The Washington Post

Billboard Music Awards: The fashion

The fashions seen on the Billboard Music Awards’s red carpet Sunday ran the gamut from traditional full length gowns to dresses that seemed to be missing a bottom half.

At an event like this, outlandish outfits are encouraged — nay — expected. And while stars like Zooey Deschanel and Taylor Swift played it safe, a handful of the more adventurous celebrities pushed the boundaries of good taste — with mixed results. Check out a few notable looks below.


View Photo Gallery: Celebrities arrive for the 2012 Billboard Awards at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nev.

Sparkles and shine

Zooey Deschanel moved out of her comfort zone with this 60s-inspired look. (Did your sarcasm detector perk up after that line?)


Zooey Deschanel (John Shearer/AP IMAGES)

Katy Perry pulled from the Lisa Frank color palette for this mermaid dress. Also note Perry’s attempt at the dark lipstick trend that was seen quite a bit on the Met ball red carpet.


Katy Perry (John Shearer/AP Images)

Julianne Hough looked like she wrapped a sparkly bath towel around herself and walked out the door. This was not a good thing.


Julianne Hough (John Shearer/AP Images)

The gowns

Jordin Sparks, who sang a tribute to Whitney Houston, was lovely in leather and velvet.


Jordin Sparks (John Shearer/AP Images)

Billboard’s Woman of the Year recipient Taylor Swift looked very mature in red.


Taylor Swift (John Shearer/AP Images)

Alicia Keys showed that less can be more in this stunning black number.


Alicia Keys (John Shearer/AP Images)

Newcomer Carly Rae Jepsen made her Billboard debut in nude. Probably not the best color to get noticed in, but still a fine look.


Carly Rae Jepsen (John Shearer/AP Images)

The bros

Justin Bieber 2.0, I’m 18 Now, Get Used To It, wore his new grown-up uniform: spiky hair, baggy pants and flashy kicks.


Justin Bieber (John Shearer/AP Images)

I may take flak for this, but I love Usher’s bright blue suit paired with a chambray button up. Looking at the vibrant color feels like something minty has been sprayed in my eyes — in a good way.


Usher (John Shearer/AP Images)

John Legend found the right mix between formal and casual, pairing his grey suit jacket with sneakers.


John Legend (John Shearer/AP Images)

The outlandish

It’s hard to pick the kookiest part of Estonian singer Kerli’s outfit. But I’m going with the stuffed animal platform shoes.


Kerli (John Shearer/AP Images)

I’m not sure what to say about Miley Cyrus’s barely there suit jacket dress and tousled hair. On the one hand, if you’ve got stems like this I guess you have to show them off. But perhaps this is a tad much?


Miley Cyrus (John Shearer/Associated Press)

Natasha Bedingfield’s see-through seafoam princess gown makes no sense to me.


Natasha Bedingfield (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for ABC)

Carrie Underwood also went for the princess style and ended up looking like a cupcake.


Carrie Underwood (John Shearer/AP Images)

I will say this about Kuba Ka’s outfit: It made me learn his name.


Kuba Ka (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for ABC)

Guys, can you believe the LMFAO people wore crazy outfits? Wild, right?


Redfoo and Sky Blu of LMFAO (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for ABC)

What was your favorite look at the Billboard Music Awards? Least favorite? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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