The Most Memorable Red Carpet Looks of 2018
Idris Elba and Sabrina Dhowre in Givenchy
Brittany Talarico, Senior Style Editor: The sexiest couple alive coordinated their outfits at this year's Met Gala, and in my heart, they were the King and Queen of fashion prom.
Elba, who has co-hosted fashion's biggest night in the past, said it was important for himself and his fiancée to be involved in the design process. They turned to Givenchy Creative Director Clare Waight Keller (Meghan Markle's wedding dress designer) for their outfits: a deconstructed black tuxedo on Idris and a elegant black long-sleeve gown on Sabrina.
"We're wearing Givenchy," Elba told Vogue on the carpet. "We worked with Clare Waight Keller, the new designer there, and we got to collaborate with her and design something that we wanted to wear."
Meghan Markle in Oscar de La Renta
Brittany Talarico, Senior Style Editor: As an avid Meghan Markle style watcher, this was the fairy tale fashion moment I was waiting for. Meghan looked every bit a Duchess in this black-and-white, tea-length Oscar de la Renta design featuring a tulle ball skirt and embroidered birds, an appropriate choice for the Australian Geographic Society Gala Awards in Sydney. (Who doesn't love a little on-theme dressing?!)
Mandy Moore in Ralph Lauren Collection
Brittany Talarico, Senior Style Editor: Of all the gowns that hit the red carpet during the 2018 awards season circuit, this is the one I would most like to have hanging in my closet. From the bold cobalt color to the slinky cut and open back, it hits the perfect balance between sexy and sleek.
In fact, the silhouette is so timeless, that Mandy's SAG Awards design was modeled after a Ralph Lauren dress she wore on the Saved red carpet in 2004 when she was just 20 years old.
"I think it's very symbolic of her rebirth," Mandy's stylist at the time, Erica Cloud, told PEOPLE, referencing Moore’s return to Hollywood after taking a break for several years. "It was such a cool look then, we thought, 'Why not revisit it now?' It's a beautiful, elegant silhouette. For her, I think it shows she’s still herself, but just an updated version. Also, the color of it is like the ocean, so it’s like a rebirth from the sea, so to speak."
I'm here for Mandy's red carpet renaissance.
Sandra Bullock in Elie Saab Couture
Brittany Talarico, Senior Style Editor: No, the actress isn't at the Met Gala in this photo, but she is promoting her film Ocean's 8, which is all about pulling off a heist at the Met Gala. I love that she went full Hollywood glam with the entire look, from wearing a feathered, beaded Elie Saab Couture gown to pulling her hair up into a chic bun.
KIM KARDASHIAN WEST IN RICK OWENS
Kaitlyn Frey, Style & Beauty Assistant: Kim Kardashian's red carpet looks never disappoint me, and this one's no exception. This backless Rick Owens gown looked romantic and her opulent Tiffany & Co. choker was a big deal for the star. It was the first moment Kardashian wore a dramatic, jeweled piece since her traumatic Paris robbery two years prior.
Zoë Kravitz in Armani Privé
Andrea Lavinthal, Style + Beauty Director: My Barbie had a dress just like this one back in the 80s. I loved it then, and I love the Armani Privé version the actress wore to a movie premiere this fall. The candy-pink color and the ruffle at the waist should feel totally dated, but instead it comes off as modern and fresh, thanks to Zoë's innate coolness and the unexpected addition of giant emerald earrings.
Cate Blanchett in Givenchy Haute Couture
Andrea Lavinthal, Style + Beauty Director: It's daring high-fashion designs like this Givenchy stunner (it's actually two pieces: a black silk top tucked into a hand-painted, pleated organza skirt.) that solidified the actress' spot on our Best Dressed list this year.
Naomie Harris in Miu Miu
Alex Apatoff, Lifestyle Director: When I saw Naomie in this glittering gold gown at the Rampage premiere in April, I put a sticky note on my desktop to be sure I added it to the inevitable "Best of 2018" gallery we'd do in December. Well, here we are. It's so undeniably "movie star" - just glamorous, head-turning and so beautifully accessorized - that I knew it deserved another look months later.
Lupita Nyong'o in Oscar de la Rents
Alex Apatoff, Lifestyle Director: At this point, it's almost a cliché to award Lupita top style honors, but this outfit epitomizes to me why she's become such a staple on the Best Dressed circuit. She takes a stunning dress and gives it her own spin (pun intended) with powerhouse makeup and beautiful braids. She's going to be topping those lists for years to come.
Chadwick Boseman in Atelier Versace
Alex Apatoff, Lifestyle Director: Some of the best style of 2018 didn't come from the expected starlets but instead, from the men of Black Panther. Chadwick, Michael B. Jordan, Winston Duke and more repeatedly shut it down with incredible and creative suiting, from the movie's premieres to the Met Gala red carpet, where Chadwick stopped traffic in this number. Over the top? Maybe, but for a Costume Institute Gala where the theme was "Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination," I'd say he knocked it out of the park.
Tracee Ellis Ross in Valentino Haute Couture
Sharon Kanter, Deputy Style Director: We have come to rely on Tracee for showing just how fun fashion can be, no matter what red carpet she's on. However, no look she wore this year was quite as standout as this couture design by Valentino's creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli that she wore to the Emmys in September. Hands-down, she won that red carpet... no one else even came close.
Lady Gaga in Valentino Couture
Sharon Kanter, Deputy Style Director: No matter how many times I look at this dress, I think, 'Wow, wow, wow!' Not only is the actual design breathtaking with its feathered tiers and soft ballerina pink hue, this red carpet look actually captures Lady Gaga's moment in time perfectly — becoming a next-level star at the premiere of A Star Is Born at the Venice Film Festival.
Timothée Chalamet in Alexander McQueen
Sharon Kanter, Deputy Style Director: At 22, Chalamet is emerging as one of the most fun red carpet stars to watch, mostly because he does it himself (no stylist for him!) and traditional looks just aren't his style. This was never more apparent than when he showed up to the Beautiful Boy premeire in London in a fully floral Alexander McQueen suit, which he says was inspired by another equally stylish guy, Harry Styles. No wonder the tween set is wild over him.
Jane Fonda in Brandon Maxwell
Sharon Kanter, Deputy Style Director: Jane Fonda has only gotten more stylish over time, as proven by this pink-and-red Brandon Maxwell suit she wore to the premiere of Book Club in May. With this look she picked one of the trendiest color-pairings of the year by one of the most sought-after designers of the year. But what makes this truly standout is how she pulled it off with an elegance that is uniquely Jane — bold and unapologetic.
Gal Gadot in Givenchy Haute Couture
Sarah Ball, Market Editor: I love everything about this look. The deep-v neckline, the lariat diamond necklace, the 1920's feel of the drop waist and sparkling textured fringe -- it's all just so good! Gal Gadot always looks amazing on the red carpet, but this silver Givenchy Haute Courture dress she wore to the Oscar's is definitely one of my favorite red carpet looks of the year.
Issa Rae in Pyer Moss
Jackie Fields, Beauty Editor: The outspoken star let her clothes do the talking on the CFDA Awards red carpet. The first black person to ever host the ceremony, Rae stepped out in a cobalt Pyer Moss gown covered in 180,000 Swarovski crystals. But it was her belt that made an even bigger statement. A black satin sash embroidered with the words “Every N---- Is a Star” (A take on the name of Boris Gardiner song, which played at the fashion brand’s 2018 runway show), designer Kerby Jean-Raymondtold PEOPLE that it was his idea to dress Rae – who once said on an awards show red carpet that she was “rooting for everybody black” – in an accessory bearing the culturally significant phrase.
Amal Clooney in Richard Quinn
Colleen Kratofil, Style Writer-Reporter: Amal made such a glamorous entrance at this year's Met Gala that it's hands-down my favorite red carpet moment of the year. The renowned lawyer wore a strapless metallic floral-print corset dress with navy trousers and a full skirt that was so large, it commanded attention the entire way up the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s infamous staircase. She chose the young British designer for the carpet, but decided to switch into a Tom Ford dress for dinner for fear the tin foil skirt would rip inside the party. A smart move because a gown so fabulous must be preserved.
Jennifer Garner in Atelier Versace
Colleen Kratofil, Style Writer-Reporter: Jennifer looked like a total bombshell in this high-neck cobalt Atelier Versace gown at the Academy Awards. It's a standout thanks to the bright hue, sexy because of the curve-hugging ruched detailing and a perfect fit for the Oscars red carpet thanks to the dramatic attached cape.