Gladiator-worthy metallics and sparkly embellishments, along with a show of feathers and chunky boots, swept the red carpet at the Met Gala on Monday night.
The event celebrates the Met’s new exhibit opening Thursday, “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology,” which covers the convergence of man and machine.
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Who better to take on that vibe than Lady Gaga, in towering platform shoes, fishnet stockings and a silvery Versace bodysuit paired with an equally silvery short jacket.
Katy Perry, like Gaga not shy about shocking on carpets, wore black Prada with clunky gold embellishment and a long train, an old-school Tamagotchi digital pet on her belt as her “tech contribution,” her hair done in a high black beehive.
Madonna flaunted her exposed buttocks in lacy Givenchy, while Beyonce wore a rubbery looking gown in peach, no Jay Z in sight.
Taking the theme truly next level, Karolina Kurkova wore a “cognitive dress” in partnership between Marchesa and IBM. Outfitted with wires and a battery pack that is “keeping me warm,” it lit up and changed colors. Claire Danes also wore a tech-driven light-up princess gown, hers by Zac Posen.
Kurkova’s dusty blue tulle gown with a high-low hemline included 150 hand-placed LED lights. The dress changed hues based on an IBM analysis of hundreds of images of Marchesa dresses, along with social media sentiment.
Grande dame Anna Wintour was the first to arrive, in a fringed, white body-hugging gown by Chanel. She acknowledged her life is not a great example of the evening’s theme.
“Me? I can’t cook. I can’t do anything with my hands,” the editor-in-chief of American Vogue told reporters, kicking off the huge night of fashion and celebrity at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
The annual gala, organized by Wintour for 18 years, brings in millions for the museum. The carpet – red, beige and pink this year – wended up the museum’s grand staircase and was, as always, a blinding display of A-listers from film, music, sports and fashion.
The strong show of silver, copper and other metallic looks, perhaps to emphasize the machine part of the evening’s equation, included Poppy Delevingne in low-cut silver tiered spangles and jewels on a Marchesa gown, her platinum hair hanging loose.
Also in silver: Rita Ora in a Vera Wang gown with a full train of feathers and sheer reveals at the side of her thighs and Tony-winning actress Sophie Okenedo wearing Tome.
Taylor Swift, one of the evening’s co-hosts, wore a short silver sequined Louis Vuitton gown with high black gladiator sandals. Cindy Crawford wore a classic long metallic silver Balmain.
Others, including Wintour’s daughter, Bee Shaffer, chose to celebrate floral elements in the exhibit. Shaffer accompanied her mother in an elegant black Alexander McQueen gown with a spare floral design and a long train.
Actress Alicia Vikander took the idea of “machine” to a new level in a multicolored mini. It, too, had a gladiator feel with a bright red bustier effect over armor-like copper and loose skirting, paired with a tough-girl pair of Louis Vuitton combat boots.
Idris Elba, another of the evening’s co-hosts, wore a white tie and black tails from Tom Ford. So how does he get ready for the Met Gala?
“Take your time. Make sure your shirt’s down and the whites of the cuffs are out,” he said.
Uma Thurman paired her creamy Tommy Hilfiger gown with a huge vintage brooch from Cartier pinned to one shoulder strap.
On the eve of the Tony Award nominations, Sarah Jessica Parker honored the anticipated big winner “Hamilton” in a white coat that had goldish buttons paired with knickers, all based on the look of Hamilton himself in the first act.
The look is by Fernando Garcia from the brand Monse. Her blue shoes came from her closet, with brooches sewn on.
Kylie Jenner wore Balmain for an Old Hollywood gown in silver, while her sister Kendall killed it in a slinky Versace gown with a blue and white geometric design and sexy side cutouts.
Zayn Malik walked the carpet with Gigi Hadid in a suit tricked out with Knights of the Round Table metal arms.
Lupita Nyong'o donned a custom Calvin Klein Collection jade sequin dress with velvet straps, her hair standing high in a conical-shape ‘do.
Ivanka Trump, meanwhile, chose a red Ralph Lauren jumpsuit-dress combination.
Kim Kardashian spoke volumes about the evening’s theme as she walked in a silver Balmain gown. She said she wanted to conjure a “blingy, sexy robot.”
Her hubby Kanye West wore a Balmain silver-embellished denim jacket to match, with ripped jeans and a scowl on his face as he explained what his fashion intention:
“Vibes,” was all he said. And it was enough.