Gender fluidity has progressively become the essence of the decade, and everyone in the fashion scene has actively tried to promote it. It is no surprise that the Met Gala is the ultimate fashion red carpet event that everybody, even with a bleak sense of fashion, ardently looks forward to. It could be a celebrity or just a commoner with an interest in the fashion scene; Met Gala and its themes have been known to excite, rejuvenate, and create milestones in the fashion field every year.
When Met Gala came back for 2021, after the prolonged break that the pandemic caused, it was bigger and only better. Its theme ‘In America: A lexicon of Fashion’ was interpreted by the celebrities in various ways. The looks ranged from Kim Kardashian’s iconic body-hugging all-black ensemble to AOC’s ‘Tax the Rich’ slogan gown. At a place where all of the celebrities made bold statements with their designer outfits, ‘Angel Baby’ famed Australian singer and songwriter Troye Sivan did not step back. His classic black slip dress at the Met Gala did not just exemplify American fashion but also gender fluidity.
Troye Sivan did not opt for an American designer for the theme that needed everything American. He opted for French designer Joseph Altuzarra, who created a black slip dress for the Australian singer. The body-hugging slip dress came with a plunging neckline and had cutouts from the waist which gave the illusion of a cinched waistline.
Troye Sivan mentioned in an interview to Keke Palmer, who was the host for the Vogue’s red carpet event:
“When I think of America, especially New York, I think of chic, I think of black and white, I think of Robert Mapplethorpe and I think of leather.” Robert Mapplethorpe was an American photographer who proudly hailed from the LGBTQIA+ community. Mapplethorpe was known for his amazing celebrity portraits, which he took in a black and white theme. Troye channeled his fashion sense and incorporated the most American element that he could think of — a black gown.
Leather is quintessentially American in our opinion, and so is black and white. The singer accessorized his outfit by adding some bling to it in the form of a diamond-studded sleek choker necklace from Cartier. It was from the Cartier Essentials line launched by Cartier and was platinum-based with little diamonds studded all over. He also added a little 18-carat yellow gold Cartier love ring to the ensemble which too had diamonds studded all over. The stunning elements of his look did not just end here. Right where the trail of his long black dress ended, his futuristic chunky black boots peeped in. These boots had a heel size of about four inches and while the entire boot was a majestic black, the heel was transparent.
Another stunning visual element to his outfit has to be the black leather belt tied around his arm. This little element provided a perfect punk surprise to an otherwise classic American look.
The Troye Sivan Met Gala look wasn’t the only one that tried to incorporate gender fluidity and honor the LGBTQIA community. Schitt’s Creek’ David, Daniel Levy pulled off a stunning outfit designed by Jonathan Anderson. Daniel Levy’s outfit took inspiration from David Wojnarovicz, an American photographer, painter, and performing artist.
While Daniel Levy went all out with his outfit and wore a queer message on his sleeve quite literally, Troye Sivan incorporated it more subtly. The fact that he decided to don a slip dress was a statement in itself and broke gender barriers. Troye Sivan’s take on the American fashion theme incorporated the New York City classic chic element effortlessly.
When the singer made his entry into the 2018 Met Gala in a Red Valentino suit for the Celestial Bodies and Catholic theme, he turned everybody’s heads. It seemed like it would be impossible for him to topple that year’s look until he arrived this year, that too in style.
Gender is a man-made construct, and clothes are probably the most important tools of defining that construct for years now. Clothing items have defined gender stereotypes for ages, and it is those same clothing items that break gender barriers for us. Troye Sivan’s Met Gala look only took the propaganda of gender-fluid clothing forward with his subtle yet groundbreaking look.
The Met Gala 2021 may have successfully asserted bold fashion statements such as ‘Peg the Patriarchy’ and ‘Tax the Rich’ after its long hiatus. While some of these statements were written on the clothes for everyone to read aloud, some others made bold statements in an understated way, and Troye Sivan’s gender-fluid dress was undoubtedly one of them.