In America: A Lexicon of Fashion


Olivia Selby and Sana Cheema

Anticipation for America’s biggest night in fashion is always high, and this year was no different though the event was postponed from the first Monday in May to the second Monday in September due to Covid. The stars of the red carpet and their designers each had a unique interpretation of the all American theme; some wore flashy gowns decked in  stars and stripes while others made subtle nods to iconic moments in American fashion. Pictured below are some highlights from the evening.

Billie Eilish looked like a vision in peach in an Oscar de la Renta dress inspired by Marilyn Monroe. As one of the four hosts, Billie, showed she was ready to impress.

Iman showed up in a Harris Reed dress and Dolce and Gabbana headpiece. The golden ensemble caught everyone’s eyes. It was inspired by ballroom culture in America’s golden age. It was described as “romanticism gone nonbinary”. 

Another host of the Met Gala, Timotheé Chalamet, walked ten blocks to the met gala while livestreaming it on his instagram. He was comfy from the waist down in sweatpants and converse while still sporting Haider Ackerman and keeping part of the met gala vibe. Ackerman was inspired by all the mixing of cultures and styles in America. 

Quannah Chasinghorse wanted to represent Indigenous art and fashion in her Peter Dundas designed dress. She had one of the most memorable looks of the night. 

Inspired by Josephine Baker, Yara Shahidi wore Christian Dior. Shahidi said, “My goal was to pay homage to [a] powerhouse renegade black American artist”. (Yara Shahidi’s Met Gala Look Honored Josephine Baker’s Legacy

Actress Lupita Nyong’o wore a Versace dress. The all denim made it pop on the carpet. 

Poet Amanda Gorman, also a host, wanted to reimagine the statue of Liberty. She wore a royal blue Vera Wang gown, standing out alongside her fellow co-chairs. 

Star tennis player, Naomi Osaka, who co-chaired alongside Gorman, Chalamet, and Eilish wore an outfit designed by her sister Mari Osaka. She took inspiration from her Japanese and Haitian heritage. 

 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s dress which reads “Tax The Rich” sparked major controversy. Many believed it was hypocritical for AOC to promote taxing the rich at the Met Gala where a ticket costs $30,000. 

“Solar Power” singer Lorde wore an upcycled and creatively American inspired outfit designed by Emily Bode. The gown includes vintage gems from the 1920s, pressed pennies, and Cracker Jack charms from the 1940s.

In a time fueled with so much divisiveness and tension, it was heartening to see people come together as collective to celebrate art and creativity.