On the heels of our general discussion on awards shows, let’s talk about possibly their worst accessory: the red carpet.
Red carpet coverage has become a breeding ground for judgment, where certain media members are given the platform to tear a woman’s outfit apart. And yes, this type of scrutiny seems to completely bypass male celebrities. Let’s face it, there isn’t much to comment on in general when talking about a guy’s suit, since male celebrities’ red carpet styling is usually only given an extra edge via a boutonnière or a tie bar or another subtle detail to his otherwise stoic tuxedo. And if there is an instance of more austere menswear styles, that male will be commended for his “adventurous” streak.
Is it just us, or has badgalriri been a little less ubiquitous since receiving the CFDA Style Icon Award back in June? But let’s be real, homegirl could never stay out of the spotlight for too long. This time, the news doesn’t come from a hairstyle change or a new single or a barely-there ensemble or any other typical thing you’d expect. Instead, Rihanna’s been making business moves; rumor has it that the iconic songstress recently filed trademark documents under her official last name, Fenty (yes, Rihanna has a last name). This could mean apparel, lingerie, cosmetics, swimwear, and more.
This shouldn’t be surprising, as Rihanna’s definitely grown into quite the fashionista over the years (hence the CFDA award). And let’s not forget about how she killed it at Paris Fashion Week, her role as the face of Balmain, her multiple collaborations with MAC, and her collections for River Island last year. Sure, these rumors aren’t really indicative of anything just yet. But Rihanna as a designer? Into it. We’re thinking lots of cutouts, oversized menswear-inspired outerwear, sexy strappy sandals, urban accessories, and plenty of the other things that Riri does best. Plus, with the probable help of stylist Mel Ottenberg, all of these elements would be perfectly meshed together in a cohesive, super stylish fashion.
Okay, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. While we could hope that this would end up like Gwen Stefani and Victoria Beckham’s impressive design endeavors, there’s always the possibility that things could go a little JLo. And again, nothing’s really set in stone.
This year’s Met exhibit, “Charles James: Beyond Fashion” celebrates the designs of one of America’s most coveted couturiers. His undeniably elegant and glamorous work was to be reflected in an ultra-formal, “white tie” dress-code at this year’s Met Gala, arguably the biggest event in fashion.
Of course, not everyone went by the dress code. You’d think that the theme of elaborate ball gowns would be pretty easy to get into, but just like last year’s Punk-themed fête, a lot of guests somehow managed to completely miss the mark. For many, this actually resulted in some pretty great looks. Take Rihanna for example. The singer – who will be honored with a style icon award at the June 2 CFDA awards – definitely proved her credentials. In a so-not-Charles-James custom Stella McCartney ensemble, Riri showed her immaculate midriff via a white long-sleeve crop top with structured shoulders and a matching long skirt. Honorable mention goes to her curly up-do and “stoner eyes.” McCartney also dressed Kate Bosworth, Reese Witherspoon and Cara Delevingne, whose casual outfit comprised of a revealing black crop top with white trousers. Charles James, who?
We need to talk about Jay Z and Beyoncé for a second, too, or as some like to call them, the king and queen of the universe. The majestic couple, who recently made headlines with the announcement of their joint summer tour, looked nothing short of incredible. Both wore custom Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, with Hov donning a pristine white jacket, and Bey wearing a mostly sheer, black embellished number. Her beaded fishnet veil completed the already divine look, as if the duo could be any more perfect. Frank Ocean, Naomi Watts, Laetitia Casta, and Riccardo Tisci’s date, Naomi Campbell also stunned in Givenchy, though few looked even nearly as breathtaking as Adriana Lima did in her brown sequined gown with a matching leather bustier. Oh, and let’s not forget Erykah Badu, who also slaughtered it. The current face of the label and muse to Riccardo Tisci essentially shitted on everyone with her voluminous, embellished suit and matching over-the-top hat that put Pharrell’s famous Vivienne Westwood cap to shame.
Keeping things in theme, a handful of ladies wore Zac Posen, one of the most similar designers of our time to Charles James. Liu Wen really turned heads in a ginormous ball gown by the New York-based designer and makeup that looked as if it could’ve been personally applied by God. Sarah Silverman went with a similar burgundy number, joking, “it’s like a fucking second skin!” Even though the comedian might have been a little bit of an uncoordinated mess on the red carpet, she looked surprisingly stunning, as did Dita Von Teese (minus the surprising part), who wore a form-fitting Posen-designed version of Charles James’ Clover Leaf gown in nude and red. And what about Karen Elson, who looked like she stepped directly out of the 1950s? Would it be appropriate to say, “yaaaaass?”
Topshop whipped up a frock for it-girl Kendall Jenner, as well as Toni Garrn, Jourdan Dunn and Chanel Iman. But none of the ladies looked like they were in fast-fashion, especially not Jourdan Dunn, who served early 1990s Tyra Banks realness in a refreshing canary yellow gown, subtle jewels, and a sleek up-do. Sorry to play favorites, but homegirl was definitely on top of it. This would definitely be the right time for a “yaaaaass.” The other three looked great, too, and Chanel Iman looked even better next to her beau, A$AP Rocky. Let’s face it, the guys generally looked painfully boring in their one-note tuxedos, aside from the ridiculous circus outfits worn by Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka. But Chanel’s rapper boyf looked kind of really awesome, pairing his sophisticated tuxedo with sleek boots and his own natural style. Andrew Garfield, whose girlfriend Emma Stone looked vibrant yet super casual in a Thakoon ensemble, kept things relatively interesting with a metallic Band of Outsiders tux. But just about every other guy’s coat-tailed tuxedos looked like some type of costume. We know it’s the Costume Institute Gala, but for real, you guys look so lame it hurts. Even a little shade could be thrown Kanye’s way; what happened to the guy who used to be known for wearing red suits? Him and Kim didn’t look too bad, though, as the reality TV starlet cleaned up nicely in her Lanvin look.
Other highlights and lowlights included the usually incredible Lupita Nyong’o in a questionable custom beaded Prada number, Rita Ora ruining what could’ve been a beautiful Donna Karan gown by looking like she rolled around in a New Jersey dumpster, Anne Hathaway showing another example of a perfectly done crop top with her red Calvin Klein outfit, Taylor Swift looking like an Oscar de la Renta Barbie doll and Kylie Minogue looking insanely basic in what appears to be a prom gown by Marchesa. Other catastrophes included Katie Holmes dressed up as Belle from Beauty and the Beast and Elizabeth Olsen running a few months late to the Winter Olympics in her Miu Miu ice skater outfit. In general, the 2014 Met Gala red carpet was kind of boring, sometimes stunning and occasionally disturbing. But instead of going into details about who, what and why things kind of sucked, we invite you to check out some of the most noteworthy looks from the event below and share your comments!
Jay Z and Beyoncé, both in Givenchy Haute Couture
Lupita Nyong’o in custom Prada
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, both in custom Lanvin
Rihanna in custom Stella McCartney
Gisele Bündchen in custom Balenciaga, and Tom Brady in Tom Ford
Reese Witherspoon in Stella McCartney, Stella McCartney in her own design, and Kate Bosworth in Stella McCartney
Cara Delevingne in custom Stella McCartney
Karen Elson in Zac Posen, Zac Posen, and Dita Von Teese in Zac Posen
Riccardo Tisci and Naomi Campbell in Givenchy Haute Couture
Naomi Watts in Givenchy Haute Couture
Bradley Cooper in Tom Ford and Sarah Jessica Parker in Oscar de la Renta
Blake Lively in Gucci Première and Ryan Reynolds in Gucci
Karolina Kurkova in Marchesa
Vera Wang and Joan Smalls in a dress by the designer
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in Balmain with designer Olivier Rousteing
Rita Ora in Donna Karan Atelier
Anne Hathaway in Calvin Klein Collection with designer Francisco Costa
David Beckham in Ralph Lauren and Victoria Beckham in her own design
Emma Stone in custom Thakoon with designer Thakoon Panichgul
Taylor Swift in Oscar de la Renta
Kristen Wiig in Balenciaga with designer Alexander Wang
Imogen Poots in Proenza Schouler with designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez
Katie Holmes in Marchesa
Kendall Jenner in custom Topshop
Jourdan Dunn and Toni Garrn, both in custom Topshop
Kirsten Dunst in Rodarte
Karlie Kloss in Oscar de la Renta
Rachel McAdams in Ralph Lauren
Gugu Mbatha-Raw in custom Lanvin with designer Alber Elbaz
Erykah Badu in Givenchy Haute Couture
Leighton Meester in Emilio Pucci with designer Peter Dundas
Chanel Iman in custom Topshop with A$AP Rocky
Elizabeth Olsen in custom Miu Miu
Lily Aldridge in Michael Kors
Frank Ocean in custom Givenchy
Lena Dunham in Giambattista Valli with designer Giambattista Valli
Liu Wen in Zac Posen
Amber Valletta in Saint Laurent
Kylie Minogue in Marchesa
Laetitia Casta in Givenchy Haute Couture
Nicole Richie in Donna Karan Atelier
Jake Gyllenhaal in Givenchy with Maggie Gyllenhaal in Valentino
Lily Donaldson in Burberry
Kate Upton in Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda with Domenico Dolce
Sarah Silverman in Zac Posen
Janelle Monae in Tadashi Shoji
Selena Gomez in Diane von Furstenberg
Gabrielle Union in custom Prada
Andrew Garfield in Band of Outsiders
Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka, both in Thom Browne
All eyes may have been on the runways during Paris Fashion Week, but if anything was noticeable off the catwalk, it was Rihanna’s omnipresence at the hottest shows. “Badgalriri” was taking the phrase, “the world is your runway” quite literally, looking better than ever in some painfully stylish looks. She owned the sporty trend with her sneakers at Chanel and her killer outfit at Givenchy, while she turned up in multicolored furs and luxe leathers elsewhere. And who could forget the provocative, sheer tops she rocked at the Jean Paul Gaultier and Balmain shows? No one else could come to a fashion show essentially topless and look as good, though no one could really pull off anything Riri does with the same level of immeasurable coolness. Whether going sophisticated, urban or overtly sexy, Rihanna proved why she’s been a front row fixture at Paris Fashion Week this season. Check out some of her best looks below!
At Miu Miu, wearing a Prada coat that debuted just days before in Milan. Photo: Getty Images
At Chanel, the sneakers make the look. Photo: Getty Images
Wearing a statement coat at Stella McCartney. Photo: BFA
Showing us all how to do the sporty trend the right way in Givenchy at Givenchy. Photo: Getty Images
Channelling her inner provocative Parisienne at Jean Paul Gaultier. Photo: Getty Images
Matching her look at Comme des Garçons with the inventive styles on the runway via an oversized leather coat and Adam Selman bunny ears. Photo: Stéphane Feugère
Ultra-glam at Dior. Photo: Getty Images
Adding luxury to her masculine-inspired outfit at Lanvin. Photo: Getty Images
Rocking a safari-esque Balmain ensemble better than anyone could ever dream of. Photo: Getty Images
Clever coverage in Balmain at the label’s party. Photo: BFA
While Miu Miu’s spring 2014 ad campaign features some respectable actresses, and Givenchy and Balmain both tapped iconic singers for theirs, Marc Jacobs’ ad stars a more controversial face: Miley Cyrus. After making every raunchy effort possible to prove that she truly “can’t be tamed,” the former Disney Channel star is seen brooding on the beach alongside models Natalie Westling and Esmerelda Seay Reynolds.
But what’s more surprising than Miley’s appearance is the absence of go-to photographer, Juergen Teller. Teller has been shooting almost every Marc Jacobs and Marc by Marc Jacobs ad for years, but the designer himself told WWD that “he just didn’t want to shoot her.” The “her,” you could probably gather, being Miley…awkward. Juergen Teller did still shoot the MbMJ ads, though, while Sims did a pretty decent job of making the twerkaholic look like a presentable model.
We’re all about the idea that ad campaigns and magazine covers should go to the models; it is fashion, after all. But when those few celebrities who can really wow us have their big fashion moments, we can’t help but stand by and applaud. Case in point: Miu Miu’s spring 2014 ad campaign.
Starring Elle Fanning and Elizabeth Olsen, two stars who’ve really started to outshine their more-famous sisters, the campaign proves that there are actually some actresses who have the beauty and the charisma to front a campaign without being too gimmicky. But wait, there’s more! The ads also feature Bella Heathcote and Lupita Nyong’o, the breakout star from 12 Years a Slave who’s been killing it in the fashion world (separate article on her to follow). Shot by Inez and Vinoodh, the shots are meant to correlate with each lady’s stunning sense of personal style.
Rihanna wasn’t the only songstress who earned a top-tier fashion campaign for spring 2014. While Olivier Rousteing deemed Riri iconic, Riccardo Tisci said the same about the star of his ad, Erykah Badu. He told Style.com, “Erykah, she’s an icon—come on!” And while Rousteing designed his spring 2014 collection with Rihanna in mind, Tisci created his latest African-Anime pieces with Badu as his inspiration.
Shot by Mert & Marcus, the finished product has yet to debut in full, but it carries something far more significant than just a stunning celebrity. The campaign features only models of color, starring Maria Borges, Asia Chow, and a newcomer named Riley. After constant outrage regarding racism in the modeling industry, most recently and notably from the likes of Iman, Naomi Campbell, and Bethann Hardison, Givenchy’s all-inclusive ad is a great step in the right direction. But Riccardo Tisci shares the same sentiments as many others, as it shouldn’t be such a surprise or special occasion to see women of color in advertisements or editorial spreads. The man who champions Maria Borges, Grace Mahary, Joan Smalls, Lakshmi Menon, and other beautiful non-white models ended his interview with Matthew Schneier by stating the obvious yet essential:
“It’s 2013. Everybody’s being so cool about Instagram, about Facebook, any media—everybody’s being so open. At the end of the day, why are not so many black girls or Latin girls in shows? When you have an American president who is black! When I see this happening, it’s quite sad, I think. People can be so avant-garde, so advanced, but actually not, because people are still making differences between skin color.”
Hopefully this same ideology will become more popular in the near future.
If being the “Only Girl in the World” that could pull off wearing a doobie in public didn’t prove Rihanna’s status as a style superstar, maybe the latest turn of events will convince you. The singer may have blown up our Instagram feeds with a slew of Christmas gifts from her designer buddies, but Olivier Rousteing definitely took the cake by making @badgalriri the face of Balmain’s spring 2014 ad campaign. Her own stylist, Mel Ottenberg put the looks together, while Inez & Vinoodh shot the ad.
So why Rihanna? Well, Olivier Rousteing recently spoke to Style.com about the collaboration, explaining their ongoing friendship, which began when she visited (and Instagrammed) his Paris studio. “…When I was working on the Spring collection, I told her she was the inspiration and that I wanted her in the campaign. It all started like that,” the designer elaborates. Rousteing also expressed his admiration for Rihanna’s strength, considering her one of today’s most important fashion icons.
Rihanna’s always making news with her constantly changing hairstyles. She rocked a Michael Jackson-esque jerry curl earlier this year before reviving her pixie cut, trying out a mullet, and recently getting a bob. But it’s her look at this past weekend’s American Music Awards that really made headlines – pun intended. The one and only @badgalriri shamelessly accessorized her two-piece Jean Paul Gaultier haute couture gown with a doobie. Oh, and she garnished it with some pearls, naturally. For those who don’t know, a doobie is the hairstyle (for lack of a better word) created by wrapping and pinning down hair to keep the style in place overnight. Essentially the equivalent to wearing curlers in public, people were obviously a little shocked when Rihanna showed up at a major awards show all doobied up. Was it her way of reminding us how many fucks she doesn’t give? Did she just give up in the midst of getting her hair done? No matter what the reasoning was, the superstar definitely proved she could own the look better than anyone else. Hey, maybe we’ll even start seeing doobies in the pages of Vogue Italia in the near future…
What would fashion week be without the glamor and the stars? The endless parade of models and street style is bound to feature a few appearances from major celebrities, including a very chaotic, blurry frenzy surrounding Kanye West and Kim Kardashian’s presence at the Givenchy spring/summer 2014 show (very poorly depicted above). But it doesn’t stop there. Carine Roitfeld popped up around the city she calls home, representing a notion that could be reflected throughout the rest of these fashion week activities. The comfort of “home” could be seen amongst the attendees and other characters in the fashion fête, as everyone appeared in a natural, genuine environment. It’s the true sense of the term “candid” that really defines Paris Fashion Week.