Following the massive global disappointment when the Met Gala was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic (yes, you guessed it!), the Met Gala 2021 was met with much pomp and splendour despite various COVID-19 restrictions. This year, the gala celebrated the exhibition, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion” by the Costume Institute, and stars celebrated American themes, some more obvious while others more subtle. Here is a line-up of all the best-dressed outfits of the glitzy evening.
Billie Eilish in Oscar de la Renta
Avid British Vogue readers may remember her cover story for the May 2021 issue where, in her interview, she revealed that she was inspired by old Hollywood. Paying homage to the 50’s and 60’s, she dressed up as one of America’s most iconic actresses, Marilyn Monroe, in this beautiful peach-coloured, ombré gown that is made from sustainable materials. As one of the co-hosts of the gala alongside other Gen-Z stars Timothée Chalamet, Amanda Gorman, and Naomi Osaka, we are most impressed with the fact that she wore this gown under the condition that Oscar de la Renta no longer use fur in their future products. To find out more about her look, click here.
CL in Alexander Wang
Wearing a denim coat and white briefs both by Alexander Wang, South Korean rapper CL’s coat was specially made to be reminiscent of the traditional Korean costume hanbok. In addition to CL, K-pop girl group Blackpink member Rosé was also in attendance that evening wearing Saint Laurent, and the two women became the first female K-Pop artists ever to receive an invitation for the Met Gala. First produced in 19th century America, denim is an iconic American fabric, and CL also pays homage to her native South Korea by incorporating traditional design in both her coat and hairstyle.
Helen Lasichanh and Pharrell Williams in Chanel
Chanel fans will be thrilled to see this outfit, which was designed by the late Karl Lagerfeld, aka “Kaiser Karl”. Singer Pharrell Williams and his music producer wife Helen Lasichanh rocked matching rodeo themed ensembles that perfectly embody the wild west theme of America. Pharrell has close ties with the brand, and so it comes as no surprise that he is wearing the Parisian fashion house’s ensemble. This look may possibly be from the archives of the Chanel pre-fall 2014 collection which was displayed at a rodeo in Dallas, Texas.
Lorde in Bode
Lorde’s gown, by New York designer Emily Bode, is a love letter to upcycled fashion. This exquisite two-piece ensemble is adorned with found objects such as pressed pennies, buttons, cabochons from the 20s, and Cracker Jack charms from the 40s. Although Bode is originally a menswear designer, this beautiful outfit makes us excited to see if she will be expanding into womenswear in the future. In addition to wearing an American designer’s work to the gala, Lorde’s headpiece is reminiscent of the Statue of Liberty, another American icon. To top it all off, she accessorises sustainably with pieces from a New York jeweller who uses recycled 22-karat gold, Prounis Jewelry.
Zoë Kravitz in Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello
Admittedly, it is confusing how this beautiful bejewelled, chainmail dress relates to the American theme, but regardless Zoe Kravitz was one of the stars who stole the show as she showed off every angle of her extremely fit body. The dress had lining around her breasts, and she wears a matching silver thong underneath. At a closer glance, the chainmail is in fact a series of interlocking YSL logos and has a slit up the back which further highlights her incredibly toned derriere.
Kendall Jenner in Givenchy
In addition to Billie Eilish, model Kendall Jenner is another star who channels old school Hollywood vibes as she pays tribute to Audrey Hepburn’s My Fair Lady gown in this beige, bejewelled dress. Like Zoë Kravitz, she puts a spin on luxe underwear, exposing a pair of French cut granny panties. While Hepburn’s original Givenchy gown featured white ballroom gloves, this modern interpretation opts for an elbow-length sheer accessory that connects to the dress like an off-shoulder. But both gowns share a dramatic train, jewelled neckpiece, and intricate shoulder pads that form the original 1964 iconic outfit. To find out more about Jenner’s look, click here.
Bee Carrozzini in Valentino
Daughter of Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour, Bee Carrozzini shows off her baby bump in this beautiful Valentino gown. This off the shoulder gown is a VALENTINO FALL 2021 COUTURE gown, modified from the original runway version. The tiffany blue colour evokes another American symbol, Tiffany’s, which was made more popular by the 1961 film, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, starring actress Audrey Hepburn.
Hamish Bowles in Thom Browne
English fashion journalist and editor Hamish Bowles shows off patriotic spirit on the other side of the pond, wearing American fashion designer Thom Browne. He pairs a smartly cut jacket with a skirt and pointed heels with a massive bow. While the red, white, and blue may be representative of America’s flag, they also happen to be Thom Browne’s signature colours. Bowles tops off the outfit with a cute finishing touch: the Statue of Liberty headpiece.
Barbie Ferreira in Jonathan Simkhai
American actress channels the ultimate mermaid vibe in this beautiful gown by another American designer, Jonathan Simkhai. Inspired by the “other” roaring 20’s that was really roaring (it’s certainly not this decade), the Euphoria actress matches this flapper-inspired dress with a bold flapper makeup look. She also wears a custom pearl headpiece from Mudd Pearl to reveal shocking blonde ringlets, almost unrecognisable from her traditional bold, black bob. To find out more about her makeup look, click here.
Saweetie in Christian Cowan
American rapper Saweetie pays tribute to her ‘Blackapino’ roots in this gorgeous bedazzling dress by British designer Christian Cowan. To her left, the train is representative of the colours of the Philippines flag, while to her right, the black and red represents the Black American heritage flag. A very impressive dress, it reportedly has 10 million crystals on it, and she showed off her signature crystalised bronze-coloured nails that coordinated with her outfit.