Slit Queen or Pageant Betty: Miss Virginia USA Shannon McAnally and Miss New Mexico USA Kathleen Danzer share things in common at Wednesday night's Miss USA 2013 Preliminary Evening Gown Competition--PH Live Theater Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino Las Vegas
As you might have read in my last few postings here on my blog, it's "Miss USA" time again and that means one thing: Pageant Gowns! The all-important Preliminary Competition occurred this past Wednesday night at PH Live Theater in Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino Las Vegas--site of the Finals on Sunday night. In my last post, I discussed my Favorites in Evening Gown (Miss Minnesota USA, Miss Texas USA, and so on) and now it's time to discuss "The Others". Normally, this is the "Oh Dear!" post. However, I have to admit, there weren't that many "Oh Dear's!" this year. This is a good thing and could signify that these pageant girls--and their style handlers--are getting a little more conscious of what defines A MESS. But for some pageant watchers (the catty ones!) it's also a semi-bad thing, since there's not much to wreck, as it were. So, with that in mind, I decided to break down the girls who STILL love a Good Slit, the "Blue Belles" (the color blue was a trend) as well as "Lipstick Ladies" (red gowns) and finally, the Pageant Betty's; contestants whose gowns were a bit of a throw-back to the 1990s. So, let's get to it:
Show Some Leg: (Left to right) Miss Alaska USA, Miss Florida USA, Miss California USA, Miss Nevada USA--these ladies (among others) love a good slit in their gowns. The slit is a very popular detail in Pageant Gowns and has been for years. I also love a good slit and have designed many a NIKOLAKI gown with them. They've even now "invaded" the red carpet with the likes of Angelina Jolie showing what a slit can do! But sometimes, the pageant girls take a slit to new heights (like waaaay up there!). And this is where you might go into "Oh Dear!" territory. The contestants above did just fine, with all their slits, thank you very much. Now, here are two ladies who took the slit to new heights on Wednesday night---First, Miss North Carolina USA Ashley Mills...
Seems OK to me, very sweet and pretty:
Uh Oh, I see something...
GURL!!!!!! Are you wearing SEQUINED HOT SHORTS under there:
Miss North Carolina USA takes the Miss USA 2013 Drag Queen "Give Them Drama" Award for this UBER show of leg.
Next, Miss Virginia USA Shannon McAnally:
One Look and She'll Steal Your Husband: Shannon is a Lady Killer in that gown. Combined with that come-hither look, the up-do and that perfectly curvaceous body of hers, EVERY woman should hold on to their boyfriends and husbands. Now let's discuss her Slit and those Heels:
Is that a nude gusset up there at the beginning of her slit? And why is that up there? Was it added because it was just too dangerously high to begin with (the slit, that is). Or is it a peek-a-boo extension of the nude/sequined detail in the gown? I'm a bit confused. And let's just be honest here, she was already Super Sexy with all that was happening, she really didn't need to take it further with those platform "Stripper" heels. The entire package is two minutes away from looking like a "Real Housewives of Orange County" cast member.
The Blue Belles:
Blue--and many shades of blue--were big at the Miss USA 2013 Preliminary Evening Gown Competition. These ladies above (and several others) wore various tones of blue--royal blue, turquoise, ocean blue, baby blue, midnight blue...you name it, it was on stage. Of the eight contestants above, some of my Blue Faves were Miss Idaho USA Marissa Wickland and Miss Missouri USA Ellie Holtman...
Lipstick (Red) Ladies:
Red was also a big "Color Trend" at the Miss USA 2013 Preliminary Evening Gown Competition. Two of my Favorite Gowns of the night were, in fact, in this "Lipstick Red" color: Miss Minnesota USA Danielle Hooper (far left) and Miss Texas USA Alexandria Nugent (far right).
There are always a bunch of contestants at the Miss USA (and especially Miss America) who, for whatever reason, do not want to start a new Evening Gown trend or are being told by their handlers to just look and dress like a Pageant Queen from "Hollywood Central Casting" or as we like to say, a Pageant Betty. These ladies above fit this mold. First off, these contestants are gorgeous, but I question why some of them chose gowns that looked straight out of a Miss USA 1998 pageant (Miss Colorado USA, Miss North Dakota USA). I know that there should be sparkles in a pageant gown but these above look dated. A note to Pageant Gown manufacturers, designers, whoever...Take a look at how Lebanese couturiers George Hobeika, Ellie Saab, Zuhair Murad do sparkle gowns. Please. Now, speaking of Sparkle...
Sparkle, Slit and Pageant Betty: Why is the lovely Miss New Mexico USA Kathleen Danzer in this "Pageant Betty" section? Shouldn't she be in the Slit Queen category, you may ask? Of course she can be in the Slit Queen section (especially with this see-through sequined slit-happy gown), but it was that big ol' bun of hers which made me give her a "Pageant Betty Runner-Up" prize. That bun can withstand a hurricane. I swear. It was very reminiscent of Miss Universe 2011 Leila Lopes' bun:
The Leila Bun--Miss Universe 2011 Leila Lopes from Angola
Finally, my (really good) Pageant Betty Queens of the Miss USA 2013 Prelims Are...
Miss Alabama USA Mary-Margaret McCord: Mary-Margaret is a BEAUTIFUL "Pageant Betty". For the evening gown portion of Wednesday night's Preliminaries, she wore a strapless black mermaid-shaped gown. It fit her perfectly and everything else she did--in terms of styling--was just right. She's a Pageant Betty Gone Right! (and some pageant-watchers think she might be the actual next Miss USA).
Miss Kentucky USA Allie Leggett wore this dusty rose pink mermaid-shaped gown with sequined bodice and feathered bottom section. It's very "Pageant Betty" but not in a dated, negative way. I actually think she looks pretty Pageant Perfect; it's got drama, it's sweet, it's impressive and on the very beautiful Allie, I couldn't have chosen a better gown.