"I've never seen such a sophisticated Golden Globes. It's like it was the Oscars," said stylist Mary Alice Stephenson.
There were lots of hues of ocean blues, tropical shades and sandy neutrals, strapless corset-style gowns, one-shoulder numbers and a little glitz thrown in. The jewels - big chunky earrings and oversized necklaces - apparently are recession-proof.
A blond Drew Barrymore channeled Marilyn Monroe with a pouffed-out hairdo and dove gray off-the-shoulder John Galliano for Dior gown. "She created a moment," observed Stephenson.
Angelina Jolie captured a bit of a boho vibe in a loose Versace tank gown, while Brad Pitt went a more traditional route with aviator sunglasses and a classic bow tie. "They rule the red carpet," said Lisa Rinna, TV Guide Channel's red-carpet host. "She looked easy, relaxed and beautiful."
Rubenstein gave a thumbs-up to Freida Pinto's yellow strapless gown - a perfect complement to her complexion, he said - and to Eva Mendes and her "womanly, sexy" white strapless Dior with a fashion-forward gathering at the hip. Her Van Clef & Arpels turquoise-and-diamond necklace was a showstopper.
The star piece of Debra Messing's outfit: 19th-century diamond-and-emerald drop earrings by Fred Leighton. Of her black halter dress, she said, "It picked me. It fits perfectly, and I feel unbelievably comfortable in it. It just made me feel pretty, and that's the bottom line, really."
An elegant Anne Hathaway was among the many stars dressed in blue. She wore an Armani Prive strapless gown with a crystal-studded bustier and skirt of layered gazar. Blake Lively was in a midnight-blue strapless satin gown with iridescent sequin embroidery by Nina Ricci.
Three made a trend for white: Kate Beckinsale in a J. Mendel sculptured strapless, Beyonce in a beaded Elie Saab with a high slit, and Miley Cyrus in an empire-waist Marchesa with peek-a-boo gold embroidery. Fans of red included Eva Longoria in a supersleek strapless gown by Reem Acra and Kyra Sedgwick in a corseted Oscar de la Renta.
Those wearing one-shoulder creations included Maggie Gyllenhaal in a subtle blue leopard print gown by Lanvin, Cameron Diaz in bright pink Chanel and Sandra Bullock in a cream Dior.
Demi Moore wore a peach Dior chiffon gown, while her daughter Rumer Willis, the official Miss Golden Globe, wore a rose-red strapless gown by Reem Acra that had an embroidered jeweled waist. Moore's husband, Ashton Kutcher, did the black-on-black combination also favored by Nick Jonas of the Jonas Brothers.
Aaron Eckhart jazzed up his Ermenegildo Zegna tuxedo with paisley accents. "I don't have much style sense, but when I saw that, I thought it was pretty cool. ... Zegna has given me suits for films I have done and stuff, so I feel like we have a good relationship."
But a fashion black strike went to Sting, who forgot to shave, which made his oversized black coat look all the more unkempt.
By Samantha Critchell