We saw dull (Felicity Jones in a blush-pink, off-the-shoulder Balenciaga column), dowdy (Julia Louis-Dreyfus in a subdued black Monique Lhuillier gown with long black lace sleeves) and disappointing (Julianne Moore in an emerald-green beaded Givenchy that lacked that extra oomph).
And we saw more plunge fronts than a water park in high summer.
We also saw a lot of just plain dark outfits, a veritable blackout on an 80-degree day. Lorelei Linklater looked as if she were auditioning for the role of Morticia Addams in a black velvet Honor gown with bell sleeves. Why so serious? It's January in L.A., not New York.
And poor Rosamund Pike, pilloried for her side-scooped white Vera Wang gown at the Golden Globes, didn't even stop to talk to the TV cameras about her ruffled blue high-low Dior gown.
But the SAG Awards red carpet wasn't a total dud.
Reese Witherspoon looked modern and confident in a one-shoulder white Giorgio Armani gown with matte sequin detailing and a deep scoop back. The gown was fitted to perfection, and her sleek ponytail was the right accompaniment. Another white light? Maggie Gyllenhaal in a slinky crepe gown with a sheer bodice panel by Thakoon Panichgul.
Pregnant or not, Keira Knightley was one of the best-dressed in a deep-plum gown by British designer Erdem Moralioglu. The dramatic hue offset the gown's delicate lace tiers.
If you were looking for unusual, Emma Stone wore a Dior design that was one part tuxedo dress, one part sheer ball skirt — altogether sassy and different.
Another cool customer, Claire Danes, chose a Marc Jacobs gown that was anything but standard issue. In olive-drab green, the column dress was embellished with sparkly cabochons. It was a riff on Jacobs' spring 2015 runway collection, which riffed on uniforms of every stripe. And it was the first time I'd seen a Jacobs design on a major awards show red carpet, maybe ever. (Jacobs left his job as creative director of Louis Vuitton after 16 years in 2013 to focus on his own label in New York, and this has to be a feather in his cap.)
When it came to stripes, always a joyful choice for the red carpet when it's nice and warm, Tatiana Maslany wore a side-flounced gown with all-over stripes that recalled beach umbrellas in St. Tropez. The gown was an Oscar de la Renta from 2013. Lupita Nyong'o was thinking along the same lines; she wore a cheery striped and watercolor floral, long sleeve Elie Saab gown.
The biggest fashion risk taker of the night was probably Jennifer Aniston, who chose a vintage gold gown by John Galliano for the simple reason that she'd fallen in love with it, as she told E! Vintage was a big trend on the red carpet in the late 1990s and early 2000s, but lesser so now that luxury labels pay stars big bucks to be walking billboards. Aniston also took a gamble on Galliano, the designer who lost his job at Dior after being caught making racist comments on a camera phone and who recently restarted his career at Maison Martin Margiela.
The dress itself wasn't tremendous, but at least Aniston proved that when it comes to fashion, she's her own woman.