The 2013 Met Gala didn't fall short of its nickname – “the Oscars of the East Coast” – and celebrities didn't disappoint on fashion’s biggest night of the year at the annual Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Benefit ball.
The event held Monday evening in New York City had a punk theme ahead of the Met’s “Punk: Chaos to Couture” exhibit, which opens on Thursday and runs until Aug. 14. The exhibition documents punk’s presence on the runway since the days of the Sex Pistols, Blondie and Vivienne Westwood to the present.
As is any red carpet, it’s a daunting task to pinpoint exactly who was the best dressed and who was the worst; This Met Gala in particular was that much more difficult, especially when factoring in that guests were encouraged to dress in a punk theme, some of who played along and some who didn’t. So, forgive us now for being harsh to those who went all anarchy on the theme. But fashion wouldn’t be as much fun if it weren’t cutthroat, right?
That being said, let’s start with the worst of the night: unarguably Kim Kardashian. The very-pregnant reality starlet, who according to rumors only scored an invite after wining and dining Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour, looked more like “junk” than “punk” in her head-to-toe floral Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci turtleneck dress. We can cut her a break for being 7-months-pregnant, but we can't give her a fashion mulligan for the matching shoes and gloves which amputated her hands. The Twitterverse seemed to agree, comparing her look to Robin Williams as Mrs. Doubtfire. Kardashian, take a cue from Amar’e Stoudemire’s wife, Alexis, who looked radiant and chic while pregnant without kitsch.
Some ladies, of course, didn’t buy into the punk theme, like Cameron Diaz in Stella McCartney (aside from the spiky belt), Julianne Moore in Balenciaga and Gwyneth Paltrow in Valentino, but that’s no excuse to look frumpy. Diaz’s look aged her beyond her youthful 40 years, Moore’s dress seemed ill-fitted and did nothing for her figure and Paltrow, well according to the Oscar-winner, going "totally classic on a punk night" is real punk. What a snooze.
Then there was co-chairperson Lauren Santo Domingo of Moda Operandi in Dolce & Gabbana whose dress I couldn’t even see beneath the sleeves. Or as New York Magazine’s The Fug Girls put it: “Lauren Santo Domingo is more punk by way of the Dowager Countess. Her sleeves are big enough to act as flotation devices.” I also bet that Nicki Minaj’s hair could also be used as a flotation device; The invitation said “punk” not “drunk,” which might have been her state of mind while dressing judging by appearances.
Other females took the theme to mean “exotic,” like Ashley Olsen who showed up in an orange vintage Dior dress that looked like a sari. Meanwhile, twin sister Mary Kate confused the punk movement with the hippie movement in a floral silk robe with a fur-trimmed collar.
Katy Perry, who wore a crown and dress from Dolce & Gabbana’s Spring 2013 collection, said her inspiration was Joan of Arc, who she called the “OG queen of punk.” If by Joan of Arc she meant the 15th century folk heroine, then I just don’t know what to say here. Probably the only time she could ever pull off the D&G Virgin Mary dress, though.
So who stood out as the supernova of the night, while still adhering to the punk theme? It truly is tough to single out just one knockout, but Cara Delevingne, Sienna Miller, Anne Hathaway, Nicole Richie and Coco Rocha are fighting for the top spot. These ladies really took the theme of punk’s evolution from chaos to couture to heart while getting dressed for the Gala: Delevingne in a black spiked Burberry gown, Miller also in Burberry with a spiked leather jacket topping her white gown, a newly blonde Hathaway in an edgy vintage Valentino number, Richie with ghost-white hair to match her Topshop gown and Rocha in an animal print, ornate gown designed by Fausto Puglisi for Ungaro. Coco’s fellow “The Face” judge Karolina Kurkova also rocked out for the night in a custom Mary Katrantzou dress with a glam punk edge. Fellow supermodel Gisele Bundchen was also feeling punk, throwing up the sign of the horns all night in her itty-bitty Anthony Vacarello mini.
I also can’t omit Julie Macklowe and Bergdorf Goodman’s Linda Fargo from the best dressed brigade; When else could you see the always polished vbeauté CEO with pink hair and a studded pink Zang Toi gown and the perfectly coiffed senior VP in goth-punk makeup with a bondage gown and Bride of Frankenstein hair? I wish Anna Wintour was as whimsical, but the Vogue Editor-in-Chief declared her floral Chanel gown was indeed punk, because “the color of punk is pink.” Touché.
While maybe not in the top five, others who were dressed to the nine’s were Miley Cyrus in a super punk fishnet Marc Jacobs dress, Elizabeth Banks in a gold Versace blazer dress, Christina Ricci in a tartan Vivienne Westwood dress, Kerry Washington in a leather and lace Vera Wang, Donatella Versace in a spiked dress of her own design, Elle and Dakota Fanning in Rodarte designs (kudos to the younger Fanning for finding the only appropriate time to don Rodarte’s tie dye from the Mulleavy sister’s Spring 2013 collection!) and of course fashion heavy hitter Sarah Jessica Parker. The 48-year-old actress went all out in a floral Giles dress, an outrageous Philip Treacy hat and tartan custom Christian Louboutin boots. Her date, Vogue’s International editor-at-large, Hamish Bowles was the perfect arm candy in a safety-pinned tuxedo, the epitome of formal punk.
Instead of sartorially channeling their inner punk, Rooney Mara, Ginnifer Goodwin, January Jones and Emily Blunt all got a bit punk for the occasion with their makeup. Each of the women sported staple punk makeup a la Debbie Harry, – who showed up looking glam in a studded jacket, accordion skirt and see-through top – Nancy Spungen, Joan Jett, Siouxsie Sioux, et al.
Other stunners who certainly deserve honorable mentions, despite not participating directly in the punk fun for the night, include: Beyonce in Givenchy (though the bodice appeared to be a bit ill-fitted), Taylor Swift in J. Mendel, Allison Williams in Altuzarra, Jennifer Lopez in Michael Kors, Katie Holmes in Calvin Klein, Jessica Alba in Tory Burch, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in Gucci, Kate Bosworth in a mini Balmain, Uma Thurman in Zac Posen, Blake Lively in Gucci, Kate Upton in Diane von Furstenberg, Amanda Seyfried in Givenchy, Jessica Biel in a Giambattista Valli pantsuit and Jennifer Lawrence in Dior.
Check out the best dressed starlets from the 2013 Met Gala. Who do you think looked the most beautiful? Leave your feedback in the comments section below.
Nadine joined IBTimes in July 2011 and is the editor of the Continuous News Desk, which covers trending news. She writes about retail, the fashion industry and pop culture...