On Friday the New York Times published an article about Michelle Williams’s red carpet choices this season, with commentary from her stylist, Kate Young. Kate also works with Natalie Portman, Selena Gomez, Dakota Johnson, and Sienna Miller. According to Kate, Michelle’s vibe is “cool and fashionable” and she leans into “the gamin little French girl thing”. The writer of the piece argues that the effect is that Michelle’s aesthetic is “sweet but not saccharine”. Mostly I agree. But it was neither sweet nor saccharine last night at the SAGs.
Both Duana and I were surprised by this Louis Vuitton. By the flashiness of it. There are no bows, no lace, no frills, no collars… it’s a sequined striped column, with an arguably unnecessary tie around the neck, that says to me she’s here for the party without the pressure. Because there really is no pressure on Michelle Williams. At another time, in another year, it would be Michelle Williams. This, however, is the year Viola Davis submitted in the Best Supporting Actress category. So Michelle Williams isn’t dressing as a frontrunner or a winner, she’s dressing as a nominee, with all the prestige that comes with being nominated, and none of the expectation that comes from having to decide on an outfit that will be remembered forever. From a style perspective, that’s actually more fun and more free.
Because when you’re a presenter and you make a big ass deal out of your look, you risk the inevitable Sit DOWN, Kate Hudson, who do you think you are? If you are the chosen one, you have to consider whether your look stands up in perpetuity, the way your award will. In Michelle Williams’s case, as neither, she has the liberty to be more interesting, without famewhore criticism, and more edgy, without future regret. And that’s where we are here. And it’s where I hope we’ll still be on Oscar night.
PS. Am I crazy because I might love Busy Philipps’s dress SO much more than most of the dresses I saw last night.