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 October 26

by Carolina


Executive Editor

On Sept. 13 , 2021, The Met Gala took place, with the theme “American Independence.” Even before the event, fans anticipated the different looks such a vague theme would bring. However, I don’t think anyone could have anticipated what we actually got. This year was not one of my favorites, but some looks certainly stood out, for reasons good and bad.

For starters, there’s my personal winner of the night, Lil Nas X. Aside from his musical ability, Lil Nas has another unique talent, the ability to get people talking. Whether it be a music video, eye-catching outfits, or publicity stunts, he knows how to not only stay in the limelight, but relish in it. He had three different outfits throughout the night. A skintight black bodysuit with gold details, a golden suit of armor, and a heavy ornate cloak made of gold velvet. With his opulence, he captured both the theme of the night, and the spirit of the event. The Met Gala is a fundraiser for The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Department. The whole event is about celebrating clothes interesting enough to remain in museums long past their relevancy.

In addition to this, his extra-ness hit the theme right on the head. A dominating factor of American Fashion is consumerism and overconsumption. Three different flashy gold outfits is the perfect ode to how a stereotypical American would dress themselves in a more fashion oriented world.

Another showstopper was Billie Eilish in her flowing peach ball gown by Oscar De La Renta. The star known for her typical baggie outfits and edgy colors looked ethereal in her barbie inspired dress. Her carefully curled bob above the off the shoulder silhouette captured old Hollywood glam so subtly you would think she had just happened to waltz off the set of “My Fair Lady.”

One look that got people talking, or mainly laughing, was Kim Kardashian’s all black high coverage ensemble. The reality star was compared to a ninja, a gimp, and Peter Pan’s shadow. However, I think her look goes beyond that. Throughout her career, she has maintained a reputation as a sex symbol. Since having her private tape leaked, American society has felt entitled to her body. Her name has become synonymous with standards for women’s bodies, and that is an incredible pressure for one woman. To me, her lowkey ensemble was a nod to how women’s bodies are put above their identities.

The black fabric clung to her signature curves, reminding us of who was underneath without seeing her face or hearing her voice. Although she brought her own curtain, her message was center stage. She arrived next to half-sister Kendall Jenner, who despite usually being the world’s most boring supermodel, absolutely shined in her Audrey Hepburn inspired dress. The acknowledgment of the classic star was a beautiful way of sticking to the theme.

Now, Naomi Osaka may be a world class athlete, but she did not come to play. Osaka’s Japanese inspired dress with matching makeup and hair was polarizing amongst viewers. Some said the look was way too off theme considering the obvious inspiration from another country, but I disagree. The tennis star stunningly celebrated her own culture while acknowledging the huge influence South Asian style has on American streetwear. Her dress was gorgeous and the unconventional hair and makeup elevated the look.

One gripe many viewers had this year was the amount of influencers in attendance. Addison Rae, newbie actress and TikTok princess showed up in a red dress, and that’s about all there is to say. The dress was red, as many are. She looked ready for brunch with Tomi Lahren and Laura Ingraham to be quite honest. Other influencers in attendance were Dixie D’amelio, whose younger sister Charli holds the crown for most TikTok followers, and Youtuber Emma Chamberlain, who conducted red carpet interviews.

D’amelio also took inspiration from Audrey Hepburn, with a funky twist on the iconic “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” look. The big fuzzy hat modernized the look and the different textures grabbed attention. The dress and gloves themselves were a bit frumpy, although the simplistic dress did allow for all parts of the look to shine. However, if you ask me, sleek, satin gloves would have paired much better.

Another popular outfit I can’t call myself a fan of was Dan Levy’s map inspired ensemble. I enjoyed how he incorporated a statement on LGBT+ rights, but each component was so intricate it made it hard to really appreciate any of them.

This year’s event was unique. The theme was indeed hard to nail down and it showed. You had the “way too on the nose,” like Ciara’s football dress, and gorgeous but not quite thematic looks, like Hunter Schafer’s chromatic, futuristic matching set. One thing I wished there had been more of were period dresses. Especially with freedom being specified in the theme, revolutionary war era dresses could have shone. The American theme will continue in May 2022 for the next gala, so maybe this was just a dress rehearsal.

Original posted at www.strosechronicle.com

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