By Chris Michaud
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The stars strutted down the Tony Awards' red carpet on Sunday, including nominees who got an able assist from Vogue editor Anna Wintour, who a year ago proclaimed the annual event a fashion disaster in need of help.
No one look predominated. Hemlines and necklines varied. Colors ran the gamut from vivid reds, pinks and greens to neutral beige. Fabrics were alternately floral, solid or embossed, and there was a smattering of metallics.
"Heidi Chronicles" best actress nominee Elisabeth Moss chose a white, sleeveless Oscar de la Renta boldly embroidered with colorful flowers and vines in deep pink, yellow and green.
Patricia Clarkson, up for "The Elephant Man" opposite fellow nominee Bradley Cooper, also went sleeveless, in a black Alexander McQueen enlivened by huge deep red roses. "You look great!" enthused Wintour as they embraced.
On the red carpet outside Manhattan's Radio City Music Hall, bare shoulders trumped strapless looks, while the men mostly stuck to traditional tuxedos, some choosing a long tie over a bow tie.
Michael Cerveris, "Fun Home" nominee, sported an Armani tux but added his grandfather's tie bar.
For Broadway veteran Victoria Clark, nominated for a revival of "Gigi," the Wintour imprimatur was a godsend.
"I didn't have to worry about what to wear because I knew they were going to take care of it," said Clark, sporting a midnight blue gown with black lace top.
"Hand to God" best actor nominee Steven Boyer, wearing a Marc Jacobs tuxedo, cryptically observed, "There was a process" to being dressed and styled by Wintour and her minions.
Wintour, among the fashion world's most powerful and influential denizens, was brought in at the behest of Tony-winning costume designer and American Theater Wing head William Ivey Long, ostensibly to inject a bit of glamour to the annual Broadway event, which has traditionally been of more interest to theater fans than fashionistas.
The American Theater Wing is the creator of the Tonys.
The editor herself bucked the bare-shoulder trend in a dusty rose gown enlivened with sequins.
Newcomer Alexander Sharp, a favorite for best actor for the "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time," wore a cream-colored dinner jacket with plum-toned bow tie and dark trousers designed by Billy Reid.
"It's been fun to dress up - I'm not really used to all this," enthused the Broadway newcomer.
Helen Mirren, who won the best actress Tony for "The Audience," dazzled in a flowing, gauzy V-necked lace gown with an extra-long train, fitting given her role as Queen Elizabeth.
(Reporting by Chris Michaud; Editing by Leslie Adler)