2017 Miss USA Evening Gown Recap

Surprising as it may be, I happen to LOVE a good pageant. Yes, the hair, makeup, swimsuit and sparkles are all a bit extra and antiquated, but it is still a competition…..and I am all about it. Much like a red carpet, these ladies’ choice in garment are picked apart, compared and ultimately one is crowned as the best. I happen to take this part very seriously, as many of the gowns are designed specifically for each contestant; much like bridal.  Allow me to judge, (in alphabetical order, obviously)—–

Miss Alaska


Red. Cherry red in fact. My least favorite palette. Miss Alaska is obviously not the typical pageant person. She is more rugged and muscular than her fellow contestants, which hinders her ability to glide as femininely as one would prefer. Don’t get me wrong,  I am totally behind the #strongisthenewskinny movement and all, but in a beauty pageant, it could pose a problem. To counter act her contoured frame, a softer shade of pale pink, blue or even yellow would have been a better choice. The halter is ago to for girls with great shoulders, but these thicker bust proportions makes her appear too broad. Needless to say, would not be my first pick. This brunette is a bombshell and deserved better.

Miss California

This gown hit close to home. Bridal introduced this pattern of what I refer to as, ‘a sparkly fence’. This geometric choice paired with the pointy bust line AND mesh sleeve overpowered this poor girl. My eye went everywhere besides her glowing face. The beaded belt was also a bit low on her torso. Raising it an inch or so would have emphasized her tiny waist and created an overall more curvy sillouette. Swing and a miss for Miss Cali.

Miss District of Columbia


This smarty pants scientist was crowned the winner, and I am 100% behind that decision. Her choice in gown was a strategically strong choice. The beadwork pattern was not my favorite, however, the movement of the skirt and the low cut key hole were perfect. She was gliding on that stage and although the dress was not revolutionary, it did it’s job by bringing the enhancing her beauty rather than overpowering it. The slit was sexy, but not slutty and the narrow cut bodice was the perfect amount of flirty. Beauty and brains. 

Miss Illinois


Hmmm. No quite sure what she was thinking with this one. There ARE aspect of the design that are intriguing, and the color is fab….but the fringe is too long and the the top is too stiff. This is a bit of a helter-skelter look. I love a good fringe, but starting at the hips on a straight skirt can only add width, and I’m guessing that was not the goal. It resembled hair rather than tassel. The bodice actually fit her well, but the structured chain mail pattern only confused matters. Not sure what if she was going for a modern, boho or hollywood look. 

Miss Minnesota


This beauty nailed it. When describing this gown, the host mentioned that she had to create this look from two gowns. She had a skirt from one dress combined with the bodice of another. I can’t tell you how many times brides wanted to do this. Many times is was a construction nightmare, but in this case, it worked. I personally would have left off the beads from the top and removed the exaggerated push up bra, but it IS a pageant and  I get it. The skirt is PERFECTION! We all know that the sheer trend has been played out, but the addition of the textured pant and opaque panty is awesome, awesome, awesome. She looked beyond confident and cool. She knew it was a home run. I am a big fan.

Miss Missouri


Meh. This mermaid, rouched style has been done so many times, there really isn’t much to say about it. It’s red. It’s fitted. It’s strapless. The pointy bodice resembles a devil’s horns, combined with the color palette…?? Give her a tail and pitch fork. It’s unfortunate, because she is as cute as a button. Something ivory and flowy would have suited her angelic face much better. 

Miss New Jersey 


I was pulling for her from the beginning. There was nothing wrong, per say, with this look. Nothing memerable either. The fit and tailoring is spot on, the proportions of the halter are great too. It was just a bit safe. Now if anyone could pull off a jewel tone, it would be this girl. Even a bit more of a sheer skirt could have given it a bit of pizazz. And I have to say…the shoe is kind of an odd choice. The platform is obviously worn and nicked up a bit, and the color is totally off. Maybe there was a wardrobe malfunction. This whole look bummed me out.

Miss New York


Not sure why red heads always go with green. It’s too expected. Now, this girl is insanely gorgeous, but from the intro, I was distracted with the styling of her hair. Why oh why did they add the eighties’ oversprayed wings? This aged her and stole the spotlight from her amazing face. I digress. The dress is fine. The sheer underlay with a beaded pattern is pretty. The deep v is flattering to her neckline, and her body is obviously banging. The barely there panty line is not necessary. She is wearing what looks like an ivory granny panty. Why highlight that in an obscure way. Doesn’t seem intentional. On this stage- it is ‘go big or go home.’ She should have either gone sans or spanx. Did I mention how much I disliked her hair?

Miss South Carolina


Yea, sooooo. I know it sounds like I am Nancy Negative, but really?!?! Royal blue?? Not sure it’s possible to pick a more pageant predictable color. I will say, that this cut on the arm is by far the most flattering for any strap. Not great for hugs or the YMCA dance, but looks damn good on some well cut shoulders. The skirt has an added train beginning from each side seam…again, a frequented design element in bridal as well. The reasoning behind it is that the skirt remains slim and flattering from from front and isn’t compromised when adding volume and length to the back. I would have preferred a heavier fabric than the tulle with this particular gown. The end result would have been more dramatic. This falls a bit flat.

Miss Tennessee


I happen to really like this gown. It’s cool, elegant without a lot of contrived elements….BUT, it is not fitted properly at the bodice. With stakes this high- I find that completely unacceptable. This blonde beauty is lean and narrow but with every step the side of her dress pertrudes at the waistline, widening her overall stature. I doubt that is what she is going for. Now if last minute alterations couldn’t happen, I am sure that some double sided tape was readily available at a Miss USA pageant. Be better than that Miss T. Be better. 

Well, that’s the top 10, people. There you have it. 

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