American Idol fashion winners and losers
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Idol Style Wrap-Up1 of 17
By Brienne Walsh
American Idol's best contestants may be singing sensations, but when it comes to fashion, they don't always hit the right note. From ill-fitting suits to bedazzled bras and full-body catsuits, even the biggest success stories had their share of style missteps (sorry, Carrie). In anticipation of the premiere of the 12th season on Jan. 16 and 17, we're taking a look back at the best and worst style moments from the show.
Witchy Woman2 of 17
MISS: Kelly Clarkson looked like a cross between a witch and a pirate during a performance on the first season of the series.
All Business3 of 17
MISS: It's a good thing Kimberley Locke's voice wowed the judges, because her "corporate lawyer" wardrobe certainly didn't earn the singer any bonus points.
Soccer Mom4 of 17
MISS: Now an Oscar winner and style star, Jennifer Hudson fell victim to unflattering mom jeans and frumpy tops in season 3.
Cat Woman5 of 17
MISS: Fantasia Barrino shocked the audience when she made a guest appearance in a black-and-red sequin catsuit with thigh-high slits for the season 11 finale.
Prom Queen6 of 17
MISS: Carrie Underwood's style has come a long way since her 2005 win on season 4. At the finale, her crimped hair and heavily beaded gown made it look like she was headed for the senior prom, not Grammy-winning stardom.
Silver Lining7 of 17
HIT: Smash star Katharine McPhee set the stage for her future role as a style stunner in this floaty silver number that she wore for the season 5 finale.
Lady in Red8 of 17
HIT: Kellie Pickler played it safe in laid-back jeans for most of season 6, but the amazing red dress she wore to the finale showed that underneath her Patsy Cline exterior, she has the style chops to match her vocals.
Orange Crush9 of 17
HIT: At 17, Jordin Sparks was the youngest contestant ever to win the competition. The orange gown she wore to claim her title was both age appropriate and timeless.
Rock On10 of 17
HIT: During season 7, Carly Smithson stood out from the other contestants—in a good way—thanks to her sleeve tattoo. We liked her outfits best when she wore monochrome dresses that complemented her ink.
Hippie Chic11 of 17
HIT: Known for her peasant blouses, season 7 contestant Brooke White showed she could be more than a '60s flower child in this refreshingly modern belted black dress.
Bohemian Rock12 of 17
MISS: While we admire her for staying true to her boho roots, Crystal Bowersox’s dreadlocks and predictable black ensembles, would have fit in better at Lilith Fair than on the American Idol stage.
Heartbreak Hotel13 of 17
MISS: Lauren Alaina could have been mistaken for an Elvis Presley impersonator in the sparkling pantsuit she wore on the season 10 finale.
Glamour Girl14 of 17
HIT: Pia Toscano never missed a beat during her stint on season 11; her wardrobe was elegant and flirty, while at the same time flattering to her curves.
Pageant Queen15 of 17
MISS: The indigo ball gown Jessica Sanchez wore when she performed Mariah Carey's "My All" on season 11 made her look more like a Miss America contestant than a contender on American Idol.
Ship Wrecked16 of 17
MISS: Hollie Cavanagh's combination of high-waisted sailor pants and sequined bandeau top during season 11 made it look like she was trying out for a role in the Las Vegas version of the musical South Pacific.
Island Time17 of 17
MISS: As much as we loved her jazzy vocals, Naima Adedapo's reggae-inspired style was more flashy than funky.