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Grammys Fashion

Claire Stephens | Monday, February 11, 2013

This year’s Grammy Awards had more than its fair share of good ensembles, ones that simply did not work and more than usual “what were they thinking?” looks. Despite the strict dress code of the event, several female celebs managed to get around it and show some (too much?) skin.

Chris Brown

The all white look was clean and striking, despite the overly-casual posture he seemed to be parked in during most of the evening.

Carrie Underwood

She knocked it out of the park, both with her classy, form-fitting red carpet dress and her silver gown during her performance. Even though the simple silver dress with unique geometric bust worked on its own, the dress stole the show as moving patterns ran across it, thanks to the special-effects lighting.


Going more conservative, Rihanna wore a long, flowing red dress, and the sheer sections in the torso of the dress added just a little bit of edge. She went for classy and chose solid colors – red for the red carpet and black for the stage . However, the white and silver striped pant/midriff top outfit from her second performance belonged in the “too casual for the Grammys” category.

Tim McGraw

He sported a look absolutely no woman could resist – the timeless, stylishly-cut black jacket with a black button-down shirt. McGraw added a matching cowboy hat and left a few shirt buttons undone to mix masculine with suave.

Kelly Rowland

Flirting with the line between sexy and tasteful, the geometric cut-outs in Rowland’s form-fitting black dress covered just enough to keep the look from going too far. On top of that, the mermaid-style skirt was a beautiful look on its own.


Though it’s refreshing to see someone in a color besides black, the red floral pattern was over the top in a bad way – it was unflattering, frumpy and looked like a print from your grandmother’s ugly curtains.

Jennifer Lopez

What might have been a simple look (an over-the-shoulder dress with a formal up-do) is completely ruined by the too-high slit, which revealed enough leg to be vulgar instead of sexy. Angelina Jolie’s sassy leg-through-the-slit look might have worked at the Oscars, but JLo’s exposed thigh does not.

Katy Perry

Perry’s long-sleeved dress was a minty, sea-foam green – a shade that didn’t work with her skin tone or hair color. This look was made worse by the huge opening in the bust, which put all the focus on “the girls.” Just because you’ve got it, Katy Perry, doesn’t mean you should flaunt all of it.


A disappointing lack of formality after her fierce Super Bowl outfit, Beyonce’s black pants and boxy black-and-white top wouldn’t be nice enough for Sunday brunch, much less the Grammys.

2 Chainz

What would have been a good look is turned into something that looks like it belongs in ComicCon, with all its bad accessories. The rapper should have lost the cape and wrestler-esque belt, unless he was going for a Batman or Dracula look.

Taylor Swift

Swift looked like something out of a Tim Burton film during her white, sparkly, ring-leader circus performance. The bottom of the dress, big-buttoned jacket and gold-striped hat could have gone either way between fabulous and failure.

Frank Ocean

The outfit for his performance (a yellow suit with sweatband across his head) was certainly out there, as were the visual effects of the performance. Ocean’s red-carpet look was also strange. The navy, unbuttoned suit couldn’t seem to make up its mind between formal and casual.


Kimbra looked as if she had rhinestones glued all over her body, but the look was actually just a nude dress covered in sparkles. Whether her dress was designed by a 5-year-old at craft time is another question entirely.

Florence Welch

While a metallic-colored dress or large, spiky studs would have been an eye-turning look on its own, Welch seems to have come dressed as Bowser, by sporting both.

Contact Claire Stephens at [email protected]

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.