RIHANNA. We have to start here and end here and return to here because this is jaw-dropping, icon-making fashion. THIS is what the Met Ball is for. Celebs can wear the pretty, safe boring things they always wear the rest of the year. The Met Gala is for turning fashion up to 11, it’s for celebrating and honoring the beauty and craftsmanship and risk taking that puts dresses in a museum, right next to the Michelangelos and Picassos.
The gala raises money for the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute–the fashion exhibit is always my favorite part of any museum–and the theme was China: Through the Looking Glass.
The Met Gala, more than any other red carpet event, is solely about the fashion. For the Oscars, the fashion is a treat, but it exists because of movies, and the stars of the show are the humans in the dresses. The stars of the Met Gala are the dresses themselves.
If I ran the world, anyone who played it safe at the Met Gala wouldn’t be invited back. (Simple is different than boring, don’t forget.) For those of us sitting at home who may never see art like this close up, much less wear it ourselves, this night every year is a gift. If you are able to go and have one of these incredible designers dress you, you should feel responsible for bringing fashion to the public and for showcasing this art.
Rihanna did that, with her queenly Guo Pei. One of the few who actually wore a Chinese designer, she not only elevated fashion, she looked like she was having a blast taking up the entire red carpet. Who else could put that on and not be swallowed up by that train or overwhelmed by that embroidery? It’s a perfect gown (coat? dress? dream?), and it was worn by the perfect person to pull it off.
There were other risk-takers last night, but also a few too many celebs who stuck to their usual. Kim, Bey, and J Lo met afterwards to found the Bejeweled Banging Body Club, I assume. (J Lo is president, obvs.) Reese Witherspoon stuck to the simple sheath she wore all awards season, and Sophia Vergara wore another sweetheart strapless gown. They looked great, but I’ve seen it all before.
Keri Russell (one of my personal style icons for her chic, edgy simplicity) was able to wear a gown that fits her style while upping the intensity in a stunning greenish black (or blackish green) Altuzarra. She kept her look simple (not boring) with limited accessories. I bet this dress was incredible close up, with the changing colors and feather details. I love feathers on clothes but I can’t imagine they would ever be practical in real life–which is perfect for the Met Gala. I might also be partial to this because it reminds me of my favorite McQueen.
Fan BingBing wore another Chinese designer, Christopher Bu, and she nailed it in a gold dress and emerald cape. She is on theme and on point, from the larger sequins on her dress to her perfect lipstick and earrings, to a cape that is anything but cliche.
I am happy to say that it’s been a wild ride. Until next year, you crazy kids.