Every Last Piece of Queer Fashion From 2021’s Met Gala That We Could Find

We’re firmly in this chapter of the pandemic where… well, the pandemic continues never ending… but somehow there’s also still the Met Ball? Which, if we’re honest with ourselves, is kinda weird, right? I mean a “vaxed, everyone must wear masks indoors” Met Ball, but nonetheless a Met Ball, indeed.

Thanks to the Coronavirus there hasn’t been a Met Ball in the last two Mays, but as long as Vogue lives and breathes, September will mean fashion, and so here we are the second Monday in September (not the infamous “first Monday in May”) with flamboyant dresses and suits to critique with the signature flourish and snark that is our right as gays.

If you need a quick refresher on the Met Gala (formally known as the The Costume Institute Gala), it’s a fundraiser, co-sponsored by Anna Wintour and Vogue, supporting the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Costume Institute in New York City. It’s also the soft launch of the Metropolitan Museum’s annual fashion exhibit — basically, an unabashed love letter to the craft and art of fashion, with a red carpet more iconic than the gala itself, etc etc etc. This is the plot of every queer woman’s favorite movie to scream that Cate Blanchett and Sandra Bullock should just make out already, so I won’t belabor the point. The theme this year was “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion.” I’ve gathered all the queer and trans people I could find, so you have something to waste time scrolling through instead of whatever work it is you are trying to avoid (no judgement here!*). Let’s fucking go.

* By no judgement, I mean that I had every intention to get you this round up in time for your morning coffee, but instead I ate 1/2 a pack of Oreos and cried over the 17th time I’ve seen this episode of Grey’s Anatomy. Happy Met from me and my period!

Zoe Kravitz, in Yves Saint Laurent, and Tessa Thompson, in Iris van Herpen

😳 😳 😳

😳 😳 😳

Zoe Kravitz in a see-throw chainlink gown and Tessa Thompson in a see through gown with deep red feathers on the bottom, both on the MET red carpet 2021

Photo by Arturo Holmes/MG21/Getty Images

Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images

Photo by John Shearer/WireImage

Said it best:

Elliot Page, in Balenciaga

Elliott Page in a black tux and a green ribbon on his lapel, he is wearing a mask.

Photo by Jamie McCarthy/MG21/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

Elliott Page in a black tux and a green ribbon on his lapel

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

I’ve been informed that “oversized 90s suit” is indeed actually back in style and this fit was in fact intentional, so congratulations Elliot for being on trend! (Love those kicks wholeheartedly)

Hunter Schafer

Photo by ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

I never knew I wanted Jules from Euphoria starring in Marvel’s X-Men remake, but daaaaamn.

Amandla Stenberg

Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Yes Daddy, I do.

Cara Delevingne, in Dior

Photo by Kevin Mazur/MG21/Getty Images For The Met Museum/Vogue

“If someone doesn’t know what this means, you’re gonna have to look it up” — Cara

OK! A FEW THINGS ABOUT THIS: 1. Cara and Dior did not come up with this phrase, and we have a few Autostraddle writers who are very curious if they paid the woman of color sex worker who did. 2. After four years in queer media, today was the first day I spelled Cara Delevingne right on the first try, which means I either get to level up to my final boss form or run away off the side of a cliff because my life has no meaning, and I can’t tell which. 3. This entire outfit/quote combo feels like if “trying too hard on your school project” was a person. I’m sorry.

Kristin Stewart

Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images

It’s also important to me, personally, that you know that Zoe Kravitz really made the rounds last night.

Photo by Arturo Holmes/MG21/Getty Images

Photo by Noam Galai/GC Images

Keke Palmer, in Sergio Hudson

Photo by Gotham/GC Images

It’s giving Classic Americana. It’s giving 70s Diva. It’s giving Diana Ross. And I liiiiiiiiive.

Sha’Carri Richardson

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

Has “step on my neck” gone out of style? Is “choke me” too straight forward for a first date? Can someone let me know in the comments?

Lily Rose Depp

Photo by John Shearer/WireImage

She spent a lot of time very adorably hugging this person that I do not know…

Photo by John Shearer/WireImage

And then also there was KStew, because of course, KStew.

Photo by Arturo Holmes/MG21/Getty Images

Nikkie de Jager/Nikkitutorials

Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

The dress is an intentional homage to Mother Marsha P. Johnson (peep the close up on the skirt below, with Marsha’s signature “Pay It No Mind”) and while I appreciate  that fashion is political, and the purpose of uplifting our mother as an American icon given the theme of the night, but still.. something about this ain’t sitting quite white.

If you know what I mean.

Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Kim Petras, in Collina Strada

Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images

I have no commentary on Kim Petras.  I did not know who Kim Petras was until I googled her last night. But a win for the horse girls, I suppose.


Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

The Farrah Fawcett/Cruella Cruella de Vil hair.

The Liberace suit.

Queer excellence.

Lili Reinhart

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

A lot of the commentary of last night’s (admittedly, often lackluster) red carpet was, “it’s prom.” And with zero disrespect I must say, never have those two small words been more felt in my soul than when looking at this picture of Lili Reinhart.

Barbie Ferreira, in Jonathan Simkhai

Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images

Speaking of prom, the Euphoria bbs had such fun last night! Barbie, you simply are gorgeous!

Valentina Sampaio

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

Until last night, Brazilian model Valentina Sampaio’s claim to fame was being the first trans model in Sports Illustrated. But I think we can all safely agree that after last night her claim to fame will be those wings. For my money, the best photo of the night.

Indya Moore

Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images

I know I’m here on some party and bullshit, no thoughts just vibes and jokes, but you should read Indya’s caption on the Met Gala. It’s serious and well worth your time.

Megan Fox, in Dundas

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

Sorry, love a bi-con (hold one second for Gillian Anderson, she’s coming). But I can’t with these clip on bangs. I cannot.

Gillian Anderson

Photo by Arturo Holmes/MG21/Getty Images

What I love most about Gillian Anderson is that her entire vibe is as such that as a living bisexual legend, she does not ever have to do more on a red carpet than “just enough.”

Chef’s kiss.

 Ilana Glazer, in Aliétte

Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

Oh trust me, you’re gonna want to see this one from the back.

Photo by John Shearer/WireImage

Mj Rodriguez, in Thom Browne

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

I sincerely appreciate Mj channeling the power of manifestation and coming dressed in the exact same silhouette as a literal award, less than five days ahead of her historic Emmy run. Congrats.

Cynthia Erivo

Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images

Cynthia Erivo continues to dance in that grey area between “out” and out out, so much so that it felt felt weighty whether or not to include her on today’s list — I asked no less than three different editors about it! — but ultimately the decision wasn’t ours, it was Cynthia’s. Those nails demanded our attention. And our attention they shall have.

Lena agrees.

Janet Mock, in Valentino

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

A classic in every way.

… And finally…

Megan Rapinoe

Photo by Cindy Ord/MG21/Getty Images

Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic


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Carmen Phillips

Carmen Phillips is Autostraddle's former editor in chief. She began at Autostraddle in 2017 as a freelance team writer and worked her way up through the company, eventually becoming the EIC from 2021-2024. A Black Puerto Rican feminist writer with a PhD in American Studies from New York University, Carmen specializes in writing about Blackness, race, queerness, politics, culture, and the many ways we find community and connection with each other.  During her time at Autostraddle, Carmen focused on pop culture, TV and film reviews, criticism, interviews, and news analysis. She claims many past homes, but left the largest parts of her heart in Detroit, Brooklyn, and Buffalo, NY. And there were several years in her early 20s when she earnestly slept with a copy of James Baldwin’s “Fire Next Time” under her pillow. To reach out, you can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram, or her website.

Carmen has written 716 articles for us.


  1. I feel simultaneously seen and called out by the end of your intro Carmen. Let’s fucking go, indeed.

    A few thoughts on fashion.

    Can I just say that I am really, really tired of the too small suit trend in menswear but I’m not actually ready for a revival of the too big suit either?

    And while you did warn us earlier that the early 00s bare belly look was coming back, I wasn’t prepared for that either. All I can say is NO. There’s no room for another decade to be revived right now, not when both 80s and 90s fashions are also being revived. /rant

    Keke Palmer and Gillian Anderson are both stunning and made all of my mindless scrolling worth it.

  2. The Met Gala was very blah for me overall. I was disappointed that Janelle Monae skipped, she always wears something iconic. I liked Kristen Stewart’s look. It read as very rockabilly and I thought it was a good interpretation of the theme.

    Also, is Keke Palmer queer? I was surprised to see her in the roundup.

  3. Here’s Lili Reinhart. I’m not really in love with the dress itself, but I do like the floral part of it.

  4. I don’t know if Zoe Kravitz was hitting on everyone or if she simply has Resting Seduction Face, but either way 😳

  5. i can’t imagine wearing trying to wear the tux/gown Mj Rodriguez has on, even if i could effect her pose (i could never). but i never want to stop looking at her in it.

  6. That would be Margaret Qualley hugging Lily Rose Depp. She played the hitchhiking Manson girl in Once Upon a Time in America with Depp’s bestie Harley Quinn Smith. Hasn’t been in anything really breakthrough as yet, but starred alongside Sigourney Weaver in a recent film about J. D. Salinger because that’s just what we need.

    • She’s Andie MacDowell’s daughter! Surprised more people don’t know who she is. She was also really good in the gay nun movie Novitiate (also starring Dianna Agron as another repressed Christian)

    • Yes, she was in My Salinger Year, but more importantly, she is Pussycat in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.

  7. I don’t know what Kehlani and SZA got going on but photos of them at the met gala after party have been getting me through the week

  8. Hunter has nerves of steel to wear those freaking contacts, I can’t handle regular contacts, let alone ones that blind you

    And does “Peg” stand in for “F**k” the Patriarchy? Otherwise it kinda sounds like its denigrating being penetrated… which is itself a byproduct of the Patriarchy

  9. Quick question: is Zoe Kravitz wearing any underwear? Because all I think I see is a beaded thong and that just seems uncomfortable?

    Anyway: she looks fabulous. It’s like one of those ancient Egyptian net dresses that inspired a lot of 1920s dresses.

    • There was a plot in Sex in the City where Samantha wears a pearl thong and runs up stairs and I viscerally remember the line “instead of getting off she was getting pissed off!”

      All I could think of looking at that thong.

    • Oh wow, I just googled Egyptian net dress and wow! Just stunning.

      And I agree with everything you said about Zoe Kravitz – she looks gorgeous and I couldn’t help wondering about her underwear situation. Maybe that’s why she looks unfriendly yet hot?

  10. thank you for this delightful roundup!

    any particular reason the (excellent!) queer fashions of Lil Nas X, Dan Levy, Troye Sivan, Frank Ocean, and I’m sure others I missed, aren’t included in this post? :)

  11. ooh, Carmen, I’d love to hear more about your thoughts on Nikkitutorials’ dress if you’re willing to share

Comments are closed.