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Stars' gowns danced down the Oscar red carpet

The Associated Press, Sunday, February 27, 2011, 5:00pm (PST)

"Black Swan" graced the Oscars on Sunday night in several ways: Besides Natalie Portman in her Rodarte violet-colored draped gown in silk chiffon with Swarovski crystals, co-star Mila Kunis wore a very low-cut, lingerie-style Elie Saab gown in lavender with lace details.

Other stars had a bit of a dancer vibe, including Mandy Moore in a gold-beaded, illusion gown by Monique Lhuillier and Hailee Steinfeld's custom-made Marchesa. Steinfeld accessorized her crystal-covered, hand-embroidered, tea-length tulle dress in pale pink with a ballerina-style, diamond-and-platinum Fred Leighton headband.

"Hailee Steinfeld made the perfect choice — in its endearingness and sincerity," said Susan Cernek, executive online fashion editor for Glamour.

Another big statement on the red carpet at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles was host Anne Hathaway in a big, attention-grabbing strapless red gown.

Gwyneth Paltrow's metallic, embroidered sheath gown with a slit-style V neck by Calvin Klein's Francisco Costa hit the trend of a more seductive, sophisticated Oscars look versus flashy, skin-baring styles.

Oscar.com fashion expert Tom Julian put Scarlett Johansson and her deep-magenta, stretch-lace gown by Dolce & Gabbana at the top of his list.

Jennifer Hudson showed off her slimmed-down figure in a tangerine-orange halter gown by Versace. She told E! she was wearing purple shoes, but the oversized skirt kept them hidden.

Jennifer Lawrence surely raised her buzz status in a slinky, scoopneck, fire-engine red Calvin Klein gown. It wasn't the usual Oscar-glam look. She looked more like a '70s swimsuit pinup — except for the 42 carats of Chopard yellow diamonds on her wrist — but it worked for her.

Cate Blanchett went the couture route in Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci. The pleated, pale-wisteria dress was embroidered with pearls, crystals covered in leather and a swath of yellow beads around the neck.

Glamour.com's Cernek put Blanchett in the same category as Florence Welch, who wore a cream-colored lace Valentino, as stars who don't back down on personal style.

"It's nice to see they could find things so unique, even as formal an occasion as it is," she said.

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