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Favorite Met Gala Looks From Years Past

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

By Adrianne Hutto

After a brief hiatus, the Met Gala resumed in post-pandemic glory with nearly all our favorite celebrities wearing all our favorite designers. This year’s gala was hosted by Amanda Gorman, Naomi Osaka, Timothée Chalamet, and Billie Eilish, who were all stunningly present at the event. This year’s theme for the long awaited event was “American Independence,” which comes across very fittingly after the year and a half America has experienced as a result of Covid. Several celebrities did attend masked-up, including Kim Kardashian who wore what can only be described as a Balenciaga morph suit. However, rather than discuss the outfits we have been obsessing over since Monday night, instead we are going to look back at the outfits that rule Met fashion history. 

Arguably, the best theme of Met Gala’s past came in 2018 with, “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination.” This was the year Blake Lively stunned onlookers with her silver and maroon Versace gown. The “Heavenly Bodies,” theme had celebrities of all kinds looking like straight royalty. Another look that dropped jaws was Cardi B’s Thom Browne cinch-waist, jewel encrusted dress. Music fans were able to see another side of the female rapper as she was dressed for a ball in the most exquisite gown we’ve ever seen her in.  

Finally, the killer look of the 2018 Met Gala was Rihanna in a silver mitre, speckled with jewels, sending a subtle ‘fuck you,’ to the Catholic patriarchy. It puts a twist on the typical appearance of a Catholic Pope by having Rihanna in a silver Demna Gvasalia mini dress.

While 2018’s theme was the best of Met’s past, “2019 Camp: Notes on Fashion” revealed some of the best looks in Met Gala history. One look that stands out to me in the wake of the 2021 Gala, is Gigi Hadid’s Michael Kors Ice Queen-esq silver, gold, and white body suit. This look stands out to me because, unlike her 2021 look, we see Gigi is a style very different from her typical straight, cinch-waist maxi dresses. 

Another stand out look, which set the tone of the entire event and is one of her most iconic fashion looks ever, is Lily Collins Giambattista Valli Haute Couture 60’s inspired wedding dress. Though more than anything it was her teased-up bouffant with the delicate butterfly details that made the entire look. 

One look from the 2019 Met Gala that needs more love is Dua Lipa’s psychedelic indigo and green Versace dress with a duchess overskirt in a high-low silhouette with a plunging neckline. Here is a dress that I feel like we should still be talking about and yet in 2019 it still wasn’t getting enough love. The hippie in my heart needs this pattern on everything, though sadly the dress is way out of all of our price ranges. 

 Lastly, there are two looks that I believe sum up the entirety of the 2017 Met Gala, who’s theme was “Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between,” which prompted a range of fashion pieces. One of the first stand out looks was Zendaya’s Dolce and Gabbana Alta Moda Ball Gown with yellow hues and sprinkled with red parrots. While her dress strayed from the avant garde “Comme des Garcons” theme it stunned celebrities and stars alike. Finally, the outfit that Time Magazine defined as having “won” the 2017 Met Gala, Rihanna’s sweeping goldenrod cape by Guo Pei. Unlike Zendaya, it was Rihanna’s leaning into the theme that led to this jaw dropping look. 

On the heels of NY Fashion Week, Met season ends with a bang as fans are given another collection of outfits to obsess over until next year. If you haven’t already, make sure to check out this year’s best looks after you’ve read this article.

Jana Clark

Manhattan '22

Jana Clark is a senior at Manhattan College majoring in Communication with a minor in Environmental Studies. Her passions include writing, photography, and health/nutrition! One day she hopes to work for a nonprofit organization where she can be part of the effort to end the marginalization of vulnerable communities and fight for social justice. You can often find Jana volunteering, at the gym, or exploring different parts of the Big Apple.
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