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SASHES AND TIARAS.....Miss Venezuela 2011 Evening Gowns: The Uh Oh and Not Bad!

The "Middle Girls"...Not Fab, Not Bad, just "In the Middle"
Coochie Coochie: Miss Apure Jeserly Gutierrez (Photo Courtesy of
This past weekend--as we know--was the "Miss Venezuela 2011" Pageant. The winner was the gorgeous Irene Esser (above), who represented the State of Sucre and wore a very nice silver metallic gown with shoulder-and-torso covering paillettes. Everyone agreed she looked perfect. In my last post, I gave my "Top 5 Plus Honorable Mentions" for my favorites of the evening gowns. I have to say that for this year's edition, there were A LOT of great gowns. There really weren't any big gown "missteps" or "Ayyy Dios Mio!" (I kind of wish there were!, but kudos to the designers). If this was a Project Runway Challenge, there would be no "OUT", but just "These ended up in the MIDDLE" for reasons like too-high of a slit or wrong dress on the wrong girl. are my "Middle Gown Bellezas" Awards. The HOOCHIE Award goes to: Miss Apure Jeserly Gutierrez: Jerserly's gown, designed by Venezuelan designer Valentina CedeƱo, was a simple white silk crepe halter gown, which at first glance: I liked. It looked modern and not encumbered by all the usual "tricks and bells" Miss Venezuela gowns have been known for. But then she began to walk and OOOPS: THAT Slit! If anyone was seated slightly below the stage, they might have seen her Britney. Gracias a Dios the judges were in seats way above the stage so they didn't get to see any of that. And not only did she have that WAY too-high slit, but someone felt that she also need a way-too-low neckline as well. It's either one or the other, but both?
Real Housewife of Orange County meet the Mother of The Bride...(Photo Courtesy of
The Mother-of-the-Bride Award Goes To:
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Miss Falcon Haydee Castillo: This gown, created by Venezuelan designer Luis Perdomo, was probably the biggest miss of the night--if one had to pick. It was a halter-style silk charmeuse dress featuring laser-cut petals in the skirt section. The halter section fit was odd and the overall style lacked youth and modernity. It was better suited for a Mother-of-the-Bride, not a young gorgeous beauty pageant contestant. It was just a little bit off. Real Housewives of Orange County Award Goes To:
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Miss Distrito Capital Gabrila Ferrari: Gabriella almost won the Miss Venezuela title. She came in second and won the Miss Venezuela World crown. Her gown--designed by go-to-pageant designer Gionni Straccia--was a show-stopper for sure, with its all-over sequins. But somehow, she looked like one of the "Real Housewives of Orange County" dressed up for the night. I don't think it was the gown's fault but more the fault of how she was "showing it".
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Gabriela kept putting her leg out to show the audience and judges how high that slit was and it cheapened the dress. I bet if this was on a dark-haired exotic girl (with a slick-back chignon), it would have looked TOTALLY different. Plus those Pink sequined pumps were a NO! The Come-Hither Award Goes To:
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Miss Monagas Rossana Medina: When Rossana walked on stage during the evening gown portion and the show's host announced that "her gown was designed by Angel Sanchez..." It promptly got my attention. I LOVE Angel Sanchez' dresses and admire his work and how he transformed the Miss Venezuela gowns in the late 90's/early 2000's into more refined elegant red carpet visions. I was surprised by this gown because it wasn't one of his architectural silk gazar stunners. I did, however, like the column one-shoulder style and the sublime white silk crepe fabrication.
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It had asymmetrical silver crystal inset beading and yes, it also had a very revealing side slit. I think it was again, the way the contestant was showing the dress which cheapened it.
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There was no elegance to it. She kept turning to show her derriere and at the same time, gave come-hither "I will take your man away" looks. No. No. And No. Not in an Angel Sanchez gown huney! The Bad Bust Fit Award Goes To:
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Miss Bolivar Fanny Ottati (what a fun name!): Fanny has some big SISTAHS, so she decides (or maybe the pageant organizers incorrectly decided) to wear a strapless gown. Strapless, kids, work best on girls with little boobies, thank you very much. Otherwise, it looks wrong. And guess what happened here? Si, WRONG! The white sequin-and-beaded gown, designed by Manuel Gonzalez wasn't bad, it was just the bad boobie fit. Notice how the cups stand out leaving all this empty space. Also, it's too "pushed up", totally cutting her torso and making her look as if her breasts are almost touching her chin! Ayyy pobrecita. Too Covered Up Award Goes To:
Miss Yaracuy Osmariel Villalobos: Osmariel came in fourth and won the title of Miss Venezuela Earth to go on to represent her country in the Miss Earth beauty pageant (yes, kids, there's a Miss Earth!). She was one of my favorites of the night because she wasn't your typical "Pageant Betty": no fake boobies, no big bouffant 80's Joan Collins/Dynasty hair. For her evening gown portion, she wore a Nidal Nouaihed-designed gown that featured hundreds if not thousands of mirror crystals and sequins. It won a trophy for one of the "Best Gowns/Best Designers" of the night.
Venezuelan Couturier Guy Meliet with client Barbara Palacios Teyde, Miss Venezuela and then Miss Universe 1986
The gown was an homage to Paris-born Venezuelan Couturier Guy Meliet. He designed Haute Couture creations beginning in the 1960's and into the oil-boom 80's. His clients ranged from all the rich Caracas Society "Country Club" doyennes, to a lot of Miss Venezuela's and Miss Universe winners, such as Barbara Palacios Teyde, Miss Universe 1986. Guy Meliet used a lot of unusual fabrications for his one-of-kind creations, including actual mirrors and therefore the Nouaihed gown payed tribute to this.
Mirrored Meliet: Miss Tachira 1988 Nancy Elena Garcia Amor, a Finalist in the Miss Venezuela 1988 pageant, in an Guy Meliet creation entirely made of triangle-cut mirrors on top of a silk organza base

The Nouaihed Gown on Miss Yaracuy, Osmariel Villalobos
I thought it was a VERY impacting gown but not sure it was right for the 5'7" Osmariel. It was open in the back but I felt maybe it was (dare I say it!) too covered up in the front--the high neck, the long sleeves. I think the biggest problem was not the gown but the hairstyle. If she had worn it up, in a beautiful chignon or even a slicked back ponytail I would have appreciated the beauty of the gown much more. So, there you go. No real "Bad Miss Venezuela 2011 Gowns" just mistakes made by the contestants, the stylists or a too-high slit here and there. Overall: A Good Gown Show for Pageant Fans and Venezuelan Fashion Designers. Can't wait to see what each of the top girls ends up wearing for the BIG pageants, Miss Universe, Miss World, and so on!

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