Taylor Swift in Elie Saab Couture at the 2013 CMA Awards

Posted on November 07, 2013

This is the very definition of an “Of course” moment:

Taylor Swift attends the 2013 CMA Awards in Nashville, Tennessee in an Elie Saab couture gown paired with Lorraine Schwartz jewelry.

Elie Saab Fall 2013 Couture Collection

Of course.

If we were asked to imagine what Taylor Swift would be wearing to the CMAs, we doubt we’d have been far off from this. A big princess gown was going to be a given and red was a rather high likelihood. But really, she looks beautiful. Expected or not, the look really works for her. Not exciting, but very pretty.





[Photo Credit: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images, IMAXtree]

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  • Adriana

    Yeah it’s expected but I can’t work up any hate because she looks gorgeous.

    • mshesterp

      That color of red on her is exquisite.

    • Kent Roby

      I’m able to work up hate for her, but she does look gorgeous.

    • Me Again

      Agreed. The “Of Course” from T and Lo suggests that there is something to disapprove of, but I don’t think that’s the case. “Of course” is more suited for Lea Michelle, whose default look is (or at least, was) incredibly tacky and vamping. Taylor’s look, though not innovative, is quite gorgeous.

  • Karen Belgrad

    Horrible dart placement. She’s far too young to look like she’s that lacking in support. (But the color is gorgeous)

    • Aidan B

      Agreed 100%! That bodice is terribly unflattering on her. Better dart placement/support and this would have been a WERQ. Okay, well, maybe with different hair, too.

    • leilah

      For me, this is a sign that the dress was designed for an older, medium-boned woman..

  • This may be her personal best, for me, at least. That dress is glorious, and she is killing it. Never thought I’d say that about Miss Tay Tay.

    • lexilexi

      Yes – and she is a pro poser.

  • RussellH88

    She looks very pretty.

    I don’t know why, but I get the feeling that if she committed to it she could work a Gwen Stefani-lite kind of look.

    • tallgirl1204

      She does, a little, in a couple of her videos. And it is a good one for her.

  • Funkykatt

    Where’s the country music hair?

    • On Carrie Underwood and Miranda Lambert. I think since Taylor is also a pop artist, she strays from looking too country, even at a country event.

  • hyperionic

    At least she did something with her hair… Its looking less dishwater colored.

  • amber.

    are we still considering her country?
    she looks fine. whatever.

  • BeeBeauNYC

    At least it’s not white! I think it’s a fab dress, actually, and she looks pretty good, but her hair is bugging me.

  • Aidan B

    God, her hair color bugs. There is something strange about it that I can’t figure out. ETA: Also, that is a strange style.

    • shirab

      It seems so flat, doesn’t it? I can’t imagine that her natural hair color would be worse than this. Why not just go with the natural color for as long as possible and save the wear and tear on your tresses? It’s not like she needs to cover gray strands at this point.

      • Aidan B

        Exactly! i remember her being much blonder in the past, and it was definitely more flattering than this. I think that was her natural color, too.

    • lrober03

      It’s a weird style, but now I’m picturing her with a bob and it would be really cute

  • Emily Smith

    She was INSUFFERABLE to watch in the audience during the show though. Example: when Miranda Lambert beat her in one of her categories and told her how much she loved her performance (which I didn’t see) she was all “who me?! aw shucks!” in just the most affected way.

  • PastryGoddess

    That hair is bad

    • Clueless_Jock

      The dress needs a more polished hairstyle, but otherwise, great look.

  • NYCGlamourpuss

    So are we transferring ownership of “Of Course” from Lea Michele to Taylor? Because… of course.

  • quiltrx

    Expected or no, it’s an incredible gown (I pinned it from the original collection and have that “I know that dress” moment every time someone wears it) and it looks terrific on her….totally agree. A great choice.

  • carnush

    Beautiful. Love the beading.

  • Fordzo

    Thank God, let’s get her out of the way this morning.

    When are we going to talk about the Miss Universe national costumes? I’m much more interested in them.

  • Really stunning.
    I’ve come full circle on Swifty. This time a year ago she was tap dancing on my nerve with all that manufactured sweetness. But then The Tongue That Took New York dropped her new shtick, and the Walking Art Project has “left her hotel” umpteen times, and suddenly, a nicely dressed girl with a little bit of class, is a refreshing change of pace. Carry prissily on, Tay.

    • Vickiefantastico

      Wow, you wrote EXACTLY what I was thinking! I completely concur!

    • Erica

      One or two poor comparisons is all a girl (or guy) really needs in life, amirite? It’s the reason why I actively benefit from the fact that my husband was married to someone else before me. She remains the incredibly poor comparison to whom I am favorably compared, eight years into our marriage, by everyone who knew her. I figure I’ve got at least 3-4 years more before I have to step up my game a bit. Tay might need to start actively recruiting her own poor comparisons after another year or two, though.

  • TrishR

    Wow! She looks amazing! No bows or other cutsies, thank goodness.

  • Jessica Freeman

    I will take her expected Of Course anyday, over the likes of the recent abominations of Of Courses shown on the site.

    • marlie

      A classy “of course” beats a tacky one, in my book. S’fine with me.

  • Adrianna Grężak

    I like the idea of her hair with this dress, but it looks a little too Pinterest.

  • xmixiex

    can’t stand this little trick, but she does look beautiful. those earrings are STUNNING.

  • Sara

    I don’t judge her for picking at or biting her nails but she really should get a manicure before she comes to these things.

    • Christy Bishop Cricow

      Actually, I was just thinking how refreshing to see a natural hand–esp. as opposed to those hideous, tacky talons we ‘re seeing so much of lately.

      • jonesybj_notreally

        I was looking at her hands, thinking – oh, yeah… of course her nails look like crap. she plays guitar. if you really play guitar, unless you have the keratin of a rhino, your nails look like crap. so I pardon that detail, and agree, she’s rising to the top of a shallow peer pool.

      • The natural nail is nice. A little buffing, some cuticle and a clear top coat could would have been sufficient. A light sparkle would have been even better. So glad she didn’t go with red.

      • Cheryl

        She is a musician, her hands are her tools. Short nails are a must.

    • filmcricket

      I’m presuming her short bare nails are for ease of guitar playing.

      • tallgirl1204

        i’m trying to work that out for myself. Long-time pianist, long-time nail biter who finally reformed but still has to keep my nails short. She looks like a nail-biter. It’s really, really hard to have to try to be so perfect all the time– so, I’m going to go with the need for a natural-ish manicure for big events, with the caveat that if that just adds stress, don’t mind me and don’t bother.

        • formerlyAnon

          ” It’s really, really hard to have to try to be so perfect all the time-”
          Yes, rightly or wrongly I’ve always seen her as being driven to the point of OCD to get everything “right,” and I’ve always cut her a tiny sliver of slack because that’s such a miserable life.**

          ** Well, *I* would find it miserable. I do know a couple of people who swear that for them it’s perfectly normal and I try not to tell them that I know better and they just don’t realize how miserable they are.

  • Clydette Wantland

    She looks gorg. No way around it.

  • Fanny_Trollope

    She looks lovely. I dislike the flesh-colored elastic, or whatever it is, under the arms. Didn’t like it on the Duchess of Cambridge; don’t like it here.

    • Fanny_Trollope

      And now I’m looking again and I’m not absolutely sure it IS flesh-colored elastic. Maybe it’s actual flesh. Hmmmm. Someone help me out here.

      • Kathy

        I see what you mean. It’s flesh-colored fabric. See pic 5 down.

        • Cheryl

          I guess it’s to have the look of bare skin, without accidental side boobage?

          • alyce1213

            Normally, I dislike flesh-colored or sheer inserts, but it’s very subtle here and definitely the right choice for her to avoid side boob.

  • It’s snooze-worthy but two things: 1) she does look beautiful 2) at least someone brought some real fashion to the CMA red carpet. I live in CMA-land. The fashion is questionable at best.

  • filmcricket

    Note entirely sold on the bodice, but it is a lovely dress and that shade is magnificent on her.

  • jw_ny

    She looks lovely…on the mature side tho.

  • fauxprah

    ZsaZsa…………..is that you?

  • Kate Andrews

    Enough with the “dart nipples.”

  • Yeah….she looks great….I have to admit it. Really a wonderful look, and her “of course” here is not as offensive as the old Lea Michele “of course”.

  • ashtangajunkie

    Couldn’t be more “of course” if it tried. But pretty, of course.

  • ojosazules

    You can tell that she loves this dress and feels beautiful in it. I guess that’s what matters, really. It is perfect for her.

  • Danielle

    She will always be on my irrational hate list, but this is still absolutely stunning.

    • Constant Reader

      Me too, on both points.

  • Angela_the_Librarian

    Christmas Taylor Swift Doll now available at fine retailers near you!

  • I like it on her very much. Maybe hair could be a little bit better.

  • colleenjanel

    Miss Tay Tay looks pretty and all, but ROBIN ROBERTS deserves some love! She was WERQing her look last night, and brought the GUNS out! For someone who was fighting for her life a year ago, she looked AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!

  • crash1212

    Of course. But she looks stunning. The very epitome of playing to your strengths.

  • kimmeister

    At least it’s not beige! I don’t like that embroidery in red though . . . looks like blood vessels.

  • rissa42210

    She looks absolutely gorgeous – safe bet, but solid returns. Don’t know that this was the venue to really go out on a limb, anyway.

  • Lilak

    I’d love to see that gown in the deeper tone (as reproduced in the runway photo) on a BRUNETTE. Then I would swoon.

  • cocohall

    Mothers of the World! Attention! I am the ROLE MODEL for your impressionable young daughters. I believe foam fingers are for ball parks and ladybits should always be covered in layers of satin and silk. Follow me to Princess Land.

    I think she looks lovely. Really. But this is no accident and not simply a style preference. I’ve read profiles of her that explain her very considered approach to her fans, shows, etc. She knows that looking like this makes her attractive to parents who purchase the very expensive tickets to her shows and makes her attractive as a brand. She is safe safe safe. I think she is a talented song writer, a passable singer, but a truly brilliant brand manager. And this is possibly a personal best for her.

    • Kelly

      Excellent point, about the branding. Definitely.

    • DuBey2

      And kudos to the parents who “vote” for this with their wallets. Because plenty of young ladies and teens are going to concerts etc by people who are NOT safe. Its got to be very hard today, for the parents and the teens…

  • TheAutisticStepmom

    I think she looks ancient. Especially in that last photo.

  • Janet B

    She chose the perfect dress and wore it perfectly, of course

  • conniemd

    Elie Saab is the God of really pretty safe gowns for beautiful lady stars.

  • EKW2

    This would be perfect for a tv Christmas special.

    • formerlyAnon

      Of the kind we watched in the late ’60s and early ’70s. And she’d do it well.

      • alyce1213

        You know, I wouldn’t mind that. I might even watch. Memories of Andy Williams, The Carpenters, Captain and Tenille, John Denver, and others. Holiday Xanax.

        • formerlyAnon

          I thought those shows were a few isolated decent acts in an hour of ennui at the time. I suspect I’d enjoy a similar show a lot more today.

      • Sunraya

        Does anyone remember the King Family specials? Lots of blondes!

  • katiessh

    she looks good! and grown up- look at the difference between the structure of this dress and the kind of dresses she wore back in the days of the ‘taylor swift’ album. And i love the back of it as well, especially the straps

  • marlie

    This is really gorgeous. Completely typical for TayTay, but I doubt the CMAs would have been the place that she decided to completely switch up her style, anyway. Yes, a princessy ballgown, but the color saves it from being a snooze.

  • SugarSnap108

    I’m usually averse to a princess-y look, but this dress is really lovely, and it’s a great color for her. However, her penchant for standing with the exaggerated swayback, looking coyly over her shoulder, works on my last nerve.

  • Violentcello

    It looks like someone sewed nipples into the dress, and too low at that.

    Her makeup’s very pretty, but I don’t much like her hair. Her bangs are too heavy, and it looks like it’s come undone in a lot of places.

  • Belvane

    She looks perfect, and wow, that whole Elie Saab collection was stunning. I liked it when you showed it the first time, but looking at it again now, it really stands out as one of the best collections this year. Hey, TLo, how about a post of the best pieces from the year’s collections? A year-end wrap-up?

  • Trickytrisha

    Pretty darned great. A bit more uplift in the chest area would have been nice, but wow, that’s an effective gown and she’s just so lovely my teeth ache.

    • Qitkat

      That is my issue with it, for such a young woman things really look too low and unsupported. It is a beautiful gown, but seems a bit much for a country music awards show.

  • Denise

    Gorgeous. She should give it to me when she’s done with that dress. I love Elie Saab. He never exactly reinvents the wheel but this dresses are just so pretty.

  • CT14

    She always looks like this.


  • formerlyAnon

    One hopes she’s having fun. It’s like a more dramatic version of a debutant gown, except it’s more for the job and there’s less fun in the strategic socializing..

  • MilaXX


  • willworktomorrow

    I’m not a fan of her music, but I think she looks incredible here. TLo, I’m confused about when celebrities are taken to task for getting too far outside their style wheelhouse and other times when they are an “of course.” With Lea Michelle I get it because she is so desperately cultivating an image that really doesn’t seem to fit. But with Taylor Swift, I think the color of this dress takes it outside of pretty pretty princess into a dramatic statement perfect for a young woman.

  • Aurumgirl

    She does look gorgeous. But didn’t she just wear a shorty version of this gown in teal, somewhere, a few days ago?

  • alyce1213

    She knocked it out of the park. Of course, in the nicest possible way.

    As I type this, I’m watching a rerun of the Season 3 finals of Project Runway on Esquire. Boy, was that a different show!

  • Imasewsure

    This is beautiful… and very seasonal since the stores are already starting to pipe in that damn Xmas music.

  • The hottest red carpet trend right now is “Christmas is coming”.

  • ItAin’tMe

    It’s rare to see the real person look as well as the model does.

  • Jecca2244

    the camera flashes does that dress no favors.

  • I kind of wish the bottom half had a touch of the slightly risqué elements in the top (the deep arm slits and plunging back). I’m reimagining this with a slinky fitted skirt to the floor on the bottom, with a vampy slit. Still retro, less twee. Try it sometime, Tay-honey.

  • Laylalola

    I’ve always thought Elie Saab’s pastel confections are almost made just for Taylor Swift. It seems she doesn’t really want to touch them, though, instead often choosing either a bold color (like this one) or some material (again, like this one) that’s not quite the ethereal look I think of when it comes to Elie Saab.

  • cakecakecake

    That waist is just too damn high, again!

  • NoveltyRocker

    This really appears to be hanging off of her and the waist hits too high. If you’re going to do something so simple, the fit has to be dead on or it all just goes generic and JC Penny holiday catalogue.

  • Oh it’s this year’s Christmas Barbie!!!

  • Kelly

    She does look lovely. Yes, it looks “Christmas Barbie” and too big, but still, I’d give her the whole thing (“of course” can be good) if it weren’t for the visible nipples and lack of support. Even if we’re just seeing the sewn-in darts, that visual adds a touch of tacky to a look that isn’t. Also, if you’re already hanging a little low at age 20 (or whatever she is), why advertise it?

  • Jeanettesca

    I don’t understand the nipple dart thing. It’s just not flattering IMO.

  • SusannaGA

    I love her soft, shiny bangs (we’re always complaining about dry, fried hair, right?), and the earrings are gorgeous.

  • Lisa M. (ReVoir) Kramp

    It’s your standard fabulous gown on your standard all-American blue-eyed blonde.

  • ThaliaMenninger

    The color is amazing on the runway. It’s probably just lighting. But MAN, I wish I could see it in that deep, gorgeous color.

  • E. D.

    Looks good. Not sure if I like those earrings though, they seem too busy.

  • jspark

    Those darts give her grandma boobs.

  • bertkeeter

    Blah just entered the room!

  • rondele

    Now there’s a red lip. Of course.

  • No seriously, she really looks beautiful. And I love a big red dress any ol’ day.

  • Call me Bee

    She’s creeping up on my Irrational Celeb Hate List just because she seems so pretentious (I really don’t know that much about her except she’s really young…) but she looks gorgeous here. And her gown is beautiful and is hemmed correctly.

  • guest2visits

    Beautiful; but I’m wondering if that gorgeous saturated pink on the model is the same color….I like it even more.
    The little twisty hair roll works really nicely on her too.

  • nicewilliams

    This ages her immensely.

  • tixilyttik

    She does look beautiful, but the dress on the model is absolutely breathtaking. It seems to be in a darker red. Why would she lighten it? Maybe it’s just the photographs.

  • French_Swede

    I love everything about this, and the cherry on top is … the earrings! Just gorgeous! The dress is perfectly fitted, she absolutely knows how to pose in it, and it is age appropriate (young woman) without being skanky.

  • paintedfish

    i see she’s suffering from Anne Hathaway Syndrome with the dress nipples.

  • Sunraya

    A waste of pockets, but I do love te gown on her!


    Even Tay looks bored with herself these days.

  • omg_dora

    I love it, even though the color looked much better on the runway. In fact, I want to have this gown’s little silky babies.