Met Ball 2014: The 8 Dresses Dividing Opinion

06 May 2014 by

2014 Met Ball- best and worst dresse

Rihanna in Stella McCartney [Getty]

The Met Ball offers the year’s most fashionable red carpet with designers vying to dress Hollywood’s most photogenic faces. This time around the Met exhibition is focused on American couturier Charles James setting the theme of  ball gowns and white tie or last night’s gala. From frothy frills to striking plumes, over the course of the evening all manner of dressmaking skills were showcased, but as ever some frocks managed to divide opinion. Below Grazia’s Senior Fashion News & Features Editor, Katherine Ormerod analyses the dresses making headlines for better or worse….

1. Sarah Jessica Parker

Sarah Jessica Parker in Oscar de la Renta

2014’s Met Ball Gala might go down as the night of glove with long opera styles featuring heavily. SJP’s effort here works perfectly with the theme – she looks like she could have stepped right out of Cecil Beaton’s famous image of Charles James clad ball-goers, although they might have baulked at the obvious branding. Elsewhere, the sculptural hair is way too princess Leia – a modern interpretation of a classic up-do is jarring with such an uber old school gown.

2. Rita Ora

Rita Ora in Donna Karan Atelier

Ms O’s racy frock ‘n’ thigh highs has been drawing some pretty negative reviews online – and there’s no denying the ensemble would have raised plenty of eyebrows in Charles James’ time. The thing is with a ballgown it’s usually better to keep it chic, rather than raunch it up with a stripper boot and lace armband. Then again, Rita has never exactly been a paid up member of the ‘less is more’ pack.

3. Monica Belluci

 Monica Belucci in Dolce & Gabbana

Monica + Dolce & Gabbana = Fashion Heaven. While it might have been nice to have seen a little more of Belluci’s bountiful bosom and curves – NB – a cape doesn’t do much for a girl’s silhouette – but it certainly helped her make an entrance.

4. Lena Dunham

Lena Dunham in Giambattista Valli

This embellished Giambattista Valli frock is flirty and fun but doesn’t speak much to the old timer elegance of the Met Ball’s theme. In better news, Lena’s new fringe is a total winner.

5. Kate Upton

Kate Upton in Dolce & Gabbana

Kate Upton’s marvelous embonpoint takes centre stage in her Dolce & Gabbana black lace gown. While there’s a flamenco/ Sicilian widow vibe going on that drama-phile Charles James would doubtless have loved, it does read slightly too costume-y.

6. Tabitha Simmons


Tabitha Simmons in Dolce & Gabbana

‘Go big or go home’ is superstylist Tabitha Simmons’ message here – this Dolce & Gabbana humongous gown is a total showstopper and makes her look like a wood nymph. While critics have suggested the dress has a swamping effect, from my point of view it’s the most romantic dress of the night.

7. Lupita Nyong’o

Lupita Nyong'o in Prada

The year’s Marmite dress, you either love or hate Lupita’s feathered flapper era frock. Perhaps she’s taken the emerald theme a little too far with the matching shoes, clutch and headband but the Met ball is meant to be all about a) fashion design and b) risk taking, and Lupita brings plenty to the table in this jeweled Prada number.

8. Katie Holmes

Katie Holmes in Marchesa

Rather than going for the belle of the ball prize, Katie Holmes opted to dress instead like Belle from Beauty and the Beast. While I love a Disney princess as much as the next girl, there’s no place for this kind of thing on the Met Ball tapis rouge. If it were Suri, you’d almost forgive her. But then she is an 8-year old, whereas Katie is a grown woman.

See all of the red carpet looks in the gallery below...

GALLERY>> All MET Gala Looks

Lupita Nyong'o in Prada

Emma Stone in Thakoon

Hailee Steinfeld in Prabal Gurung

© Rex

Haile Steinfeld in Prabal Gurung

Ashley Olsen in Chanel

© Rex

Mary Kate in Gianfranco Ferré and Ashley Olsen in Chanel

Rihanna in Stella McCartney

Rihanna in Stella McCartney

Victoria Beckham in Victoria Beckham

David and Victoria Beckham in Victoria Beckham

Kim Kardashian in Lanvin and Kanye West

Kim Kardashian in Lanvin

Blake Lively in Gucci

Blake Lively in Gucci

Adriana Lima in Givenchy Haute Couture by Riccardo Tisci

Dianna Agron in Miu Miu

© Rex

Kate Bosworth in Stella McCartney

Liu Wen in Zac Posen

Claire Danes in Oscar de la Renta

Rachel McAdams in Ralph Lauren

Adele Exarchopoulos in Prada

Arizona Muse in Ralph & Russo

Joan Smalls in Vera Wang

Amy Adams in Oscar de la Renta

Karlie Kloss in Oscar de la Renta

Alexa Chung in Nina Ricci

Brie Larson in Prada

Dree Hemingway in Proenza Schouler

Dakota Johnson in Jason Wu

Gabrille Union in Prada

Florence Welch in Valentino Couture

© Rex

Cara, Rihanna, Stella, Kate and Reese in Stella McCartney

© Rex

Anne Hathaway in Calvin Klein

Beyonce in Givenchy

Kristen Stewart in Chanel

Dita Von Tease in Zac Posen

Kendall Jenner in Topshop

Lena Dunham in Giambattista Valli

Beyonce in Givenchy

Cara Delevingne in Stella McCartney

Kirsten Dunst in Rodarte

Riley Keough in Louis Vuitton

Reese Witherspoon in Stella McCartney

Charlize Theron in Dior Couture

Naomi Watts in Givenchy Haute Couture by Riccardo Tisci

Janelle Monae

Diane Kruger in Hugo Boss

Chloe Moretz in Chanel Couture

Hayden Panettiere in Dennis Basso

Kate Upton in Dolce & Gabbana

Marion Cotillard in Dior Couture

Taylor Swift in Oscar de la Renta

Taylor Swift in Oscar de la Renta

Allison Williams in Oscar de la Renta

Amber Heard in Giambattista Valli Haute Couture

Emmy Rossum in Carolina Herrera

© Rex

Naomi Campbell in Givenchy

Jessica Alba in Diane Von Furstenberg

Katie Holmes in Marchesa

Kylie Minogue in Marchesa

Leighton Meester in Emilio Pucci

Lily Allen in Chanel

Selena Gomez in Diane Von Furstenberg

Solange Knowles in 3.1 Phillip Lim

Diane Kruger in Hugo Boss and Joshua Jackson

Georgia May Jagger in Thierry Mugler

Lea Michele in Altuzarra

Elizabeth Olsen in Miu Miu

Rosie Huntington Whiteley in Balmain

Michelle Williams in Louis Vuitton

© Rex

Rita Ora in Donna Karan Atelier

Nicole Richie in Donna Karan Atelier

Karolina Kurkova in Marchesa

© Rex

Zoe Saldana in Michael Kors

Tabitha Simmons in Dolce & Gabbana

Bradley Cooper

Eddie Redmayne

Suki Waterhouse in Burberry

Suki Waterhouse in Burberry

Anna Wintour in Chanel

Sarah Jessica Parker in Oscar de la Renta

Sarah Jessica Parker in Oscar de la Renta

Chloe Sevingy in Kenzo

Rosamund Pike in Louis Vuitton

Colin Firth and Livia Firth


All posts must obey the house rules, if you object to any comments please let us know and we'll take the appropriate action.