Katy Perry must have grown out of her teenage dream in 2012; a look at her style choices over the last year reveals a showstopper who’s left behind the kooky looks that gained her so much attention and adopted a new, elegantly glamorous style. Just because her latest looks are more low-key doesn’t mean they scrimp on allure. Take a look at how the popstar has traded candy-colored wigs and cartoony dresses on the red carpet for Old Hollywood waves and graceful trains.
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2011 was the year of Katy Perry, and her look-at-me style was all about zany one-of-a-kind statements that told her fans how much fun she was having becoming a star. Perry wore a lot of cartoonish dresses crafted to look like anything but, like the sequined Smurfette dress by The Blonds which she wore to The Smurfs world premiere and the “breaking records” dress designed by pal Johnny Wujek that she wore to the VMAs. The popstar was known for her throwback style, like the exaggerated 1940s hair and bobby-soxer outfit by Jeremy Scott which she wore the EMAs. At the MusiCares Person of the Year gala, she went over-the-top in a flower-shaped hat by Alexis Mabille Couture and looked positively space age at the Echo Awards in Berlin, wearing a mirrored dress by Paco Rabbana and sporting her signature (for a time) blue hair.
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In the second half of 2012, Perry seemed to come into her own both in her personal life and on the red carpet. Her turn towards toned down style came around the time of the premiere of Part of Me, a documentary which focused on a seminal time in her life and career. At the Australian premiere of the film, the singer surprised fans in a remarkably low-key gold Versace dress and deep violet, almost natural-looking, locks. She continued her transformation at the VMAs, wearing a stunning Elie Saab gown adorned with classic florals instead of the kooky graphics we were used to, with long, dark waves. The trend continued when a fresh-faced Perry appeared in another floral gown at the Celebration of Dreams gala, this time by Dolce & Gabbana, while at the Snowflake Ball she went dark and glamorous in a navy laser-cut Naeem Khan gown with a cape that we would’ve expected to see on a star like Florence Welch or Blake Lively. One of her latest appearances at the Trevor Live benefit saw the singer in an understated and elegant nude sequined column gown by Marchesa, accessorized with a Lena Erziak clutch and a crown braid.
We can only speculate about what caused the shift, whether it’s the change in her love life from a comedian to a brooding bad boy, a deepening in her work from catchy and quirky hits like I Kissed a Girl to soul-searchers like Wide Awake, or simply just a girl growing up. Whatever it is, we know it will be fascinating to watch her style continue to evolve in 2013.