Best National Costumes--Miss Universe 2015
During Thursday night's Miss Universe 2015 Preliminary Competition, the 80 contestants competing for the coveted crown also presented themselves in the much-awaited "Miss Universe 2015 National Costume Presentation". They taped introductions of themselves (to be shown during Sunday night's Live Telecast) in costumes representing their native lands/culture or something "special" and/or unique about their respective countries...
Feathered Beauties: (L to R) Miss USA and Miss Venezuela onstage during the Miss Universe 2015 national Costume Parade of Nations taping--The AXIS Theater Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino Las Vegas
This is always one of the favorite parts of the Miss Universe beauty pageant and much loved by the fans. And as always, this year's costume couture did not disappoint. It always blows my mind, when I wonder how the heck some of these costumes get packed and sent...and WHO paid for the UBER expensive shipping costs!? Well, enough of that--time to discuss the costumes: Of all the 80 costumes, I have chosen my TOP 15 Best Costumes. And here they are--in alphabetical order. Let me know what you thought and if any of YOUR favorites made my Top 15 List. Oh, and I added one extra as a "Special Mention", just because :)
Here we go...My Top 15 Favorite National Costumes of Miss Universe 2015:
Miss Argentina Claudia Barrionuevo: Claudia's costume is supposed to be inspired by all the artists who have performed at the iconic Buenos Aires Colon Theater. It's an homage to actors, costumes, the theater and maybe a little bit of Carnival. It was very grand and made enough of a powerful impression on me to place it as one of my Top 15 favorite national costumes.
Miss Brazil Marthina Brandt: This is unmistakably BRAZIL! Yes, she's very "Carmen Miranda" but a fabulous Couture one at that! It looks amazingly well made and I especially love the sheer sequined top section in combination with the feathered and butterfly skirt. This is a Brazilian Costume Celebration!
Miss Australia Monica Radulovic: I just about fell off my chair when i saw Miss Universe Australia's costume--she went as Dame Edna Everage--the iconic character created and performed by Australian comedian Barry Humphries. I have nothing more to say than FAB-U-LOUS!!!
Miss Curacao Kanisha Sluis: I absolutely LOVE this costume on "Miss Universe Curacao". The colors, the sequined body suit, the feathers...it truly is a celebration of everything about Curacao. The design is a tribute to the local queen of art, a former Miss Curacao (1966) and Miss Amity at Miss Universe 1967, Elizabeth "Nena" Sanchez (photo above). The main subjects of Nena's paintings are typical native cottages, tropical flowers, windows, exuberant sea views and blue goddesses.
Miss Dominican Republic Clarissa Molina: There were many of these pre-Columbian Native Empress feathered costumes at this year's Miss Universe National Costume Presentation. They were all vibing that sexy winged Victoria's Secret look I assume. Miss Universe Dominican Republic was one of the better ones; very impressive with the gold paillette details and huge red peacock-like feathers. I certainly wouldn't want to mess with her if I just arrived on the island of Hispaniola back in 1492!
Miss India Urvashi Rautela: Urvashi's costume represents an Ancient Vedic-era costume. Lots of gold and silver highlight this Warrior Goddess-like costume and it is a nice change from the Sari-like costumes one would expect from a Miss India. This was original and impacting. One of the Top 15 Best Costumes for sure, at least in my opinion.
Miss Indonesia Anyndia Putri: I included Miss Universe Indonesia's costume almost solely based on that out of control--and very fabulous--tiger-like back "winged" concoction. I cannot even fathom how she packed that and how it even traveled from Indonesia to Las Vegas! I want that for the entrance to my fantasy palace. Oh...and the rest of her costume is pretty great as well!
Miss Nicaragua Daniela Torres: One word--WOW! Here's another one of my favorite Pre-Columbian Native Goddess costumes which made an impact on me. I love the turquoise blue and violet colors, the sequins, THAT headdress and wings! It is very, very impressive I must say. I also love that no stone was left un-turned: they even thought about the shoes. Muy bien!
Miss Panama Gladys Brandao Amaya: Yes kids, here's another one of those feathered goddess costumes. Miss panama really blended the pre-Columbian theme along with some "Conquistador"-looking gold platform bootie heels! Among all the fabulous Native Empress Diva costumes, this one is particularly SuperFab. And I LOVE that "Don't Mess With Me Fellas!" look. That's the look I'd like to give every time I step out of my house!
Miss Paraguay Myriam Arevalos: Myriam is wearing a costume depicting the "Garra Guarani" or "Guarani Claw". It was designed by Alfredo Gaona and features over 4,500 crystals. The Phrygian cap that she is holding on one hand is representative of symbols in her nation's flag, representing freedom and justice while the lion represents bravery and courage. And notice the actual Paraguyan flag as her costume's cape. Gorgeous, strong and muy sexy.
Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach: This sublimely beautiful costume/gown is a Capiz terno and it was designed by Albert Andrada. I love everything about it. It blends both a gorgeous representation of Filipino tradition and beauty and it has incredible detail work. The gown alone would be one of the most impressive evening gowns at any pageant--or red carpet! The crown--by the way--is inspired by the carnival queens of the early 1900's epitomizing Filipina beauty queens. I just have one question: where can I get THAT fabulous fan??
Miss Sweden Paulina Brodd: Miss Sweden Universe's national costume is one of MY FAVORITES of all the Miss Universe 2015 costumes. It was designed by Aviad Arik Herman, who has designed previous national costumes for past Miss Universe Sweden contestants. He had the generous support of the Gothenburg Culture Festival, together with the talented fashion design students from Drottning Blanka's High School. The costume comes in two fabulous parts: a royal cape in 30 meters of fabric using flags from last year's Gothenburg Festival; and the "reveal" underneath is a traditional Swedish folk dress that honors the Swedish Royal Family. The designer said that he was inspired by the original and historic design of King Gustav III which was first introduced in 1778. Now that we have all that out of the way...it's OUTSTANDING!!!
Here's a GREAT video about Miss Universe Sweden's National Costume:
Miss Thailand Aniporn Chalermburanawong: Aniporn chose to wear a costume inspired by--what else--the iconic Tuk Tuk , the very famous Thai mode of transportation. The unique costume was designed and created by cultural scholar Hirankrit Paipibulkul. The dress was made of chromium and decorated with real headlights that "Nat" can flash at her other 79 competitors. I absolutely love it! It's so George Michael video!
Miss USA Olivia Jordan: Miss USA's costume is very Victoria's Secret Fashion Show and very USA-impacting! The red, SILVER, and blue metallic-like feathered winged costume was designed and created by Adam Selman who is also famous for the "Josephine Baker"-like crystal look Rihanna wore at the 2014 CFDA's. Selman said that he was approached by IMG to create Olivia's costume with only three weeks notice. The wings span is 8 feet across. I love everything about it; she's an American Bald Eagle Diva!
Miss Venezuela Mariana Jimenez: Miss Venezuela's feathered-and-sequined costume is inspired by the Venezuelan Cardenal de lara--or Lara State Cardinal bird (seen above). The costume was designed by Venezuelan designer Raenrra. I also love this feathered costume and thought it was a perfect celebration of that colorful bird.
And Finally, I have to Give a Special Mention to...
Miss Austria Amina Dagi: I LOVE THIS!!!!! I just about gave this gal a standing ovation (in my living room!) when I saw her walk out as Eurovision 2014 winner from Austria Conchita Wurst. The beard, the Rainbow Gay Flag, the Mermaid lace gown, the AIDS ribbon...This is just about THE FIERCEST national Costume EVER!!! What a fab celebration of equality, love, respect...and FABULOUSNESS!!! Kudos Miss Austria Universe and the designer. Oh and speaking of designer, in case you are wondering, it was the same as Miss Sweden Universe, Aviad Arik Herman.