19 Met Gala Looks No One Should Ever Forget

Let this serve as an important reminder

04.30.17

No one humblebrags that they got ready for the Met Gala in 10 minutes or a little drunk. Such an admission would be tantamount to insulting Anna Wintour, the party’s host. Because while most red carpets serve as, if not just an entrance, at least a precursor to something more significant, the Met Gala’s red carpet is the lynchpin around which the event evolves. Even the carpet itself is extraordinary, all expansive and permanent-looking. It, and the people perched upon it, thoughtfully and artfully dressed, are kind of the whole thing, you know? Few seem bothered by what follows. (My research, for the record, indicates champagne, a speech and possibly a miserably hot party, per Gwyneth Paltrow.)

The focus on fashion makes complete sense. The event is, after all, held in honor of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute and themed around the forthcoming exhibit. This year’s honoree is visionary designer Rei Kawakubo — her, her point of view and the house she created, Comme des Garçons. According to the Met website, the exhibit, entitled “Art of the In-Between,” will attempt to break down imaginary dualisms and expose their arbitrariness.

Let’s recall her words as quoted by the press release: “I have always pursued a new way of thinking about design…by denying established values, conventions, and what is generally accepted as the norm. And the modes of expression that have always been most important to me are fusion…imbalance… unfinished… elimination…and absence of intent.”

I don’t want to overhype it, but it’s hard to imagine a theme better poised for a thought-provoking, avant-garde red carpet. I’ve never been more ready to see Sarah Jessica Parker in, say, this. So while we await the Vogue parade of the first Monday in May, I’ve curated — with the help of the team — a slideshow of memorable looks from galas past to get us in the mood. There have been some real showstoppers, for reasons both good and…interesting, and it seems almost irresponsible to not pay them due homage as we anticipate the eccentric offerings of a Rei theme. Click through to reminisce and tell me which you would permanently retire/marry yourself in if I made you choose. Or just your favorite, whatever.

Photos via Getty.

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  • Kay Nguyen

    Claire Danes’s outfit is amazing! Still my favorite <3

    https://www.myblackcloset.com/

  • I love Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen in vintage stuff (Chanel, Gianfranco Ferré, John Galliano. But my favorite of all time- the one I would marry myself in- is John Galliano in 2001, the theme was Jackie O… https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/72f7002f2194d4f3ecc5799d5a0d4027b0d210b755138e6f0a1b6cc989c01861.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/07e4a6dbd911998f3bc02542415a2b6f8cb67b2f1888443dcaaeafc249047284.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d64bd53b63b248df28c8c91bf21f55f1f7d5034f841b91ded784d5f0a525cc19.jpg

    • Delphine Gintz

      No way! Thank you for that hahaha love it

  • Rheanonn Perez

    rihanna & beyonce 💓

    frheak.net

  • Wenbo

    Rihanna was wearing Guo Pei, not Gui Pei.

    • Harling Ross

      Thanks for the catch!

  • kdfantasy

    Marc Jacobs is wearing Comme des Garçons Homme Plus SS12 – not Marc Jacobs

    • Haley Nahman

      THANKS!

    • Haley Nahman

      let’s not! sogood!

  • Katy

    I still love Taylor’s 2014 Oscar de la Renta better than last year’s Louis.

  • Alyssa

    This just fuels my excitement even more for tomorrow! Also Marc Jacobs 2012 is just 😍🙌🏼 (no words)

  • Grace B

    god, I LOVED karolina kurkova as a teen – where is she now???

  • Bee

    I feel slightly shameful for saying it, but I loved Kanye’s look last year. I feel like I really got what he was going for. But as a Rei Kawakubo fan, I think I’m most excited for this theme than any other!

  • Mary

    lol Kim K’s floral couch ensemble never 4get

  • Cristina

    Also cannot WAIT for SJP to kill it with this theme. She’s always one of my favorites, not just because she is awesome, but because she’s not afraid to go all out and dress for the theme. Which makes it even more fun.

  • Marina

    I truly love watching all the red carpets, but above all The Met Gala one is my favorite!! I would like to see SJP overcoming her 2016 look, which was a deep disappointment and neither should be forgotten. Maybe she was trying to make an statement, who knows.

    Btw, MR has become a huge passion, I really enjoy all of the contents!
    Btw 2, sorry for the grammar, writing and admiring from Spain!

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/sites/default/files/custom/Stephanie/Sam/GettyImages-527344140.jpg

  • eizhowa

    You forgot Kate Moss in the gold turban. I will not accept any list without it.

  • 11/10 marrying myself in Amber Valletta’s Maggie Norris getup

  • Basil

    I remember the Madge in Givenchy outfit because the first picture I saw was a back view, and I straight away knew it was her. I don’t know how worried I should be that’s I can instantly identify madonna by her butt.

    My faves are the one of Rihanna featured here, and SJP in Oscar de la Renta

  • Mira Sheridan

    Madonna’s look in 2013 was sooooooo cool

  • Meh. I’d rather forget half of these.