What do you do when you’re invited to present at the 56th Annual CMA Awards in Nashville just 10 days before the big event? If you’re HGTV‘s Erin Napier, you call up Drew Barrymore and ask for help! Erin and her husband Ben leaned on their famous friends to pull some strings and show them the ropes as they headed to celebrate the year’s biggest night in country music.
How Erin Napier Found Her Gorgeous Dress
The Napiers received an invite to present at the CMAs just 10 days before the event. According to HGTV, Ben said they didn’t hesitate when they got the call, given that they’re both big country music fans.
“We were like, absolutely!” he said.
In addition to packing up their family, including four-year-old Helen and 18-month-old Mae, to head from Laurel, Mississippi, to Nashville for the big night on November 9, 2022, they had to figure out what to wear. Ben told a reporter that he got his vintage Pendleton cowboy blazer on eBay. He paired it with a denim shirt, Blue Delta jeans, and his dad’s vintage boots.
As for Erin, she revealed that she turned to her new friend Drew Barrymore, who she fangirled over when the couple appeared on her show via video in February 2021.
“I’ve been, like, your biggest fan since…my whole life, basically, so this is a really big moment for me,” Erin told her.
The Napiers appeared in person on Barrymore’s show in December 2021, and the two women apparently struck up a friendship.
“It’s true,” Erin said before the CMA Awards. “We’ve gotten to know each other a little bit. I didn’t know how to get a dress that quickly and Drew helped me get this one.”
According to HGTV, Barrymore called the Marchesa design house directly, which created Erin’s textured, floral dress with flounce sleeves and got it to her quickly.
The Napiers Got to Sit With & Celebrate Friend Chris Stapleton
Before the awards show, Erin posted a photo to her Instagram Stories from rehearsals at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, where she showed the table where she and Ben would sit, complete with seating signs that featured their photos.
The pic revealed that they’d be sitting with their good friends, singers Chris and Morgane Stapleton, as well as country legend Patti Loveless, who sang with the Stapletons during the awards show. Meanwhile, Keith Urban was seated right behind Erin.
Erin and Ben presented the Male Vocalist of the Year Award. When they took the stage, Erin said that all the nominees in the category were her favorite male entertainers, and then the two joked that Ben is really her favorite when he’s singing in his pickup.
Stapleton won the award and, in his acceptance speech, said it was special to receive it from his friends. He also said it was his 12-year-old daughter’s birthday, so gave her a sweet shout-out.
The Napiers daughters were in Nashville, too, staying with friends while their parents were at the award show. On the red carpet, Ben said they’d be watching — but that Helen was not so interested in seeing them on the TV.
“Helen’s not really interested in us, she wants to see Carrie Underwood,” he said.
The couple clearly had a great time during and after the show. On Ben’s Instagram Stories, he uploaded some late-night photos taken by the couple’s personal assistant, including pics from backstage and at an afterparty complete with cotton candy and cowboy hats.