Grammys Red Carpet: Lace, Gold and Red Brighten Somber Night

Adele, Katy Perry and Rihanna turn heads with stunning fashion before tributes to Whitney Houston begin inside the Staples Center.

While the 2012 Grammy Awards red carpet show was slightly somber as musicians remembered legendary singer Whitney Houston , the energy remained overwhelmingly positive as musicians spoke of their mutual admiration and love for the icon and her legacy. Event-appropriate long, sleek, elegant looks abounded, and given that the Grammys are the Oscars of music, the ladies turned it out and dialed it up to 11.

Both Both Katy Perry and Carrie Underwood swanned through in lace gowns, Perry in Elie Saab with demure elbow-length sleeves and a scoop neck, Underwood in a pristine white Gomez-Gracia dress with long sleeves and a slight train.

Adele also opted for long sleeves in a black, A-line Armani dress that sparkled under the lights and Corinne Bailey Rae wore a black, tea-length Christian Siriano dress with a full, flouncy skirt.

Two more notable all-black ensembles were David Guetta’s studded lapel black suit with matching Louboutin studded sneakers — oh how we LOVE continuity at MTV Style — and Deadmau5′s characteristically cartoonish headgear coupled with a hilarious T-shirt that advertised multiple-Grammy Award winner Skrillex’s IRL phone number (according to the half-shorn Skrillex, he’s changing his digits as we type).

Jessie J shone for England in her silver shard-covered Julien McDonald gown. She said she felt like a disco ball and that the heft of wearing a dress dripping in multiple pieces of glass was well worth it.

On the precious metals front, gold was a popular hue for the night with Paris Hilton — who we haven’t heard from in quite some time — dipped in a stunning, floor-length Basil Soda dress with a tulle skirt. The hotel heiress flaunted gold inlaid panels and a metal belt as well as cap sleeves.

Taylor Swift stunned in a rose-gold applique dress from Zuhair Murad with cap sleeves, mandarin collar and a peek-a-boo back. Exposed backs were seemingly the erogenous zone du jour (nuit?) and Rihanna stole that show in her one-of-a-kind Armani. She credits Michelle Pfeiffer circa “Scarface” for the style inspiration and it’s notable that she had the incredible honor of designing the dress with Mr. Armani himself. And you can absolutely tell that RiRi had a great deal of input because her plunging halter neck gown with a similarly adventurous back fit her like she was sewn in it.

Get More Behind the Scenes Talk On These Dresses at MTV Style’s Live Red Carpet Blog

Fergie also had some help from a European designer, namely Jean Paul Gaultier, who dressed the blonde dynamo in a startling orange, see-through lace dress. That said, the sartorial spectacle that takes the cake tonight has GOT to be Nicki Minaj who not only showed up in a massive red riding hood from Atelier Versace — ID’d by the enormous Versace Medusa Head logo bedazzled front-and-center — but shared a black limo with the pope who helped her traverse the scarlet carpet.

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