With the new dress code at the 55th Annual Grammy Awards this past Sunday, Feb. 10, “buttocks and female breasts” were to be “adequately covered” and “sheer see-through clothing” was to be avoided if it were to expose the breast or genital region — a request that seems pretty self-explanatory. Right?
However, the Grammy committee felt that these guidelines needed to be established after multiple years of stars sporting scandalous outfits on music’s biggest night.
These efforts do not necessarily mean that there weren’t any dress-code offenders. Stars such as Jennifer Lopez and Katy Perry interpreted the dress code in their own way, stretching the rules to accommodate their outfits. Seeing as these stars were not thrown out of the ceremony or reprimanded in any visible way, some are left wondering what the purpose of the dress code is or why it was even established in the first place.
“The Grammys should be a classy event,” said sophomore Sarah Kitts.
Senior Megan Braun, who was interviewed alongside Kitts, agreed with her statement.
“The new guidelines are there to make the event much more tasteful,” Braun added.
There was much controversy surrounding Lopez’s dress, as it seemed to be missing half of its bottom. The slit in her black Anthony Vaccarello dress wore more like a bodysuit on her right side, exposing her entire thigh. At one point when interviewing with Ryan Seacrest on E!, she was forced to hold her clutch in front of her dress, just to make sure she didn’t flash the camera. Lopez joked about her dress, saying in the interview, “as you can see, I read the memo.”
Pitbull read it as well. When presenting alongside her, he quipped, “you look gorgeous and you inspired the memo.”
Other near rule breakers were Katy Perry and Miranda Lambert. Lambert wore a black Roberto Cavalli dress on the red carpet with a massive plunging neckline, while Perry wore a long- sleeved, mint green Gucci gown, also with not much left to the imagination by ways of cleavage. The jeweled collar and low cut highlighted her bust. At one point in the evening, Perry was pictured laughing with Portia de Rossi and Ellen DeGeneres, who was caught jokingly checking out her cleavage.
Not everyone ignored the memo to dress more conservatively however, with stars like Beyoncé, Florence Welch, and Adele covering mostly all of their assets.
Beyoncé, who was largely quiet on the red carpet, interviewing with nearly no one, wore an Osman Studio pantsuit with black and white paneling. It was elegant, yet it received mixed reviews from the public. Some expected her to go all out, “Beyoncé-style,” blowing everyone else out of the water. Others were happy to see another side of her style, letting others take the lead.
Florence Welch also abided by the dress code, however her dress was far more exciting. Wearing a custom-made, reptilian green colored Riccardo Tisci of Givenchy gown, Welch was a head-turner on the red carpet. Its 3D studs were unique to her style, and the emerald green offset her flaming hair color perfectly.
Adele, who recently had a little boy, returned to the Grammys wearing a Valentino print dress, pleasing many who were happy to see her vary from her standard black dress and voluminous hairdo. Adele opted for an up-do and matching print shoes, however her look still received mixed reviews. While many were happy to see her change it up, they would’ve preferred the black monotony to this overbearing and unflattering pattern.
Best dressed of the night went to Rihanna, who stunned many people in a crimson red Azzedine Alaia gown. Her wavy, ombré hair and her statement ruby red lips highlighted the color of the dress. The gown was sheer in certain areas, but at the same time, subtle enough not to draw too much attention from the sticklers who created the new dress code.
Alicia Keys also wore a dress by Alaia, although her dress was black and had visible geometric cutouts. She also paired her dress with statement lips, a popular trend of the night that drew more attention to her outfit rather than as to whether or not she adhered to the dress code.
Taylor Swift did not vary from her own personal style, wearing what she called in an interview with E!, a “vanilla yogurt” colored dress. Swift seems partial to this color and other neutral tones but wowed nonetheless. Her dress was a J. Mendel design, and was officially described as chiffon, not yogurt, and had beautiful metallic-plated straps and tasteful cutouts over the waist and back. Despite the maturity of the dress, Swift was able to pull off the look.
While the women clearly stole the show on the red carpet, the men did not disappoint. Many sported the classic black tuxedo, but others like X-Factor host Mario Lopez took a different route by wearing a maroon-colored tux.
Lopez was successful in his spin-off of the traditional tuxedo, but others like rapper Wiz Khalifa were not. Khalifa bore his full chest under a black-and-white checkered jacket, turning many heads who questioned his choice to do so. Although the dress code was targeted to the women of the red carpet, Khalifa could have also benefited from taking tips from the Grammy committee.
The 55th Annual Grammy Awards were an overall success in the fashions adorned by celebrities on the red carpet, as stars went all out despite the new dress code. However, this year did seem to be missing a true statement dress that would eventually prompt the creation of a meme (hint: Angelina Jolie). While there was no real star that took a risk with their choice, the oddest dresses would have to go to Florence Welch and Jennifer Lopez.
Perhaps the era of the meat dress or showing up to an award show in a pre-hatched shell is over, or perhaps the absence of a certain fashionista pop icon just put the movement on hiatus. That being said, one can only wonder how Lady Gaga would’ve interpreted the new dress code.
Luckily for the viewers, the Academy Awards on Feb. 24 will be another opportunity for stars to take risks on the red carpet, meriting much discussion thereafter.
Mackenzie is a member of the class of 2016.