Reba McEntire aced her ACM Awards hosting duties on Sunday night. The country icon cracked jokes, had an epic performance with Kelly Clarkson and, like any truly talented award show host, had an impressive number of outfit changes. And one of the best style swaps of them all was when she changed into a red dress which she originally wore in 1993!
McEntire dug out a red, “very revealing” turtleneck dress with flared sleeves and jeweled bodice to perform her 1993 hit, “Does He Love You” alongside her daughter-in-law, Clarkson.
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She last wore the dress during the 1993 CMA Awards and told PEOPLE it ended up being one of her favorite looks of the night.
“I really liked the red dress from the ’90s,” McEntire tells PEOPLE. “It was like seeing an old friend again. When Sandi Spika made that dress for me, I felt like Cinderella. I wore it to the CMA Awards 25 years ago when singing ‘Does He Love You’ with Linda Davis. Sandi Spika Borchetta, who’d been touring with me and designing my clothes for years, designed it.”
Want to know more about her impressive nine outfit changes and how she chose each look? We have an exclusive photo diary straight from McEntire and her team, below.
With the help of stylists Loretta Harper and Terry Gordon, McEntire took the stage wearing nine different outfits throughout the night. Gordon tells PEOPLE that the most important thing McEntire wanted was “a look that would connect her classic styling with a contemporary twist.”
She accomplished that perfect mix by pairing a white fringe jacket with embroidered Justin cowboy boots from her collaboration with the footwear brand. “The boots and jacket came to life for us simultaneously. I had the boots embellished with the same stones as are found on the jacket to keep the look cohesive.”
And this styling choice really made the boots stand out. “This look took time to evolve for both Reba and me,” Gordon explains. “We were considering two very strong design elements; the jacket and boots. Choosing from a wide selection of stylings, we felt the vibrant energy of this look exudes the sexy, fun and contemporary vibe Reba brings to everything she does. Utilizing a basic black base further showcases and heightens both the drama and energy of the boots and jacket.”
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For Harper, she found inspiration for McEntire’s outfits by thinking of the country star’s signature style. “Reba was my inspiration! She’s the Queen of Country. The dresses I chose were all designed by Johnathan Kayne. He understands the female silhouette and is inspired by old Hollywood. The glamour of that era is timeless just like Reba.”
McEntire chose a white fringe and sequin gown to wear on the red carpet, but she wasn’t in it long. She protected her bright white dress with her hairstylist’s cowgirl-print cape (which she designed a shoe after) during a quick makeup touch-up.
During the show she wore a black dress with high-shine metallic embellishments and a beaded purple curve-hugging gown, which was Harper’s favorite. “When Reba first tried it on, it was an instant winner,” Harper says.
She paired her looks throughout the night with stilettos, pumps and of course, a pair of Justin boots (she has a collection of shoes with Justin Footwear), because of one important factor: “They are very, very comfortable … something that’s very important to me,” she says.
Be sure to check out PEOPLE’s full ACM Awards coverage to get the latest news on country’s big night.
She also loves that Justin is able to merge comfort with edgy style. “They captured my personality with the boots. They know that I like the tough sexy look, and that’s what these boots are.”
But after hours and hours on her feet, McEntire swapped to the ultimate comfy shoe — a red slipper that matched her vintage gown.