Every year, the first Monday in May marks the most coveted event in fashion: the Met Gala. Split into two parts, this year’s theme followed suit from last year’s “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” but it placed emphasis on styles from the Gilded Age. The thematic aspect of the Gala hasn’t always been as competitive, but in recent years, celebrities, stylists and designers alike have approached the red carpet with a cutthroat attitude. From Emma Chamberlain’s controversial Cartier look to Kylie Jenner’s homage to Virgil Abloh, here are The Daily Californian’s picks for best dressed at the 2022 Met Gala.
Kylie Jenner’s look was easily the most talked about of the night, as commentators tore apart the Off-White wedding dress for its apparent deviation from the theme. The full length gown was styled with a backwards baseball cap with flowers, a traditional wedding veil and a mesh t-shirt adorned with the iconic “OFF” label. Despite its criticisms, Jenner’s look transcended the need to fit into a costume-like look. The reality star wore the ensemble to honor late Louis Vuitton trailblazer Virgil Abloh, and the dress mirrored one that closed the designer’s last runway show. Through his work, Abloh manifested classy streetwear and logomania, propelling himr to more recognizable heights than before. Essentially, this is the entire message of the exhaustive Met exhibition: to honor how far the American designer has come. The meaning behind the look and its dedication to the insurmountable work of Abloh is plenty enough to define it as best dressed.
Autumn de Wilde
Autumn de Wilde is an American triple threat — she’s a photographer, videographer and director, with her latest work being the 2020 film “Emma.” De Wilde’s look was a witty ode to the lovely Oscar Wilde, who wrote his iconic stories and plays during the Gilded Age. Even though Wilde wasn’t technically an American, de Wilde’s cosplay of the writer was spot on, and it channeled an aura from the Gilded Age that had to be included. The look featured a gold, glittery dress-like top with baby pink pants that matched de Wilde’s grandiose pink, glittery ascot. De Wilde proved that the best looks aren’t always reserved for A-list celebrities or models, and even her ensemble was akin to a costume, it was exceptional.
YouTube sweetheart Emma Chamberlain donned a custom Louis Vuitton ensemble dazzled with Cartier jewelry. Chamberlain’s canary-yellow top was pulled from Louis Vuitton’s 2016 ready-to-wear runway show and paired with a long white skirt. All of Vuitton’s looks were constructed from archive pieces, demonstrating how successful sustainable fashion can be. Some argued that, because these looks were recycled, they weren’t necessarily on theme, but shifting to sustainable efforts — regardless of the event — is exactly the influence American fashion needs. Chamberlain’s bleached bob haircut looked incredibly fabulous with the addition of a Cartier tiara and large diamond choker, which held the famed De Beers diamond. The jewels spurred conversation over Cartier’s acquisition of said diamonds, which once belonged to the Singh of Patiala in India. Controversy and thematic strength aside, Chamberlain’s look was youthful and sustainable, and it matched the star’s cheeky personality and fervor for eclectic fashion.
Evan Mock traded in his preppy “Gossip Girl” uniform for a pastel yellow Head of State suit and Cartier jewels. It’s fun to see smaller designers and brands make their debut on the red carpet and shine brighter than the greats — and Head of State was exemplary of this. The suit blended men’s and women’s Gilded Age fashion in a modern take that avoided looking like a costume. The look consisted of a white puffed collar, a corset styled bodice and low rise flared trousers with split pleats. Styled with Mock’s spiky pink hair and sprinkled with Cartier jewels, the outfit was punk and very Gen Z, and it balanced thematic integrity with the intuitive artistic design that encapsulates a great Met Gala look.
Kaitlin Clapinski covers fashion. Contact her at [email protected].