Long gone are the days men would exclusively wear plain black tuxedos on the red carpet.
Menswear is currently enjoying a renaissance, with heavy-hitters such as Lil Nas X and Timothée Chalamet showing how much fun can be had with formalwear.
The Met Gala is traditionally a place for sartorial experimentation, and this year’s delayed event was no different. The theme of the night was ‘In America: A Lexicon Of Fashion’, and the men in attendance really pulled all the stops out…
Timothée Chalamet was one of the co-chairs of this year’s Met Gala along with Naomi Osaka, Billie Eilish and Amanda Gorman. Chalamet wore a designer he frequently collaborates with – Haider Ackermann – and it really was an outfit of two halves. The top part of the look is quite classic with a white satin tuxedo jacket, but it’s on the bottom where things get interesting: white tracksuit bottoms and Converse trainers, a nod to the American tradition of athleisure.
Schitt’s Creek star Dan Levy called on Loewe’s Jonathan Anderson for his Met Gala debut. The colourful, intricate look is inspired by artist and AIDS activist David Wojnarowicz. Levy told Vanity Fair: “Jonathan described [the look] as a superhero for the community, and when I put it on, I definitely feel that. And to me, that’s an America that I want to be a part of.”
Lewis Hamilton used his platform at the Met Gala to promote young black designers, hosting Theophilio, Kenneth Nicholson and Jason Rembert on his table. Hamilton wore a creation from Nicholson: a sleek black suit with a trailing white lace shirt dress underneath.
Lil Nas X
Every year one star brings the theatrics to red carpet, and for this Met Gala, that role went to Lil Nas X. Reminiscent of Lady Gaga’s costume changes at the 2019 event, Lil Nas didn’t wear just one outfit – he slowly shed his clothes to reveal three separate looks.
All designed by Versace, Lil Nas’s first outfit was an elaborate glittering cape, which he then took off to reveal a gold suit of armour, and finally a crystal-covered bodysuit. Versace explained the symbolism on Instagram: “@lilnasx told a three-part LGBTQ+ American fairytale with his look for the 2021 Met Gala. He arrived on the red carpet in a dramatic cape that exudes regality and represents concealing one’s true self. The cape was then shed to reveal gleaming Medusa-adorned armour, a symbol of protection from the prejudices faced as a Black, queer person. Finally, the armour is removed to reveal a skin-tight bodysuit that represents living life as your true, unguarded self.”
Jeremy O. Harris
Playwright Jeremy O. Harris’s outfit was an homage to the late singer Aaliyah. Wearing custom Tommy Hilfiger the standout of Harris’s look is the floor-length, bright yellow bomber jacket.
New York-based designer Thom Browne – who is known for his sharp tailoring and androgynous approach to fashion – was a favourite on the night, worn by plenty of celebrities. Vogue’s editor at large Hamish Bowles wore a Statue of Liberty-inspired look by Browne, complete with a Stephen Jones crown.
Actor and singer Ben Platt channelled cowboy chic in his sequinned denim outfit by New York-based designer Christian Cowan.
We can only assume Virgil Abloh designed his own outfit: a white suit with the word ‘modernism’ splashed across in blue. His abstract hat inspired many a meme, with people on Twitter likening it to a turkey hat.
Australian popstar Troye Sivan wore a new label for the Met Gala: Altu, the gender-fluid collection from established designer Joseph Altuzarra. The sexy black dress was topped off with a leather armband and a Cartier necklace.
Dominic Cooper’s lemon look feels like a classic Eighties power suit, right down to the blue silk shirt underneath.
Wearing full Chanel, Pharrell and his wife Helen Lasichanh went down the Western route in their leather outfits and matching cowboy boots.