The actress tells PEOPLE that she'll know her dress when she sees it

By StyleWatch
Updated September 14, 2011 05:30 PM

Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage

Evan Rachel Wood is stunning on the red carpet these days, whether overseas at the Venice Film Festival or in Hollywood for an awards show. And the star, nominated for an outstanding supporting actress in a miniseries or movie Emmy for her role as Veda Pierce in
Mildred Pierce
, says she’s felt more comfortable at such events lately thanks to age and experience.

“I think when I started getting older and started feeling like I wanted to express myself as a woman and to do what made me feel beautiful” is when she finally fell in love with fashion, Wood recently told PEOPLE. “I was just having fun really. I wasn’t feeling pressured to do certain things. I just felt like I was expressing myself.” Doing so with a recent, dramatic haircut — and a slew of stylish looks — she’s been able to evolve her style. Of finding her fashion sense, she shared, “I think it just happens naturally.”

As a first-time Emmy nominee, Wood is “learning to love” the process of picking out a red carpet gown, too. “I’ve started looking,” she said in late August. “I’ve gotten some offers, and I don’t know. Right now I’m just looking for what feels like me.”

Though she’d seen “some really beautiful dresses” throughout the summer, “they’re just not me,” she lamented. “So, I don’t know. I’m keeping my eye out. I’ll see it and that’ll be it.”

Reporting by Scott Huver