The first Monday of May has come and gone, and with it, the fashion event of the year presented by the Metropolitan Museum of Art: the Met Gala. 

Wearing my favorite plaid sweatpants and a torn T-shirt, I’ve compiled a list of the best and worst dressed stars who graced the carpet to honor the Met Costume Institute’s spring exhibition, “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion.”

The theme, “Garden of Time” — taken from English writer J.G Ballard’s 1962 short story about a couple surrounded by their magnificent garden who eventually destroy it to hold back a mob beyond their walls —  honors the beauty and destruction of nature. For the first time in a while, it was tough to narrow down a list of my top looks from the evening.

The whimsical, fantastical and uninspired graced the carpet Monday night, with an unfortunate lack of a few iconic Met Gala attendees including Rihanna and Lady Gaga.

Best Dressed

Tyla – Balmain

The Grammy-winning singer’s innovative dress sculpted with sand and microcrystals cemented her as the stand out of the evening

Her long train and asymmetrical strapless neckline created the mythical image of rising from a sand dune right before the event — complimented by the patches of textured sand pressed onto her body and brushed on her shoulders. Completed with an hourglass handbag and wet hair, the singer’s magical ensemble embodied the passage — or garden — of time unlike any other. 

Anok Yai – Swarovski

Shimmering crystals akin to mermaid scales covered the supermodel’s body in a jumpsuit made by Swarovski. Yai, a growing staple of the Met Gala for her impeccable style and modeling talents, transformed into a naiad-like deity underneath the flashing cameras.

The contrasting baby blue and navy tones adorning the ensemble sparkled on her skin combined with the form fitting design to enhance her slender figure, immediately drawing all eyes to her and creating one of the most impactful looks of the night.

[UMD student fashion show celebrates spring with alumni designers]

Harris Reed and Demi Moore – Harris Reed

Reed and Moore brought a much needed suspended reality element to the Met Gala.

Moore, who said her dress was made entirely from wallpaper, wore a black gown with a massive heart-shaped sleeve design, finished off with what appeared to be large cherry blossoms painted on the side and bottom of the gown. But the most striking element was the arrangement of sharp arrows protruding from her sleeves and matching Reed’s own circular, halo-esque headpiece.

Reed wore a matching look to Moore with a stunning two-piece gold and blue ensemble — featuring a corset spreading into wide pointed ends like the blossoming leaves of a flower along with thick fabric and a playful wide-leg pant. 

Wisdom Kaye – Robert Wun

Wisdom Kaye — who has recently taken the online fashion scene by storm through his innovative TikToks  — refused to conform to the lackluster outfits often worn by male attendees. The influencer stood tall in a long crimson coat seared with burn marks at the hem, a top hat and tightly ruffled sleeves with finishing touches of tar embellishing edges of the fabric, creating an enchanting homage to the beauty of fire. 

Zendaya – Givenchy

A best-dress list wouldn’t be complete without the princess of the Met Gala. While many online raved about Zendaya’s first dress — a luxurious deep navy and moss mermaid gown likely honoring the feathers of a peacock — I enjoyed her morbid and heavier second look of a lacy vintage Givenchy gown more. 

Not leaving out a single color in her wide spring floral hat, the actress and co-chair of Monday night’s event’s all-black look personified the death of spring and the inevitability of a dark end. The gown’s long train and curtain-like fabric brought the beauty of mourning to the forefront. 

Rebecca Ferguson – Thom Browne

This look brought “Quoth the Raven ‘Nevermore’” in an outfit. The form fitting, sequined gown dripping with silver crystals from the chest down, embodying an evil queen fairytale. Similar to Zendaya, Ferguson’s look is a dramatic take on “The Garden of Time” and celebrates the beauty of nature at night. The vine tendrils woven into her dress and birds captured mid-jump within the folds of the gown give a writhing, living feeling to the outfit. 

[Students present creative dance pieces at UMoves performance]

Worst Dressed

Doja Cat – Vetements

The wet look has been done. The sheer, nudity moment has been done. For Doja, who has been at the forefront of edgy, experimental fashion in the past couple years, the dripping mascara and all-white gown drenched in water felt quite pedestrian. 

Amelia Gray – Undercover

The princess Belle imagery doesn’t save this model from a complete miss of a Met Gala look. The bulging, slightly sheer skirt filled with scattered roses seems to expand a block from her waist.

Camila Morrone – Chanel

Chanel is always at the scene of the crime. Trapping a stunning woman like Morrone in a frumpy black and white ensemble is unforgivable. With the ruffled top resembling a coffee filter and her tassel skirt mimicking a car wash spinner, this was easily the worst and least inspired look of the night.