I don’t pay much attention to red carpet events. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very passionate about seeing how people use fashion, beauty and design to express their personalities, always have been, but in my experience you see very little personality on the red carpet. It’s where actors, actresses and musicians who play vibrant and ebullient characters on stage and screen slip into a uniform – red gown, red lip, wavy hair – and hide all evidence of quirks and imperfections. The Met Gala, on the other hand, is like a playground. The Met Gala is the annual fundraising benefit for the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. For a smooth $30K ticket, celebrities (or let’s be real, their stylists) get the opportunity to creatively interpret the annual theme. Like when we DIY our outfit for a themed birthday party – except with couture ateliers.
I was especially excited for this year’s theme, Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons. Kawakubo has made her name by challenging standards. According to the New York Times, she “refuses to accept any of the rules that govern normal clothing design: that clothes need to be flattering, for example, or that they need to have armholes. Instead, she is interested in challenging our ideas about what defines beauty, identity and gender.” Our community of readers is no stranger to challenging standards every day just by wearing their hair as it naturally grows out of their heads, so Kawakubo’s message resonates with me.
While there was no shortage of long, shiny straight hair and basic mermaid silhouette dresses, there were a few women who really embodied the Comme des Garçons spirit.
Last year, Zendaya wore a bowl cut. She is not interested in anyone’s idea of “sexy.” She’s not concerned about having the most defined curls or battling frizz, and I love her for it. There are some who may claim that wearing this hairstyle is inappropriate for the formal ballgown, but I think she’s doing a beautiful job of showing the world that big, beautiful hair is a natural fit for formal events.
Solange, aka my bff, was giving us Missy Elliott “The Rain” vibes and challenging the archaic notion that women must show their body to be beautiful. Rei Kawakubo doesn’t subscribe to society’s flatter figuring requirements, and if that means walking down a red carpet in a dress so comfortable you could sleep on it, I’m here for it. Obviously I’m also here for hair looks like art no matter what Solange is wearing.
As my good friend put it last night, “@badgalriri showed up in laundry basket chic and WE LOVE IT.” Rihanna reminded me last night how fun it can be to take a fashion risk and love every moment of it – even if no one else does.
You may not be dawning a sleeping bag to work tomorrow (but wouldn’t that be amazing?) but nonetheless, when you get up and get dressed this week take a little inspo from Rei Kawakubo’s avant garde message and the women who embodied it last night.
Who was your favorite look of the night?