Arriving at the 15th Annual Academy of Country Music (ACM) Honors in Nashville, Tennessee on Wednesday (24 August) evening, Ballerini turned heads in the figure-hugging Marc Bouwer design.
The floor-length gown is decorated with sequins all over, and features a turtleneck and fishtail skirt.
Emulating Twain’s appearance more than 20 years on, Ballerini also wore her hair in a simple updo and opted for a smokey eye makeup look.
Twain, who was also present at last night’s event, told Entertainment Tonight that she was “blown away” by Ballerini’s gesture.
The dress is part of an exhibition at the Grammy Museum but was loaned to Ballerini for 48 hours.
“She looks stunning. She looks like an absolute angel. It’s very flattering to see her in the dress, and that she even wanted to wear it. I said, ‘I hope it’s not too dusty after being in the [GRAMMY Museum]’,” Twain said.
Twain picked up two awards at the 1999 event, winning Best Female Country Vocal Performance and Best Country Song for “You’re Still the One”.
“It was an incredible night for me at the Grammys. That dress represented that experience, so I’m just happy to see it alive again,” Twain said.
“Now it has a new life, and it has new memories, and it’s really great to be able to share that with other people, with another women. Obviously, it’s a huge compliment to be admired enough that someone would want to step into my dress.”
Ballerini said she wanted to wear the dress to pay homage to Twain, who was presented with ACM’s Poet Award on Wednesday.
“It’s Shania’s night! When I was asked to be a part of it, to honour her, we were just thinking about every possible way that we can highlight every stage of her career,” Ballerini said.
“One of the things that I think she’s an icon because of is her fashion, and the way she’s always pushing boundaries. I wanted to honor that part of her too.”
Ballerini said she had only tried the dress on for the first time on Tuesday (23 August), and had selected a back-up option in case it didn’t fit.
“We’re not allowed to obviously alter anything so I am. I am just a little bit taller, and so far that’s the only thing we noticed,” she said.