Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Met Gala 2012 Retrospective or, Leigh Judges You

As Michael Kors says, the Met Gala is "the Super Bowl of fashion." I anticipate the looks from this one as I do no other event, since attendees are more likely to take sartorial risks. I was perplexed, however, to see so many fails this year. I'll start with my few favorites. If you're looking for well-aimed snark, skip straight to the tragedies.

The look that balanced best the demands of beauty and originality, in my view, was China Chow in Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture. The dress is light and ethereal while skillfully juxtaposing white and black, crisp lines and floaty layers. Love.

The classic look that worked for me instantly was Camilla Belle in Ralph Lauren. She wore a dress straight from the runway, without fiddling with it, and perfected it with an unexpected twist of chocolate lipstick.

Another flawless look was Carey Mulligan in Prada. Yes, we've already seen these futuristic metallic fish scales elsewhere, but how can you say no to the perfect proportions, the textures, the dual chromatics? It's so shiny!

I think Astrid Berges-Frisbey topped Mulligan, however, in this old-fashioned yet fresh Chanel Couture creation. Somehow I don't think she would've looked as radiant in a more modern silhouette.

Another wonderful silhouette belonged to Ginnifer Goodwin in Monique Lhuiller. Every choice, from the color to the detail work, was perfect. I would've gone with a different shoe, though.

I also will recognize Cate Blanchett for being able to look drop-dead gorgeous in anything. Even an Alexander McQueen gown made entirely of black feathers.

Now on to the interesting looks, or the ones that I give credit for straddling that fine line between genius and plain weird.

Elizabeth Banks in Mary Katrantzou.
Caroline Sieber in Christopher Kane.
Angela Lindvall in Prada.

The tragedies far outnumbered the hits, and I was hard pressed to narrow down the field. But someone has to do it.

Kristen Stewart in Balenciaga by Nicolas Ghesquiere. I have no words. I have words for every outfit, except this one. I truly have nothing to say. I can only stare at this picture and slowly lose my innocence.

Diane Kruger in Prada. Oversized boudoir nightmare.

Kirsten Dunst in Rodarte. How could Kate and Laura Mulleavy have gone so wrong? They created a Santa's Little Helper.

Anja Rubik in Anthony Vaccarello. Angelina's leg at the Oscars? Sexy. Anja's hipbone at the Met? Worrisome.

Karen Elson and Alexa Chung, both in Marc Jacobs. I'm going to assume that they got dressed together, and point to this as a warning against the dangers of groupthink.

Chloe Sevigny in Miu Miu. Too easy.

Isabeli Fontana in Emilio Pucci. Too busy.

Jessica Alba in Michael Kors. Gold lame is never, ever the right answer.

Gwyneth Paltrow in Prada. I'm getting strange visions of Grease and Marilyn Monroe and a high school prom.

Karolina Kurkova in Rachel Zoe Collection. The model says she co-designed this getup. Lesson to take home: when every celebrity and semi-celebrity out there thinks they're a designer, this is the result.

The Courtin-Clarins sisters in Mugler. Refugees from a Halloween mixer tragedy.

Leighton Meester in Marchesa. Got separated from the Courtin-Clarins party.

And the finale:

Beyonce in Givenchy Haute Couture. No snark here. It just doesn't work for her body type and height. Actually, I'm not sure if even Cate Blanchett could pull this off. Maybe if we dyed the purple feathers black.

Like I said, someone has to do it. Let's cleanse the palate with a couple of beauties who can make nearly anything look good.

Chanel Iman in Tom Ford.
Joan Smalls in Balmain.

One last look that I thought was lovely: Bee Shaffer in Erdem.

A simple, unpretentious silhouette and an exquisite print. This is how it should be done.


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