August 29 2014

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Why I’m Still Not Over Erykah Badu at the Met Gala


The Unofficial MET Ball After Party Hosted by The Top of The StandardThe whirlwind Met gala went down on Monday evening, which—in the fast-paced fashion news cycle—feels like eons ago. After repeated viewings of our epic 152-slide red-carpet report, there’s just one look worth revisiting, and that’s the tour de force that was Erykah Badu. She was clearly the coolest person at the event, and her “I don’t give a f*ck” attitude made her impact all the more persuasive.

Nearly a week later, I’m still trolling photo agencies for unseen Badu Met images and relishing in the candid selfies she shared with So what’s behind my obsession with the neo-soul queen? I’m by no means a fangirl, and could maybe hum along to some of her bigger hits. But in addition to Badu’s Givenchy Haute Couture look (more on that momentarily), it was simply her unanticipated, fundamentally vital presence at one of the industry’s biggest nights that provoked my reaction: “This is everything!”

In a sea of ball-gown-clad starlets well versed in the step-and-repeat paparazzi routine, Badu was a breath of fresh air in her embellished topcoat and strapless black jumpsuit designed by Riccardo Tisci (who recently cast her in Givenchy’s Spring ’14 ad campaign). And let’s not forget that statement-making hat, which was the crown jewel of her outfit. The tall, wide-brimmed lid quickly earned its fair share of Pharrell comparisons, but many didn’t realize Badu has been rocking major top hats long before Pharrell debuted his now-signature Vivienne Westwood style at this year’s Grammys—after all, she’s got to be able to stash that mass of all-natural hair somewhere. Completing the effect were a pair of bling-y diamond chandelier earrings, Badu’s own gold grill, and a fistful of rings by Lillian Shalom. All in all, Badu’s look was inspired, her personality shined, and her presence was memorable, which is why I still can’t get over her.

Dept. of Culture