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Glamour unfolds Sharp angles and bright whites and silvers rule Red Carpet '09

The stars were out Sunday night, and they wore . . origami?

Some designers apparently have studied the Japanese art of paper-folding and translated it to evening gowns.

Heidi Klum's off-one-shoulder red gown at Sunday night's Academy Awards featured a single elegant fold at the neckline. The bodice of singer Beyonce Knowles' gown received the origami treatment.

And Marisa Tomei's gown had amazing folds and pleats from bodice to train in what could be the color of the night: white.

Even Mickey Rourke's non-tux look was off-white.

White as well as ivory, cream and other light hues quickly became a trend, with some -- such as Anne Hathaway's jewel-encrusted gown -- shimmering as well.

Best supporting actress Penelope Cruz, Sarah Jessica Parker, Taraji P. Henson and Melissa George also wore white or close to white (Parker described her gown as "barely mint"), with Cruz going the vintage route.

Metallic dresses and gowns appeared on the runways during the recent fall/winter 2009 fashion previews in New York City, so it's no surprise that they appeared on the red carpet on Sunday as well.

Viola Davis' golden halter dress was smashing, while Miley Cyrus -- who was one of the first stars to arrive and be interviewed -- wore a dress that was quite regal for the young singer.

And, apparently, heavy to wear. She told E! host Ryan Seacrest that the beaded gown weighs more than she does. Cinched at the waistline with a wide band, the gown's bottom featured embellished petals.

For those actresses and attendees interviewed on screen -- and standing behind the podium -- the designs of the top of the gowns are so important, since that's what viewers often see the most of.

On Oscar night, strapless gowns often were accessorized with "statement" necklaces for extra pizzazz (Amy Adams and Henson wore them, to name two).

Several one-shoulder gowns were seen, with one of the most memorable being Freida Pinto's sapphire blue number that bared one arm, while covering the other with a lacy sleeve.

Meryl Streep's taupe-gray gown with three-quarter-length sleeves rested slightly off the shoulders and featured subtle draping.

She opted out of a flashy statement necklace -- no surprise there -- but her dangling earrings couldn't have been a better choice.

Runway misses were hard to come by, but Parker's princess gown was a bit too frothy for some.

A few other observations:

Best hair: Kate Winslet's sculpted hairstyle looked modern with a nod to Grace Kelly at the same time. It was a nice change from all the loose up-'dos.

Lingerie looks: While not the biggest trend of the evening, gowns with details borrowed from the boudoir are making a comeback in evening wear.

George's gown featured a lace-up corseted top and a bottom so tight-fitting that one wondered how in the world she could ever sit down.

Simply pretty: Natalie Portman's pinkish strapless gown.

It doesn't get prettier than that.

e-mail: smartin@buffnews.com

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