I always struggle analyzing and reviewing the Met Costume Gala; it's the ultimate red carpet fashion parade, and there are no real standards of what is or isn't "good" because everything is so over-the-top.
This year's exhibit theme was "Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination," which added a level of controversy to the gala. Frustrated Catholics called the fashion parade heretical and claimed the Met was appropriating their culture. This is a hard point to argue, as the Met had support from the Sistine Chapel sacristy and the exhibit was a partnership with The Vatican. The goal of the exhibit was to "examine fashion's ongoing engagement with the devotional practices and traditions of Catholicism," which feels pretty respectful to me.
It also might be mildly hypocritical to complain about a Catholic exhibit being cultural appropriation if you didn't also complain about the "China: Through the Looking Glass" exhibit a few years back.
And it's one thing to be confused or frustrated by the stars attending the gala, but it's another to criticize the exhibit itself, which is STUNNING.
But anyway. You're not here for my analysis of people's objections to the gala, you're here for PRETTY DRESSES. That's what it's all about.
Who Wore it Better?
Evan Rachel Wood in Altuzarra and Katy Perry in Versace
Katy's look is fine for the stage, but at the end of the day she looks like a pop star trying to be cool at the Met. Evan's longtime partnership with Altuzarra really shines, and her wings are far more effortless (can we just picture Katy trying to walk through a door with those cumbersome things?)
Lili Reinhart in H&M and Zendaya in Versace
This is a tie in my book. Zendaya was the perfect Joan of Arc, but Lili's dress portrayed romance and femininity within its strength. Both were styled to perfection and were a unique departure from a sea of gold gowns.
Gold with a Slit
Gabrielle Union in Prabal Gurung and Jasmine Sanders in H&M
Supposedly Gabrielle wore yellow because it's the color of the Vatican flag, but unfortunately she looked like an out-of-place highlighter. Because she added the matchy-matchy shoe and the oddly contrasting silver jewelry, everything about the look was just off. Jasmine's gown, on the other hand, looked like molten metal and the draping was perfection.
Priyanka Chopra in Ralph Lauren and Scarlett Johansson in Marchesa
Scarlett wore Marchesa to stand up for Georgina Chapman in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, and to make the point that the sins of a man should not effect the career of a woman. I completely agree, and it's a gorgeous dress...for the Oscars. The Met Gala is all about bold statements, and this gown is so pretty and soft that it falls flat. Priyanka's dress is simple but daring, and the color couldn't be any better for her.
Headpieces and Trains
Sarah Jessica Parker in Dolce & Gabanna and Cardi B in Moschino
Sarah Jessica Parker is the queen of the Met Gala and often takes the theme VERY seriously. This year she went so far as to wear a nativity scene on her head. Even so, because of the shape of her gown, the look wasn't overwhelming and the styling was spot on. Cardi B's look was way too much of a good thing. I like the headpiece, but without the necklace. I like the sleeves, but without the gloves. I like the dress, but without the duvet-cover train. If she was trying to knock off Beyonce's maternity Grammy's look, it just wasn't successful.
Photos Courtesy of EOnline and Fashionista.
I'll be honest, the Met Costume Gala was just not on my radar this year, but thanks to my friend, Lydia, who requested a "best and worst dressed" review before I even knew the Gala was happening, I will gladly provide my feedback.
It’s always pretty difficult to determine the “best and the worst” in Met Gala fashion; ridiculousness is expected, and as I said last year, the line between what is good and what is bad is weird and blurry.
This year's Gala theme was "Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology." It seemed like a lot of guests took that to mean:
1. "Oh, so I can dress like a robot and that will work fine."
2. "So I can just cover myself in sequins and beading? Cool."
3. "Yeah, I have no idea what this theme means so I'm going to wear a totally plain dress and call it a day."
4. "I can wear something off-theme as long as I mention that technology created my outfit," (*cough cough* SARAH JESSICA PARKER.)
Overall I thought there were a lot of missed opportunities when it came to the theme, but there were still some clear winners that stood out.
Best Tech Dresses
Best Sustainable Looks
Best Black + Metal
Best Silver and Gold
Best for Last Year's Theme
All photos from Eonline, Huffington Post, Vanity Fair, smashd.co, and Upworthy.
Okay, friends. I seriously debated whether or not to post about the Met Gala, because the Met Gala is not like other award shows or red carpet events. It's an event for really wealthy people to flaunt fashion at a COSTUME institute. To a certain degree, ridiculousness is absolutely expected. In some cases, it's required...it's high fashion! It's avant-garde! Not everything is supposed to look pretty and neat and glamourous, and because of that, the line between "best and worst dressed" can be weird and blurry.
This year's Gala theme was "China: Through the Looking Glass," and you guys asked for my humble opinions. I'd hate to disappoint, so here we go:
Best in Red
Best in Gold
Best in Black
Best in White
All photos courtesy of Vogue and Mashable.