By Hillary Busis
September 17, 2012 at 08:47 PM EDT
Disney ABC Domestic Television

Sunny, chatty Katie Couric’s signature style doesn’t exactly scream S&M, but today the TV host found a way to embrace her inner bad girl… without having to go the full Rihanna.

Dressed in a black leather shift dress from the Raoul fall/winter collection — click here for a closer look — Couric welcomed Fifty Shades of Grey author E L James to today’s show.

Clearly enjoying her walk on the wild side, Couric completed the edgy look with a red room-ready Slane cuff — a not-so-subtle nod to the restraints used by Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele in the books — and black Stuart Weitzman spikes.

As a Katie publicist told me before the show started taping, the host has been enjoying the sartorial freedom that comes with her new gig; a lady can get mighty sick of wearing sensible blazers night after night.

And before striding onstage, Katie herself caught my eye and struck a playful pose in her new dress — Anastasia, eat your heart out. Maybe a pink vinyl bikini and matching cap isn’t far behind.

Read more:

On the scene: E L James talks ‘Fifty Shades’ with Katie Couric

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