The evening of Monday, the 13th of September, brought with it a novel sense of excitement for devoted admirers of fashion worldwide, all thanks to the Costume Institute Gala—better known as “Met Gala”—portrayed by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City. A throng of onlookers cheered from across the street as a manifold of guests—old, young and admired—stationed their rides ahead of the museum, one after the other.
The Met Gala is famously dubbed “the party of the year” for no insignificant reason. The event, while being a fundraiser to the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute and, similarly to Fashion Weeks, is a platform for the world’s leading designers to flaunt what they create. In this case, designers go their distance, celebrities splurge in six-figure, seven-figure numbers to cross the line in making statements of fashion that would be spoken of throughout fashion history.
With regard to the effects of the pandemic—which did rob followers of the Met Gala in the previous year—people presumed this year’s event to be a modest, understated affair, especially owing to the fact that the guest list was narrowed down to a count of 400 as well. Nevertheless, the presumptions were negated once the guests started filing in, clad in attire that epitomized the term glamourous and fabulous enough to raise the bar for Met Galas to come, honoring the event’s theme: “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion.”
While each ensemble of garments had a unique form of allure and resplendence, a few especially caught the eye, proving themselves to be worthy of note.
It would be improper to start off without discussing the outfit worn by actor Timothée Chalamet—who was tied in duties of co-hosting the event with singer Billie Eilish, tennis star Naomi Osaka and poetess Amanda Gorman.
Chalamet appeared comfortable in a pair of white sweatpants, Converse sneakers, a satin tuxedo jacket (Haider Ackerman) and a white turtleneck (Rick Owens). Vintage brooches (Cartier) were fastened to his loose sweatpants as well. Where the other stars wore the creations of a single designer, Chalamet handpicked a combination of them.
Following closely was Canadian singer and wife to Elon Musk, Grimes, who preferred a sword as an accessory to accompany her dress for the event.
She stayed true to her admiration for Frank Herbert’s 1965 scientific-fiction novel Dune (the related movie will soon be released), from which the sheer, off-white dress that clung to her skin— and swept the floor in the form of a train on which the color intensified into darker tones towards the end—was inspired.
Grimes mentioned that her attire harmonized with the theme of the event considering Frank Herbert was an American novelist. Likewise, the theme of this year’s Met Gala, “American Independence”, was incorporated in each ensemble one way or the other, despite which the theme’s discernibility in the outfits rarely reached a level of high. For instance, Lupita Nyong’o made it apparent that she certainly understood the assignment.
The Black Panther actress made her appearance dressed in a denim Versace ballgown that sang American right down to the edge of its ruffled denim train, accessorizing her look with a necklace composed of diamonds.
Rihanna captured the attention of every photographer on the same platform shortly after.
The singer was enshrouded in a selection from Balenciaga’s most recent collection of couture. A manifold of Bulgari diamonds peeked from beneath her Balenciaga beanie hat and crowned the base of her neck, contrasting with the black in the rest of her garments in the most striking way.
One other entity that contrasted in color with Rihanna’s black ensemble was Normani’s bright yellow preference.
The grandiose Valentino dress, complete with gigantic sleeves and train, added to Normani’s own stunning beauty as she stood on the steps of the Met, jewelled accessories glistening on her hands and neck.
Apropos of color, singer Finneas O’Connell made a statement in bright, bold red.
Not unlike Chalamet mentioned earlier, O’Connell appeared to have an affinity for Cartier jewels, as was evident from the panther ring on his finger and the pink-gold, grey mother-of-pearl encrusted necklace partially hidden underneath his Givenchy suit.
The Met Gala was teeming with generously accessed creativity. Traces of the latter factor could be perceived in each and every outfit, which was the backbone of the event. Notwithstanding, an exceptional moment of creativity was displayed by rapper Lil Nas X on the Met Gala carpet.
Nas X arrived at the venue in a Versace ensemble, half-concealed in a gigantic, velvet, embroidered cloak, which was then eliminated to reveal the metallic golden armor underneath. He went on to strip down to a gold-embellished bodysuit that embraced his figure as he posed for the cameras.
Besides the fashion moments mentioned, many other stars—Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Jennifer Lopez and Frank Ocean to name some—contributed to the pizzazz of the event in their own unique assortments of clothing, thus automatically adding themselves to the album that is the esteemed history of fashion.
By Rebecca Mischelle