Monday, September 12, 2011

Pageant Minute: Miss Universe 2011--Preliminary Evening Gowns Trend Alert: Transparency


See-Thru Miss Universe


Continuing on my "Miss Universe 211 Preliminary Competition" Gown Review...While looking at all the photos, and viewing the video--I quickly noticed a Trend. One of Transparent/see-through gowns that had sequined embroidery/applique' to cover the "important areas". There were LOTS of these. Some worked and some, not so much...

Let's take a look:


Miss Venezuela Universe 2011 Vanessa Goncalves: Miss Venezuela is always a favorite and top contender for the crown. Need I remind you, there were TWO Miss Venezuela's--back to back, who won the Miss Universe crown not so long ago. Vanessa wore a different gown for the very important Preliminaries. Designed by the go-to-guy for Miss Venezuela Gowns--the "new Angel Sanchez"--Gionni Straccia, it was a one-shoulder fit-to-flare gown in a sheer organza base with gold, silver and turquoise embroidered sequin applique'. It's A LOT of gown and very heavy with the embroidery. I like it in terms of its statement-making effect. She looks like a South American Cleopatra. If there was any "critique", it might be the hair: She's a hot minute away from looking a little too "Real Housewives of Atlanta" Kim Zolciak.

Miss USA 1996 Ali Landry (in Nick Verreos/NIKOLAKI gown)with host (and former beau) Mario Lopez

It also reminded me a bit of the gown I designed and created back in 1996 for the-then Miss USA Ali Landry, when she was giving up her crown. It was VERY CONTROVERSIAL then, in that I heard the producers--and the official Wardrobe Designer, did not want her to wear it because it was too risque'. But she did anyway! (At-a-Girl!).

Miss Colombia Universe 2011 Catalina Robayo: Catalina gets my "You Go Girl!" points for just going there and wearing this orange chiffon "gown" with an attached sequined see-through JUMPSUIT. Yes, I said jumpsuit! I always say, if you're going to do something, do it 110% never do it 95%. And boy, did she ever follow my advice. I can almost hear the gasp from the Preliminary Judges when she came out. I'm sure a couple of them were like "Oh, uh, ummm, OK!! Well, that's a Gown!!!!...And a beaded jumpsuit!" In terms of the "Nick Verreos Drag Queen Scale": A TEN!!!! Incidentally, it's very similar to...

This ocean-blue gown above that Miss Thailand Universe 2011 Chanyasorn Sakornchan wore for her "Official Evening Gown Portrait" (above photo). It must be by the same "designer"/brand. Same beaded legging/jumpsuit "base" but different silhouette in terms of the chiffon "over" gown.

Speaking of Miss Thailand: She changed and wore a different gown also featuring that trend of see-though/embroidered applique'. It was another one of those gowns I would put under the category of "A LOT of Dress". It's very "Showgirl" and two minutes away from looking like a gown you would see the Hostess of a Cruise Ship Cabaret Theater, wear. Those silver platforms did not help. I look at that photo and I think "Am I back in 1992??"

Miss Switzerland Universe 2011 Kerstin Cook: Kerstin's gown is a prime example of the "Transparent/Embroidered" Trend. In case you didn't know, Switzerland has a long history of making the laces and embroidery for a lot of the Haute Couture Fashion Houses--especially in the town of St. Gallen---so it makes sense for her to "represent". But somehow, this gown doesn't work, at least for me. She's so pretty, and the gown takes away from that.

Miss Dominican Republic Universe 2011 Dalia Fernandez: This is a different gown from the one she wore for the website's "Official Evening Gown Portraits". It's a coral chiffon gown with very heavy beaded details on the torso. It's a little "Nuestra Belleza"--and not in a good way. Also, she looks as if she rubbed up against the coral reefs of Australia and ended up with this gown.

Miss Australia Universe 2011 Scherri-lee Biggs: She's a BEAUTIFUL girl! Total "commercial" material. But this gown: It's a strapless gray-ivory organza gown with embroidered sequin applique', transparent from the thigh down. She could have done better; a simple clean colored silk crepe strapless gown with no "bells and whistles" would have sufficed. This one just makes her look as if she's a Trophy Presenter at the World Music Awards in Monaco. She needs to look as if SHE IS GETTING THE AWARD!!!

Miss Philippines Universe 2011 Shamcey Supsup: Shamcey also followed on this transparency-with-sequins trend. But in her case, she did it right! She doesn't look trashy or like a back-up singer in a Sonny and Cher Show (like some of the previous girls). I like the subtlety of the sheerness and the fact that her hair-and-make up don't take away from it. In terms of the "Miss Universe Drama" scale, it's pretty low, but that could be a bonus for her.

*Up Next: The "Hot Messes" of the Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary Evening Gown Competition!!!

Stay tuned...

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