Yesterday in Las Vegas, Latin and Spanish-speaking entertainers hammed it up on the red carpet to honor Shakira as the 2011 Latin Recording Academy's Person of the Year. If this was just the warm up to tonight's main event, The Latin Grammys, then I might have to broaden my definition of "over the top" tonight.
Shakira is pretty great. She disguised herself as a boy to take classes at UCLA. I hear she has an IQ of 140 (not that IQ tests are totally unbiased, objective determiners of one's intelligence) and is rumored to be a member of MENSA (ditto). Her charity organization, Pies Descalzos has built schools and community centers all over her native country of Colombia, and most importantly—or at least the most-important very-superficial reason for why she's great—she's the best dressed star of the night in a beautifully draped Grecian gown with beaded, silver straps. Way to show up at your own party looking every bit as gracious and classy as the guest of honor ought to look.
Singer Natalia Jiménez demonstrates the twirling advantages of wearing a searing white bridal dress with a circle skirt. I marvel at how coy she looks with a gloved hand inside her skirt pocket.
That is one impressive dress on Brazilian singer Paula Fernandes. How does a dress with a gaping slit down the front manage to give her boobs so much terrifying lift? I'm amazed by how much the slit on her dress resembles a dagger. Also, how on earth does that dagger-slit manage to get down to her crotch without revealing even a hint of bellybutton? It's a talented dress. It also employs one of my favorite red carpet tropes, the ol' decorating one's crotch with a bunch of froufrou frippery. Sure the dress is a bit much, or a lot much, and even Paula looks a bit frightened by her own make-up, but it's a totally appropriate dress to wear to an awards ceremony honoring a SHE WOLF.
Dude, no one, and I mean no one, is going to top Mexican singer Alejandra Guzmán's poses. According to Wikipedia, Alejandra is known as the "Queen of Rock" in the Latin world. She's wearing a studded leather dress, and in a couple of photos, she looks like she's two pubes away from grinding up on that wall. She's new my hero.
Maria Conchita Alonso is wearing a very shiny ECG monitor on her skirt. Cuban-American model and TV show host Lili Estefan is wearing a lovely gold draped dress that is all but ruined by the loathesome cowl neck. It's hard for me to find the good in Barbara Mori's dress. The awful shade of blue, the weird neckline of her sheer dress over a very synthetic looking slip, the horrible beading, the ugly flowers that outline her crotch, need I say more?
These three ladies represent the toned-down portion of last night's outfits. Giselle Blondet is in odd shoes—they look both orthopedic and painful. Compared to everyone else, Paulina Rubio looks nearly Amish in her strapless black gown, at least if you ignore the impressive cleavage. Karen Hoyos is air kissing us to draw our attention away from the tulle explosion happening at the bottom half of her gown.
Variations on a theme: peep toe stilettos, shiny dress, shiny hair, shiny make-up, big ol' earrings, and incredible posture. Check, check, check, check, check, check. Shaila Durcal is relatively covered up, but unfortunately the fabric she covered herself in is pretty ugly. Chiquinquira Delgado looks like she wrapped herself in spun silk. Lourdes Stephen proves that a dress can be draped into having a half-bubble hem with an extra inexplicable piece of fabric peeking out from underneath the bubble portion of the skirt.
And now I present to you the best dressed duos of the night. Angelica Castro and Cristián de la Fuente look like a witchy priestess and old country ranger, respectively, dressed up for a formal night out. Gotta love it when the man is the one who wears the glitter, as is the case with Aleks Syntek and Karen Coronado. Rapper Taboo of the Black Eyed Peas looks like a modern-day dandy next to his beautiful and stylish wife, Jaymie Dizon. It ain't easy matching two loud prints with each other while still managing to look understated and chic.
And now, the winners of the evening's "Wait, what event did you think you were attending?" awards: More than 90% of Arlene Tur's body is covered by this very shiny white dress (proving that the color white can be an eyesore); the lack of flesh is practically subversive. Musician Pau Donés is scruffy and shine-free. This occasion dictates one embrace the exact opposite! Satcha Pretto's dress is the closet thing to colorblocking this event had. It's still your standard bandage dress with your standard stiletto pumps, but her hair is shiny and bouncy and mine is dull and ratty, so I'm shutting up and succumbing to the allure of the SHINE.