January can be a bit of a drag. Thankfully the post-holiday doldrums are reliably broken by two things; awards season and the unveiling of the Spring couture collections. Rachel Zoe spent the majority of her career immersed in both, making her uniquely qualified to identify the Spring 2020 couture looks destined for the Oscars red carpet.
As we've already seen on the awards season circuit thus far, the biggest trend is individuality, ranging from creative trouser-based looks to sheer ruffled gowns. Couture collections, which, by definition, require painstaking attention to detail and countless hours of careful consideration, typically represent a hyper-distilled version of a brand's creative vision. It stands to reason, then, that many of the most unique looks quickly make their way onto the biggest red carpet of the year.
But it's when the jaw-dropping look is paired with the perfect personality, that the real magic happens. "There are so many things to consider, from whether the silhouette is actually practical for an eight-hour evening, to whether the look is more appropriate for a best actress nominee or a presenter," explains Zoe. And then, of course, there are personal preferences to take into consideration, "anything from preferring a shorter train to disliking overly dramatic shoulders," that oftentimes result in a few tweaks in collaboration with the designers themselves.
So, which looks from the past week's couture shows in Paris jumped out at Zoe? We tapped her to share them, along with her suggestions for who would wear them best.
Dior Haute Couture
"I can see this stunning tiered gold fringe look on someone statuesque like Charlize Theron, who would make this feel edgy and cool while embracing its subtle wink at Old Hollywood charm."
Giambattista Valli Couture
"Every look in the Giambattista collection was breathtaking, but this elegantly draped pink confection, which is every bit as beautiful from behind as it is from the front, is a clear standout for the Oscars."
"I love a sleeve on the red carpet and this sculptural cocoon style from Givenchy is a fresh take on a more demure silhouette."
Alexandre Vauthier Couture
"Vauthier's sunny yellow gown is playful and unique without being over-the-top. I'd love to see this on someone like Renee Zellweger."
"This look is perfect for someone like Nicole Kidman. The combination of sheer tiers and beaded fringe make it truly head-turning and it would look stunning with her coloring."
Chanel Haute Couture
"The beauty of this collection lies in its simplicity. This icy, pure white gown with knife pleats and a buttoned bodice is so simple yet so classic, and would look stunning on Margot Robbie."
Elie Saab Couture
"I would be so excited to see a bold sleeve like this on the carpet, and this epic brocade look would be gorgeous on Laura Dern."
Valentino Haute Couture
"Pink has been cropping up everywhere and this vibrant sequined iteration from Valentino is one of the most high-octane examples of the trend. I'd love to see it have an iconic moment like Gwyneth Paltrow's pink Ralph Lauren in 1999, and it would look gorgeous on Cynthia Erivo."