She may have hosted the ALMA awards, but Eva Longoria deserves a title of her own: "Best Quick-Change Artist." The stylish star slipped into a new gown 15 times over the course of the show. Her longtime stylist Robert Verdi was initially stunned by the prospect. “She told me about it in the car: ‘I want to change every time I come out and wear another dress.’ Thankfully, she was driving.” A seven-person team helped Longoria change (each dress created by a Latin designer), but the actress took all of the close attention in stride. Says Verdi: “amp#91;In a photograph I haveamp#93;, she is laughing, her head is back and she’s got a sandwich in one hand and I’m putting a diamond bracelet on the other.”
Her mint duchess satin and silk tulle frock was by Argentinian-born, Miami-based designer Gustavo Cadile.
Longoria shows off the bow-bedecked back of her Cadile dress. "I really loved her red carpet dress," says Verdi. "It was sort of '1940s starlet' with the big bow." The actress wore gold and aquamarine earrings by Dominican-American designer Simon Alcantara, a bracelet by Brazilian H.Stern, a bag from Colombian Nancy Gonzalez and shoes from Sergio Rossi (designed by Puerto Rican creative director Edmundo Castillo).
The petite Longoria swept the stage in a long silk chiffon gown by Brazilian Carlos Miele paired with the designer’s rosette-covered shawl. "It made her look like an opera diva," says Verdi. She wore earrings and a bracelet by H.Stern and shoes from Sergio Rossi.
The actress wore another Carlos Miele gown, this one a striking red and leopard-print silk chiffon strapless. "We chose dresses to match the staging," says Verdi. "'Does she have a 20-foot walk?' If so, we'd pick a dress that was flowing and moves." The duo paired the dress with H.Stern jewelry and Sergio Rossi shoes.
Verdi chose a long white gown with black lace overlay from Venezuelan-born Carolina Herrera. He says: "We started [planning] by thinking of hallmarks of Latino design: a tiered something, something flowy, something patterned, something lace." Longoria accompanied the dress with H.Stern jewelry.
For the after-party, the actress chose a silk taffeta frock by Colombian-born Esteban Cortazar. "We wanted a very broad expression [of design]: the simplest of simple to something extremely ornate." Longoria complemented the short frock with Sergio Rossi shoes, a Nancy Gonzalez bag and jewelry from H.Stern.
Longoria loved this Gustavo Cadile gown as soon as she saw it. "It’s an interesting thing," says Verdi. "She wouldn’t have worn these dresses when I first started styling her. She was always about slicker, cleaner-not these sort of 'cha-cha' looks." They chose earrings and a bracelet by Gabrielle Sanchez to accompany the feathered lace halter gown.
High-drama hairstyles like this one were part of Longoria's quick-change magic. "It looked like a wig store," Verdi said of the area backstage. Eva paired this custom-made, single-strap gown by Gustavo Cadile with earrings and bracelet from Brazilian designer Claudia Lobao.
The actress stood tall in a silk crepe organza gown from Venezuelan designer Armando Piquer. "I loved the Armando dress," says Verdi. "The design was really proportioned to her body." The gown has Swarovski crystal detailing on the bodice and a low-dipping back with gold leather straps. Her gems came from H.Stern.