Celebrating the new exhibit “Punk: Chaos to Culture” last night’s Met Costume Institute Gala was a mixed bag: A lot of stars seemed to roll their eyes at the theme and wear elegant satin gowns anyway, while others let their freak flag fly (and only a few seemed to hit the mark).
Here are some of the best and worst looks of the night:
Anne Hathaway in Vintage Valentino
Holy smokes! That platinum ’do, the detailing on that dress! She worked punk into her look in such a subtle and genius way, and she looks fierce, which is what the movement is all about.
Miley Cyrus in Marc Jacobs
Confession: I was a little scared when I saw this. But she’s channeling some real Sid Vicious here, and we all know he wasn’t about pleasing people. It was a bold move to spike up her hair and wear essentially a fishnet dress, but she looks like she doesn’t care how this look blows over, which kind of makes her the most successfully-dressed star of the night, by definition.
Rooney Mara in Givenchy
There is just something so lovely and Victorian about this look, but Mara keeps it from looking too innocent with her slicked-back jet black hair and some deep, deep purple lips. Just the right amount of edge.
Jennifer Lawrence in Dior
This is definitely more goth than punk (except the spiky heels), but between the shape of the dress, the classic makeup, and just enough fishnet obscuring her face, Lawrence looks just too damn heart-stoppingly gorgeous to not be in the top 5. Seriously, who wouldn’t fall in love with her instantly if they saw her??
Florence Welch in Givenchy
The detailing on the dress is so heavy and armor-like, like something Khaleesi would wear if she were in a band (and if she were, it would obviously be called Mother of Dragons and your mother would not approve.) But I digress. Flo looks like a rockstar, is what I’m trying to say (and how convenient! She actually is!)
Sienna Miller in Burberry
“Oh, it’s punk-themed? But I have the most stunning white gown picked out — are you SURE it’s punk? UGH, okay, let me throw on a jacket. HAPPY NOW?”
Gwyneth Paltrow in Valentino
Pink dress? Check. Simple diamond stud earrings? Check. Unusual cutout that doesn’t actually reveal anything? Check. Neatly scooped back ponytail? Check — okay, my point is, if you’re going to completely not do the theme, in fact, slap the theme right in the face, you might as well look sickening while doing it. But this dress does absolutely nothing for Gwyneth.
Jessica Paré in Jason Wu
I feel bad. She’s so lovely as Megan on Mad Men, and I totally see what she was going for with the dramatically-heavy eyes, but she looks a lot like what I imagined Jane Lynch’s character to look like in Best in Show after Jennifer Coolidge gives her a “persian eye” makeover. Yeesh. The top is actually lovely, but the pants look like what a mom would wear to try and be hip at her kid’s middle school violin recital—Jessica’s young! And breathtaking! She should’ve gone with a miniskirt!
Sarah Jessica Parker in Giles and Philip Treacy
You know those people who say SJP looks like a horse? Well, um, they kind of won today. Her face and complexion looks as beautiful as ever, don’t get me wrong but…the headpiece. I know she was going for a mohawk and I so badly want to love it because I adore the living hell out of this woman. But all I see is, well.
Nicole Richie in Custom Topshop
Do I have to say it? I don’t think I do.