When it comes to Met Gala themes, there’s pretty much two ways it can go: a celebration of a designer (like 2017’s Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between, 2011’s Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty or 1996’s Christian Dior) or something a bit more abstract (like 2013’s Punk: Chaos to Couture, 2008’s Superheroes: Fashion and Fantasy or 1998’s Cubism and Fashion).
In 2017, when attendees were given the arguably easier prompt — wear the designer — we saw fewer celebrities adhering to theme. This year we didn’t know what to expect really. The theme Fashion and the Catholic Imagination seemed interpretable in a number of ways, from the quite literal (crosses, crowns, rosary beads) to the more abstract.
And while a number of celebrities seemed to have done their homework, many simply ignored the night’s theme. Now, it should be noted, sometimes adherence to the theme is not visible on the carpet itself, but through subtle details in their look that were added after careful research.
Such is the case for Tracee Ellis Ross, who on her Instagram story explained her choice of wearing rose Michael Kors: “On the 4th Sunday of Lent, priests wear rose robes to rejoice reaching the halfway point,” she remarked. Or Selena Gomez, who had verses from the Bible hand-stitched on the side of her bag and on the ribbon of her Coach gown.
This to say that not everyone’s research is shared online, so some we are deeming ignorers of the theme may in fact have sought nonobvious inspiration. Still, if you aren’t going to make your play on the theme obvious, we suggest sharing your inspo a la Ellis Ross.
Below we pulled together 19 celebrities who adhered to the theme (we couldn’t include everyone, so consider this a note that this is not everyone who came to slay), and 11 who did not.