Every year, the Costume Institute Exhibition celebrates fashion with its themed party, the Met Gala (or Met Ball). As the biggest night in fashion, celebrities make sure to reserve their pieces months, or even a year, in advance. And this year's theme was based on an individual—Rei Kawakubo, designer of Comme Des Garçon—as opposed to a collective. (The last time this happened was in 1983 for Yves Saint Laurent.)
Despite companies paying up to $15,000 per seat to send celebs as advertisements for their brand but, in most cases, the garments they wear do not pay homage to the theme as appropriately as they should. As an unbiased lover of fashion, to qualify as best-dressed on a night like this, celebrities must have rightfully taken the theme down the red carpet. Here are the top 5 outfits we enjoyed most for the night.
Somehow, Rihanna always surprises even though we expect her to kill each look every time. This year, she wore Commes Des Garçon straight off the 2016 runway and, honestly, who could ask for more? No, seriously. Designer Rei Kawakubo makes her fashion very expressive. Through her use of textiles and fabrications, she creates abstract garments that stand as art. As opposed to your typical ready-to-wear fit, she is a breathing example of couture. The expert craftsmanship behind Rihanna's piece is said to be inspired by anger, although the theme of this collection is punk. While the dress is functional, we imagine Rihanna had a little trouble being seated this evening. The fabric had to be stiff enough to hold the form of these exaggerated flowers hand-painted with a surprising balance between dark and light.
We started to rule the Kardashian/Jenner clan out until Kendall came down the red carpet. Immediately stunned by how much skin she flaunted, the shining dress was a bit more than jaw-dropping. But as it was designed by Julia Haart, creative director at historic lingerie brand La Perla, we now understand why we see so much skin. However, though Kendall's sex appeal steals the show, Haart took effort into paying homage to Kawakubo by creating movement with seemingly immobile fabrications as she used stones connected on a single thread to create the gown. Amongst a few firsts of the night, we were not surprised to see that Kendall's rumored bae A$AP Rocky couldn't keep his hands off her.
After tonight, it is established that some years from now we will look back and honor the timeless fashion Solange has been serving over the years. Rocking her beautiful crown of hair picked out into an Afro, she waltzed in wearing a black-and-white puffer coat with a train, accentuated by extremely long shirt cuffs by Thom Browne. This is reminiscent of Kawakubo's style in years past, but timely enough to make us jealous of anyone with the Comme Des Garçon X Supreme jacket that recently released.
Helen Lasichanh, Pharrell's wife, may have been the source of many jokes last night, but she was by far the most on-point with her wardrobe selection. She is seen wearing a design by Kawakubo. One of the singular most significant styles of Kawakubo are her abstract silhouettes. Often those silhouettes are as jarring as this piece worn by Helen, which makes it gold!
While there were many dramatic moments, among them was the arrival of Cassie. Her gown is reverent of Kawakubo style in that it was an architectural piece that told a story about the art of design and construction. Kawakubo's Japanese heritage plays a large role in her approach of "form follows function" which makes a statement piece like this very impactful. Of course, a gown so grand could not go without an audience as Diddy look a seat on the red carpet to gaze as Cassie posed for the most viral picture of the evening.
The Met Gala is a night to remember and now that it is televised, celebrities should be more creative in their approach to attending this event. Rihanna stands as a leader in the fashion world because she isn't afraid of fashion. The sooner we all realize fashion is a form of expression and allow ourselves to "live a little" we will see more originality. As a parting message: stick to the theme and give us something mind-blowing to talk about.