotter and founder of the lifestyle magazine The Wanderlust Report. When she's not uncovering the newest hotspots as Daily Secret's Canadian editor, you can find her posting her escapades on Instagram and Twitter.