Rachel Bilson in Milly at the People’s Choice Awards Nominations Event

Posted on November 06, 2013

Since she’s mentally filed in the cabinet labeled “BEYOND DULL” in our collective brainspace, we’d probably be inclined to Huzzah and Attagirl her all over the place for wearing this. If it was July right now.


Rachel Bilson attends the 40th Annual People’s Choice Awards Nominations, held at the Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills, California in a Milly ensemble paired with Givenchy sandals.

Milly by Michelle Smith Spring 2014 Collection

The shoes are pretty much awful, but we really like the top and skirt for her. And look, we get that seasonal dressing is somewhat less important in this, our ever-shrinking 21stC world. We’re the last people who think that we should all, for instance, have to dress in autumnal tones of orange, gold and red during the fall months or pastels during the spring months. And don’t even get us started on the whole red-and-green thing in December. People should wear the colors that suit them and dress according to the weather outside their windows. But we also think there are ways to dress both weather and season-appropriate at the same time. This shows too much skin and has too many wildly bright and bold graphic elements to read as anything but high summer, especially with the focus-pulling white sandals. Sure, it’s relatively warm in Beverly Hills, but it’s not so blazing hot that she can’t wear something with slightly more coverage.

Pretend Stylist time: We would have: kept the skirt and given her a solid-color top, possibly even a blouse (so long as it didn’t look too business-like) or cami; put her in a pair of dark red pumps; added a cuff or bangle; given her a stronger lip.

Pop Quiz time: What would you do to make this look more like November while still looking Southern California?





[Photo Credit: Jennifer Graylock/INFphoto.com, Peter West/ACE/INFphoto.com, IMAXtree]

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  • teensmom99

    I loved the the thumbnail (I know, I know) so I think TLo are right about a few quick fixes. Is there a non-midriff baring version of the top. That’s what I’d like because I actually like the look and think it’s heavy enough to not be July. And maybe slingback shoes in navy . . .(inother words, cover the toes). Or a cute peep toe–so SoCal with some openness but not totally bare.

  • Glam Dixie

    She certainly doesn’t look like she loves it so I don’t know why we should. I’m no stylist so I’ll just say, what you said.

  • Leslie Streeter

    She’s a pretty girl, but you’re right, Glam Dixie. She doesn’t look comfortable in it. I hate this midriff thing, not that she can’t pull it off, but because it’s not needed.

  • bellafigura1

    Black booties!

    • procrastinatrice

      Agreed! I unabashedly love this, seasons be damned, but black booties, ideally with open toes (I know those are controversial, but I like them!) would add sophistication.

      • procrastinatrice

        Oh, and maybe, a black cropped cape, if she is chilly.

      • PostsYouCanDanceTo

        I’m not the only person who likes open-toed booties! They look like something you’d find in a sci-fi jrpg while still looking like clothing people actually wear!

      • bellafigura1

        I love open-toed booties too. I’m past my expiration date for that look (meaning, too old to figure out what season they belong to) but think it’s divine. Chanel did over the knee open toed lambskins a year or two ago and they were WOW.

  • What’s bugging me most is the too much hair thing, which is over-balancing her and making her head look huge compared to her wee frame.

    • Introspective

      cocker spaniel hair has been the bane of our BK existence (and apparently the reason for being among hollywood hairstylists) for about forever. when will it end???

      • I wish I knew. *sighs loudly*

      • Jessica Freeman

        the same time flat-ironed-almost-burnt will.

      • conniemd

        We are seeing a few shorter lengths. Christina Aguilera’s hair on The Voice is beautifully cut and frames her face. I don’t think it’s stylists, it’s straight men’s fault because they always tell women that they love long hair and not to cut it.

    • teensmom99

      I’m so used to too much hair (on her/on others) that I hardly see it any more.

      • Tatiana Luján

        at least it looks like it is all hers and not extensions.

  • Janet B

    Slim pants (dk orange or black) and a leather bomber jacket. Hair pulled back in a ponytail.
    Poor thing, she looks cold.

  • Tatiana Luján

    the ankle straps of those sandals, plus the skirt’s leght are doing bad things to her legs.
    I live ina tropical country and simply don’t understand why bold graphics, bright colors and loud prints don’t fit in the fall or winter wardrobe. The skin baring on the other hand… I say, if it’s warm enough, then do it. If it’s not warm enough, you look stupid and feel cold and that’s your punishment.

    • AnneElliot

      I agree, my first thought was that the ankle straps were cutting her off, making her look shorter — and she’s a wee little thing, only about 5’2″

  • Jessica Freeman

    Well the top and the shoes certainly are the first to swap. Certainly a short sleeve top tucked in, and default black pumps. I would have pulled the hair back as well.

  • carnush

    I agree. Keep the skirt, add a cropped fuzzy sweater – white or gray – and maybe some cute ankle boots with a stacked heel, and yes, a stronger lip. Done!

    • MilaXX

      ooh I like a cropped fuzzy sweater

      • teensmom99

        cropped fuzzy sweater is an inspired touch.

    • AmeliaEve

      I love this idea, though I am seeing it in apricot in my mind’s eye, short dolman sleeves, with a chunky pendant.

      As long as we avoid the assassin’s gloves the model is wearing.

  • Lori

    This would be an attagirl if it was July and she didn’t look like she was sucking it in for all she’s worth. If you’re not comfortable in the skin baring outfit, pick another outfit. “Has not drawn a full breath since she got out of the car and wishes she was anywhere else right now” is not a sexy look.

  • decormaven

    Dear, please pull back your hair. It overwhelms every look you sport on the RC. And take a cue from the kindly uncles; a closed-toe shoe and a different, non-baring-midriff top would give this a more sophisticated style. Right now, it’s a step away from hula gal in strappy sandals.

    • it’s always the right time for a bare midriff in L.A. so-cal does not know from seasons…

  • JDreesen

    when in doubt, scarf it out!

    and wear close-toed shoes.

    and sleeves of any kind.

    and an elastic hair tie.

    …aaaaand i’m done.

  • Mary Lauer

    I have no idea how to take that and make it not look like high summer. But I am more concerned about the fact she apparently dripped her coffee/water/wine/unknown beverage down the front of the skirt …

    • CakesOnAPlane

      oh snap it looks like coffee or wine…either ways something not easy to get out…

  • gabbilevy

    Covering the midriff and putting her in pumps would do it for me.

  • In_Stitches

    Sew that skirt to the top. It raises the hemline to a more flattering length while eliminating the strip of skin that reads so summery. Swap out the white sandals (which I love) for…I don’t know, teal booties? That sounds horrible. Copper pumps?

    • oooo copper is a good idea. maybe an exquisite copper cuff.

  • Danielle

    She looks like she is afraid to exhale.

    • HomeOfficeGirl

      Agreed. She is sucking-in-to-death.

  • ashtangajunkie

    I think I would like it if approximately 87% of female celebrities went for a big haircut. Or just removed their extensions. Then we could spend less time wishing that they would pull back their hair. It is almost always my first thought when I see these gals on the RC. Too much hair.

    I think a solid top that meets the waistband of the skirt and some pumps would Novemberize this enough for me. Even black top and pumps would be better.

  • sagecreek

    Dark red pumps with that orange hem? Once again, I must reflect on my basic lack of cool, since that sounds awful to me.

  • MilaXX

    Black top, blood red booties, hair in a low, loose pony. A pair of bangles or gold cuff. Those shoes she is wearing are offensively ugly and a size too small. Burn them.

  • Jaeda Laurez

    I would have kept the top, and added a pair of dark high-waist skinny jeans with black boots, thrown a cute fitted blazer on top, and added a gold statement ring.

  • MoHub

    No. More. Exposed. Midriffs.


  • tereliz

    satin bomber jacket.

  • mrspeel2

    What are those two black dots on the front of the skirt?

  • marlie

    Honestly, I would have switched out those gawdawful white shoes and put her in a pair of red or navy (or even black) pumps. Otherwise, I like this on her, and it doesn’t scream too summery to me (except for the shoes).

  • mmebam

    Shoes and a shrug/jacket.

  • NDC_IPCentral

    Unkempt spaniel hair, right down to the wavies in the lower sections. I don’t like this hairstyle at all.

    I like the colors and print in the outfit, but agree with the BKs who are nixing the bare midriff. Even an all-black top, or mostly black with maybe some orange or jade would have taken this out of the summer category. The shoes, though, are a big mistake.

  • Lil cropped blazer. Top attached to skirt for chrissakes! A dark pump, and put that hair up, pleeease!

  • Anne

    A black blazer and closed-toe shoes.

    Also, she looks like she can’t breathe. Or rather, like she was told that she shouldn’t breathe too much in this outfit.

  • Jackie4g

    Firstly, I don’t like the proportions of the 2 piece dress on such a petite person. It would compliment a taller woman.
    If a band is wanted at the hem (which to me is gimmicky in the first place) then break up the orange hem band with a narrow bias strip of black, at its top or bottom, so it has some relationship to the black waistband, and doesn’t look to be the bookend to the black waistband. The open midriff is not essential, but startlets bare their bodies and this one is a lot less awful than it might be. I would also opt for pumps, in any color of the print. Then carry a little leather jacket in a tan or saddle color. Autumnal in a warm climate.

  • prettybigkitty

    I actually love the shoes. Just not with this outfit and not in November.

  • SugarSnap108

    I would use the shoes to create a small bonfire next to her, providing the extra warmth needed in November and allowing her to keep the beachy luau vibe she seems to enjoy.

  • bertkeeter

    Lets chop her into a few more pieces???

  • MannahattaMamma

    Wrap her in a floor-length abaya and send her home?

  • this is a rare occasion indeed, for sleah is about to recommend black shoes. in fact, the one the model is wearing are perfect, as they echo the black bandeau look of the skirt. and how about a cropped little jacket with 3/4 sleeves? black of course comes to mind, but how about navy or a dark mossy green?

  • Michael Cardoza

    Why not dress like this since it’s around 80 degrees in L.A.?

  • Miss_Led

    She looks so uncomfortable — she’s gripping her fists in the 2nd photo from the bottom.

  • Roz

    black booties and a lightweight hip length cream silk sweater. Hair in a loose ponytail.

  • snarkykitten

    She looks really uncomfortable

  • judybrowni

    brrrrr, I’m getting a chill just looking at the outfit, while in my apartment, in freaking Los Angeles.

    If this was a night-time event, it’s in the low 50s here, never mind sunshine during the day.

    • Cordelia_Gray

      Yep. It may be high 70’s during the day here, but night-time definitely requires a bit more coverage than this.

  • If she still wants the crop top feel then I’ll style her in a black, slightly loose, long-sleeved turtleneck crop knit top to go along with the skirt. Add a gold cuff on one wrist and a chunky gold watch on the other. Since it’s a turtleneck, her hair would be pulled off her neck; maybe in a slick low ponytail or a high slightly messy bun. Finish off the look with a navy blue heels.

  • quiltrx

    Maybe a cute little black jacket (like maybe elbow or 3/4 sleeves) and some black shoes?

  • ItAin’tMe

    I love the dress, no matter the season. I hate seeing people wearing clothes made for cool weather in 80 degree LA or Miami, just because it’s fall.

  • calimon

    to answer TLo’s PopQuiz question: booties instead of sandal heels.

    I live in southern California, and while the days and the sunshine is still warm, the air is chilly, especially in the morning and towards sunset/evening. I can tell she’s freezing too, because of the way her hands are in the second to the last picture — that’s not her tense with excitement.

  • Qitkat

    It’s quite an adorable unusual dress, but the shoe choice is hideously wrong. I’m not so bothered by the apparently summery look here as with some other outfits; I think it’s flattering on her. But if you’re chilly, honey, there’s no need to suffer so for of all things the PCA. I’m with many of the BK’s who had some great ideas for styling it up to feel more appropriate for November in the Northern Hemisphere, so I have no new ideas.

  • Tracy_Flick

    The tight, high-waisted skirt and belly top combo, where a strip of skin in the Heimlich zone is exposed, seems trendy right now. It also seems extremely uncomfortable; ladystars always seem like they’re not ably to fully breathe.

  • Since we’re going through a 90s redux, I might have just put a long-sleeve black shirt under that top Maggie Sheffield of the Nanny style. Royal purple peep-toes for the shoes.

  • Trickytrisha

    Hmm, shorter skirt, black tights, some sick yellow booties, and Tilda’s top from today worn open as a jacket. Feel free to scoff.

  • melanie0866

    White sandals in November = Rachel Bilson will never be a Kappa Kappa Gamma.

  • I would like to know why in the bloody HELL someone couldn’t have taken the cords off the floor and out of the photo. it’s the details that always bother me.

    As for styling–yes to the stronger lip and different shoes, but I don’t see this skewing as anything but warm weather fare. Maybe keep the top and put it with a pair of black skinny ankle-length pants?

  • mickiemonkey

    Salt-water sandals’ slutty cousin.

  • elzatelzabelz

    More November-ornage or purple top, closed top pumps, gold jewelry-done.

  • ankali

    Keep both top and skirt, add black long-sleeved bodysuit (turtleneck would be good, OH SUE ME I LIKE THEM) underneath, black tights, & booties that are either entirely dark red or with dark red accents. Or are slouchy & black. Hair in messy updo w/ chopsticks.

  • Brittany Knupper

    As someone currently living in Los Angeles, where it is still in the 80’s in November, I can’t really fault her for this.

  • demidaemon

    I don’t know. It looks so flat on her and has a lot more hootzpah on the model. I’m calling this one a fail.

  • Close-toed pumps, black top.

    …It’s been in the 80s in LA this last week…ugh.