When Sweden hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 2016, presenters Måns Zelmerlöw and Petra Mede performed a parody at the expense of the competition: a television event broadcasted and streamed worldwide. ‘Love Love Peace Peace’ outlined the formula explaining how to create the perfect Eurovision performance, noting how the costumes “need to look memorable. Something that the viewers will notice”.
A month on from this year’s Eurovision, most of the style choices have haunted me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not traumatised. The costumes achieved exactly what a classic Eurovision performance asks of the performer. The contest never shies away from glamour, but it can just as easily tip over into garish. See this year’s winner, Netta, (pictured left) representing Israel in her controversial Asian- inspired theme. Aside from sparking accusa- tions of cultural appropriation, the mish- mash combination of crimson and fuchsia in a kimono, held together by a glittery bustier, was criminal. What started off as a mess of an outfit was not saved in the slightest by the hot pink and white platforms, which I can only imagine residing in the wardrobe of a Disney Channel show.
The runner-up from Cyprus, Eleni Foureira was a fashion favourite this year. Foureira set the stage ablaze in a striking cat- suit and a questionable black leather jacket exclusively for the shoulders. Performing her song ‘Fuego’, her outfit, consisting of se- quinned flames and illusion cutouts, made sense even though the shoulder jacket didn’t. Another favourite among viewers was Elina Nechayeva, (pictured on the right) who flew the flag for Estonia (or should I say, projection dress?). Yes, the unforgettable dress, a 52-me- tre squared garment, had some mesmeris- ing animations beamed onto it. As inventive as the gown was, was it possibly a gimmick to distract from a dull song and the fact that Estonia hasn’t taken home the trophy since 2001?
I won’t comment on the Netherlands, whose representative, Waylon, donned a leopard-print jacket with leather trousers and topped it all off with a fedora. What do you call an ungodly amount of fashion faux pas all in one look?