Best of the best dresses from Oscars

After more than eight decades of the Academy Awards, take a look at our pick of the best dresses to ever grace the Oscars’ famous red carpet, from Lupita Nyong’o in Prada, to Gwyneth Paltrow in Ralph Lauren

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Gwyneth Paltrow chose a petal-pink taffeta gown by Ralph Lauren for the 1999 Academy Awards, where she picked up the Best Actress Oscar for her role in ‘Shakespeare In Love’ with a teary acceptance speech. The dress was lauded for its classic style, and Paltrow’s look was compared to that of Grace Kelly. She accessorised with Harry Winston jewels that were a gift from her parents, who attended the ceremony with her

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Julia Roberts took her first ever trip to a couture house to find the vintage Valentino gown that she wore to the Oscars in 2001. The black and white column gown was originally created as part of Valentino’s 1992 couture collection, and Robert’s reportedly said she simply “thought it was a pretty dress”. The designer has cited the moment Roberts received her Best Actress Oscar for her part in ‘Erin Brockovich’ whilst wearing his dress as one the best of his career

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The 1954 Oscars was the first time Audrey Hepburn had worn a design by Hubert de Givenchy to a public event, having first met the young designer in 1953. The floral belted dress proved lucky for Hepburn, who picked up the Best Actress golden statue for her part in ‘Roman Holiday’. Givenchy would go on to dress Hepburn for seven of her later films

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The simplicity of Hilary Swank’s midnight-blue Guy Laroche gown was what set it apart at the 2005 Oscars, where she won an award for her role in ‘Million Dollar Baby’. Long-sleeved and high-necked but with a dramatic cut-out back, the ready-to-wear gown was formed of 27 yards of silk jersey. Swank caused a little controversy when she publicly stated she would be wearing another designer weeks before the event, however she reportedly saw the Laroche gown while shopping in Paris and decided she would wear that instead

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Michelle Williams bravely donned a canary-yellow Vera Wang to attend the 2006 Academy Awards. Perfectly complementing her porcelain-white skin, Williams teamed the gown with bright red lips and a tousled chignon for a breathtaking result

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Keira Knightley’s custom-made plum taffeta Vera Wang gown stole the show at the 2006 Oscars. The classic full fishtail design and twisted one-shoulder strap was accessorised with a beautiful Bulgari necklace. Knightley later donated the dress the Oxfam, who auctioned it to raise money

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Elizabeth Taylor won her first of two Oscars in 1960 for her part in ‘Butterfield 8’. She wore an embroidered Christian Dior gown and sported a tracheotomy scar having suffered from a bout of near-fatal pneumonia a few weeks before whilst filming ‘Cleopatra’

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To attend the 2004 Oscars, Angelina Jolie chose a daring white satin Marc Bouwer gown. Despite clingy white satin’s reputation as one of the trickiest materials to wear, Jolie pulled the Monroe-esque gown off with aplomb

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Halle Berry made history by becoming the first African-American actress to win a Best Actress Oscar in 2002 for her role in ‘Monster’s Ball’. Her Elie Saab dress made waves too, thanks to its sheer top and modesty-saving embroidery which was rather risque for the Academy Awards

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She may not be known for her understated fashion statements these day, but it seems Chloë Sevigny does know how to do minimal somewhere under all those hotpants and flatforms. From the plunging neckline, to the simple leather belt, peek-a-boo sheer skirt, red lips and bombshell hair, Sevigny worked this Yves Saint Laurent number like there was no tomorrow for the Oscars in 2000

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Zoe Saldana put the fun back into awards season fashion with her hot-off-the-catwalk Givenchy couture spring 2010 dress for the Oscars that year. The purple ombre thigh-split number is top of our all-time ‘dream dresses’ list, and Saldana showed it off to perfection

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Glenn Close proved that you don’t have to be a spritely young thing to make an impact on the Oscars red carpet in 2012. Her custom-made bottle-green Zac Posen gown and blazer were the epitome of chic and she easily overshadowed the decades-younger counterparts

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Though plagued by the ‘unique’ haircut she was forced to sport for her Oscar-nominated role in ‘The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo’, Mara styled it out perfectly, pairing the severe cut and colour with an ethereal-yet-edgy Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci gown for the 2012 awards. A strong red lip was all the the dress needed accessory wise, and not a piece of jewellery or clutch bag were in sight proving the Oscars isn’t all about million-dollar gems. Striking simplicity at its best

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Grace Kelly received the Oscar for Best Actress in 1955 wearing an ice blue gown created by costume designer Edith Head. At the time, it was said to be the most expensive Oscars dress ever made, with the material alone costing $4,000. Head won a record eight Oscars for her costume work throughout her career

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Gwyneth Paltrow gave us our first ever peek of Tom Ford’s eponymous fashion line when she decided to wear this caped dress to the 2012 ceremony. Until then, nobody had had even a peek of what Ford had to offer owing to his strict no photography rule at his shows. We’d never of thought a cape would work, especially not a bright white one, but Paltrow proved us wrong

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Red is always a risky colour to wear on the red carpet, for obvious reasons, but Heidi Klum’s spectacular scarlet Galliano number for the 2008 Academy Awards was an exception to the rule. From the shawl neckline to the dramatic train, there was nothing to fault here

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Then still relatively unknown, French actress Marion Cotillard chose a mermaid-like Jean Paul Gaultier couture gown to collect her Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Edith Piaf in ‘La Vie en Rose’ in 2008. With a dramatic fishtail shape and gold sprinkled scale-like scalloping, the gown may have divided opinion at the time but we think it was just the start of Cotillard’s now much-loved red carpet style

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Cate Blanchett chose to focus the attention on her back with this custom-made knitted and embroidered Galliano number in 2009. Its sheer back was delicately embroidered with flowers and a hummingbird, and ever since Blanchett has been a trendsetter

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Diane Kruger never puts a foot wrong when it comes to red carpet dressing and her white Elie Saab number in 2006 was no exception. The delicately frilled gown created a knockout silhouette, and successfully avoided looking bridal thanks to Kruger’s low-kep accessories and tousled hair

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Cruz’s dusty pink Atelier Versace in 2007 was everything and more than you could ever want from an Oscars dress

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Nominated for her part in ‘Black Swan’, Mila Kunis decided to don an delicate lavender Elie Saab number for the 2011 awards, perfectly complementing her dark colouring

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Although Kidman’s Chinoiserie chartreuse Galliano for Dior gown seemed jarring to many at the time, back in 1997, the dress changed the course of red carpet fashion. John Galliano had just shown his first couture collection for Dior and people did not yet know what to think of him; Nicole Kidman was married to the world’s biggest movie star (Tom Cruise) and her stamp of approval (she trusted Galliano to create the dress and had little input) not only certified Galliano’s talent, but made him a world-famous name

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Proving peplums can be pretty as well as trendy, Michelle Williams’ pillar-box red Louis Vuitton number from the 2012 red carpet has just the right amount of detail so as not to overpower the petite actress so still make an impact. And that it did

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Statuesque Charlize Theron channelled Twenties chic for the night she won her Best Actress Oscar in 2004. Her delicately beaded Gucci gown and finger-waved blonde ‘do meant she not only topped the winners chart, but the fashion chart too

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Kim Basinger chose a mint-green Escada gown to to collect her Oscar in 1998 and was lauded for her elegance. She was dressed by celebrity stylist Jessica Paster, the woman behind the looks of Miranda Kerr, Cate Blanchett and Emily Blunt

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Nyong’o picked up her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in 2014 wearing a custom-made Prada gown. The silk georgette soleil pleated dress was full of personal references to the actress. The subtle sparkling beading on the skirt was for Champagne bubbles, while the colour was for her family heritage, a nod to Kenya, where Lupita was raised – the actress told a red carpet host that the particularly shade of blue reminded her of Nairobi. Meanwhile the neckline and silhouette were reminiscent of Elizabeth Taylor, someone Lupita has previously said she looks to for style inspiration

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Emma Stone’s pale green beaded Elie Saab gown for the 2015 Oscars was a masterclass in colour-matching for redheads and certified Miss Stone’s status as a red carpet

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Amanda Seyfried’s pale lilac and grey Alexander McQueen dress for the 2013 Oscars will go down in history, not only for being beautiful but also for causing some major drama. Anne Hathaway was due to wear a very similar gown by Valentino and had to switch to Prada last minute

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Who could forget the jawdropping Atelier Versace dress Angelina Jolie modelled on the 2012 red carpet? The black velvet strapless gown embodied dark glamour in all the right ways, and Ms Jolie’s exposed thigh was the talking point of the night

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Fan Bing Bing played out her creamy complexion and ebony hair to perfection, wearing a magenta satin Marchesa gown and matching lips to the 2013 Oscars ceremony

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Wearing ruffled Oscar de la Renta with a tiered train in egg-shell blue, Amy Adams became a swan princess on the night of the 2013 Academy Awards

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The 2009 Oscars saw Anne Hathaway dazzle in a floor-length cream Armani Privé strapless dress that highlighted her elegant posture

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Then-pregnant Keira Knightley chose a heart-stoppingly romantic blush-nude Valentino design for the 2015 Oscars, the layers of embroidered tulle just the thing to glide over her baby bump

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The ever-beautiful Freida Pinto chose a one-sleeved beaded cobalt dress by John Galliano for her breakthrough moment in 2009, when ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ won Best Picture

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Jennifer Lawrence’s blossom-petal pink gown was picture-perfect as she scooped the Best Actress gong for ‘Silver Linings Playbook’ in 2013. Trust J.Law to mess up her moment of glory though – she famously tripped over her full skirt on the way onto the stage

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via – telegraph

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