Going Green on the Red Carpet

by Lauren Verini

The words eco-friendly and glamorous don’t always pair well together, but this year’s Oscars ceremony that aired last Sunday proves that efforts by fashion designers and celebrities are changing that. The ever-stylish Meryl Streep was awarded Best Actress this year for her role in The Iron Lady, and accepted the honor in a stunning gold gown by Lanvin made of eco-certified fabric. This is a part of Livia Firth’s, wife to actor Colin Firth, Green Carpet Challenge, which she started in 2010 to encourage celebrities to sport sustainable fashion on the red carpet. This year, Firth herself wore a stunning red Valentino couture dress made of recycled polyester from plastic bottles.

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Also spotted wearing green on the red carpet was Missi Pyle, leading actress from “The Artist” which won best picture. Pyle showed off the eco-friendly creation by fashion designer Valentina Delfino who was the winner of the Red Carpet, Green Dress contest. An initiative similar to Firth’s Green Carpet Challenge, the Red Carpet Green Dress contest was started by James Cameron’swife Suzy Amis Cameron in 2009. This year, Pyle was the lucky actress to sport the winner’s dress, a blue gown featuring organic silk, natural hand dyed mineral pigments and recycled polyester.

Aside from the sustainable fashion, stars also enjoyed eco-friendly SWAG bag gifts and sustainable cooking after the show. Each nominee who didn’t take home an Oscar took home a SWAG bag worth over $60,000 dollars filled with tons of goodies, including eco-friendly product like Essential Safe Products food storage containers, EarthPawz pet cleaners and organic body scrub from Eminence Organics. After the show, stars enjoyed a delicious meal prepared by celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck who cooked 50 dishes for 1,500 guests at the Governors Ball, the party immediately following the Oscars. Puck’s menu incorporated locally grown California produce as well as sustainable seafood, in addition to classic favorites like chicken pot pie with black truffles.

While certainly not every celebrity at Sunday’s award show was making an effort to go green, many of the stars that were nominated practice being eco-friendly in their day-to-day life. George Clooney for instance owns two electric cars, and Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie started the Make It Right Foundation where they have helped to build 150 sustainable homes in New Orleans.

While this year’s Oscars ceremony had its eco-friendly moments, there is still plenty of room for improvement. The good news is that the show’s producers are already planning next year’s ceremony and are making another change to be more sustainable. According to the official Academy Awards website, in 2013 for the 85th Oscars ceremony, the academy will use an electronic voting system for the first time instead of paper.

What other changes would you like to see at next year’s Oscars ceremony in an effort to be more sustainable? Let us know below!


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