10 Unforgettable Met Gala Moments Throughout the Years

Cher at the 1974 Met Gala in custom Bob Mackie; photo courtesy Ron Galella/WireImage

 

Today is the Met Gala — but you already knew that. With this year’s theme as “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination,” we’re anticipating a lot of vintage McQueen, probably some Gaultier, and of course, a hell of a lot of Dolce & Gabbana.

So, to prepare, we’ve put together a list of of the 10 most memorable past Met Gala moments.

 

Rihanna in Guo Pei

 

photo courtesy of Getty Images

 

You can’t have a Met Gala roundup without mentioning Rihanna’s infamous dress from 2015. That year, the theme was “China: Through the Looking Glass,” and Rih chose Chinese designer Guo Pei for her look. The handmade gown took over 2 years for the designer to make and instantly made her go viral. In fact, there’s currently a new documentary that highlights Pei’s impressive career.

 

Rihanna, again, in Comme des Garçons

 

photo courtesy of Getty Images
Queen Rih also made the list because of her Comme des Garçons F/W ’16 look for the Met Gala last year. The theme actually was Comme des Garçons and Rih was one of the only people who actually wore something by Kawakubo — partly, I think, because she’s one of the only people who could really pull it off.

 

Cher in Bob Mackie

 

photo courtesy of WireImage

 

Cher always looks iconic. But it was this custom Bob Mackie gown at the third annnual Met Ball, that set the tone for it to be one of the most fashionable nights of the year. The theme was “Romantic and Glamorous Hollywood Design,” so the singer essentially could’ve shown up naked and — oh wait, she basically did.

 

Katy Perry in Maison Martin Margiela

 

photo courtesy of Margiela
Who could forget Katy Perry’s look from last year’s Met Gala? I know she can’t, because she still talks about how hard it was for her to pee. But beauty is pain, ladies and gentlemen — especially in custom Maison Martin Margiela (that looked suspiciously like Givenchy F/W ’17).

 

Sarah Jessica Parker in Alexander McQueen

 

photo courtesy of Vogue

 

“Anglomania” was the theme in 2006, and Sarah Jessica Parker went full on with the plaid, natch. On the arm of Alexander McQueen, the duo wore custom “Anarchy in the U.K.”-inspired looks by the designer, himself.

 

Lil Kim in god knows what

 

photo courtesy of WireImage

 

No one ever really knows what Lil Kim is wearing, and the 1999 Met Gala was no exception. The Hard Core rapper opted for a pink fur trench, pink snakeskin boots and a pink bikini — and no, the theme was not “pink.”

 

Kate Moss in custom Marc Jacobs and a Stephen Jones turban

 

photo courtesy of Getty Images

 

In 2009, Kate Moss looked the total part for the Met Gala’s “Model As Muse” in a custom Marc Jacobs gold lamé mini, YSL pumps and Stephen Jones turban.

 

Liv Tyler & Stella McCartney in matching halter tops

 

photo courtesy of Mari Sarai/Getty Images

 

Sure, the Met Gala wasn’t as big of a deal fashion-wise in 1999 as it now. But halter tops? Liv Tyler and Stella McCartney, you both know better. Still, the duo really leaned in to the “Rock Style” theme with matching “Rock Royalty” tank tops.

 

Donatella Versace in Versace

 

photo courtesy of Getty Images

 

Donatella’s leather Versace look for the 1996 Met Gala was iconic for a couple of reasons: Sadly, this would be Gianni’s last Gala before his death, but also the debut of his bondage-inspired style that would become a trademark for the legendary brand.

 

Jaden Smith and his ponytail in Louis Vuitton

 

photo courtesy of Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

 

Last but not least, Jaden Smith at last year’s Gala. Yes, the theme was Comme des Garçons, and sure, Rei Kawakubo is known for getting a little avant-garde sometimes. But Jaden Smith took things to a whole different level when he showed up on the red carpet in head-to-toe Louis Vuitton, carrying his recently cut dread locks.

 

Fingers crossed he — and everyone else — leaves the gross accessories at home tonight. Though, the theme is Catholicism, so I’m guessing this year’s top trapping will be guilt.

 

Alexa Chung is the It-est It Girl

Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com

Being an It Girl takes a lot of work. There’s traveling, partying, wearing gifted clothing, and mass attempts on being downright fabulous. It would be hard being Alexa Chung, said no one, nowhere. The British beauty air kisses Karl Lagerfeld’s cheeks regularly and sits front row at nearly every major fashion show.

She’s a chain-smoker and author of a book simply titled “It”. I think that needs no explaining as to why. Alexa is trotting behind personal favorite Chloe Sevigny on becoming the end all be all It Girl. See why, below.

1. When Alexa was a Versace. BFA_4795_548202Photo: Billy Farrell/BFAnyc.com

2. One of the multiple times Alexa DJed for Chanel. CHANEL Numéros Privés Opening Night Party and DinnerPhoto: David X Prutting/BFAnyc.com

3. She’s basically Anne’s BFF. Joe-Schildhorn-3Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com

4. Cozying up to The LSD in hopes of snagging some free Moda Operandi (we would too). Neil-RasmusPhoto: Neil Rasmus/BFAnyc.com

5. Only an It Girl can get away with those shoes. CHANEL SS15 Runway ShowPhoto: Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com

6. Only an It Girl can be a cheeseburger and not eat carbs at the same damn time. THE BYRNE NOTICE & EMERSON Host A Sick Halloween PartyPhoto: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

7. When she cozies up to other It Girls Poppy and Joan just to solidify that she’s the Itest of them all. Solid & Striped x Poppy Delevingne Launch Dinner - Exclusive ContentPhoto: David X Prutting/BFAnyc.com

8. It Girls get giant bottles of nail polish. They’re the only people to get them. ALEXA CHUNG / NAILS INC. Personal Appearance at SEPHORAPhoto: Aria Isadora/BFAnyc.com

9. If you’re an It Girl you can push Tommy and get away with it. TOMMY HILFIGER Spring 2015 Womens CollectionPhoto: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

10. And finally, signing “It,” her book. Aria-Isadora-2Photo: Aria Isadora/BFAnyc.com

Eight Stand Outs from Milan’s Menswear Shows

1: Brioni’s East-meets-West vibe

You have to go back a long way to uncover the roots of Brioni’s Fall/Winter 2014/15 collection—all the way back to Caravaggio, in fact. Take, for example, Giusquiamo green—yes, I had never heard of it either, but a chief pleasure of fashion is how it expands your appreciation of color. Giusquiamo green—dark and mossy—is named after a leaf (henbane in English), that was said to help witches fly, and the dead forget their loved ones, as well as more practical purposes in treating colic, irritable bladder, and gastric ulcers. And now it is a shade of beautiful knits and jackets by Brioni, taking the color palette from the shades of Carvaggio’s compositional chiaroscuros. There’s also midnight smoke, cherry brandy, dry bougainvillea, and geisha red. Talk about a (cashmere) coat of many colors. And that geisha red is no anomaly: a 1963 travel journal by Brioni co-founder Gaetano Savini, in which he recorded his impressions of Tokyo, serves as the anchor to this sublime collection in which silk shirts and a varsity jacket are embroidered with traditional Japanese scenes that you don’t need to be an extrovert to wear. Current creative director, London-born Brendan Mullane, let me look through Savini’s yellowed notebook, full of scribbles and doodles, and practically humming with inspiration and passion. Mullane and his team have taken that inspiration and expanded it for a collection that genuinely merits that overused trope “east meets west,” by synthesizing the best of both worlds.

Brioni JournalBrioniSilk ShirtBrioni close up

2: Bottega Veneta’s everything.

There were many shades of green on show at the Bottega Veneta presentation early on Sunday morning—at an hour that Tomas Meier, the brand’s reserved, somewhat cerebral creative director, tends to favor, presumably because he thinks that afternoons are for slackers. Meier has helmed the luxe Italian brand, Bottega Veneta for over 12 years—and for good reason. His collections are never less than impeccable, and consistency is his hallmark. There is almost nothing that materializes on his runway that I wouldn’t want to wear, and almost nothing I could ever afford. This season’s signature was a dip-dyed sweater, as well as cashmere sweat pants that will never be worn to the gym.

Bottega

 

DipDyesweater

3: Canali’s Grand Piano

The music for the Canali presentation was a live performance by pianist Ludovico Einaudi, playing his own pastoral compositions on a grand piano. Yes, it was exhilarating to hear Beyonce’s Superpower at Bottega Veneta, and the blast of Pulp’s Hardcore at Feragamo was a delightful mindfuck, but after all the pop and rock that propels the svelte young boys down the catwalks, how nice to have the grown-up sound of Einaudi at the piano. I’d never heard of him before, but when I fly back to New York, this is the song I shall be playing to calm my nerves.

CanaiRunway

Ludovico Einaudi

 

CD for ludovico-einaudi-in-a-time-lapse-album

4: Bebel’s Puntarelle salad

Man cannot live on style alone. Sometimes he needs bread, too—preferably dipped in a little olive oil, and served with a heaping bowl of puntarelle salad. Let me come clean: I had no idea what puntarelle was when I first encountered it at Bebels, one of those typical Milanese restaurants that are over-lit, and basic, but which serve fresh, simple dishes that you crave after a day of sitting endlessly on hard, narrow benches waiting for shows to start 30 minutes after their scheduled time. Puntarelle is a winter chicory that grows in southern Italy, and which is transformed by a little chopped anchovy, garlic, vinegar, and olive oil. Reader, I could eat this every day, and when I am here I do.

Puntarelle Salad_Bebels

5: Pink? No, Flamingo.

I overheard Deborah Needleman, now making waves as editrix of T Magazine, marveling one morning at the rise of the men’s clutch. Men’s fashion had become a little more feminine, she noted, while women’s wear was a little more masculine, and so much the better. It’s a good and true observation, but Valextra, a cult Italian bag company, suggests the wheel has simply been dialed back to the 1960s when European men thought nothing of running around with a slim, elegant purse under their arm. Velextra’s fall collection of leather goods come in three colors—petroleum, dark brown, and what they refer to as Flamingo, a bright poppy pink that would add just the right amount of dash to a man’s wardrobe. It surfaces in attaché cases, document wallets, even a cool little case for your computer cables, but I liked the wallet best of all. Is it too early to draw up a Christmas list?

Valextra-Wallet

6: This model

Watching Pier-Gabrile LaJoie stroll down the runway for the Fall/Winter 2014/15 Calvin Klein’s menswear collection was my Death in Venice moment of this season’s shows (you’ll have to read the novel/watch the movie to understand). In Gerontophilia, the most recent movie by director Bruce LaBruce, the young French Canadian plays an 18-year old attracted to an 82-year old man, and it’s easily LaBruce’s most touching and mainstream movie to date. There was something cinematic, too, about Italo Zuccheli’s latest collection with its masculine suiting and the slick-haired models strutting confidently down the catwalk. Leading the charge, LaJoie wore a green trench and pleated, roomy pants that brought to mind a Raymond Chandler crime noir. Later that night, at an extravagant cocktail party festooned with tureens of caviar, LaJoie reflected the same lovely ease and grace he shows on camera, and yes—I was charmed. And no, I did not ask his age. That would be too depressing.

Pier-bigger

7: Donatella Versace

When her brother was shot and killed by Andrew Cunanan on July 15, 1997 few fashion world observers expected Donatella Versace to have the combination of talent and business acumen to keep the fashion house relevant. And yet, here she is in 2014 with a collection that had the audience at the Versace mansion cheering at the weekend. It was, perhaps, the most purely entertaining and joyous occasion that this year’s shows had to offer. There were men in assless chaps that might have been ripped from the pages of gay illustrator Tom of Finland; and men in elaborate jewel-encrusted cod-pieces; and men in ferociously-patterned biker helmets. I had the pleasure of interviewing Donatella some years ago, and still remember thrilling to her deep-throated purr as she discussed fashion and sex. Was there such a thing as being too sexy or seductive, I asked? “Never, never!” she responded, “You can be too boring, but you can never be too seductive.” Nothing about Donatella has ever been boring. And when she came out at the end—a gush of silky blonde hair and a buoyant smile—seductive was precisely the word that sprang to mind.

Versace

8: The enigma that is Prada

Trays of whiskey were waiting as the fashion press poured into the large cage-like arena for Prada’s always-hot ticket show. A stickler for detail, even the refreshment is often a hint of what’s to come, but as usual with Miucca Prada the show was playfully abstract with a somber undertone. Were we in wartime Europe, or maybe in the immediate aftermath? The fox furs hanging around mens necks, and used, harness-like, to reinforce vests, conjured escaping prisoners, but no — afterwards, backstage, Miucca smiled appreciatively at the guessing games, but quickly clarified: we are in the world of the German avant-garde, of which the late Pina Bausch was such a great exemplar. And Bausch, like Prada, commanded a devoted following, not simply because she knew how to dance, but because she knew to think.
PRADA

Aaron Hicklin is the editor in chief of Out magazine and editor of BlackBook.

5 Things We Learned From Donatella Versace’s ‘Telegraph’ Interview

Prior to the unveiling of Atelier Versace’s first haute couture show in fifteen years, Telegraph sat down with the Italian fashion house’s chief designer Donatella Versace  to hear more about the highly-anticipated relaunch. Amidst heartfelt moments in which she discussed the untimely death of her brother Gianni and how he inspired her brave return to couture, the feature is peppered with all kinds of interesting nuggets about the svelte talent. From being besties with Miuccia Prada to sleeping in a freezer, read on for the highlights.

1. She found the fountain of youth: "How do I keep young? […] Haven’t you heard? I sleep every night in the deep freezer!"

2. She’s BFF with Miuccia Prada: "[We first met] at some event, somewhere… I made a joke and she started to laugh and she said let’s go and get some paninis because we’re starving… and off we went. We just talk, talk, talk. She’s so inspiring. We make fun of each other and teach each other."

3. She thinks feminism is a passé: "Feminism is dead in the world. It comes from another time. I’m a feminist. I want to fight, but I don’t see many people with this desire to fight for something. Women don’t help each other, especially in fashion."

4. She has bratty kids: "[My son Daniel] is always in the studio but he never lets me listen. He’s very private. He doesn’t want to be recognised as my son. Not that [my daughter] Allegra listens to me, either. Neither of my children listens to me."

5. She thinks the H&M collaboration made her cool again: "I had 15-year-olds asking to have their pictures taken with me. That’s when I realised this brand still means something. It sounds stupid, but before that I wasn’t so sure."

Photo: The KiKi Report

Versace Returns to Paris Haute Couture After 8-Year Absence

Backstage at the Versace spring/summer 2012 couture show, Donatella Versace told the Telegraph that, despite our economic times, "the world needs glamor." With that said, the Italian fashion house’s head designer made it a point to design a couture comeback that solidified Versace’s membership in the elite club of luxury brands that are still designing extravagant fashion. 

Over-the-top sculpting, blinding metallics, and fierce fembot accents made up Versace’s couture debut after nearly eight years of absence. Similar to Karl Lagerfeld’s "billion dollar babes" theme of his Chanel resort 2012 collection presented at the decadent Hotel du Cap on the French Riviera last year, Donatella’s "glamorous warriors" represented the "more is more" ethos championed by the aspirational shoppers that high-end brands cater to.

Cathy Horyn of the the New York Times tweeted on Donatella’s chosen vibe for the show: "watching a model unnaturally flex her shoulders at Versace couture, on dodgy game-show steps, as audience stands in coats behind ropes. Glam." Sure, the show was anything but natural, but for die-hard fashion lovers, Paris Haute Couture is the goal, so it should be nothing short of fantastical when you get there. 

See all 15 looks here.

Photo via NOWFASHION

If You’ve Ever Wanted to Bite a Designer’s Head Off, Here’s a Cake-Pop

Just in time for fashion week, London-based bakery Molly Bakes has revealed a set of cake-pops that feature the faces of all your favorite fashion designers and influencers. Pictured are pops inspired by Andre Leon Talley, Karl Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour, and they also carry cakes with the faces of Donatella Versace, Victoria Beckham and Vivienne Westwood (really). 

If you find yourself in London, you can pick up the cakes at Selfridges. The company’s online shop doesn’t carry these guys, but you can special order them here.

FashionFeed: Versace’s ‘Bad Boy’ Children’s Line, JC Penney’s Awkward Fashion Show

● Nicki Minaj interviewed Donatella Versace, and the designer revealed that the new Versace children’s collection will be "a little bad boy, with the black leather and studs, and a little bad girl, with all the black on black." [Interview]

● This is too much: watch JC Penney’s (remember them?) hilariously awkward denim fashion show from 1987. [Styleite]

● On Sunday morning, Anna Wintour and Hamish Bowles will appear on CBS to promote the new Vogue archive site that costs $1,575 per year to access. [The Cut]

● In an attempt to earn her off-and-on British accent, Madonna says Kate Middleton is a "lovely girl with a great sense of style." [Grazia]

● A diamond-encrusted Hermes Birkin bag sold for $203,150 at a Dallas auction. [Hint]

● Watch the NSFW making of the NSFW 2012 Pirelli calendar. [Fashionologie]

Naked Models, Pharrell Gets Happy, and Fashion Fires: Today’s #StyleScoop

If you’re having trouble shaking off the weekend, spend a few minutes with Pharrell’s latest – a 24 hour music video guaranteed to help with the whole Monday thing. Better now? Okay. Let’s talk about what’s happening in fashion.

In case you didn’t know, Sophia Loren is still smokin’. The one-time Pirelli calendarmodel was on hand alongside Karolina Kurkova, Lapo Elkann, Franca Sozzani, Alek Wek, and myriad other beautiful and talented faces as Pirelli celebrated 50 years in Milan on Thursday. The calendar released for 2014 pulls Helmut Newton’s 1986 not-a-nip-in-sight calendar out of the archives.

Quel hommage! Donatella Versace Lady Gaga stars in the latest Versace campaign lensed by Mert and Marcus (the same duo who did Kate right for Playboy).

Speaking of Kate’s nude shoot (one of many, really) the NYTimes is talking about Treats, only the latest to jump on the tastefully done, fashion nude magazines bandwagon, addressing the ever-increasing popularity of omitting clothes from fashion shoots.

Another no-clothes situation: Mulberry isn’t showing a fall 2014 collection in London this coming season. They’re still looking for a creative director since Emma Hill left. But if you’re tuning in to  i-D’s list of reasons Things to Remember When Fashion Gets Too Much, it’s ok.

And finally: a fire destroyed the Abercrombie & Fitch flagship store in Paris. Discuss.