BRIT Awards 2017: Fashion & Highlights | Emily Bashforth

BRIT Awards 2017: Fashion & Highlights

When you analyse how excited I get for the BRIT Awards each year, you'd think I was attending and performing myself. Alas, this year I spent BRITs night in the same way that I do every year - watching the ceremony from the comfort of my sofa. It'd be a dream to attend the BRITs one year, although, I'm not complaining about being able to watch the show in my pyjamas without having to pose on a red carpet or stand on a stage in front of millions.
I make no secret of the fact that the BRIT Awards are my favourite night of the year. The build up is one of the best parts. Refreshing Twitter every ten seconds, hoping for a blurry photo of your favourite celebrity on the red carpet and then waiting for the High Quality paparazzi shots. Then counting down the minutes until the show starts and being on edge throughout the whole show until the category your favourite musician is nominated in is announced or until your favourite acts perform. The BRITs are a wonderful night for British music. America have the VMAs, the PCAs, the AMAs, the Grammys and whatever else and I know we Brits love a musical celebration, however, for me, the BRITs are the biggest night in the British music calendar. They're the one time of year when some of the biggest names in the world congregate to celebrate the achievements of British musicians and the impact their music has had on the world over the past year. I believe British artists are responsible some of the best, most relatable, poignant, timeless songs and believe it's only right that we recognise the artists behind the magic at such a high brow event. Not only does music make us feel good and give us something to listen too when we're bored, but it heals, it unites and it gets people through tough times, therefore, the BRITs to me are so much more than just a chance for singers to put on designer clothes. They're a time to cut loose, forget about the outside world, have a great time whilst relishing in the pure beauty of music.
This year's BRIT Awards were hosted by British TV presenting royalty, Dermot O'Leary and the woman pretty much the whole country wants to marry, Emma Willis. I think the overall consensus is that the pair did a truly brilliant job of hosting the 37th BRIT Awards. They were entertaining, informative, funny and dealt fantastically with the pressures of live TV and the enormity of the event. The ceremony took place at London's renowned O2 Arena and the stage was performed on by some musical greats, including Little Mix, Bruno Mars, Ed Sheeran, Chris Martin, Emeli Sande and The 1975.
Awards were given out over the course of the evening to very worthy winners and some touching acceptance speeches we're given. I think that the 2017 BRITs were one of the best I've ever seen, therefore, I thought I'd talk you through my top moments from the show, followed by my favourite red carpet outfits because, as much as it's all about the music, fashion plays an important role in events as big as this and, personally, I'm always desperate to find out what my favourite celebrities shall be rocking on the carpet.

Little Mix's epic performance and rather emotional first ever BRIT award win




Little Mix opened the show with an epic performance of their number one single Shout Out To My Ex which truly set the bar for the performances that were to follow. I'm a Mixer through and through, therefore, to say I was looking forward to the girl's performance would be an understatement - I was beyond excited, especially after they teased fans saying they'd be doing "something they hadn't done before." That's certainly what it was, though, as the girls were carried on to stage on the shoulders of their dancers on throne like seats, which instantly told the audience that they were A) Queens and B) not here to mess around. The performance then progressed into a show stopping explosion of futuristic fierceness with metallic outfits and robotic style dance moves. The girls put yet another spin on their hit single with a a few new breakdowns, chanting of "SHOUT OUT TO MY EX" before the final chorus and some beautiful note changes. They ended the performance by ascending into the Heavens on an elevating platform, looking ever the professionals with poised, strong, sassy expressions on their faces. The girls' performance was simply an indication of the sheer awesomeness that was yet to come that night and to say they got the show off to an amazing start seems criminally understated. I have never seen a performance like the one Little Mix delivered but, that being said, they always go all out with everything they do. One thing is for certain though, they sure as hell know how to open a show...oh, and they look HELLA GOOD in blonde wigs.

As if Little Mix's night couldn't get any better, they then went on to win their first ever BRIT Award for Best British Single for what has become the break-up song of the century - Shout Out To My Ex. The girls' were nominated in three categories, including Best Group and Best Video and their fans, and I, were optimistic that they'd scoop at least one gong, especially after having such a successful 2016. We were right to be optimistic, though, and seeing the shocked expressions on those girls' faces when their win was announced...that feeling was priceless, for me, as a devout Little Mix supporter. After following the girls since their X Factor days, I've seen how much adversity, sexism, doubt from both the public and themselves they've had to overcome in order to make their mark. Girl bands don't have it easy, however, Little Mix have become pioneers for the female musicians that are to succeed them, I'm sure of it. They've proven that hard work and a little bit of belief can get you anywhere. They've been so dedicated to their art since day dot and so winning such a prestigious award like a BRIT must have made it all seem worthwhile. I screamed when the girls were announced as the winner for Best British Single because I knew it meant so much to them and that meant a lot to me. Little Mix are fantastic, positive female figures in the lives of many and I'm so proud of all they've achieved in what seems such a small amount of time. Them winning a BRIT was girl power in its highest form, for me, and I believe it couldn't have gone to anyone more deserving.

The 1975's performance and award win, which featured a poignant speech from Matty Healy



I was rooting profusely for The 1975 on BRITs night. I'm a huge fan of them as a band and of their music and so was sincerely hoping they'd take home a trophy, which they did for Best British Group, which really is quite the honour. The 1975 had a brilliant 2016 with their album reaching number one and their fanbase expanding worldwide, therefore, winning their first BRIT must have seemed the icing on the cake. The 1975 make some truly wonderful songs with thought provoking, meaningful, rather beautiful lyrics which I want everyone to hear and I think it's great that they're being recognised for their talent. I also love the fact that such a unique band like them are being recognised at such high brow events. They've been a band for over a decade yet are only just starting to see results of their hard work and dedication in terms of awards and sales figures. The 1975 aren't your typical bubblegum pop band, they aren't squeaky clean and they're unlike any other band currently on the market and the fact that they are 'different' is often frowned upon. People don't tend to like different. People find something they like and they want to stick with it, they don't tend to branch out or experiment and, when someone comes along who doesn't conform to norms and doesn't say the things they're expected to say, people are shocked and they turn their backs to them - which is a shame. Therefore, it makes me happy to see diversity being celebrated. The 1975 are original and I think its only right that their originality is awarded. One of the most memorable moments of the night, for me, also came from The 1975. When accepting their prize, Matty, the band's front man, delivered an acceptance speech on behalf of each member. He, of course, said thank you but, also, used the platform and voice that he had in that moment to speak out about something important. That 'something important' was the fact that people aren't speaking out. Matty stood on that stage and he urged every selfie and Snapchat obsessed celebrity in that room to stand up and speak out when it comes to social issues. He encouraged them to not "stay in their lane" and to utilise the voices they have been blessed with. Whether they listened to him or not, I don't know, but I feel so passionately when it comes to people remaining mute on social problems and so it meant a lot to me for him to address that on such a large scale.

The 1975 went on to perform one of my favourite songs of theirs - The Sound. They had a choir on stage and, despite performing at The O2, made their performance seem so personal and intimate. They certainly set the place alive with their catchy song and got pretty much the whole country talking then derogatory messages from their music video flashed on the screen throughout the song. It was a genius bit of marketing and, for me, Britain really started to take notice of this band on that night.

The tribute to all the artists lost in the last year and George Michael tribute delivered by Wham members and Chris Martin





Many musical greats have been so cruelly taken from over the course of the last twelve months and it seemed only fitting to pay tribute to them during the BRITs ceremony. The tribute focused mainly on the late George Michael, whom we lost on Christmas Day. A video was played in which names of the musical legends who passed away in 2016 appeared on screen and it was an emotional moment for all viewers as they were given chance to reflect on the lives lost and impact they had on the music industry. Emotions continued to run high as former Wham! members, Pepsi, Shirlie and Andrew (who reunited for the first time since 1986) spoke about their friend, George, sharing their fond memories of him, stories and what they'll miss about him. They carried out a true act of bravery, something I doubt I could've done, and spoke beautifully about George Michael. They paid their respects in a very fitting way and everyone watching, both in the venue and at home, undoubtedly felt both pain and love in their hearts. I imagine there was not a dry eye in the house after the speeches were given and, if there was, there certainly wouldn't have been once Chris Martin finished singing. He was asked to perform George's A Different Corner as he was a fan of Chris' voice. The performance was stunning and gave me chills when I saw George singing on the screen and Chris almost duetting with him. The whole thing was just the perfect goodbye and way to remember the legacy of such an icon.

Katy Perry's oh so sneaky political reference in her performance which - quite literally - brought the house down




Katy Perry seems to live by the phrase "Go hard or go home" as far as performances are concerned as she loves a whacky costume and elaborate staging. The BRITs were no exception as she performed her latest release Chained To The Rhythm along with featuring artist Skip Marley, wearing a slouchy striped suit. Her outfit didn't need to be loud, however, as the set did all the talking. As she sang, Katy was surrounded by dancers wearing cardboard houses, like, literally, there were LOADS of them. Personally, I don't think it would've been right if there were no mishaps during the performance, I mean, with that many dancing houses, one of them is bound to topple over, right? Well, they did one unlucky dancer took a tumble off the stage! It was like Left Shark all over again. Additionally, Katy seemed to slip a cheeky political jibe into her performance, which impressed many people, including me. Not only was she joined by a whole estate of houses on stage but she also had company in the form of two huge puppets, a man wearing a suit and red tie and a woman in a floral blouse, red skirt and jacket. Do they look familiar? Well, rumour has it that the skeleton-like figures were supposed to represent Donald Trump and Theresa May as they were dressed identically to how the President and PM were dressed when they met over in the U.S. Remember that awkward photo of them holding hands? Ugh it makes my skin crawl just thinking about it. What political reference Katy was trying to make exactly, I'm unsure, but what I do know is that it was a stroke of genius from whoever put that performance together.

Ed Sheeran's performance with Stormzy that seemed to leave everyone speechless



The world spent the entirety of the BRITs anticipating Ed Sheeran's performance. The world adores him and so couldn't wait for him to get on that stage and leave us all needing CPR after giving a faultless performance. Ed Sheeran performed one of the singles from his upcoming album, Divide, titled Castle On The Hill with perfect identical-to-his-studio-recording vocals and got the whole audience in the palm of his hand. Then, just in case that wasn't enough, he went straight into his number one single, also from his new album, Shape Of You, and and was joined by none other than rapper, Stormzy. Rumours of Ed collaborating with another artist on the night had been circulating, especially as he teased fans that "We have something special planned." We were all eager to discover who this artist was going to be, was is Harry Styles? Was it James Arthur? Stormzy was a surprise nonetheless and an unlikely collaboration but the duo got everyone in that room on their feet, feeling energised and totally pumped. The atmosphere whenever Ed Sheeran performs is always electric and the BRITs 2017 were no different. He put on a real show and there's no doubt in my mind that he'll be taking home plenty of awards next year after the release of his album in March.

One Direction's Best Video Award win and Liam Payne suddenly appearing from thin air



As a 1D fan, I felt the pain that many of you probably felt in the build up to the BRITs. We all knew that 1D were nominated in the Best British Video category for their music video for History, despite being on hiatus (what legends) and we all knew there was a high chance of them winning seeing as though the boys had been in the lead pretty much the entire time the social media vote was open. We were hopeful that they'd scoop the award but were any of the band actually going to turn up? That was the question on all of our lips. The show had started and, despite every member being in London and speculation that Louis would be attending being rife, the boys were nowhere to be seen. They did not walk the red carpet nor were they seen anywhere near the venue, so, what was going to happen? Was Simon Cowell just going to accept the award if they won on their behalf? Or would they appear out of nowhere at the end of the show? Well, unsurprisingly, the boys won the award with ease AND, as their name was called, LITERALLY OUT OF NOWHERE, Liam James Payne appeared. Honestly, it was like a scene from a movie. He did a full on David Copperfield and popped up out of thin air to accept the award and thank fans on behalf of the band. Once again, as always, Liam was the Batman we always knew him to be, and stepped in to save the day, looking extra adorable with a hoodie and fluffy hair, may I add. The rest of the band then proceeded to post THE CUTEST thank you messages on Twitter to show their gratitude to fans for voting. I mean, is it really a BRIT Awards if 1D go home empty handed? The fact that they are still adding to their extensive trophy collection despite enjoying a sabbatical and working on solo projects is astonishing yet, also, not a shock, as the dedication and passion that the One Direction fandom have is undeniable, its so special and we come out in full force every time there is a chance to help the boys achieve something. To me, this award was all the more special as it recognised a really special music video - History. That video was a montage of the boys' time together and holds a special place in our hearts as it allows us to relive fond memories and reflect on how much the boys and ourselves have grown each time we watch it. I don't know about anyone else but, for me personally, this award was also a last little something for Johannah, Louis' Mum who tragically passed away just before Christmas last year. I know she shall be feeling extremely proud of all the boys and the fans who took time to vote tirelessly.

David Bowie's music and memory being honoured with two trophies


David Bowie, the musical icon we all know and love, passed in 2016. Tribute was paid to him during last year's ceremony, however, he was awarded two trophies at the 2017 show thanks to his album Black Star. The late star was awarded Best Male and Best Album - the most sought after award of the night - and rightly so. To me, even though Bowie is no longer, physically, with us, he deserves to still be honoured at events which celebrate music as he definitely helped shape the music industry into what it is. I think its wonderful that we are carrying him and his music with us into the future for coming generations to enjoy and I think its fantastic that such a legendary artist is being recognised today for the artist he was. Michael C. Hall accepted the award for Best Male Artist whilst David's son Duncan Jones came to collect the Best Album trophy. Both spoke beautifully about Bowie, his work, his character, and the sheer poignance of his existence. They acknowledged the fact that he supported the people who didn't quite fit in and that he represented the weird and strange amongst us, which he definitely did. I really loved seeing Bowie and his music being honoured and paid tribute to at this year's BRITs and I don't think anyone could've been more worthy of these two awards.

A surprise duet between Coldplay and The Chainsmokers



Throughout the show, Dermot and Emma teased a surprise duet between two huge artists. Everything was very hush hush right up until the last moment, leaving social media users to go into a frenzy whilst they debated who it could be. Well, it was none other than The Chainsmokers and Coldplay! Chris Martin took to the stage for the second time that night to accompany The Chainsmokers - one of the most popular acts in the world right now, what with the success of their single Closer. They debuted a track titled Something Just Like This to the world, which was available to stream and download instantly and it soon began soaring up to the top of the charts. The song is exactly what you'd expect to come from this collaboration between these two huge artists. Its fun, catchy and something that you simply cannot listen to whilst sitting still. The performance of the new record was just as lively and entertaining as the song itself, what with the flashing lights and Chris Martin crowd-surfing half way through! I doubt anyone saw this collaboration coming but I'm sure that Something Just Like This is going to be in all of ours heads for a while now - don't you think its the perfect Summer soundtrack? That beat drop though!


Now, let us talk red carpet FASHION... 


Katy Perry
Katy kept her hairstyle simple and shone in a pink and silver mini dress with complementary jacket. Everything just tied in together nicely and she looked ever the Pop Princess. 

Ellie Goudling
Ellie Goudling always kills the red carpet and this event was no exception as she looked fierce and fabulous in a black satin dress with a high split and chains across the chest and around the halter neckline. Nothing too fancy but oh so beautiful. 

Rita Ora
Rita looked radiant in a green gown that wouldn't have looked out of place at the Oscars. Her encrusted outfit had a more sheer skirt and ensured she looked ever the emerald Queen. 

Louisa Johnson
 Louisa too opted for the slicked back hairstyle, just like her former X Factor mentor, and looked stylish in a black and silver strapless jumpsuit. The unusual piece consisted of a lace corset, sequined trousers and feathered ankles - its as little more edgy but I reckon Louisa rocked it.

Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran did what Ed Sheeran does best on the red carpet. He kept it simple in a navy suit and turtle neck alone with a pair of casual, comfortable shoes, yet still looked well put together and managed to melt hearts across the country.

Caroline Flack
Caroline Flack went for an edgy vibe in a feathered mini dress, lips shaped clutch and a pair of biker chick style boots. This was one of my favourite looks from the night as, despite not being the most formal or extravagant, it was fashionable and Caroline looked oh so awesome. 

Nicole Scherzinger
Nicole Scherzinger opted for a more unusual outfit with a red and black printed jacket dress and matching knee high boots. Nevertheless, she looked like a total rock chick and surely set pulses racing.

Pixie Lott
Silver seemed to be a popular colour this year and Pixie Lott definitely got it right in a mini dress with a cut out in the centre and fringing around the skirt. She finished the look off with a fuchsia lipstick which tied everything together perfectly. 

Holly Willoughby
Sticking with the metallic theme, Holly Willoughby was responsible for another of my favourite looks from the night. Wearing a long sleeved mini dress with strappy silver heels, she sparkled on the carpet and made looking beautiful so effortless.

Charli XCX
Charli XCX strayed away from the norm this year in a purple ruffled dress and a pair of pink heels with gold beaded detailing. She came under fire for her unusual outfit choice but, personally, I think it was fun, flirty and funky. 

Mollie King
 Isn't Mollie King a beauty? She shone in a silver mini dress and heels but my favourite part of her look has to be the teal scarf she used as an accessory. Its colour matches the silver so well and, for me, Mollie is up there with 'best dressed.'

Michelle Keegan
Michelle Keegan injected some life and colour into the night in an electric blue strapless jumpsuit and pointed silver heels. To be fair, Michelle can wear anything and look a million dollars but there was something about this blue look which just ticked all the right boxes. 

Fearne Cotton
I'm a huge fan of Fearne Cotton's style and, despite her BRITs outfit simply being a black dress, it was chic and very Fearne. I loved the tiered lace skirt and the pop of colour injected via the purple heels.

Emma Willis
Host Emma Willis was another celebrity to keep it simple in a black gown but that didn't prevent her from stealing the limelight. Her floor length frock with beaded detailing around the neck showcased her natural beauty. 

James Arthur
James Arthur kept things quirky in a navy shirt with an interesting pattern, which he teamed with a blue jacket, skinny jeans and pair of comfortable boots. He got smart-casual totally on point. 

 Grace Chatto
Clean Bandit star Grace, like Charli, also went purple in a fitted lilac satin jumpsuit with a V cutout, which she teamed with a clutch bag and heels in a darker purple shade. Her outfit brought some fun to the night, especially with her teal hair, which I am envious of!


Tallia Storm
Okay, isn't this look just AMAZING? Tallia Storm rocked a teal pinafore dress with a lilac ruffled blouse which she pared with some high red heels for more vibrancy. I adore the beaded details down the front of this dress and just wish I could pull something this gorgeous off!

Little Mix
Little Mix expressed their individuality by tearing up the red carpet in some jaw-dropping pieces. Jesy opted for a sultry black leather-look dress with a high split, Leigh Anne channelled her inner Britney in a unique denim gown, Perrie looked fierce in a black feathered dress which showcased her enviable legs and Jade looked ever the movie star in a white silky gown and long black gloves. Little Mix can do no wrong in my eyes and made it clear right from the start of the night on the red carpet that they meant business.

The 1975
Finally, we have The 1975 who looked great in some unusual suits. They looked preppy and smart but also intriguing and fashionable in their interesting attire which was sure to turn heads. They stayed well away from the conventional black suit, black tie and white shirt and expressed their personalities through their rather awesome clothing choices.

And so that's it for another year! Time to put my feet up and bask in the beauty of music and try and take in everything that went down at this year's BRIT Awards. Let me know what your favourite moments from the night were and who you thought was best dressed! Did your favourite artists take home any trophies?

Love, Emily :) xx

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