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February 18, 2009 8:19 PM

Eye, Fashion, Media

The Oscars: A Wearing Game

The economy is in the dumps. No one is shopping. But here in L.A. during Oscar Week, things seem to be more or less business as usual. For the last day or so, WWD has been on a fact-finding...


The economy is in the dumps. No one is shopping. But here in L.A. during Oscar Week, things seem to be more or less business as usual.

For the last day or so, WWD has been on a fact-finding mission, buzzing around parties, annoying celebrities and stylists, trying to get a sense of what people might be wearing on the red carpet come Sunday.

After a couple of false starts -- that would be parties at which the expected celebrities didn't actually show up -- we hit the mother lode this afternoon at a luncheon for Andrea Lieberman's new clothing line at Barneys New York in Beverly Hills. For almost a decade, Lieberman has been the stylist of choice for a number of Hollywood's most famous dressers, among them Gwen Stefani and Jennifer Lopez. Both of those gals were in attendance, as were a number of other top stylists, such as Arianne Phillips (clothing guru to Madonna) and Elizabeth Stewart (who dresses Calista Flockhart, Kristin Davis and others).

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Here's what the guest of honor had to say about dressing up in down times: "It's hard to predict what people will wear, but I think the mood right now is a little more effortless. I think people just don't want to look like they're trying too hard," said Lieberman.

Still, Jennifer Lopez said she felt no pressure to be less J.Lo and more Jenny From the Block. "I don't think there's anything wrong with playing dress up right now," she said. "Who wouldn't want to wear borrowed dresses and borrowed jewelry? I think you can get criticized if you're wearing borrowed dresses now because it's borrowed, and I think you can get criticized for if it's not because you bought it during the current economy. So I say do what makes you happy and wear what you want because the only thing that really matters is if your mother calls you up the next day and says, 'What were you wearing?'"
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