This weekend, while we were doing super-glamorous things like laundry and dodging drunken St. Patrick’s Day revelers, Beyoncé, Blue Ivy and the Knowles-Lawson-Carter clan showed up and out at the WACO Theater Center’s second-annual Wearable Art Gala in Los Angeles.
WACO, an acronym for Where Art Can Occur, was co-founded by Tina Knowles Lawson and her actor husband, Richard Lawson, who also served as the evening’s hosts. Honorees for the evening were Beyoncé and her mother-in law, Gloria Carter, while Solange, Bianca Lawson, Kelly Rowland and La La Anthony served as honorary event chairs. The gala’s host committee included Holly Robinson Peete, Vanessa Bell Calloway and Lela Rochon Fuqua, among others.
This year’s theme was “From WACO to Wakanda,” and the attendees used the opportunity to come through black-royalty-style. Seriously, we feel like the WACO red carpet might have just featured every outfit that didn’t make it onto the carpet at the Black Panther premiere.
But, of course, no one had on more royal attire than Queen Bey and her Mini-Me, Blue Ivy, dressed in coordinating gold outfits—complete with gold headpieces. (It should be noted that this was a three-generation theme, as Mama Tina was also attired in a golden dress by designer Jean-Louis Sabaji.)
Beyoncé’s formfitting custom-made gown, designed by Indian fashion house Falguni Shane Peacock, featured an extravagant train and strategically placed beading over illusion netting. The dress was reportedly intended to evoke ancient Nubian warrior Queen Amanishakheto. The Queen Bee also surprised us with some pretty elaborately styled baby hair.
Blue’s dress was a sparkling confection of ribbons of gold lamé layered into a shape that ever so slightly resembled a very adorable tinsel tree. To top it off, the mini mogul wore a gold Mylar headpiece cut in the shape of a bob.
From the looks of it, Blue loved her look, but what she really loved was getting into the action at the evening’s auction, hosted by Star Jones. Jay and Bey’s firstborn has clearly inherited her parents’ penchant for investing in art, as she ambitiously bid up to $19,000 for an unknown piece, much to the delight of the crowd. It’s rumored that she lost that bid to Tyler Perry but ultimately took home a $10,000 piece as a consolation prize. Oh, the joys of childhood!
But, of course, the evening was really about the honors, and to accept her award for her years of humanitarian work, Beyoncé made a costume change into Sabaji’s leg-baring, elaborately embroidered “Sphinx” silk abaya dress that was, in the designer’s words, “inspired by a goddess and created for goddesses.” The gorgeous embroidery on the dress was created in tribute to the Mesopotamian solar deity, Shamash.
In her heartfelt speech, the megastar expressed the irony that she would receive this honor from her mother, Tina, since it was her mother who taught her that “there is something more valuable than any dollar amount, and that’s time.”
Rounding out the night’s festivities was a lush cover of Beyoncé’s ballad “I Was Here,” sung by her protégés, Parkwood Entertainment artists and Grown-ish stars Chloe x Halle, whose debut album, The Kids Are Alright, will be released Friday, March 23.
The 2018 Wearable Art Gala was definitely a night to celebrate, and from the looks of it, it was a major success. But in case you, like me, decided to forgo tickets to Jay and Bey’s upcoming tour (in favor of, I don’t know, bills), I’ll just leave you with this parting shot from the evening.