Forget the darling buds of May—stars like Sandra Bullock, Kirsten Dunst and Sharon Stone are in full bloom, stepping out in ruffly, romantic floral frocks. And they're not your grandma's frumpy housedresses. "Florals used to be thought of as dowdy," says celeb stylist Vincent Boucher. "Now they're used in new ways." In figure-hugging fabrics such as silk chiffon and charmeuse, the gossamer gowns "drape nicely," notes designer Ticci Tonetto. They're versatile, says L.A. boutique owner Lisa Kline—"an alternative to the dressy gown, but still appropriate for evening." For daytime too. A flowered frock provides "a softer look than the harsh lines of a suit," Kline adds. And harsh just isn't where it's at. "It's a big season for pretty," says Boucher. "It's comforting."
Which overstyled tresses aren't—so if you're going the floral route, coif accordingly. "Romantic dresses require hair that looks beautiful but not too groomed," says hairstylist Jennifer Jahanbigloo, who gives actress Bridget Moynahan's sexy finger-wave two thumbs-up. Accessories should also be simple. "If you're wearing a floral dress," advises L.A. jeweler Jennifer Kaufman, "you've got enough going on."
with N.F. Mendoza in Los Angeles
behind the seams
Eight-months-pregnant Brandy wasn't the only one beaming at a baby shower held at the pop diva's L.A. digs last week. Guests, including Holly Robinson Peete and Tia and Tamera Mowry, got in on the gift action as well, receiving a goody bag brimming with such presents as a Pottery Barn baby-picture frame, Cover Girl lipstick, Godiva chocolates, Frédéric Fekkai's Gently Clean Baby Shampoo and a gift certificate to the Greenhouse Spa....
Life in a Mob family is more than a little stressful, so last week The Sopranos' Jamie-Lynn Sigler and Aida Turturro, daughter and sister, respectively, of crime boss Tony, took an agita-busting break, booking facials at Manhattan's Oasis on Park day spa. Sigler, with skin irritation due to lip waxing, left with Dermalogica's Special Cleansing Gel, Multiactive Toner and Active Moist. Turturro, who said she was "feeling gray," opted for the line's Full Spectrum sunscreen, alpha hydroxy Gentle Clean Exfoliant and Multiactive Toner....
In a show of support for the New York City Fire Department, Prince William has taken to wearing a blue T-shirt with the FDNY initials on the back. William changed into the shirt after a June 2 polo match in Cirencester, England. "He was deeply moved by what happened on Sept. 11," says a Palace spokesperson. "It's possible someone brought it back for him as a gift."...
Actress Kelly Lynch got top fashion honors at the opening night of the Andy Warhol retrospective at L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art recently—not for her vintage Pucci minidress but for her killer gold-leather boots. Manolo's? Jimmy Choo's? "They are Frederick's of Hollywood, and I picked them up for 35 bucks!" the star squealed. Andy would be proud....
Seen: John Travolta, looking trim in black button-down sweater, tight jeans and sneakers, feasting on lobster at the Palm in West Hollywood.
How did VH1's Rachel Perry get up the nerve at Divas Las Vegas to don the beaded Celine halter shift and Swarovski-crystal-studded shoes Heather Locklear wore so memorably four months ago? She just followed her fashion heart. "I loved it," says Perry. "I thought, 'Heather's not going to be here, and she's definitely not going to be wearing this dress!'"
At a recent charity event in the South of France, Iman showed up sporting a great big rock star. Not hubby David Bowie—the De Beers Millennium Star, the world's largest flawless pear-shaped diamond. Weighing in at 203 carats, the plum-size gem reportedly carries a $150 million price tag. But isn't it a strain to schlep around? Not at all, insisted Iman, the new public face of De Beers. "It makes you so giddy," she said, "you don't feel the weight!"
Calista Flockhart wowed the red carpet crowd at last week's Tony Awards in a shimmering Lurex-lace macramé dress that boasts sexy crisscross lacing in the front and back. "Calista is a Missoni fan," says designer Angela Missoni, who created the form-fitting frock for the actress. "And the feeling is mutual."
Telling Tinseltown Tails
Call it a tails spin: Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Connelly and Penélope Cruz borrow the formal after-dark look from the guys, turning it into what Los Angeles stylist Petra Pfaffli calls a "sexy statement." The slim-silhouette updates from designers like Ralph Lauren, adds Pfaffli, "accentuate a woman's curves," leaving room for personalizing. "It's about your individual style," she says. "You know if you can carry it off." Or if you need a top hat.
The road to becoming bronze can be hazardous. What was your worst tanning mishap?
"I didn't realize that you had to wash your hands after using a self-tanner. I had orange hands for five days. It was awful!"
My Big Fat Greek Wedding's Nia Vardalos
"I once tanned with these huge sunglasses on trying to look like Jackie O. When I took them off, I looked like a raccoon."
"When I was in the ninth grade, I went on a wilderness project and didn't know anything about [sunblock]. I came back from that trip crispy! I learned that black people burn too."
Dr. Laura Schlessinger
"I don't go in the sun. I'm 102 and I look 20."