Monday, February 9, 2015

2015 Grammy Awards Red Carpet: Brief Impressions

Much like the Country Music Awards, the Grammy Awards tend to bring out the wildest and wackiest of couture. Musicians and actors have a distinctively different flair on the red carpet, and last night’s Grammy Awards showed off “musician flair” quite dramatically. Rather than attempt to categorize the various looks, or directly compare them, I’m just going to go through a number of attendees and give a brief description of the impression I got from each look.

Anna Kendrick’s skinny, cleavage-baring tux paired with long, wavy locks and pointed stilletos was elegant and flattering, but it’s been done before (if not necessarily done better).

Annie Lennox is the Helen Mirren of the music world: her gown was flattering, glamorous, and age-appropriate, and her hairstyle was just dramatic enough to set her apart from the crowd. She looked like a million bucks.

Ariane Grande managed to look both cute and sexy in this Grecian-inspired white gown. The silver panel looked a bit sloppy, but the lines of the dress were lovely and I loved her high half-pony and minimal makeup.

Ashanti’s gown also had beautiful lines, but the broad open front revealed just a hair too much drooping side-boob. One more bead-edged panel halfway up would still have allowed for plenty of skin while carrying out the geometric lines, but would have been much more flattering. A fuller hairstyle would also have balanced out the proportions better. 

Beyonce’s red carpet look was a bit blah for my taste. The silhouette was pretty, but her chest looked flattened and uncomfortable and the peekaboo fabric covered with blobs that looked like crushed tissue paper just didn’t work for me. 

Charli XCX had a halfway decent concept, but the execution didn’t work. The baggy tux pants with narrow hem looked a bit like sweatpants, the jacket was too tight over the ribs, and the droopy fur wrap was not the right proportion for the rest of the outfit. The coordinating pink bow tie and satin shoes were a nice touch, though. 

Chrissy Teigen barely pulled off this stunning gown, with the long wavy lines of her hair echoing the long wavy open panels in the dress. Unfortunately, the panels hit in just the right place to reveal some unflattering underboob. But with John Legend on her arm, especially in a slick shawl-collared gray tux, she pulled it off. 

Ciara was slightly overwhelmed by this bulky gown. I liked the volume in the train, and it would have worked with a slimmer body (the gown’s, not hers – check out those calves!!), but the bulk around her neck looked like a spare tire. Points for her sleek shiny hair and natural makeup, though.

Gwen Stefani rocked the red carpet in this fabulous jumpsuit with its swirly mesh bodice and baggy tapered capris. I should have hated everything about this outfit, and yet it was one of my favorite looks of the night. The structured top and loose bottom worked together, and something about the lines of the top reminded me of a Van Gogh painting. This kind of cutting-edge look is what the Grammys are all about.

Iggy Azalea stunned in this cobalt blue column with wide cleavage and just a few well-placed peekaboo slits. It fit her like a glove and was never out of place when she moved. Her thick coronet-style braid was a bit fuzzy but its geometric line worked perfectly with her gorgeously chiseled features to create another of my favorite looks of the evening.

Jennifer Hudson’s short white gown teetered on the edge of being too simple, but her chic short ‘do, fabulous orchid lips, and tiny but elegant necklace pulled it up nicely. 

Jenny Lewis’ charming rainbow-fade suit paired with giant bottle green sunglasses was a flower child look for the 2010s. It could have been improved by better shoes (perhaps rainbow-striped strappy sandals or bright orange or turquoise pointy pumps), but it was a fun look.

Jessie J and Meghan Trainor both went for old-school glamour in similar lacy black columns with sheer overlays. Jessie brought just a hair of an edge with slicked-back hair and dark, stark makeup, where Trainor opted for softer hair and makeup that played up the traditional glamour of the look.

Kat Graham’s gown was basically a giant white chrysanthemum applique over a see-through black sheath. It was absolutely gorgeous and perfectly flattering on her. Her tight bun and nude lips let the dress take center stage, as it should have. A great look.

I felt like I should have loved Katy Perry’s dress, but somehow it didn’t quite work for me. It was too see-through, the fringe was too shaggy-looking, and the cut was somewhat matronly. It couldn’t decide whether to be sexy or covered-up. I loved her hair color, if not the mussed style, and the silver of the dress worked well with it, but this overall look just didn’t do it for me.

Kim Kardashian opted for something that looked like a heavily beaded metallic gold bathrobe with too-long sleeves weighed down further by bulky cuffs and giant epaulets. She announced that she had been styled by Kanye, which may explain a lot of things about this disastrous look.

Kristin Anderson-Lopez looked absolutely adorable in this vintage-inspired flared dress. I loved the textures of the fabric, especially the vertical strips around the rib cage. And with her equally adorable husband Robert on her arm, in a retro velvet tux jacket paired with ruffled shirt and sneakers, they look like they’re headed to the most fun prom ever. 

Lady Gaga’s look was toned-down to the point of being almost subtle (for her, anyway) in this sleek silver column with high slit and wide cleavage. Her smooth platinum hair and stunning emerald pendant added a nice finishing polish.

Madonna wore a matador hat with birdcage veil and epaulets mixed with a sequin-encrusted corset and tutu and matching long gloves and thigh-high gladiator boots. It wasn’t a horrible look, but she always looks like she’s trying too hard these days. 

I probably would have liked this look better on someone other than Miley Cyrus, but I will grudgingly admit that it wasn’t a bad look. The plunging neckline was sexy without being too revealing, and the cut-outs were tastefully done, although the ones over the hipbones were perhaps not at the most flattering location. But the slim line with just a hint of a mermaid flare and a tiny train was lovely. 

I barely recognized Nicki Minaj in this va-va-voom black fringed gown paired with simple straight hair and nude makeup. She looked absolutely stunning with a tiny waistband emphasizing her tiny waist, gravity-defying cleavage, hip-hugging skirt ending in a carwash fringe that moved beautifully, and matching diamond cuff bracelets. Well done, Nicki!

Rihanna’s giant pink gown reminded me of the doll-shaped birthday cake I made for my daughter’s second birthday. The color was great on her, and the bodice was pretty, but it was just ridiculously voluminous. Lose three or four of the petticoats that had to be under there and it might just have worked. 

Sia’s look consisted mainly of a giant white wig and a mini-me by her side. I think she had on skinny black pants and a plain black cape as well, but who noticed underneath the bizarre wig? I’m not sure what else I can even say about this look, other than that her lipstick was a pretty color. 

Taylor Swift stunned in this spectacular aqua gown. The geometric straps and flat bodice were flattering on her tall, slim figure, and the straight miniskirt with yards of leg ending in gorgeous orchid-colored shoes peeking out from the ballgown-styled skirt (which perfectly skimmed the ground) brought it to a whole new level. My eye was drawn to her in every single crowd shot. Hands down, my favorite look of the night.

Bottom line for the red carpet? There were a few missteps, but on the whole, there were some great and unusual looks out there. 

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