For many, the 1970s will always be the decade that style forgot. But at the Baftas, the era was the common thread among A-listers.
Many of the celebrities on the red carpet could have been heading to a night out in Studio 54. Julianne Moore wore a tomato-red Tom Ford column with a deep plunging neckline that felt pure Bianca Jagger.
The louche, 70s deep V neckline was seen, too: on Kristin Scott Thomas, in a jet black vintage gown; on Reese Witherspoon, in purple Stella McCartney; and on Anne-Marie Duff, who wore a long-sleeved white maxidress by Temperley with transparent mesh panels to the navel.
There were other 70s throwbacks on show, too: Holliday Grainger and The Lunchbox star Nimrat Kaur wore batwing sleeves; the black flowing column dress worn by Rosamund Pike had a cross-neckline that recalled Halston in its heyday; Monica Bellucci was covered from head to toe in a black maxi gown by Alaia with bell sleeves and a ruffled hem.
The men stopped short of wearing flares, but did pile on the velvet – seen on best actor winner Eddie Redmayne, in midnight blue Armani, and on Douglas Booth, whose strokeable jacket was a suitably retro shade of pea green.
The 70s has been hugely popular in catwalk fashion in recent seasons, notably at Louis Vuitton, where creative director Nicolas Ghesquière showed burgundy leather tank tops and wide car-salesman collars at the presentation of his first collection for the house in March. That mood has since been captured by the rest of the industry, with Prada’s current men’s campaign centring on tasteful tank tops styled with stiff, retro denim and designers from Gucci to JW Anderson to Topman conspiring to bring flares back into fashion.
The red carpet is usually slow on the uptake when it comes to trends. Wary of choosing a dress that does anything other than demonstrate how gobsmackingly beautiful its wearer is, A-listers tend to stick to the same formula. Waists are cinched, curves are accentuated and hands are placed stiffly on hips. At its most glamorous, let-it-all-hang-out 1970s fashion is the antithesis of all this: it is louche, its fabric is billowing and it is decidedly corset free. As far as red carpet dressing goes, it all sounds rather relaxed.
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