Last night was the Met Gala, in case you missed it. I sat in front of my television with friends for a good two hours as the Fashion Police crew “commentated” the “red carpet.” I use quotations because the entire commentation was a repetition of five phrases, and because the “red carpet” was actually beige carpet covering the steps to the Met. Nonetheless, I was looking forward to the showcasing of couture because this is a ~FASHUN~ event — not just any old awards show where the goal is elegance. The Met Gala is, as it should be, thematic.
This year’s theme and exhibit, “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between,” provided the most blank canvas of opportunity. Comme des Garçons is a lot of things, but predictable is not one them. Dichotomy, androgyny, complexity — these are common descriptors of Kawakubo’s work through the years. The New York Times said it best when they wrote, “For decades, at least since her Paris debut in 1981, Ms. Kawakubo has forged her own path, a durable antagonist of established norms and received wisdoms.”
I was prepared for the red carpet of the century.
But at the end of the night, I felt like I had watched the entrance to the Golden Globes. Elegant gowns, diamonds, and tuxedos. Those were all present. The “insta-girls” slash new-wave-models had a contest of who could bare the most (it’s a tie between Kendall’s butt cheeks and Bella’s Alexander Wang catsuit). Kylie and friends took selfies in the bathroom (where apparently they take smoke breaks?), which felt irreverent to Rei Kawakubo, Andrew Bolton, and the exhibit. I wonder if Anna scolded them later?
Not even Sarah Jessica Parker, someone who is always meticulously on-theme, was there to help save the red carpet from the predictable plunging necklines of the Victoria’s Secret angels. (Still wondering where you were SJP?!)
Most played into CdG’s defining characteristics subtly. Slicked back hair, tight top knots, and blunt bobs were as far as the majority went to stick to the theme. Kawakubo let’s her clothes make the statements standing along (as in, she offers no commentary on her work), but few responded unapologetically.
Rihanna was my saving grace. Making her fashionably-late entrance (per usual) in 2016 CdG. She walked into the exhibit literally dressed in it.
Solange isn’t one to shy away from avant-garde. She’s wearing Thom Browne, including what I can only describe as “ice skate shoes.”
Tracee Ellis Ross, like Rihanna, also came dressed in the namesake designer. Although contrary to RiRi, Ross proved that art can worn, and it can be comfortable, and most importantly authentic.
Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen did their own g-dang thing last night. Maybe they were nostalgic for their long-gone boho days? Or maybe they were playing with the idea of Rei’s dichotomy by contrasting these lace looks by their label The Row with the actual aesthetic of their most recent designs (i.e. not this). It’s a mystery to me. All I know for sure is that they’re still saying “PRUNE” during photos.
In reality, I doubt Rei stuck to a dress code herself, so I guess I can’t be that disappointed about the lack of thematic dressing this year?
Images via The New York Times