In celebration of the Costume Institute’s new exhibition “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art of the In-Between,” the biggest celebrity names gathered in New York City for fashion’s most important night of the year — the Met Gala.
Rei Kawakubo has become an industry legend for her unconventional, avant-garde creations — many of which look more like art than fashion. She disregards the concept of flattering in favor of bold, statement-making pieces. Last night, influential designers took a stab at her flair for the dramatic by dressing the biggest It Girls in on-theme looks. Others weren’t so brave and, instead, chose to simply adopt Kawakubo’s signature hairstyle — a short, ultra-blunt bob with bangs. Find out who hit the mark.
15. Cara Delevingne in Chanel Haute Couture
Wearing head-to-toe silver (literally), Cara Delevingne certainly wasn’t afraid to take risks when it came to this avant-garde theme. But would her belted jacquard suit have fit in better with last year’s technology theme? Possibly. We still love it.
14. Emmy Rossum in Carolina Herrera
Emmy Rossum opted for a simple color palette with a dramatic, sculptural silhouette. This Carolina Herrera get-up featured fitted trousers on bottom and a feminine floor-sweeping train on top. The contrast was striking.
13. Hailee Steinfeld in Vera Wang
This Vera Wang look was one part army influence, two parts high-fashion goth and we’re here for it. It was all about the architectural details, from the off-shoulder coat with extra-long sleeves to the hot pants. The gold detailing was just the bonus finishing touch.
12. Hailey Baldwin in Carolina Herrera
Hailey Baldwin stepped out in a custom powder pink set by Carolina Herrera. The skirt made creative use of ombré, while the strapless bandeau-style top made interesting use of structural elements, with visible boning on the sides. A metallic beaded veil and a silver chain choker gave an edge to the sweet look.
11. Zoe Kravitz in Oscar de la Renta
Bleak romanticism at its best. Zoe Kravitz’s duchesse satin dress by Oscar de la Renta featured black floral appliques against a structured, pale pink bodice. But it was the black off-the-shoulder train that felt reminiscent of a Comme des Garçons gown — over-the-top and larger than life.
10. Tracee Ellis Ross in Comme des Garçons
There’s no easier way to pay homage to the Japanese designer than to actually wear a piece from her line. This short blue, cocoon-like Comme des Garçons dress reminded us why Kawakubo’s work is so influential. It’s art-meets-fashion chic and we can’t stop staring.
9. Lena Dunham in Elizabeth Kennedy
Lena Dunham showed up to the Met Gala in a plaid Elizabeth Kennedy ball gown featuring a full skirt and ruffled detailing. Dunham matched with Girls showrunner Jenni Konner in a nod to past Comme collections that have shown attached garments, meant for two people to wear simultaneously.
8. Bella Hadid in Alexander Wang
Bella Hadid turned heads in a skin-tight catsuit by Alexander Wang. Hadid was actually sewn into the eye-catching piece, which was done in lace with all-over beading and embroidery down to the shoe. Bodysuits are rarely done at the glittering gala, but this might just pave the way for future designers.
7. Selena Gomez in Coach
Though she may not have appeared on-theme aside from her bob hairstyle, Selena Gomez still made quite the splash in Coach. As the face of the brand, Gomez opted for an ethereal, pale pink embellished gown with a hot pink cat-eye.
6. Kendall Jenner in La Perla Haute Couture
Like her pal Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner gave new meaning to the nude-look dress craze. Jenner’s look was made of just thread and 85,000 crystals. Though we’re in awe of the sheer dress, which took 160 hours of labor to make, we don’t exactly see the tie-in to this year’s theme.
5. Lily Collins in Giambattista Valli
All that tulle! On the other hand, Giambattista Valli nailed this year’s theme by playing with proportion and opting for a bold beauty look on Lily Collins. The embellished bustier perfectly juxtaposes the femininity of the ruffled look.
4. Zendaya in Dolce & Gabbana
From the free-flying hair to the whimsical parrot print, Zendaya dominated the red carpet yet again in this Dolce & Gabbana off-the-shoulder gown.
3. Gigi Hadid in Tommy Hilfiger
Gigi x Tommy strikes again! It appears this collaboration can do no wrong. With one fishnet-clad leg forward, Hadid walked the red carpet looking like a punk ballerina in a deconstructed jacket-dress.
2. Rihanna in Comme des Garçons
It’s hard to top Rihanna when it comes to Met Gala fashion and this year was no different. She fittingly stepped out in Comme des Garçons and proceeded to blur the line between fashion and art with every new glance we took at her ensemble. Now that’s how you bring serious drama to the carpet!
1. Blake Lively in Versace
We like to imagine everyone experienced the same reveal of this dress that we did — a slow scroll from head to toe, with a surprise feather finish! The Versace number blew us away. Who knew an electric blue feathered train against gold, chainlink detailing would be such a dazzling pairing?