No wonder 2022 was a big year for fashion. The world of style returns in full, frivolous way after the years of the pandemic. The economy is a different story, but that’s why we have the lipstick index: the theory that sales of affordable luxury goods increase during periods of economic downturn. So, yes, the cost of living in crisis can be rampant, but so are parties, red carpet looks, and front rows.
In fact, so much has happened that it’s hard to believe it all happened in the same year. It almost seems ridiculous that the same year that gave us a slew of Rihanna maternity outfits also gave us the drama Don’t Worry Darling and accompanying Harry Styles and Florence Pugh red carpet looks. And then, less than a month later, we saw Bella Hadid spraying a dress and Heidi Klum squirming like a worm.
In case you missed it, here are the biggest viral fashion moments of 2022.
Rihanna serves maternity look after maternity look
The year of fashion moments kicked off in true Herculean style with Rihanna on January 31. Yes, Chanel’s AW96 pink quilted coat that made waves around the world, stripped down to reveal the singer’s baby belly, with dad in Carhartt’s A$AP Rocky outfit on hand.
Little did we know then that this was only the beginning. The next four months, leading up to the final delivery on May 13, saw a slew of groundbreaking maternity outfits. See-through dresses in the front row of Dior, lacy crop tops at Gucci shows, red jumpsuits on the cover of US Vogue, and so on and so forth.
Nicole Kidman is wearing Miu Miu mini
Ah, the ubiquitous Miu Miu mini skirt. The true outfit of 2022, this little number has been worn by almost everyone and everyone over the past year. First appearing in more stories (Zendaya for Interview magazine, Paloma Elsesser for iD), then red carpet appearances (Sydney Sweeney, MTV Movie Awards) and appearing in a selfie for the coolest Gen Z outfit. (male model Vin Ho, Emma Corrin and Tommy Dorfman).
But Nicole Kidman was, as Gen Z says, really the best for it. The 55-year-old actress posed for Vanity Fair wearing an off-putting low waist duo miniskirts in February, driving the internet into a frenzy and the demand for gym memberships.
Julia Fox at the Oscars
It was definitely the Year of the Fox. It began with an infamously extravagant courtship with a rapper whose name will not be pronounced in January. Photo shoots in restaurants, apartments full of clothes – and these are only the first two dates. Rapper and actress Uncuh Jahmz broke up on Valentine’s Day, so the rest of the year unfolded like a tale of two. Her ex was slowly disintegrating into a social media documented breakdown like no other while she grew and grew in the fashion scene.
Favourite? Oscars dress. A leather fist neckline, a clutch of human hair, self-drawn eyes in the shape of a swan lake (Say with me now: “I actually made them myself”). May it reign long.
First look at Margot Robbie as Barbie
On June 27, as we were fast approaching the summer rush, Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling’s squint-inducing fluorescent outfits arrived. Shooting on location in Los Angeles for Greta Gerwig’s upcoming film Barbie, Robbie dazzled in an 80s swirl swimsuit and bright pink bike shorts, while Gosling in a matching outfit, both sporting yellow visors and roller skates. Combine that with the Valentino PP Pink collection, which launched with 40 head-to-toe pink looks in March and sparked Barbiecore hysteria. Given that the movie won’t hit theaters until next summer, it looks like Barbiecore may (God willing) stick around long into 2023.
Kim K spoils the Internet (again), among other things
The Metropolitan Museum of Art hosted the Costume Institute’s annual gala on the first Monday in May under the theme “Gilded Glamor” as part of the second installment of its “In America” series. As usual, the arrival of the guests created a perfect storm of carefully curated on-topic and ridiculously off-topic looks, ranging from hosts Blake Lively, Ryan Reynolds, Anna Wintour and Lin-Manuel Miranda to the very late Kim Kardashian, shoulder to shoulder with her ex-boyfriend , Pete Davidson.
Kim’s look overshadowed all others when she revealed that she was wearing Marilyn Monroe’s iconic “Happy Birthday Mr President” dress, which the actress originally wore while singing for John F. Kennedy in 1962. Unfortunately for Kim, that wasn’t the main takeaway from the outfit: it quickly became apparent that Kim’s famous butt didn’t fit in the dress, so she had to lose weight to fit in – but then she damaged it anyway.
Kate Middleton is camping in the Caribbean
I just love it when the Royals do something interestingtrue? I mean the dress code, not the start of another Netflix series (please, I can’t take it). Also, I’ve seen so many plaid coats, Alexander McQueen coats, and beige dresses on the ladies of this royal family that it’s left me numb for life, so when someone goes out in a bit of color, that’s nice. Kate Middleton did just that on her royal trip to the Caribbean in March, where she wore an unusual pink sequin gown by The Vampire’s Wife for a special party in Belize.
The dress was a hit, as were many of her more ambitious outing outfits, but unfortunately those fuschia sequins still weren’t enough to distract from the overall bad look of the tour (Remember the photos of Kate and Will reaching over the wire fences, the handshakes with Jamaican children? Yes). One step forward…
Anne Hathaway reprises her role as The Devil Wears Prada
Anne Hathaway? The Devil Wears Prada flashback? Groundbreaking. No, really, it was groundbreaking. The Oscar-winning actress has expanded her look considerably this year, from full Valentino PP Pink get-ups at Fashion Week to Christopher John Rogers rainbow catsuits for talk shows to cute minidresses with a cone-shaped bodice at Cannes, courtesy of Gucci.
Despite serving up energy and variety throughout 2022, we’re nostalgic beasts at heart, so Anne’s mod moment topped them all was her little nod to Andy Sachs at NYFW’s FROW. She was wearing a dark brown crocodile leather coat, oversized sunglasses (a reference to Anne among Andy) and a black turtleneck reminiscent of her Devil Wears Prada counterpart’s final look. Which makes it even better: she wore it sitting front row at Michael Kors next to the one, Anna Wintour. Known as the inspiration for the fictional “Runway” boss Miranda Priestley.
Timothee Chalamet in his Haider Ackermann
This little boy knows how to do stunts, let me tell you. In September, Timothee Chalamet gave us another slice of red carpet reality when he showed up at the premiere of Bones and All at the Venice Film Festival wearing Haider Ackermann’s scarlet silk vest, which people quickly realized was missing a back. What a shame for him! But no, like everything this heartbreaker turned slayer does, it was very purposeful and much appreciated by 18 year old boys and girls around the world. This is by far the best look of his “Bones and All” press tour, but he’s made some good ones too, and all very to the point. Blood-red silk, bare skin, snow-white suits with diamonds on the bones – a lot. Look, the boy came to eat and he ate.
Florence Pugh shows up late with an Aperol Spritz
There’s a lot to be said for Flo Pugh’s big year in fashion, but her Don’t Worry Darling press tour outfits have to be worthy of an honorable mention. Granted, she pushed so little into the video (eye emojis) that there were actually only… two of them, but boy did she turn around when she showed up up. For its premiere at the Venice Film Festival (this festival was obviously important for fashion moments), Pugh caused a red carpet frenzy with her oversize black tulle gown with massive puffy sleeves and embroidered little silver stars.
But it was earlier that day when she taught everyone the true meaning of stardom: arriving late to her hotel in Venice, arriving late to a press conference for her own movie, hanging around with an Aperol Spritz, all in a purple Valentino double-breasted piece. And sunglasses. Perfect. No notes.
Bella Hadid wears a spray-painted dress
Good luck to anyone trying to have a Fashion Week “moment” this fall, because no matter who did what, all they could talk about was the moment Coperni sprayed Bella Hadid’s dress. So much so that, according to WWD, the media impact of the performance was valued at $26.3 million. Better than any old ad campaign, eh?
The media sensation was the result of the work of Manel Torres, the inventor of the Fabrican spray fabric, who was one of two people tasked with spraying Bella Hadid’s naked body (other than naked underwear) on the runway to close the Coperni show. Then came Charlotte Raymond, the brand’s head of design, who took the dress from a silly thong to a chic one by gently manipulating the shoulders and cutting in the thigh slit. Voila, viral.
Heidi Klum dresses up as a bug
If spray paint dresses started in October, bugs ended it. Heidi Klum’s annual Halloween party brought us classic costumes like the Joker, Catwoman, Cleopatra and… a giant worm, which Klum herself was of course wearing. Honestly, what did you expect from Heidi Klum? Over the past few years, she has been disguising herself as an older woman, Fiona from Shrek, and a skinless human body. She’s definitely not aiming for sex appeal in her Halloween looks – well, except late at night when she took off her bug costume to reveal a dazzling nude teddy underneath. (But most importantly, he left the bug face behind.)
Jodie Turner-Smith hosts the Fashion Awards
It would be sacrilege to end this look without mentioning Jodie Turner-Smith, Jodie Turner-Smith, 2022 red carpet heavyweight. The actress finally got some recognition for her fashion chops this year in the most official form: she was asked to host the British Fashion Awards earlier this month. Responding in this way, Turner-Smith portrayed the event in not one, but many amazing, bizarre stylings. Her first look – a lime green flowy Gucci Greek gown – would have sufficed on its own, but it just isn’t Jodie Turner-Smith. We are manifesting this energy for 2023, right gang?