So no doubt this morning you have been inundated with emails, tweets, blogs and news reports on the best and worst dressed from last night's Met Gala. If you are anything like me you've been through at least three of your favorite websites to see if their picks match yours. Nothing like confirmation from the experts or, in my case, your peers to prove that your eye for style is just as keen as theirs. Just in case you were wondering my favorites for best dressed are Rooney Mara in Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, Kristen Stewart in Stella McCartney and Cary Mulligan in Balenciaga. However, agree or disagree with my picks, I have to point out that there is something inherently wrong with them, and it's a problem that has infected all of the best dressed picks I have seen so far. The issue; they're not very punk.
There has been a fashion theme conflict that has been playing tug of war with trend conscious early adopters this year and that is whether to go Gatsby or go Punk. One is pushed by the heavyweights in Hollywood and the other is pushed by the fashion illuminati at Vogue. In the beginning it was hard to say who would win out, but I leaned more towards Vogue as the motives to get us to appreciate punk seemed more altruistic as opposed to Hollywood, who is using fashion to promote a film. The Met Gala after all is held to kick off a special Costume Institute exhibit that is on display for only a limited time, with this year's being "Punk: Chaos to Couture". And I personally love when we look back on counterculture fashion, reexamine it, and turn what was once loathed by the mainstream into something that is embraced and appreciated. However, as the Met Gala has come and gone, my leanings are beginning to, no, they for sure have changed.
What happened to the punk fashion?! Just like the rest of us plebes that refused to gawk from afar, meaning 85th street, and instead watched from our laptops, I viewed look after look after look and was severely left wanting. Many attendees went for somewhat daring looks like Beyonce in her Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci (which I loathed by the way) and Gwen Stefani in Maison Martin Margiela, but isn't that par for the course at most Met balls? To wear something that's just shy of being safe. It is fashion's biggest night of course. What left me stunned was how few actually embraced the punk theme. I mean, I was expecting to see these fashion heavyweights having a lot of fun with mohawks and safety pins and plaid and leather and was really excited to see how it all would mashup with couture. What I got instead was most attendees in the usual red carpet attire. Even Anna Wintour herself looked as if she were dressed for a garden party in a Chanel floral cap-sleeved dress. Boring!
Jennifer Lawrence in Dior, Maggie Gyllenhaal in Calvin Klein and Emily Blunt in Carolina Herrera are just a few who could have been snapped on any red carpet at any event in any season. Those that did try to be somewhat counter culture like Florence Welch in Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, Anne Hathaway in Valentino and Jessica Pare in Jason Wu looked more goth than punk. The red carpet was so skewed toward couture that those that did go all out punk like Madonna in another Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, Christina Ricci in Vivienne Westwood, Miley Cyrus in Marc Jacobs and Dee Hilfiger in Tommy Hilfiger looked as if they came to the wrong party!
So what does this tell us. Because it is telling us something. I am sorely disappointed in the lack of punk fashion. I was looking forward to seeing these fashion icons interpret the trend and offer some style inspiration that we can reinterpret for our own wardrobes. Instead, their obvious lack of enthusiasm for the trend tells us that we shouldn't be enthusiastic for it either. It also tells us that it's not as easy to incorporate punk fashion into mainstream clothing as they would have liked us to believe prior to the Met Gala. Even the celebs I thought would wow us with a punk couture mashup like Nicki Minaj, Rita Ora and Solange Knowles fell so flat on the punk scale it was pointless to even watch them. Had it been "Studio 54: Disco to Divine" they all would have fit right in. That also goes for Diane Von Furstenburg in her groovy get-up.
So with that said, there were a few, very few, celebs that did embrace the theme quite nicely and who I feel are not getting the attention they deserve. Therefore, I am taking the liberty to revise my previous best dressed list. Most wearable for a night out goes to January Jones in Chanel. January isn't the most daring person on the red carpet which makes her Met Gala choices stand out all the more. The hair, the dress, the shoes, the makeup..she reminded me of Tilda Swinton and, in my opinion, she nailed it! Best red carpet look goes to Rooney Mara in her Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci. She's the only pick from my previous list that I'm keeping. The zippers on her elegant white dress gave it a slightly punk edge and her dark makeup was the perfect mesh of elegant and edgy. Last, but not least, Sarah Jessica Parker was the bell of the ball. Her mixed media style in a dark floral Giles Deacon dress paired with custom flannel plaid thigh-high Christian Louboutins was so outrageously punk and couture. Not to mention her Philip Treacy mohawk headpiece was the only true mohawk motif. SJP gave us the only true fashion inspo and I would love to see the idea of mohawk headpieces taking off in lieu of these silly fedoras that just won't go away.
I normally find red carpets boring and safe and had this been any other event I would have loved everything that was worn, because for all intents and purposes many attendees did come out of their comfort zone. So if you look at it that way it still can be called a great night for fashion. But, unfortunately, I'm not looking at it that way and am considering this night a punk fashion punk-out.