Celebrity Style

AOC's Met Gala Dress Has A Bold Message About Paying Taxes

Her look was designed by Aurora James of Brother Vellies.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 13: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez attends The 2021 Met Gala Celebrating In...
Kevin Mazur/MG21/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Although celebrities usually steal the spotlight at the annual Met Gala, congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez turned heads on the carpet with a bold statement imprinted onto her dress: Tax the rich.

Walking beside designer Aurora James of the fashion label Brother Vellies — who designed the dress in question — AOC wore a simple yet sophisticated white dress, complete with a tulle bottom. The show-stopping moment came, however, when she turned around and revealed the words “Tax the Rich” painted across the fabric in bold red lettering. The ensemble was also a nod to AOC’s heritage with her shoes featuring the official flower of Puerto Rico, the Flor De Maga.

In a press release about the evening, AOC said, “There’s no way I’d be doing this if it wasn’t with a woman of color and with the intent to grow the table and empower women that look like me. Despite being held in New York City, the culture of the Met Gala is everything but. NYC is often synonymous with inclusivity, inviting millions of people from different walks of life to call this city home. The Met Gala, on the other hand, is seen as elite and inaccessible. I’m attending today because I want to change just that and spotlight women of color who are often not included during events like these.”

AOC attends the 2021 Met Gala wearing Aurora James.Mike Coppola/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

James is the founder of the 15% Pledge, an initiative to encourage brands, designers, and companies to prioritize Black voices and creators. Given that, it’s fitting that she dressed AOC for the occasion.