The White House Correspondents’ Dinner may seem like a stuffy, boring affair to the untrained eye. However, this annual dinner is notorious for being a meeting ground for various political powers and celebrities (including the ever-talented Kim Kardashian and momager/pimp, Kris Jenner). Besides the comedians who attend and host these dinners, the President also gives humorous roasts and it’s basically just a big party. But, like any party, the red carpet fashion is the most important part. Take a look below at the best and worst of the 2012 White House Correspondents’ Dinner red carpet!
Alicia Keys in Diane von Furstenberg
I’m not really sure what Alicia Keys or this dress and tights catastrophe are doing on the White House red carpet, but they need to have not been there. The tights were a mistake, no matter what would have been paired with them. The color of this tunic-looking dress is terrible, as is that misplaced belt and unflattering sleeve length. She looks pretty, but I just wish she hadn’t hidden under this ugly dress. It just didn’t suit.
Anna Paquin in Herve Leroux
Huzzah for Anna Paquin! Finally! It seems that pregnancy agrees with her because she looks absolutely bangin’ in this classy but sleek and sexy black gown. I’m loving that she showed just enough skin with the back cutouts and low neck, but kept it classy with minimal cleavage and a long, flowing skirt. A+ in my book.
Charlize Theron in Emilio Pucci
Personally, I really love this gorgeous lace and nude dress. While it may come off as matronly to some because of the high neck line and long sleeves, I think the lace and nude underlay play off of those elements well. Because this is an affair where celebrities button up a bit more, I think Charlize made the right choice in choosing a glamourous pattern and fabric that would make her sexy and “now” without having to whip out her cleavage or showing a ton of leg. And, as usual, she looks flawless.
Claire Danes in Vivienne Westwood
Did she trip on the way over here? Is that the explanation as to why the top of her dress looks like someone ripped it? And, what’s with this disjointed halter top look? Was that a new trend I wasn’t aware of? I love the color, but it washes her out slightly and it’s just a touch too long. Another note, that fabric seems to wrinkle very easily (see Lindsay Lohan’s dress below), and between the wrinkles and her blah-looking hair, she just doesn’t look polished and put together enough. Sorry, Claire.
Dakota Fanning in Prada
Yay, Dakota’s back! After a string of what I thought were pretty heinous outfits, it’s refreshing to see one of our young, fresh starlets looking so… sparkling! This dress is perfectly age appropriate, playing only slightly with an element of sexiness with the low cut front and peek-a-boo chest cut out. All in all, she looked sophisticated but still young and fun. My only critique of this look is her shoes. I’ve seen them alone and they’re perfectly cute, but hidden under this gown they just look like cheap sandals… and I’m not loving those exposed toes, either.
Love! What a class act, Diane is. She’s not a 20-year-old strutting her stuff on the red carpet, but she still looks divine. The dress fits her like a dream and the strategic shoulder cut outs amp this dress up an elegant notch. I love the golden shawl and the black and gold clutch as well. What a classy broad.
Elizabeth Banks in Antonio Berardi
If anyone has anything bad to say about this dress, keep it to yourself because I will not accept anything less than the top praise for Elizabeth in this to-die-for red gown. It fits her perfectly, the color is absolutely striking, and she looks incredibly effortlessly chic. The subtle, soft peplum gives this dress an extra little something and I’m loving her slightly messy bun, too. Elizabeth has been on a red carpet winning streak lately and this is just another jewel in her red carpet crown.
Eva Longoria in Marchesa
Oh, good. This red carpet just wouldn’t be complete without a tablecloth-chic dress. So happy someone managed to wear one. First of all, this dress looks totally different and stunning on the runway. But on Longoria, it feels stiff and awkward. Maybe this skirt would have been pretty at another event, but I’m just not loving it here. Also, is it just me or does she wear these black Brian Atwood’s to everything? This look could’ve been much better with a nice pair of creme Louboutin’s, as well. The black is way to heavy for a dress of this color.
Ginnifer Goodwin in H&M
Okay, this is a toughie. I saw this dress on a tall, blonde, and waif-ish (what else do we expect?) H&M model, and it was worn without the black belt, making it look regal and very pretty. However, while Ginnifer wears this beautifully, I just don’t see it on her. Maybe it’s because of the severe hair and makeup (the red lip) she’s sporting, or maybe it’s because of the black belt she’s paired it with, but some looks are made specifically for certain people. Don’t kill me, you gurrl power girls, you — I know that sounds bad. But come on, a dress that looks ah-mazing on Florence Welch might not look as awesome on Rihanna or Katy, am I right?
I like Goldie Hawn. She looks so happy here and the pictures of her and Kate are adorable. I love how she looks here. Look, she’s older and I personally wouldn’t really want to be seeing that cleavage or those arms… sorry, Goldie! But getting back to the point, this classy black with kitschy-meets-chic (what I’m hoping is faux) fur wrap and classic blonde banged hair, Goldie looks exactly her age and perfectly dressed for the occasion. Maybe a gown in a different color (like a shocking red or midnight blue) would’ve been a little more attention grabbing, but I think she looked lovely all the same.
Ivanka Trump in Naeem Khan
Hello! WOW. Somebody wanted to be a show stealer! Ivanka looks beyond perfect and like a million bucks (which she probably is wearing) in this semi-sheer, shimmering number. My only, only negative point about this gown is that while low cuts graced the carpet all night, I’m feeling that this was a little too much cleavage for the occasion. However, it is a party after all and she certainly looks ready to party (like a lady, of course)!
Julie Bowen in Monique Lhullier
Oh, Julie. Julie, Julie. I’m rooting for you, Julie. That’s more than I can say for a lot of other people. Let’s start from the top, shall we? Her hair looks good, I suppose. I can’t really tell if she’s sporting a classy bun or not. I’ll judge her favorably on this one. Moving on to the weird neck shadow thing… I honestly thought that was just a shadow in the first picture I saw of this. And then I saw a few more pictures, and a few more, and I realized that it was a piece of fabric. Why?! Okay, moving on, the entire bodice of this dress is just busy, confusing, and manages to be loud while being a little too demure. Then, moving down, are those slits I’m about to see?! Great, now this dress has some sort of frontal flap reminding me entirely too much of the entire cast of Pochahontas. Is that weird when she sits? The shoes are perfectly fine, although I myself am not a huge fan of the teardrop peep toe. Oh, well. I guess we all just have to keep rooting for her and hope for the best.
Kate Hudson in Jenny Peckham
There are only two words that come to mind every time I look at this dress: Totally. Perfect. I actually don’t remember a time when I thought Kate Hudson looked this good. The dress is gorgeous and mature while still being playful and she looks beautiful. This was without a doubt the right choice for her.
Isn’t is such a luxury when you can roll out of bed, put on your silk robe, and go to the White House Correspondents’ Dinner? Honestly, HONESTLY, what was she thinking?! Her hair is so-so (her roots are heavily showing), and it doesn’t even look like she’s wearing a bra. If this dress had been shortened, tied less sloppily, and worn with a bra and pretty hair, it would have been a completely different look. But right now it looks like she got up to make her family breakfast on a lazy Sunday. So not impressed.
Elle Macpherson in Romona Keveza
Let’s cut right to the chase here, shall we? Best dressed of the evening, people! She looks amazing. The dress is to-die-for and of course fits her like she’s just been born out of the male fantasy. She looks mature, beautiful, polished, sophisticated, and just downright hot. But hey, do we expect anything less from Elle?
Kerry Washington in Calvin Klein
Calvin Klein happens to be one of my favorite designers of all time for reasons that are shown in this dress: his styles are sleek, chic, and accessible while still being high fashion, but without being over the top all the time. Now that I’ve said that, all I’ll say about Kerry is that, while she looks simple and beautiful, the dress itself definitely needed to be tailored more to her body and shortened. Although the look of Calvin Klein is usually to stay simple, I think she could’ve benefited from having a few more accessories.
Kim Kardashian in Johanna Johnson
Oh, hey, Kimmy! Didn’t expect to see you here at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner since you’re neither an actor nor political correspondent to the White House nor someone whose brain houses more than five cells. However, since you were there, I suppose I have to say something about this dress that’s somewhat confusing to me.
This dress only confuses me because it’s on Kim Kardashian, yet I see no giant boobs or butt seemingly coming to attack me. This dress is a major departure for her from the normally garish and, well, slutty gowns she dons, and I have to say, I’m really liking it! I do like my Kardashians more on the “here’s my giant ass, take pictures of me!” side, but I think this dress was the appropriate choice for this occasion. It’s flattering and the waist and shoulder embellishments were just the right touch of sparkle. Also, loving her hair. There’s no denying she’s gorgeous!
Oh, hey, it’s Kim Kardashian’s pimp! I mean manager! I mean pimp! I mean MOM! And she looks scary, as usual. First of all, why is her body and face perpetually two different colors? Either be a person or be an oompa loompa — there is no in between, Mama Kris. This dress also fits her all wrong and while that mid-section slouch might have worked on someone like Rosie Huntington-Whitelely, it only creates an unflattering silhouette on Kris. Plus, it’s too long. Plus, is that a feather duster or hair on top of her plastic face? This is all so confusing. Next time, Kris, just go to a movie. I’m even more baffled as to why you’re there than I was when I saw that Kimmy was there.
Leslie Mann in Naeem Kahn
Yay, Leslie! I love Leslie Mann. I’m pretty sure she’s played the “aging hottie” in every single movie she’s ever been in. I really do like this dress, and she looks lovely, but there’s something about the floral prints that just makes me think it’s not right for the occasion. The silhouette and cut of the dress looks great on her, but maybe if the florals were a different color? Or maybe if there weren’t any florals at all? I’m still not sure how I feel about wearing bright florals at night.
Okay, okay, okay! Lindsay! Proud of you! I know we were all hoping to be seriously wowed by Lindsay, but honestly, I’ve seen her recent outfits (which include an ill-fitted mini dress with long, spiked sleeves and that absolutely terrible white dress she wore to the amfAR Gala in New York) and I’ve been seriously underwhelmed. To see LiLo, finally teetering on the edge of a comeback, wearing a classy black dress like this is refreshing.
I don’t absolutely love how much the skirt reminds me of a prom dress (nor do I love the few wrinkles adorning said skirt), but I think she looks really very nice. Her boobs look great, as does her hair, and I have to give props to whoever did her makeup because… hey, she doesn’t look 50 here! That’s an improvement.
Ugh. This is so exhausting, Malin. You’re blonde, tall, skinny, and absolutely gorgeous. Don’t make me hate on you. I’m just gonna dive right in here. The cut of the bust is awful and awkward, the waistline is fantastically unflattering, and the dress needed to be about half a foot longer. Also, if you’re going to do a front slit, don’t back out when you get to the knee! The whole point of a slit is so your leg can peek-a-boo and make boys crazy. I understand that this is a formal affair, but with any slit, especially a daring frontal one, it’s go big or go home. Malin, please go home. Also, I hate the shoes with this dress but LOVE them on their own! They have a black platform and a nude top. I like!
First Lady Michelle Obama in Naeem Khan
Yay, she’s back! I don’t know how long it’s been since I’ve seen Mrs. Obama in a really great, full-length ball gown, but I am so happy I got to see her in this one! Although there are currently no full body pictures of the first lady, she does look stunning, even from just the waist up. The gown is to-die-for and she looks like she rocked it! Her hair also looks amaze. I just want to touch it. Is that weird?
Rachel Zoe in Valentino
This dress is exactly the reason people hate Rachel Zoe. It’s trying too hard to be cool and unique and stylish, but it just falls flat. (I know, she’s very successful and I do admire her, but at some point it’s like, “Eat a meatball, woman!”) The truth is, at a different event if this had been tailored more to her midsection (and the sleeve shoulders weren’t so goddamn poofy), I could’ve liked this. I just don’t think it was the right color, fit, or choice for this occasion. However, the length is absolutely perfect. Learn from her, people!
Rashida Jones in Tory Burch
There’s just… something, isn’t there? First of all, length. Why do you want your Tory Burch gown dusting the carpet?! Second of all, I do like this dress and I love Rashida, but I just think there’s too much going on here. The pattern is one component of the dress, then you have the peplum (which totally does not compliment the cut of the skirt), and then you have the sheer underlay at her chest. Maybe if the underlay hadn’t been competing with the peplum and the bust had been a little higher on her, this dress could’ve worked. But it really just looks like a sloppy mess.
Reese Witherspoon in Monique Lhullier
God, she’s gorgeous. There is nothing wrong with this dress (except for maybe the LENGTH!) and I think it was totally the right decision. Her body looks fantastic and you can’t even see her new baby bump. The shoulder and chest cutouts along with the three straps were just playful and sexy enough to really work. I’m also loving the pop of color in her earrings. Nicely done, Reese.
Renee Puente with boyfriend Matthew Morrison
I realize most of you have no idea who this Renee person is because I had no idea until I saw her standing next to
Mr. Schue Matthew Morrison. Okay, her body looks great in this dress and the color looks amazing on her, but I just think between her completely exposed arms and chest, this dress was a little too casual for the occasion. It actually kind of remind me of the Clavin Klein dress Katie Holmes wore to the 2011 Emmy’s, which was also too casual for the occasion. Plus, it looks like Renee is wearing sandals. I don’t know what fabric this dress is, but it looks like if she took her hair down, added a floppy hat and a tote bag, she could spend a day at the beach.
Rosario Dawson in Armani Prive
Look, it’s Rosario Dawson’s boobs! And Rosario Dawson, of course. This is a perfectly pretty dress, but it is just waaayyy too shiny and there is seriously too much boob showing. I feel like I’m looking at Christina Hendricks here. But, she does look pretty facially, and I’m really happy she was there. I just love her.
Sofia Vergara in David Meister
Another Prom dress?! Honestly. Sofia is gorgeous and she looks totally awesome here, but she was way too casual. Above the knee and strapless? And with those boobs holding it in place?! No. Just no. She really does look like she’s going to prom, right? Anyway, awesome for her… just not awesome for a White House dinner.
Viola David in Amsale
Yes. YES! God, I missed Viola Davis on the red carpet! The only thing missing is her two Help co-stars, Emma and Octavia, to complete the awesome fashion trifecta. She looks gorgeous and this color is so right for her. She looks classy, elegant, and really happy! I just wish there had been someone to straighten out her dress on the bottom right. Is that just bothering me?
Zooey Deschanel in Oscar de la Renta
Talk about needing to shorten a dress! My God, you could make Mary Kate a burka using the extra fabric from the bottom of this dress! It’s a little too precious, too girly, too washing her out, and too low in the boob area for me. She needs to pull that top up before we have a White House Nipplegate. Also, why does her hair always have to look like she just came from shooting New Girl? And while I’m talking about her hair, her makeup looks a little sloppy, too. I absolutely love a red lip on her, but it just looks like she slapped on some red, too much eyeliner with no other eye makeup, and a bronze-y pink cheek. She just looks unfinished.
Uggie the Dog
Best dressed of the night.