The Met Gala, first established in 1948 and known as “fashion’s biggest night out,” is an annual fundraising event for the Costume Institute as part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art located in New York City. The famous first Monday in May introduces the Costume Institute’s exhibition of each respective year, in which the invite-only attendees dress accordingly to the night’s theme. Each year, only six hundred to seven-hundred guests make the list after meticulous detail and approval by Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour and her team. Wintour raised an estimation of over $186 million since her co-chair position first started in 1995. The event’s prior roles as co-chair were fashion publicist Elanor Lambert and former Vogue Editor-in-Chief Diana Vreeland from 1972 onwards.
When completing the 2016 summer intensive through The School of The New York Times Journalism Certificate Program, I had the pleasure of visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s “Manus X Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology,” exhibit, the Met Gala’s current theme, consisting of over 170 pieces and centered around the division of haute couture and machine-made fashion, showcasing early 20th century designs to now. In honor of an experience I will never forget, here are ten unique red-carpet looks from that evening.
Sticking to the Met Gala’s theme from 2016, singer/songwriter and dancer Ciara debuted her red-carpet look, wearing a handmade choker neck H&M gown decorated with Swarovski crystals draped throughout and a silver wig to complement her look.
- Gigi Hadid and Zayn Malik
The couple, now parents to their baby girl Khai, made their first red carpet debut together, wearing coordinating attire by designers Tommy Hilfiger and Versace, respectively. Hadid also dressed in a choker neck gown made up of a sheer floor-length skirt and connecting metal-like color bustier to match. Malik sported a classic black and white suit with silver, robotic accessory attachments to both arms.
- Lupita Nyong’o
Academy Award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o stunned in a glimmering jadeite Calvin Klein gown with sparkling drop earrings and jewelry. Her unique hairstyle infuenced by her African heritage of “structural hairdos from all around the continent,” also taking inspiration from music icon and civil rights activist Nina Simone.
- Claire Danes
Primetime Emmy Award-winning actress Claire Danes glamoured in a baby-blue fiber-optic “Cinderella” ballroom dress by Zac Posen. She topped off the magical look with a bright red lip and blonde hair slicked into a bun.
Queen B graced the red carpet in an exciting smoky eye and a figure-hugging, latex “orange sherbet” Givenchy dress, consisting of faintly floral decorations and pearl garnishes. Her dress was designed by the former fashion house’s creative director, Italian designer Riccardo Tisci.
- Liu Wen
Chinese fashion model Liu Wen opted for a metallic Iris van Herpen dress embellished in a “fish-scale” like manner accompanied with a “fishnet” detail for the dress’s bottom half. She accessorized with Tiffany & Co. jewelry, a black Giuseppe Zanotti evening clutch, and black and metallic heels.
- Nicki Minaj
Accompanied by Moschino’s creative director Jeremy Scott, Nicki Minaj made an entrance in a sparkly and sheer black strapped dress, crossed at the neckline with crystal buckles all around. She also opted for a black and platinum blonde wig styled to one side and a dramatic winged eye.
- Kim Kardashian and Kanye West
The duo coupled in a luminous Balmain ensemble designed by the fashion house’s creative director, French designer Olivier Rousteing. Kim’s thigh-high slit reflective-like dress, paired jewelry, and light brow, harmonized with Kanye’s jeweled denim jacket and colored contacts.
- Kylie Jenner
For her first Met Gala, Kylie Jenner showcased a similar theme to that of her sister, Kim, also designed by Olivier Rousteing. To combo, she wore silvery, strapped heels, black bob, and minimal jewelry.
- Zoë Saldana
Actress Zoë Saldana show stopped with a strapless Dolce & Gabbana gown with an extravagant peacock train, colorful chandelier earrings, and a simple pearled pinned the end of her braid.