It feels like we’ve been waiting FOR-EV-AH for this moment to arrive, and at last this weekend saw everyone's favourite style showdown kick-off in spectacular fashion. Emerging onto the X Factor stage through billows of smoke, Cheryl Cole and Dannii Minogue began the battle that’ll keep our fashion-hungry eyes satisfied for 10 glorious weeks. Yipppee! So here’s how it looked when they went head to head...
It was only recently that Grazia Daily was praising Chezza for championing up-and-coming talent and on Saturday night, she did just that. The black asymmetric frock she sported is by American designer Daniel Vosovic, a Project Runway finalist who shows at New York Fashion Week. And this little beauty is hot off his S/S '11 catwalk, proving once again that the Geordie lass has her finger firmly on the fashion pulse. Or at least her stylist does... We’re loving the delicate lace underlay for a touch of sauciness and reminds us a bit of Antonio Berardi’s ladylike designs, plus that swishy ponytail is the perfect way to show it off (although wouldn't it be nice to see her sans extensions for a change?). Accessorised with bow-embellished Valentino stilettos and jewellery by De Grisogono, we're saying nice work, lady.
And for last night’s extravaganza? Our Chez brought back the lace big time with this grey mini dress covered in a draped overlay by Zuhair Murad, the Lebanese designer who dressed her in a lavish creation for last year’s X Factor finale and counts many a fierce starlet, including Katy Perry and Beyonce, as fans.
And Chez, it's true you looked uber-elegant on both nights, but there's just one thing we've gotta ask: where’s the edginess, eh? We understand our Chezza is a bonafide girl group-er so wanted to go matchy-matchy with her gang (above) while easing us into what will undoubtedly be a major fash parade (baby steps, and all that). So after playing it safe for week one, let’s cross fingers and toes that she seriously brings it next week. But HOW will she top that David Koma ‘dustbin lid’ dress, and CAN she beat the lampshade-like Versace number from last year? C’mon love, the nation’s counting on you.
So, what to say about Dannii? Well, we reckon she might’ve stolen Cheryl’s thunder. Just. Because didn't she look blimmin' marvellous in her white frock? We say a big fat yes. That cascading lace, those winged shoulders and the sheer detailing all go to show that this little lady, who notoriously styles herself, is not one to be outdone. Ms Minogue’s been known to patriotically support Australian designers, so it was no surprise to learn that the dress is by Melbourne-based design house, J'Aton Couture. What’s more, those bold red lips and her bouncy hair keep the look super-youthful; a refreshing contrast to Cheryl’s near-neon tan, dontcha think?
Still, we have to confess Grazia Daily wasn’t so blown away by her second appearance. Admittedly we were proud to see Dannii bringing the drama and working the oh-so-fashionable hourglass silhouette for Sunday’s show. Plus, the fouffy black dress is one of her own designs - yes, it's by Project D, the line Dannii co-designs with BFF Tabitha Somerset-Webb - so it's no wonder she was looking confident in all those ruffles. But we're just gonna come out and say it - that WAG-ish hair piece is horrid. Oh why, Dannii, why? Bring back the magic fringe pleeease!
So with that, we hereby officially welcome the fash-off back onto our telly boxes, and naturellement we want to hear your verdict on the Cheryl v Dannii contest. Who wins the crown for Round One, wardrobe watchers? Let us know below!
by Jessica Vince