Awards season kicks off in full force the first week of the year. In NYC they will have barely finished getting all of the confetti out of times square and in Hollywood the glitterati will be gearing up to fete all of their films and television shows that have picked up honors and awards nominations. The second awards red carpet of the year is the 2019 AFI Awards, I will get to the first one in just a few days. The American Film Institute honors 10 films and 10 television programs as the best of the previous year at a luncheon ahead of the Golden Globe Awards. We see stars bring their ‘ladies who lunch best’ to this red carpet and I am always excited to see some of the more casual looks of awards season. Amanda Seyfried is one of the stars of First Reformed which has earned one of the spots on the AFI Awards Best Films of 2018 list. The journey for that film started back in August 2017 when it screened at the Venice Film Festival ahead of its US theatrical release in May of 2018. It didn’t have a huge promo tour, but I do tend to love seeing Amanda on the red carpet so I am hoping she will be out to support the film at the AFI Awards next Friday. I decided to go to the designer whom Amanda wore to start this journey wearing, Alexander McQueen. She wore a custom gown from the label at the films premiere at the Venice Film Festival. For the AFI Awards I decided to pick this Alexander McQueen crewneck short sleeve abstract beetle printed jacquard flared knit dress for Amanda because it just seems like that perfect meshing of classic shapes and absurdity. I love the pattern and I really wonder how many people could pull it off, but I do believe that Amanda is one of the few. It is that chic casual moment that I think is perfect for this red carpet and I definitely think that sleek center parted locks, simple makeup, and a pair of gold Alexander McQueen strappy chunky heel sandals would all ensure this look is perfection. Donald Glover is part of the creative and the cast of the show Atlanta which has earned a lauding for one of the best television productions of the last year. Donald always brings just a bit of a flare to the red carpet with his menswear choices. He likes to push some of the boundaries and I am hoping that will happen once again at the AFI Awards. I saw this congac brown one button double breasted suit from the new Ermenegildo Zenga XXX Couture menswear collection and it really stood out to me. I love the look and I think that the tonal turtleneck it was paired with in the lookbook was absolute perfection. I would keep that styling probably opting to pair the look with a lighter brogue style lace up shoe to really bring this look to the level of perfection that I am expecting from menswear on the red carpet this coming awards season. In the crowded field of films this year I am actually a little surprised that Mary Poppins Returns made the list of the AFI’s best films of 2019. While I have heard great things about the movie I have not yet seen it, but despite my surprise I am excited to see what Emily Blunt will bring to the red carpets over the course of awards season. The first appearance from Emily we will see is going to be at the AFI Awards luncheon. I wanted to go with one of the classic New York brands so I turned to Oscar de la Renta and this chic multicolored ikat print sleeveless midi length dress with an a-line skirt from the brands Spring 2019 RTW collection. It is a very chic moment that I definitely think is perfect for the more laid back air of the AFI Awards red carpet. Emily has been bringing some major moments and pushing her style boundaries lately and while this isn’t anything innovative I think it fits her typically very ladylike sense of dressing. I would totally compliment the colors in this dress adding a matte light red lip, forest green Malone Souliers ‘Penelope’ matte and metallic leather pumps, and a pair of citrine and diamond cluster earrings from Beladora. Simple old Hollywood waves and a defined eyes all would finish this look perfectly. Of all of the ladies, and gentlemen, nominated I am most excited to see what Lady Gaga will bring to the red carpets over the course of awards season. She has done it before, but never fully as a nominated actress in a movie. And never as a real contender for a Best Actress Oscar. I am absolutely going to go over the top for all of my looks for Gaga, but in the most glamorous manner. I already have my wishes for her Golden Globes, Critics Choice, Grammy’s, and SAG Awards gowns. So what should she wear for an awards luncheon? Well as I always say #WhenInDoubtBeExtra. I have been eyeing this black Elie Saab Fall 2018 Couture jumpsuit which features a dramatic fully ruffled bodice, crystal embellishments on the hips, cigarette style pants, and an organza train since it first came down the runway. I put it in my must see looks from Fall 2018 Couture list as a wish for Evan Rachel Wood, but when I was looking for a couture look for Gaga to wear on this red carpet I definitely believe that it is something that I could see Gaga wanting to option, especially for an event like this one. I would go full glam with the styling too adding a rockabilly victory roll inspired updo, defined winged eyes, bold red lips, black Christian Louboutin ‘Naked Bow’ strappy pumps, and a pair of Harry Winston diamond cluster earrings to really make sure that this is just screams major Gaga moment on the red carpet. I want her to be a major contender for the Red Carpet Diva of the Year title next year and kicking the year off in this look would certainly bode well for those hopes.For the third year in a row This Is Us is being lauded as one of the best shows of the year. Mandy Moore attended the event in 2017 wearing a chic ladies who lunch dress from Lela Rose, but skipped the event this year. I love seeing Mandy on the red carpet so I am hoping that she will be back on the red carpet at the awards luncheon again next year. I did decide to turn back to the same designer Mandy wore for her last AFI Awards red carpet because Lela Rose is really the perfect designer for a luncheon event. Instead of a dress thought I decided to opt for a matching pants ensemble with this navy floral print ensemble from the Lela Rose Pre-Fall 2019 collection which I consists of a long sleeve collard button down shirt tucked into a pair of matching high waisted pants. While I figure that almost everyone will be in dresses this pants look would be a nice change of pace and I definitely think that Mandy has the fashion chops to really make it work on the red carpet especially when paired with a loose chignon hairstyle, defined eyes, light pink lips, and a pair of cornflower blue Olgana Paris ‘Delicate’ bow detail satin pumps. Rounding out today’s wishes for the AFI Awards is the gorgeous Rachel Brosnahan. The show’s second season is being lauded by the AFI. This time last year I had no idea who Rachel was, but then over the course of this last year wearing looks from Zuhair Murad, Erdem, Oscar de la Renta, Rodarte, Brandon Maxwell, Carolina Herrera, and more. Her fashion chops have definitely grown over the year and I am really interested in seeing what awards season will mean for Rachel. I decided that while couture isn’t the norm for the AFI Awards that this Ronald Van Der Kemp Fall 2018 Couture ensemble which features a pink ruffled floral bodice with puffy sleeve and a high ruffled neck and a grey and white pleated a-line knee length skirt is just toned down enough to be a really chic moment for Rachel to bring to life on this red carpet. I want to continue the ruffled theme of the look adding a pair of rose pink Jimmy Choo ‘Karalie’ sandals which feature a dramatic ruffle down the heel and a crystal embellished buckle. Then adding a sleek low bun, defined eyes, and rose pink lips would all ensure that this look is absolutely chic from head to toe.
The 2019 AFI Awards luncheon will take place on Friday January 4, 2019.