The Met Ball: the tributes, the hits and misses

Left to right: Naomi Campbell, Karen Elson, Sarah Jessica Parker and Daphne Guinness
All images courtesy of Getty images and style.com

The Met Ball, aka the fashion equivalent of the Oscars, was held on Monday night in New York. The annual event, which is co-hosted by Vogue editrix Anna Wintour at the Costume Institute, sees the who’s who of fashion trying to out do each other in the style stakes. Expectations were high this year because the event paid tribute to the mad genius of Alexander McQueen and the opening of his first exhibition, Savage Beauty.

For a brand with such an incredible body of work (and that is riding high from the Kate Middleton’s wedding dress coup) I was expecting some stunners to resurface. Sadly, I was left disappointed. Sarah Jessica Parker chose an elegant yet simple (we’re talking McQueen here!) silver crystal embellished dress, while Gisele wore a fire engine red number that failed to bring out McQueen’s fierce, dark side (I don’t think she has the personality to pull it off).

Fortunately you can always count on good friend and loyal fan Daphne Guinness to work her fashion magic. She wore an incredible lilac feather dress with exaggerated hips from the current spring/summer collection, while Karen Elson resurrected a silver embroidered chiffon dress from the designer’s spring/summer 2004 collection. I am not quite sure what McQueen would have made of Naomi Campbell’s custom “Heraldic” gown though …

 And onto the winners…

Left to right: Ginnifer Goodwin, Florence Welch, Madonna and Leighton Meester

I was pleasantly surprised to see Madonna finally dressing her own age in a chic blue gown decorated with sequinned stars by Stella McCartney. It fit her perfectly. Gossip Girl’s Leighton Meester added a naughty S&M vibe to the festivities in her cage dress by Louis Vuitton that I am sure McQueen would have approved of.  Liv Tyler chose a Givenchy Haute Couture gown that was as intricate as it was beautiful – extra points for the summery yellow accent. The cheap thrill of the night goes to up and coming actress Ginnifer Goodwin who wore a very cool TopShop green dress with Van Cleef & Arpels jewellery and a Kotur clutch (which happens to bea  HK based brand – locals represent!) My favourite was Florence Welch who looked like a goddess in her vintage inspired white Yves Saint Laurent gown with a larger than life marabou feather jacket. Love, love, love!

 And the losers…

Left to right: Frida Pinto, Shalom Harlow, Carolyn Murphy and Christina Hendricks

Oh dear, where do I start? Both Christina Ricci and Beyonce looked so uncomfortable in their fishtail gowns (apparently Beyonce couldn’t even make it up the stairs in her Pucci dress because it was so tight!). Stella McCartney is one of my favourite designers so there was absolutely no excuse for her awkwardly constructed, waist-less black gown. How did Tom Ford even let model Carolyn Murphy leave the house in that purple get up, let alone escort her to the event? Shalom Harlow’s Marchesa dress reminded me of a bad 1970s hallucination. And why, pray tell, did Frida Pinto think a black tie would match her white Chanel couture gown? And last but not least Mad Men star Christina Hendricks. I must say I have been a fan of hers for so long because she always shows off her curves so beautifully and appropriately. But what was with the badly cut and overly modest Carolina Herrera long sleeved organza fest. Bring back the figure-hugging, low cut dresses stat!!!

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