She Leads, You Follow: 2015 ESPY Awards Edition

The annual ESPY Awards took place on Wednesday night at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, California, and while the award show itself recognize great achievements and victories in athletics, the ESPYs red carpet showcases those who have great style on and off the playing field. And these talented athletes certainly proved that they have some serious style game.

U.S. Women’s National Soccer team star Ali Krieger hit the red carpet in a red-hot floor-length gown, complete with a thigh-high slit and waist cutout. She paired the look with strappy black pumps, and kept her hair and makeup soft to let her true beauty shine through.

Amy Purdy looked equal parts sparkly and stunning in a silver minidress on the ESPYs red carpet. The Paralympic bronze medalist paired her beaded nude frock with a taupe and silver frame clutch and metallic gladiator heels, while sweeping her hair up into a chic updo that allowed us to see her gorgeous chandelier earrings.

Los Angeles Clippers star J.J. Reddick’s cobalt suit was not enough to compete with wife Chelsea Kilgore’s white-hot floor length gown. Kilgore’s ethereal gown features intricate pleating and ruching details at the bodice that tapers off into a subtle fringe skirt. With her hair was styled in a classic updo, Kilgore opted for an equally classic red lip, creating the perfect red carpet look.

Volleyball star Micha Hancock rounds out THL’s favorite ESPY red carpet looks, wearing a nude tulle trumpet-style gown, embellished with navy lace appliqués. She completed her lacy look with a silver clutch, a simple updo, and minimal jewelry.

Although these ladies are dressed to impress for the ESPY Awards, there are some things we can take away from their red carpet look and apply to the way we dress in our everyday lives.

  1. Cutouts can create shape – Ali Krieger’s gown shows us that there are more to cutouts than what meets the eye, that is, if they are well-placed cutouts. Krieger’s gown features a cutout at the waist of the dress, which serves to not only show some skin but also to accentuate her natural waistline. To incorporate cutouts in your wardrobe, start off with pieces that have small cutouts at the waist; this way, you can test out cutouts in a way that won’t show too much skin but will still serve the purpose of drawing attention to your waistline. Once you get comfortable with the idea of cutouts, work up to pieces that may have a back cutout or cutouts that start on the front of the garment and move to the back; pieces like this will ensure that your shape is defined coming and going.
  2. It’s all in the details – Amy Purdy and Micha Hancock’s dresses show the power of details. Purdy’s dress is covered in sparkly beading, but they are all deliberately positioned. If you notice, the sparkles widen at the neck and bust, narrow at the waist and gradually widen at the hip. This intentional beading tricks our eyes into seeing a perfect hourglass shape, letting the dress do the work so your body doesn’t have to. Hancock’s dress works in a similar way: the lace appliqués are more dense at the top, and in a dark navy, this slims the torso and hips. The appliqués taper off toward the bottom, and the wide hemline balances out her hips, again creating a perfect hourglass silhouette. Paying attention to tiny details like these in your clothing will allow you to choose pieces that will instantly flatter you.
  3. Simplicity can be complex – Chelsea Kilgore’s white gown teaches us that a simple outfit can be just as complex as those with loud prints and flashy beading. The pleating and ruching on her dress not only acts as an interesting detail, it also creates shape in a similar way to Purdy’s beading and Hancock’s lace appliqués. The gown’s skirt features trendy fringe, allowing for a peek of her legs while also creating movement in the dress. So although Kilgore’s gown is a solid color, there are several elements of the dress that create visual interest and make it more complex than it appears. When you are shopping, don’t dismiss simple pieces at first glance; take a moment to evaluate the features of the garment, and you might be surprised by the hidden complexity in the piece that may just make it the piece your wardrobe has been lacking.
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