Wednesday, May 7, 2014

-NY.  The Costume Institute Gala, the Met Ball, or most recently called and more known as the Met Gala, happened last May 5. The event dazzled in elegance, glamour and cause as this annual fundraiser for the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute had the who's who in business, fashion and art walk down its red carpet to raise money for the worthy cause, with individual ticket starting at $25,000 up to $75,000 to $250,000 for corporations buying tables. Vogue's editor-in-chief and the fashion industry's last say, Anna Wintour, has been the chair for the event since 1995. Her leadership and taste made numerous Met Gala success that the institution decided to rename the costume institute in honor of her, which prompted her to make a whooping $40 million renovation that she, herself, raised

This year's theme was controversial much like last year's Punk: Chaos to Couture, but in the opposite manner. Some people think the theme was much too noncontroversial -hence the controversy- and much too underrated. Wintour coined the theme Charles James: Beyond Fashion. However, art and fashion intellectuals were all nods at the concept. Charles James, although British by nationality, was known as America's first couturier. A master cutter, James' was regarded for his highly structured aesthetic. Some of his loyal clients (up until his line's bankruptcy days) were Andy Warhol and jewelry designer Else Peretti.

Today's gowns and dresses were inspired by some of Charles James' iconic designs such as the swan gown, silk satin evening dress, goth (oversized) capes and coats, the butterfly gown, the petal gown, serpentine tree gown, ball gowns in balloon structure or with back ribbon trails, and the most famous of all- the 4 leaf clover gown.

However, this year's theme was troubling for some guests who I'm guessing didn't do much research on the late designer and came wearing zero semblance of inspiration from the designer, were too far from the timetable with outfits taken from years earlier than that of the era James' was in, or worse, had a 2013 Met Gala hangover. Thankfully, a number shined with beautifully inspired designs that speak of the theme and of the honored designer.

Ball Gown: Karlie Kloss in Oscar de la Renta

Ball Gown with Long Ribbon Trail: Taylor Swift in Oscar de la Renta

"Petal" Ball Gown: Co-chair Sarah Jessica Parker in Oscar de la Renta
This gown much resembles Charles James' Petal ball gown design circa 1951

"Goth" Coats: Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen in vintage Chanel

Serpentine "Tree" Gown: Kendal Jenner in Topshop

Ball Gown: Sarah Silverman in Zac Posen

Balloon Gown: Zoe Saldana in Micheal Kors

"Goth" Cape: Janelle Monae in Tadashi Shoji

Ball Gown: Aizona Muse by Ralph and Russo Haute Couture

(Inverted) Satin Clover Gown: Liu Wen in Zac Posen

And the most beautiful modernly applied Charles James' inspired gown...
"4 Leaf Clover" Gown: Karolina Kurkova in Marchesa

Who were your favorites? 
What do you think about this year's theme, Belles and Beaux of the Boulevard?

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