Taraji P. Henson wowed in a custom lace Alexander Wang gown in black with bike-chain straps, and Amy Schumer stepped up her fashion game in a strapless blue-gray Zac Posen as the Emmys parade of pretty kicked off Sunday in Los Angeles.
Henson paired her edgy look that had a tiny, triangular cutout below the breast with a bob and minimal jewelry. Of the designer, Henson said: "He was my first date to the Met ball so I thought he should shine tonight.
" If two is a trend then count Claire Danes with Henson as she, too, went for chunky chain details, her look a purple sequin Prada with gold links at the shoulders and sides.
"It IS a little rock star-esque," she said.
Schumer did a little dance as she walked with her sister in her busty full gown. "We feel like the evil stepsisters," she said. "We're pretty psyched."
Joanna Newsom went way outside the box as she walked the red carpet with hubby and the evening's host, Andy Samberg, in a strapless Delpozo creation that had a huge oval applique with seashells on it, choosing a back 'do with a severe middle part that hid her ears. She appeared more kicky nun than wow.
Some adored Heidi Klum's Atelier Versace silk chiffon confection with one long, flowing sleeve and a skinny strap on the other side. Sheer to the upper thigh and dotted with crystals, it was busily adorned with petals.
"I called Donatella (Versace) and I said, 'I have to have this canary yellow dress,' and here it is," Klum explained.
One of the early ladies in red was youthful Sarah Hyland, in a fitted maroon Zac Posen with an elegant neckline and a dainty strap falling to the shoulders and encircling her back. She rocked a wavy bob and sexy side part.
"I'm so sweaty," she said. Styled by Brad Goreski, she wore long drop earrings and a jewel-encrusted cuff of the same color.
Mindy Kaling, Padma Lakshmi, Taylor Schilling and Dascha Polanco joined the yellow patrol. It wasn't possible for Lakshmi to be any sexier in her bombshell Romona Keveza in chartreuse. The strapless gown featured a draped silk sweetheart bodice and showed off her curves.
"It fits me, which is impressive," the beauty smiled.
Jaimie Alexander of NBC's "Blindspot" glistened from neck to toe in a body-hugging, blue, purple and red Armani Prive she wore with a slicked-back 'do and delicate purple crystal earrings from Baccarat.
Jamie Alexander with Peter Facinelli
"It covers all the leftover tattoo residual stuff I have on my body right now," she said of her high neckline and long sleeves.
In the all-about-the-pattern department, Zoe Kazan was part peppermint, part test pattern in her swirly striped Miu Miu gown. And that's just fine with her. She said she picked it because it looked like a candy cane. And it did.
Kazan said she's a great admirer of designer Miuccia Prada.
Kiernan Shipka, quite the little fashion darling with her regular attendance at New York Fashion Week, earned raves from style maven Nina Garcia on Twitter for a yellow Dior Haute Couture cut-off ball gown that was embroidered yellow with a sheer panel on top, paired with black wool cigarette pants and simple black heeled pumps.
Garcia tweeted that it was "fun, fashion forward, different & chic." Others also praised Shipka's look, but designer Michael Costello, who appeared on "Project Runway" and now designs his own lines, wasn't a fan.
"It's the Emmys and I think you shouldn't show up looking like you're wearing two different outfits," he said. "That was just a fashion disaster."
Costello loved Schumer's curvy gown. In fact, he loved all the curves on the red carpet.
"That color on Amy was absolutely beautiful. She was old Hollywood glamour, but we're used to seeing that in sizes 2, 4 and 6," he said. "It's nice we're now seeing it in 8, 10 and 12."
Ellie Kemper in a sleeveless, multicolored Naeem Kahn that had a sparkly, striped design earned accolades. She also wore a big smile, with her hair slicked back in a middle part.
Always the bombshell, Laverne Cox showed up at the Microsoft Theater in a custom Calvin Klein Collection silk crepe dress in teal. It had a cut-out back and was designed by Francisco Costa.
The evening's bright pop of pink came courtesy of Christine Baranski, worn with golden pearl drop earrings with diamonds from Chopard. Gina Rodriguez dazzled in a strapless paler shade of pink. It was a beaded silk tulle gown by Lorena Sarbu.
Kerry Washington walked in a silver-encrusted Marc Jacobs fresh off the New York Fashion Week runway and falling to the mid-calf with a side slit. January Jones went for a teal green but in a strapless jumpsuit with a sweetheart neck.
Julianne Hough attended Marchesa's fashion week show in New York and grabbed Look No. 1 for herself, a strappy black sheer praised by some but criticized by others as a bit too Frederick's of Hollywood.
And then there was Sofia Vergara, in her usual wow mode. This time, she picked Italian gold lame, a custom gown encrusted with Swarovski stones and designed by St. John with a softly flared train and a curved strapless neckline.
Leanne Italie, Associated Press; AP Photos