Cartwheels, costume changes and political statements take stage at the Met Gala
Co-chair Amanda Gorman’s outfit made multiple references to the Statue of Liberty. Credit: Theo Wargo/Getty Images
Making her way up the steps in an embellished indigo Vera Wang gown and silver laurel crown, she said: “I think American fashion really is at the crossroads of the world.” Representing a reimagined Statue of Liberty, Gorman held an Edie Parker clutch that said “Give Me Your Tired,” a reference to the poem inscribed at the statue’s base.
The poet was one of several stars to don deep shades of blue at the glitzy event. Tracee Ellis Ross wowed in a Balenciaga Couture coat dress with a popped collar, while gymnast Nia Dennis made an acrobatic entrance in a blue Stella McCartney catsuit.
Timothée Chalamet in Haider Ackerman. Credit: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue
But of those looking to the stars and stripes of the American flag for inspiration, the ones drawn to red came out in greatest force.
Megan Fox turned heads with pinup-style bangs and a daring Dundas dress featuring a plunging v-neck and high slit, while Karlie Kloss wore a scarlet Carolina Herrera gown with striking structural details.
Megan Fox was one of the many stars wearing either red, white or blue at the 2021 Met Gala. Credit: Theo Wargo/Getty Images
Model Ella Emhoff, the stepdaughter of Vice President Kamala Harris, sported an all-red Adidas outfit by Stella McCartney, joining a long list of celebrities to wear the color, including Jennifer Hudson, Rosalia, Emily Ratajkowski and Maluma.
On a night dedicated to American fashion, it is unsurprising that many opted for old Hollywood glamour.
Wearing Oscar de la Renta, co-chair Billie Eilish channeled Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly in her décolleté-bearing peach gown, which came with a fitted bodice and lengthy tulle train that required the support of four helpers. Megan Thee Stallion also glittered in an elegant pink Coach gown featuring hand-embroidered crystal detailing and an asymmetrical hem.
Billie Eilish opted for classic glamour with her luxurious Oscar de la Renta gown. Credit: Stephen Lovekin/Shutterstock
MJ Rodriguez looked to the past for inspiration, too, stunning onlookers in a Thom Browne creation she described as a “Victorian look.” Yet the outfit also alluded to something altogether more contemporary. Speaking to CNN Style on her way in, the “Pose” star said the outfit had been designed to “show what it looks like to be America now in 2021 and be a Black, Latina trans woman who can show that she can take her roots all the way back to American roots.”
Rodriguez was among a number of attendees to interpret the theme through the lens of diversity. Rapper Saweetie wore a figure-hugging, crystal-embellished dress with a lengthy train by Christian Cowan that incorporated the colors of the Black American Heritage flag and a Filipino flag — a reference to her mixed heritage.
Similarly, co-chair Naomi Osaka brought her Japanese and Haitian background together in an ensemble by Louis Vuitton. The ruffled sleeves evoked carnival, while the red obi across her tulip skirt recalled the traditional kimono tie.
Lil Nas X made one of the evening’s most dramatic entrances, revealing a gold suit of armor and, later, a gold jumpsuit. Credit: John Shearer/WireImage/Getty Images
With so many takes on what American fashion means in 2021, one thing is clear: The Met Gala brought it out in all its diversity.
Scroll through the gallery above for more highlights from this year’s Met Gala red carpet.