EW Fashion Police: The most disappointing red carpet looks of 2009

In a year that saw Taylor Swift shine in glittery frocks, Diane Kruger wow at the Inglourious Basterds premieres and Zoe Saldana strut in a cavalcade of gorgeous dresses for her Star Trek and Avatar promotional tours, 2009 was a memorable year for some of the red carpet’s newest faces. But what about the all-stars?

Sienna Miler and Sarah Jessica Parker are the ones I usually count on to make the premiere and award show carpets pop. Their impressive fashion choices usually land these women on the best-dressed lists, but this year, one too many underwhelmed me. Let’s take a look at some of my picks:

Sienna Miller at the Tokyo premiere of G.I. Joe (August): The Brit beauty is known for galvanizing the boho chic trend, but at this premiere, she ditched draped and billowy and instead went for a shiny snakeskin suit by Gucci. Snakeskin as an accent? Love it. Full-on snakeskin? No thank you.

Sarah Jessica Parker at the Oscars (February): The woman who plays Carrie Bradshaw usually can do no wrong—I love seeing her on the red carpet in sleek L’Wren Scott sheaths or even that glitzy, yet appropriate Nina Ricci gown she wore to the premiere of Sex and the City: The Movie. But this Christian Dior Haute Couture dress was unfortunately more Princess Cupcake than princess.

Leighton Meester at the American Eagle flagship store opening (November): She may not have been around as long as Miller and Parker, but Meester has certainly created a formidable presence on red carpets. Here, the worst offense was the overdone makeup. Smokey eyes and bold red lips? It’s too much on its own, and looks even less flattering when paired with her saucy Paule Ka leather dress. But if it’s any consolation, this get-up is award-winning compared to the outfit she wore later that night while performing.

Some other reliable fashionistas who let us down in ’09? Renee Zellweger for her gothic Golden Globes dress by Carolina Herrera, Sandra Bullock’s swirly Lanvin number at the All About Steve L.A. premiere in August (nix the booties!), and Rihanna’s Dolce & Gabbana suit from the May Costume Institute Gala that mixed menswear and sharp shoulders to disappointing results. Seriously, those shoulders could knock someone out!

What do you think, PopWatchers? What other normally fashionable stars disappointed you this year?

Photo: Miller: Junko Kimura/Getty Images; Parker: Tony DiMaio / Retna Ltd; Meester: Rob Kim/Retna Ltd

Comments (37 total) Add your comment
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  • Diane R

    I liked SJP’s Oscar dress. If you can’t be a princess at the Oscars where can you be one.

    Here’s my complaint-why does the media focus on the same 25 stars

    • amj

      I really liked that dress too, it was a tad too tight on her bosom though.

      • Gazza

        yeah I think the bust was what ruined what would’ve been a gorgeous gown – that one thing let the entire outfit down.

    • snarkalicious

      Leighton Meester looks like your average garden variety hooker.

  • Troy

    Yey! Another worst dressed list that has no mention of my Mariah Carey. Who saw that coming!?!

    • alex

      That’s because Mariah is a given. She’s a worst dressed hall of famer.

      • hen

        agreed. it’s like someone saying that Bai Ling isnt on this list- its kind of understood that she looks awful and dresses too young.

      • Troy


  • julie

    Why isn’t this in a slide show? Kind of dumb

    • moi

      This list is all sorts of fail. They choose 3 looks from the whole year? lol and I second there not being a slide show.

      • Diane R


    • kiki

      I agree with you. Why isn’t there a slide and why is there only 3 picks. I’m sure there’s more 3 worst of 2009.

  • steph

    i liked SJPs Oscar dress as well. I thought it was pretty. too small up top, but cute!

    But ugh Leighton Meester looks terrible with all that makeup.

    • Ashley

      Seriously, why DOES she wear that much makeup?! All the time! Stop it, Leighton! You’re gorgeous. You don’t need it.

  • Shari

    sorry, Leighton’s look at the MET BALL was the worst. She massacred that Vuitton.

    • EleanorGrace340

      I second that! Complete massacre. :] happy 2010

    • Jessica

      In her defense….would anyone look good in that ensemble?

      • Ally

        Minus the tights, yes. Her fault was trying to copy the runway look exactly.

  • EleanorGrace340

    Good choices. Leather dress and a ton of makeup , snakeskin dress *shudders* eep, and I bet they payed LOADS of money for those too.

  • Ashley

    This is ridiculous, SJP looks absolutely fantastic at the Oscars. I wish EW would stop commenting on fashion. They have no idea what they’re talking about. Did anyone see the best dresses of the decade list? I think it should have been called the most average, safe, boring dresses of the decade. Yawn.

  • chichi

    Amy Housewine. She has robbed ballet flats of their innocence … shame, Ms. Winehouse … shame.

  • Zach

    OK, I’m no fashion expert and have no real interest in it. But I find it ironic that now that SJP’s show is over and her film career and looks are up in the air, it’s suddenly in vogue to trash her style choices. If the dress Archana is criticizing is truly the one photographed, then I have to call her a hypocrite, because it looks like most of the frothy, strange fairy-tale concoctions SJP got away with, and even made popular, during the SATC heydey.

  • E

    Really, is this all that important?! So much money is wasted because, heaven forfend, someone wear the same gown twice, or have one ruffle too many. Good grief.

    • Molly

      You are the type of person I find extremely annoying and pretty stupid. Every time I read an article, you people make comments like this. If you are only going to whine and complain about the topic of the article, why do you even click on the link to it? Why waste your time reading and commenting if you hate it so much?

      They are the ones that made the money so the can waste it if they want to. It is their choice to buy these outfits and it is their choice to attend these events. No one is forcing them to do either. Why are you throwing such hissy fit about it when it does not affect you at all?

      • @Molly

        Wow- the one who’s looking “pretty stupid” is you Molly. Whining little beotch brat. God- stfu.

      • AG

        Molly- Totally agree with you. I hate these people, too! Apparently, you need add immature and little psycho to the list.

        E (a.k.a. @Molly)- You are the one who is a “whining little beotch brat”. Remember your little “Really, is this all that important?! So much money is wasted because, heaven forfend, someone wear the same gown twice, or have one ruffle too many. Good grief.” rant. Don’t be complaining about it when you are the poster child for a “whining little beotch brat”. You are a huge hypocrite so why don’t you STFU.

      • AG

        E- If you were going to reply to Molly’s comment, why did you not answer any of her questions?

    • SO2009

      It MUST be that important “E”, or you would not have bothered to reply.

  • Lily

    I don’t ever comment about fashion since I don’t care about what celebrities wear (I don’t really know why I clicked on this aricle), but after reading so many comments on how people liked SJP dress for the Oscars, I felt that I had to. First off, it really looks like a wedding dress in this picture. The top part of the dress is slightly different, but this looks almost exactly like an actual wedding dress that I saw when I was helping my cousin shop for her wedding dress about three weeks ago. If you took out the read carpet, I believe everybody would think it was one. The color does not help make it look less like a wedding dress either. I don’t think this color is the best for her skin tone. There are so many other colors that she could have chosen that would compliment her skin better. The shape of the dress also makes me think of a pageant dress for a little girl. As others have said, the top of the dress is way too tight. The top section of the dress is cut so low on her chest and so high above her hips, it makes her look like she has almost no torso. When you wear a dress that shortens your torso (and has such a massive bottom), it make you look much wider than you are. I did not watch the Oscars so I don’t know what others were wearing and don’t have anything to compare it to, but her whole look seems to be pretty boring. Her hair and make-up look no different than usual. SJP’s look might not be the worst, but it certainly is not good.

  • Allison

    Lily: I totally agree. I didn’t like it when I saw it in the Oscar recaps and I still don’t. If you’re going to wear mint green, wear mint green; this just looks like it was washed with something else and the color ran. I also don’t get how someone who is supposed to be so stylish can wear something that doesn’t fit at all.
    As for Leighton Meester – well, I realize beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I don’t think there’s anything that spectacular about her appearance, except that that outfit and the one she had on later that night were spectacularly bad.

  • Auds

    I adored SJP’s gorgeous princess-like dress. There were definitely worse dressed people this year than her.


      Yeah……like Victoria Rowell’s OBAMA dress at the EMMY awards. TRAGIC!!

  • SG

    Loved SJPs dress. I can’t believe of only 3 dresses of the whole year, that’s the one you picked.

  • Tee

    I liked SJP’s dress, aside from being too tight in the bosom. Regardless, I think it definitely didn’t deserve to be lined up next to those two utter trainwrecks of looks. I always seem to baffle over the “style” picks on this site….

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