The singer's Valentino Couture gown was a tribute to her record
The singer — who is nominated for four Grammy Awards this year (and has already won two), including album of the year for her 2019 mega-hit Golden Hour, best country album, best country solo performance (“Butterflies”) and best country song (“Space Cowboy”) — wore a nude tulle Valentino Haute Couture gown featuring a pleated strapless neckline and berry-colored belt.
And she chose the dress as a special tribute her hit album: The bodice of her gown resembles the fan on the Golden Hour cover.
“I love this dress — it immediately struck me because it reminded me of the fan that was on my album cover,” she told PEOPLE on the carpet.”
As Musgraves finished up her hit album, she started working with stylist Erica Cloud, and their collaboration on her red carpet wardrobe, tour looks and album press outfits have earned Musgraves raves.
“Kacey and I discussed the next phase in her career both musically and aesthetically. We both love the ’70s and color pairing and felt there was a way to interpret that through her wardrobe,” McCloud told PEOPLE exclusively. “We wanted her clothing to be a nod to the past but grounded in the future, like her music, and to create a strong overall look that felt familiar but aspirational and visually impactful.”
For Friday’s MusiCares gala, the star literally embodied her album title in a gold lamé J. Mendel gown, that shows how well she mixes ballgowns with non traditional country looks.
“We both do love a traditional Nudie suit – however, the intent is to keep it clean and strong so you aren’t distracted from the music,” Cloud says. “I think it’s about creating an overall vibe and not something that is so ‘in your face’. She’s so talented that she doesn’t need a lot of bells and whistles. Color and music can go hand in hand in creating a mood and strong sensory effect so we base looks off of whatever song she is performing, complete with the band matching or tonal as well.”
Cloud described Musgraves overall style as “a little bit retro, a little bit trailblazer.”
“Kacey is smart, fun, and creative, and I like to represent that with her wardrobe,” she added. “Even when her lyrics are melancholy or wistful there is still hope and resolution behind them. She wears color and textures with confidence and energy, and I think that speaks for her music as well.”
Be sure to check out PEOPLE’s full Grammys coverage to get the latest news on music’s biggest night.
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For Musgraves, this year was all about music and sharing a very intimate album with her fans.
“This record is very personal to me. More personal than any bit of art I’ve ever made,” she told PEOPLE. “Also — so much great music was released this year. I really believe that art is thriving. Being nominated alongside great albums that garner way larger sales numbers and radio play is extra special for me. It lets me know that hard work does pay off, and also that people just want to connect to music that makes them feel something regardless of what genre it’s labeled under.
The 61st Annual Grammy Awards are broadcasting live from Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT on CBS.
–reporting by Sharon Kanter and Jeff Nelson