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The Best Oscar Dresses Of All Time

- Hannah Slapper

The Academy Award has always been one of the most revered accolades in show business. But in addition to the international recognition of excellence, this one night in February is a chance to do some serious PR work. Actors and actresses alike have a rare opportunity to show their 'real' personality, rather than acting within a role, and, for better or worse, a lot of this is caught up with their personal appearance. Yes, the red carpet is arguably the most eagerly awaited part of the ceremony, as we see our idols arriving in glittering attire. The A-listers and their stylists really have to work together to get it right, because when they do, magic can happen. This year, Jennifer Lawrence stole the show in her couture Dior, and it got us thinking about all the other beauties who have taken our breath away with their glamorous gowns. Here are our favourite Oscar dresses of all time:

Audrey Hepburn in Givenchy, Roman Holiday
Audrey Hepburn in her beautiful waist-enhancing white lace midi Givenchy dress kisses her Oscar for Best Actress in Roman Holiday.
Grace Kelly in Edith Head
1955, Grace Kelly holds her Oscar in a classic Hollywood mint green dress by Edith Head, the designer who still holds the record for most Academy Awards won by a woman, a grand total of eight.
Julia Roberts in Vintage Valentino 2001 Oscars
Julia Roberts brought vintage back into fashion with her amazing Valentino dress at the 2001 Oscars, the year she won Best Actress for Erin Brokovich.
Kate Hudson in Versace 2003
Kate Hudson's effortless elegance was emphasised in 2003 by this ethereal and delicate Versace dress.
Jennifer Lopez in Valentino 2003 Oscars
Jennifer Lopez departed from her usual bootylicious-ness in the same year with this delectable Valentino number, and that draped one-shoulder cut made her look like a Grecian goddess.
Charlize Theron Gucci 2004 Oscars
With glamourous waves in her hair and an enviable smooth bronzed back, Charlize Theron was both sexy and demure when she won Best Actress for Monster in 2004.
Cate Blanchett Valentino 2005
Cate Blanchett showed us that blondes can look beautiful in yellow with this classic Valentino silk dress. The burgundy belt emphasised her red lips, alabaster skin, and happiness at winning Best Supporting Actress for The Aviator.
Hilary Swank in Guy LeRoche Oscars 2005
After an awe inspiring performance by Hilary Swank in Million Dollar Baby, we were delighted with the simple but risque Guy Laroche at the 2005 Academy Awards.
Keira Knightley Vera Wang 2006 Oscars
An instant classic, Keira Knightley's chocolate brown Vera Wang dress with its impressive fish-tail made her look like a statuesque mermaid.
Reese Witherspoon Vintage Dior 1955, 2006
Reese Witherspoon had another old-school success in 2006, when her sparkling dress turned out to be vintage Christian Dior from 1955.
Penelope Cruz in Versace 2007
For most girls, the Oscars present an exciting opportunity to dress up. Penelope Cruz inspired many of us in 2007 after arriving in a full-blown Versace princess dress, complete with feathered skirt.
Jennifer Lawrence Calvin Klein 2011 Oscars
Jennifer Lawrence smouldered at the 2011 Oscars, her first ever, wearing a figure-enhancing red Calvin Klein.
2012 Emma Stone Giambattista Valli
Emma Stone is famous for her impeccable style, but it was this sweeping cherry red Giambattista Valli dress, with that super cute side bow. She looks like a present, waiting to be opened.
Gwyneth Paltrow Tom Ford Academy Awards 2012
Finally, who can forget Gwyneth Paltrow. Last year she stood out in this ultra-modern and sleek Tom Ford dress. From the back, the cape detail made her look like a marble column, and her simple make-up and silky low ponytail ensured she was unbeatable.

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