In Arts & Entertainment

So. Great. (PHOTO: Lena Waithe Facebook)

MET Camp: My favorite looks from the Met Gala 2019

If you have been endlessly scrolling through #metgala and #metcamp since last night, no worries, it's perfectly normal and you're in good company. 2019's theme was "Camp: Notes on Fashion," a homage to the 1964 essay written by Susan Sontag. Camp, as Sontag wrote "is the consistently aesthetic experience of the world." To clarify, "camp" is a term referring to exaggerated, fantastical fashion throughout history, but has strong roots in queer, ballroom culture.

Sadly, several celebs in attendance missed the camp mark horribly. (Ahem, Kim K. and Katy Perry, anyone?) Sequins, glitter, weird headpieces with no story or relevance to match the outfit, and you realize some celebrities (or their stylists) didn't properly understand what camp life is all about. Let's talk about some of my favorite looks of the evening.

Lena Waithe

The first post I saw was from writer and actress Lena Waithe, and the aesthetic and message blew me away. If you follow Lena's career, you know her as outspoken on social justice issues concerning people of color and her mission to bring more underrepresented talent to Hollywood. So there was no surprise when she showed up to the red carpet in a Pyer Moss suit, with custom Johnny Nelson Jewelry buttons and cufflinks and red lipstick. The best part was the message on back of the pantsuit that read "Black Drag Queens Invented Camp," a message of solidarity for black, queer culture that is largely ridiculed yet largely appropriated in the fashion world. Lena is truly here for the culture!

Billy Porter

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That's 👏 an 👏 entrance! The ever-vivacious @theebillyporter has arrived. #MetGala #MetCamp #BillyPorter

A post shared by The Met (@metmuseum) on

If you want to be true camp, there is no better way to do it than being carried across the carpet by shirtless men in gold pants and combats boots as you lounge luxuriously, dipped in gold, on an Egyptian litter. Whew! Billy Porter gave us Egyptian royalty realness in a chained headpiece, gold custom suit, with golden wings to boot, designed by The Blonds. Billy's entrance was hailed by Vogue as "the most fabulous entrance in Met Gala History." It's Billy Porter, so who could possibly expect any less?


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Thank you to my Fairy Godbrutha for a fairytale ending to my Disney days.

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Zendaya stunned on the red carpet in a Tommy Hilfiger, Cinderella-inspired blue gown that – get this – lit up, as her "Fairy Godbrutha" gave a wave of their magical wand. The costume design gave pure theatrics on its own, but I love that Zendaya was in full character as she blew kisses to the cameras and reenacted the infamous scene of becoming the belle of the ball. In case you missed the detail, Zendaya's hair was perfectly coiffed into a hairstyle fit for a Disney princess, and she daintily held a silver pumpkin-shaped carriage purse. Total camp and total cuteness.

Ezra Miller

Ezra Miller is no stranger to being "extra," but the actor came through the Met Gala with all eyes on him, literally. Behind his creepy mask was an even creepier optical illusion of multiple eyes, executed by makeup artist Mimi Choi. Choi, who is known for her avante garde special FX makeup looks, says the inspiration behind the multiple eyes were to represent the "layers hidden beneath an exterior mask." As a makeup artist myself, I love the transformation of makeup and how it completes a fashion story. This look on Ezra perfectly blended fashion and beauty, although I couldn't look at his pics for more than a couple of beats.

Janelle Monae

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Yes , Eye'm winking at you . 🎩🎩 👁 💋

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Janelle is one of my favorites on the carpet at pretty much any event and she didn't disappoint at #MetCamp. The singer/songwriter's stylist, Alexandra Mandelkorn, worked with "Project Runway" alum Christian Siriano to create Monae's look which incorporated her signature black and white with pops of hot pink. The gown, which married a bit of Picasso and Dali in surrealism, was unlike anything else seen at the gala. She specifically pulled inspiration from Picasso's work from 1906-1909 referred to as the African Period, where the Spanish painter's work was inspired by African masks and other sculptures and artifacts he encountered in Parisian museums. The icing on the cake was the headpiece of multiple top hats stacked atop one another.

As the "Make Me Feel" star states, "I am camp. It's embedded in my DNA." With a crystal-clad winking eye covering one boob, a hat headpiece to envy and a stunning overall silhouette, I don't disagree.

Check out the Susan Sontag's 1964 essay that inspired this year's Met Gala here.


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